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anyone else feel like they are "safer" because they have gained weight? i used to get leered at a lot, but my weight gain really stopped that...

Fri. May 12, 2:38pm

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i find it opposite - I get a lot of oogles and whistles from men, when I have some extra meat hanging out. Especially latin and black men - very uncomfortable. I hate it, that's why I want to lose weight...

Friday, May 12, 2006, 3:03 PM

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yes, OP i feel that way. the one time i was super-hot (in my 20s) the approaches were too much to bear - i quickly gained it all back and hung on to the weight for 10 more years. for some reason, i'm willing to accept the fact i might get hit on this time around. maybe b/c it seems less likely!

Friday, May 12, 2006, 3:49 PM

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two very different perspectives there! Personally, I think that being leered at might not be too pleasant, but it does satisfy that need in us that someone thinks we're attractive? I'd rather be leered at and slim and happy with my size and weight than overweight, self-conscious and not turning any heads!

Friday, May 12, 2006, 3:50 PM

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i think i feel less self-conscious and more happy with my body when i have a little extra weight-it's not how i LOOK that makes me want to lose weight, it's the other health issues. but, if i could be heavy and healthy, i think i would prefer that...

Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:08 PM

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To the 3.50pm poster - nope, nothing pleasant in sexual objectifying leering. I'm the one who gets too much unwanted attention when slightly overweight. I always feel like 'Ball of Fat' in the Guy de Maupassant story. If you're not familiar with the story, wikipedia has a short cheat sheet on it (link below)


Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:27 PM

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Interesting. so you'd rather be heavy and healthy than slim and healthy?

Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:28 PM

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i know that's maybe a bit odd, but i do prefer to be heavy & healthy than thin & healthy. i do not mean obese or very overweight, but i am 5'4'' and i like the way i feel and move when i'm in a size 8-10 more than when i was in a size 4. i can't really explain why, as i have no idea why. but, having been very slim and very heavy, i prefer the middle.

Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:33 PM

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ok, 4.27 pm. You are right actually. I don't enjoy being leered at. Perhaps I'm talking in a less 'sexual' sense, and in a more 'appreciative' sense. Isn't there anyone out there who knows what i mean??

Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:33 PM

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i know what you mean. as the OP, i meant LEERED at, not appreciated. that would be pleasant from either a man or woman, if not sexual.

Friday, May 12, 2006, 4:36 PM

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I never knew someone felt like me about his issue

The truth is ever since i was a child i wanted to be less attractive to men because men had always "oversteped" their bounds with me as a child (if u know what i mean) all in the name of "oooo you are sooo pretty and ooo u are sooo cute. well i never seen them fawn over my fatter cousin so i tried to be like her and it worked, until i wanted to be thin again as a pre teen and teen ager. Now as an adult im stuck with these bad habits and a serious love for good food to make me feel better about all the pain. Being in this place in my life is seriously hard. I try to love myself but i sure wish i knew then what I know now.


Friday, May 12, 2006, 8:29 PM

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a suggestion

Get a very short haircut and men won't leer...though (bi or lesbian) women might. :) I have found this to be true.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006, 8:50 AM

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being invisible without being fat

Anyone can be invisible if they want to, except maybe pro basketball players. Wear sweats in black or grey a couple of sizes too large, nothing expensive or shiny, pull your hair back into a messy ponytail, look down when you walk, don't wear makeup. Well, if you _really_ want to play the part a little pink eyeliner on your lower eyelid inside the lashes helps.

And then when you want to be seen you can put on your shiny high heels and slinky jeans and makeup, yeeha!

As for leering or the occasional remark, I'm old enough to enjoy it.

Thursday, May 18, 2006, 4:01 PM

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hey now, i have a very short haircut and i have men (and women) check me out still and compliment me on it!!! I've had the short hair for about 5 years now and i get just as much attention now than when I was 40 lbs heavier.

Yes, some people definitely may think i'm "gay" because of my hair . . . or they just think i'm hot and confident.

Thursday, May 18, 2006, 11:24 PM

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I find that having a little extra weight makes you seem sexier in clothes that are revealing than when you are fit.. I don't know, the visible rolls of flesh make you seem vulnerable, like you are TRYING to be noticed. Now that i am in better shape, I find it less necessary to show off my assets as much. When I was a size 10-12 and wearing a short skirt I could not stop the comments coming my way... like I wasn't allowed to wear revealing clothing if my butt and breasts were really round. Now that I am more petite, I just wear regular clothes.. and I stay out of bad neighborhoods where poor, uneducated men haven't ever learned manners. Does that make sense?

Friday, May 19, 2006, 12:30 AM

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Interesting discussion! I've always felt uncomfortable those looks from men, you know "elevator eyes," up and down, especially when I was younger and slimmer. But now that I'm in my forties and heavy, I realize I am invisible to a lot of people, even when I speak to them directly. I don't want to be leered up but I would like to be treated like I'm a person. Since I've noticed this, I've been making more of an effort with dressing up just a bit, taking care with the hair and the makeup. Even though I'm still heavy, I find this boosts my self confidence and I get more postive reactions from people in general.

Friday, May 19, 2006, 4:58 AM

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Let em look

Honestly I used to hate being looked at... I've always gotten the looks, even when I felt I looked horrible.

What is the worst they could do (realistically). The chances of a man forgetting about you the second you walk by are almost 100%.

Guys are visual... they look at everything... women arent, but we still look, we just don't get caught.

An example of this is I had 3 of my friends ( all guys) hanging out in my room we were planning a cottage thing for the end of the summer.. I went into my closet and grabbed some pants ( I was wearing tight sweats before) and they all looked at me, then later when I came out of my bathroom *after I changed into the jeans* I couldnt find my belt and when I did find it and put it on, they were all like litterally staring at my belt area lol... like everything was at a dead stop...

Not a few hours later I asked one of them what that was about, and he was like "what? hm I didnt notice I was doing anything, I actually dont remember"

I think a lot of women also think * I'm ready to be blasted* that men are looking at them in a sexual way, when they SO aren't...

An example of this was at work JUST yesterday...

I was standing having some water, and another lady at the office ( she had to be 15 years older then me) was saying " oh the tech guys are staring at ME again" and I was like " oh yeah well you look nice today :) and she just smiled and then a few of them came over... and she was like " oh here we go again, they always get the guts to come up and then they walk away" and at that point I was like hmmmmm so tech guys come over and start talking to me and shutting her right out lol.. I was like odd... I thought she said they were looking at her...

Long story short I asked them if they were looking at her, and they said well we litterally looked, but because she was in our line of sight... not for anything else...

So I say 2 things... 1) let em look... enjoy the fact they WANT to look at you, and 2) they probably arent as creep or intense as you think, you may just be something they glance at and you happen to look at them at the same time!!!

Just thoughts.

Friday, May 19, 2006, 8:42 AM

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I've always just thought it was funny. I've been walking places and gotten honked at our whistled at pretty regularly since I was about 18 (I'm 23 now). I have a fiance, and it makes him jealous like crazy, which I love! He knows I have options, so he has to be good to me!

I don't know, guess I just like attention!

Oh, I'm pretty shy too, I never know what to say to people I don't know or don't know well. Maybe that's why I like the attention for my looks - I don't have to respond!

Friday, May 19, 2006, 11:01 AM

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When I was much heavier my mentality was I was safe from sexual acts of violence. No one would approach me because I am heavy. I was using public transportation and would get home at night so that thinking helped me think I was safer. Then I realized these lunatics go after just about anyone regardless of size. How am I to fight or run away from an attack if I'm 100lbs overweight and can't run more than 3 minutes. So, I lost weight. Regardless of what the odds are of being attacked at least I know now I can put up a fight.

Friday, May 19, 2006, 11:44 AM

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RE putting up a fight. Back right after 9/11 when everyone was thinking about what they would do if they found themselves on an airplane with terrorists, I was talking to probably the heaviest person I know (more than 100 pounds overweight). She said that in that situation she intended to get into the aisle and block the bad guys from going anywhere, "I can't fight but I'm a great obstacle!"

Friday, May 19, 2006, 2:24 PM

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I don't care if men leer either. Why should it make me feel dirty or ashamed? Some men are pigs period, and why would I let them dictate how I look? I'm not going to let some guys prevent me from being my personal best.

When I get leered at or other unsolicited attention, I either a) ignore them, b) roll my eyes and continue on my merry way or c) tell them to keep dreaming, and find someone else. Personal opinion, the ones who leer aren't the ones to be afraid of. Those you should be afraid of will be much more subtle and discreet.

Friday, May 19, 2006, 3:39 PM

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I'm so glad someone agreed with me =D!!

More power to us!!!

Friday, May 19, 2006, 4:59 PM

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i think ive sabataged weight loss in the past b/c of the leering. i work promotions in bars and it gets quite annoying. but then when i gained weight and the constent flirting stopped, i felt unattractive...somethings wrong. the grass is always greener on the other side!! i'd rather be healthy and fit and have to deal with stupid men googling then be unhealthy and unhappy with myself just to keep them at bay. fun topic by the way, i always kinda felt conceded talking about this.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 5:04 PM

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Wow! I love all the different points of view on this topic. I thought I was the only one who had those feelings about weight being a cloak to hide yourself in safety. I too had always felt uncomfortable being leered at when I was younger and slim. Now I am middle aged and heavier and I miss those looks. I think when I get the weight off and if by some miracle someone actually gives me a look I will know how to handle it better. Looks are nice and are a compliment, but leers are disrespectful. I think I can tell the difference now and can handle it appropriately.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006, 6:54 PM

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I recently lost 35+ lbs and I'm a bit uncomfortable with some of the attention I'm getting. Some from customers and coworkers. Also I'm not good at responding to compliments, even though I like receiving them, go figure. I really like looking good and I like wearing more form fitting clothes, I just don't want men telling me I am sexy, except for my husband.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 7:12 PM

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Woah - What a string of comments! I've been collecting issues like this over the years and here they are:

First - my Mom, she gained weight with the pregancies and she kept it on. Why, when later she became a diabetic? It's becuase my Dad was extremely jealous of how men reacted to her when they were young and to keep him from embrassing her and out of fights, she got fat and staid fat. Then he left her (for a lot issues that didn't have to do with her weight) and she regreted the weight and the lifestyle she's forced to live with as a diabetic.

Second - My cousin, who as always fought her weight up and down, as an executive had to serve as an airline stewardess when they went on strike. The comments and looks she got were so hurtful. Then she started loosing the weight and realized that at work, she had been invisible to a lot of her co-workers and the upper management. They actually saw her only after she lost weight! She said that was a real eye-opener too. So, there is a lot of discrimination against folks with weight issues.

Third - - this comment is more about Cultures. In the Latin world - heavy women are seen as being desirable becuase of a lot of reasons - they are good cooks, they provide well for the family, they won't stray off to other men, they are grateful for the attention - a lot of vaiables. Plus - the men like having something to wrap their arms around - it feels like Mom to them - it means comfort.

My second husband, who happens to be my last long term relationship, is Hispanic - he's not from Mexico but he understands the culture pretty well. We have issues becuase he really hates the men who leer at me and because of him, they do it behind my back. Sometimes, I think he sabotagoes my healthy diet becuase he doesn't want men comming on to me. But he also loves me the way I am and is worried if I get too skinny, he won't like the sex. I've agreed that I'm comfortable to be at a weight of 150 which would still be 10 lbs heavier than my doctor would like but it's a lot healthier than 220. Any ways - he's never had a problem with dates becuase he knows that heavy girls are more fun and skinny girls could never keep up with him sexually. Yes, latin lovers are better.

As a kid - I always thought I was heavy but in lookng back at the pictures - I really wasn't that bad. And beign a little heavy never stopped the whistles or the come-ons or anything. After all - I stopped developing at 7th grade with 36 DD breasts - I've always had men coming on. I've been lucky that they all backed off when they realized I was jail bate. I also had a very protective Mom who never allowed me to be in the situation that she was at 9 where she was raped by a guy who was taking her home after she was done babysitting for them.

So - all in all - weight is very much both your perception of yourself and your self confience/ esteem and our coulture/society. Your weight is very much an individual choice and you are the only one who can decide what is comfortable for you and what your want out of your life. THen you have to go for it and still be aware of your surroundings and situations. Being aware is a great part of the battle when being preyed upon. And as another poster said - its the quiet ones who can be most dangerous.

I see the last comment demonstrated all the time by my husband. He's not skinny, he wears glasses and his age is showing - he's pretty grey anymore. But all he has to do is make sincere eye contact, some kind of innoucous comment about the weather or prices or whatever, and the next thing I know this woman or girl (it doesn't matter their age or weight) is eating out of his hand in 30 seconds flat. It's a good thing we are complety honest with each other and I have total trust so I'm not jealous. But it's really interesting to watch him do this with complete strangers. If he was a predator - he'd be unstoppable. And - he's teaching my girls what to watch out for becuase he knows what a predator is and he knows, weight doesn't matter to a predator. Never think, becuase I'm fat, I'm safe - you aren't.

Thursday, June 15, 2006, 12:45 PM

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Here's something that happened to me recently: I used to be oogled at a lot, but since I have put on weight the looks have stopped. But sometimes I forget about the weight gain, assume someone is oogling at me for my looks, only to find out later that i interpreted everything wrong and they were looking at my open fly or stain on my blouse. Anyone else out there have a similar experience?

Thursday, June 15, 2006, 2:12 PM

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I had to read this eating disorder study back in school. The researchers took a bunch of body sketches of all different sizes and asked both men and women to identify the "ideal" size body for the same sex and the opposite sex. Across the board, women wanted smaller bodies for themselves and for men. On the other hand, men wanted larger bodies for themselves and for women. I guess that explains the macho male body builders who think they look hot but are really just scary.

Just to see if the study was true, my husband and I did our own experiment. (You must have a secure relationship for this one). We were on Miami Beach, sitting at a little cafe, watching people go by. We each picked out our "ideal" body from the men and women going by. Sure enough, his were both bigger and mine were both smaller.

I guess it makes me feel better about the fact that when i was 17 and in the absolute best shape of my life (doing competitive sports which involved 2-3 hour of exercise every day) I still couldn't get any smaller than a size 8. I'm 26 now and would be thrilled to fit back in the 12s, but I also know that my primary goal should be health. A healthy happy size 14 is more attractive than an unhealthy, unhappy size 6 any day. And (most) men agree if the above study is correct.

Thursday, June 15, 2006, 2:19 PM

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Just watch how you dress

As mentioned many times, we men are visual creatures. If you don't want us leering at you, dress conservatively. I work part time at a retail establishment and I see the ladies with the clothes Mega-Ultra-Tight thoughts pop in my head and it's not "I wonder what books they like to read". But when a woman is dressed more conservatively my look is more of admiration than a "WOW".

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 1:19 PM

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from op to 1:19, 7-25-06 poster

i don't know if you have ever shopped for clothes as a large breasted woman, but it is very difficult to dress in a shirt that fits but is not just a little snug aroung the chest area. i, myself, do not wear tight clothes as a rule; that said, sometimes, it's just plain obvious that my boobs are DD. that's what is so bothersome-unless i wear xxl t-shirts or sweatshirts, i just seem to attract those leering stares. that is definitely fueling my weight-loss program!!!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 1:46 PM

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Thank you male poster for posting!

I'd just like to add that you can look hot without having a tight shirt. You dont have to be all wrapped up to not look skanky. They always say go skanky on top, or on bottom, but never ever both.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 2:00 PM

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I completely feel your pain.

The most annoying thing to me is getting unsolicited looks and comments from people because of things I can't change. Like some previous posters I'm genetically "gifted." While it might be a great thing for a hooters waitress, for anyone else, they're just a pain most of the time. It really annoys me that whenever I wear anything other than a sweatshirt I get dirty looks from old ladies and dirtier looks from old men. Ok so maybe it's not fair to say that, not all old ladies and old men.. but enough of them.

I don't think I should have to dress like a sack-draped hobo simply because I'm big chested. I don't think I should have to go have surgery to apologize to the world for my genetics either. Smaller breasted women can get away with wearing adorable little tank tops and people consider it classy and stylish. I wear anything remotely close to sleeveless and I get the persnickity old lady in the grocery store calling me a tramp under her breath as I walk by.

I think a lot of that negative attention has contributed to my poor posture, and shy nature. I'm always trying to hide myself behind myself. It's almost second nature at this point.

Amusingly enough, OP was mentioning gaining weight to avoid unsolicited attention. It's one of the reasons I've been trying to LOSE weight. I'm hoping it'll make me look a little more proportionate.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 2:06 PM

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op here. i, too, think it's funny that i started this thread with the idea of keeping weight on...etc. but, i have changed my position on the topic in hopes (tremendous hopes) that my bra size will shrink. i am so tired of the back-pain, inability to wear tank-tops except around the house (without feeling the leers and feeling kinda exposed). hopefully it will work! good luck to the rest of the pt community who are dealing with similar annoyances...

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 2:31 PM

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to the last poster-i know what you mean . . .i've always been large chested and it has always driven me crazy that people look at me like i'm naked if i wear a tank top because i have a little cleavage showing. the skinny, flat chested girl next to me in the same outfit is showing the same amount of chest (my shirt is not any lower than hers) and yet mine is offensive because my breasts meet in the middle. haha!!!!

i've even had male friends say things to me about having too much cleavage showing (and i assure you, i'm really NOT running around w/ everything exposed!!)-and it's hurtful and frustrating. look, it's hot out-i want to wear tanktops and if you don't like what you see, then don't look!!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 2:34 PM

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op: Have courage! You're doing something great for yourself by losing weight. What others think and leer and look, don't worry about it.

Also: my breasts did shrink when I lost weight.

Good luck!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 5:23 PM

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thanks for the encouragement!! i like the "true-life" stories of happy weight-loss experiences!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006, 9:54 AM

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