This is Thin Privilege

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Thin privilege is having people remember that you are a vegetarian.

I am a vegetarian. I have been for over five years. All my close friends, family members, and school mates (should) know this. I am constantly encountering questions about why I don’t eat meat, and people expect a health condition. At the beginning of my vegetarianism, I had all sorts of people telling me how proud they were of me, what a healthy choice I was making, and how much weight I was going to lose. They couldn’t fathom a dietary decision I had made not being based around the concept of weight loss. Five years later, I am still fat, and everytime I sit down to a meal, someone says, “Oh yeah, I forgot you didn’t eat meat.”. These are usually people who have know me the whole time I’ve been a vegetarian and people I frequently eat with/in front of. I know why they forget. People don’t mind telling me why they forgot. I don’t “seem” like a vegetarian. Just like I don’t “seem” like someone who enjoys salads. Just like I don’t “seem” like someone who likes hiking, or bike rides, or swimming. I’ve had people outright tell me that I’m not a vegetarian because they can’t believe it. I am sick of people presuming to know what decisions I make based of the visual appearance of my body. I am sick of people assuming that I only eat cheeseburgers because of my size. I’m sick of people thinking all of my decisions should be motivated by weight loss. And I am very sick of my friends forgetting a big part of my life just because I don’t “look like a vegetarian”.

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