Throughout my life I have always been made fun of, teased, laughed at and called names because of my weight. The way I’ve handled those times has varied through the years. As I wrote about a little while back, when I was a child I would lash out toward them with violence. In my teen years, I would just cry and feel sorry for myself. As a young adult, I would give only a silent smile to people who teased me. For the last several years of my life, I’ve taken a different and much more fun approach by using humor.
Two specific instances of counteracting malice with humor come to mind. The first instance happened one evening years ago while I was minding my own business grocery shopping. A group full of young guys approached me and were cracking up laughing and one of them said something like, “Look at ol’ weeble wobble!” while trying to mimic the way I walked. I said something along the lines of, “Haha, yeah, grow up.” He became enraged and said some really nasty things to me. I decided to react to the situation with humor. My response to his cruelties was, “Honey, you couldn’t handle all of this woman.” He and all of his friends turned around and walked away. I had successfully rendered them speechless.
The other instance was a time when I was out and about with Laura. A car full of guys pulled up next to us at a stop light and were pointing at me and laughing. I decided to go with a rather unconventional response. I pointed back at them and laughed. They all started laughing even harder and rolled their window down and yelled, “You’re cool!” as they drove off. It was interesting how a car full of men taunting me had turned into something to laugh about.
We always have the opportunity to choose our reactions to each situation. Sometimes we just need to take a step back, breathe and assess things before we give that reaction. All of us will have times when we react poorly to something. It happens. What’s important is that we try our best to react to bullies the way that we want to, and not the way they hope and expect for us to act. Hold your head up high and don’t let them have the last laugh. As a matter of fact, every once in a while, a laugh can be had by all.