Humble Pie, an open letter to Maura Kelly

photo credit: flickr.com/photos/cobalt/

Dear Maura,

While playing on Facebook this morning, I noticed that a fellow blogger, journalist for the Palm Beach Post , and a friend who I know slightly in real life, but mostly through Facebook, blogs and emails , Leslie Gray Streeter had posted a link to your now infamous article.

Just last night in my “life of love” group this bible verse was brought up.

A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control. (Prov 29:11)

I obviously didn’t retain that. Or represent a “life of love”.  So, I vented, and I foolishly wrote you an open letter. I was so proud of myself. I had said most of what I wanted to say while trying not to attack you personally.   “You” became that voice in my head that told me I was fat an ugly and disgusting my whole life, and I finally had “your” email address. I had finally told off  the girl who always picked on me, the voice that never left me. I was even interviewed for The Palm Beach Post. My friends rallied around me.

They told me how beautiful I am.

They told me I was a great writer.

They told me I was witty.

They told me I was snarky.

Then, I was told I was mean. (I did say I would hug you if I didn’t want to strangle you. Ouch.)

Much to my surprise, you responded personally, in humility. You told me I was right. And very few times have I ever felt so very wrong.  We have since exchanged several emails. You told me of people who have told you to go hang yourself.  How sad you are and how you have spent your time  today responding personally to most emails. As of this letter, you have over 2,200 comments, on the Marie Claire site alone.  That is one heck of a bad day for you. I didn’t see that. I needed to be heard. I kicked you while you were down, and snidely offered you calorie-free humble pie.

I have apologized to you privately, and would now like to do it publicly.

I am sorry.  I was wrong. I was the jerk, and hypocrite. I have contacted Leslie and tried to unring my bell. Telling her that I am your advocate, and you are not my enemy. I have forwarded her our correspondence so she could also see a glimpse of the repentant you, and the true foolish me. I have responded to comments telling them, I was wrong.

I realized that  it’s easy for us to write about someone not realize that we are talking about an actual person, whether a fattie , or a journalist who wrote a brutally honest blog.

Thank you for extending me the grace that I did not extend to you.

I need to take my own advice. Think twice, write once.

Moving forward,

Julie

A confident, beautiful, strong, not always so friendly  ”fattie” who is eating some humble pie.

Dear Maura Kelly, (an open letter)

Revision:

After exchanging several personal emails with Maura Kelly, the author of the article, I realized how I was a fool, a hypocrite and how wrong I was to write the letter that is below. I am now eating some humble pie. Read the revised open letter here.

Dear Maura Kelly,

This is an open letter I am writing to you in response to your article in Marie Claire, titled,

Should “Fatties” Get a Room? (Even on TV?)

I can’t believe someone who I never knew existed before today, could provoke such a reaction. I want to scream. I want to cry. I feel bad for you and I would want to give you a hug, if I didn’t want to strangle you.

But seriously, what were you thinking? Your own “point, counter-point” style of writing indicates that you knew that what you were writing was not appropriate. Especially for a woman’s magazine.

And not only was it not appropriate, it was just cruel, condescending,  insensitive, and flat-out incorrect. And I would be more “brutally honest”, if I wasn’t so taken back, and offended by your ignorant “brutal honesty”. Maura, that was the only accurate statement in your article,  it was brutal.

I won’t go into all of my emotional reactions to your statements. I won’t engage you in the playground bullying.

But I will say this.

After a rant of defending the often unattainable, and often unhealthy “naturally slim” model you boldly state; “No one who is as fat as Mike and Molly can be healthy.” I have never seen the show. So,I don’t know how “fat” these actors and actresses are. But I know that even since losing weight I am fat. And Maura, I want to inform you, that I am 100% healthy. Just this past summer, I had a full exam. Full Blood work, thyroid tests, liver tests, who knows what they tested my urine for, cholesterol, EKG, an ultrasound of my heart, lungs, abdomen. Breathing tests.  I have lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and am healthier than one of my best friends, who weighs more than 100 pounds less than me.

If you want to encourage someone to lose weight, or be healthier, spouting off nutrition information would go alot further out of love and compassion, not after offending, degrading, and verbally bitch-slapping people.

Think twice, write once, and you will find yourself more humble, and more helpful. Don’t worry the humble pie you are now being forced to eat, doesn’t have any calories.

Moving forward,

Julie

A confident, beautiful, strong, friendly,  “fattie”,  who feels pretty.

update: This wasn’t just an open rant. I did send this letter to Maura Kelly, who has printed an apology, and a retraction on her article. She actually even replied to my email.

You’re right Julie–encouraging someone to lose weight is one thing, and insulting people is another. I feel really sad that I’ve hurt so many people, including you. I really do apologize.

-maura