A fat kid in speedos

Story By: Luke Luke

He used to be a fat kid in speedos, terrified of coming out as gay, with a developing eating disorder, and a self-harm habit. So why is his motto 'chin up'?

Sad boy resting his head on his lap
I looked about, at everything, and thought 'why is the glass half empty everytime?' I had one answer: Because you choose to see it that way.

I used to be quite the heffa (fat) in highschool, so my big fear for the week was swimming every Friday. Nothing like a fat kid in speedos! I was also coming to terms with being a homo... that was tough too. So yes, there I was roughly in Year 10....fat and gay. Fun fun fun.

Trying

I tried everything to avoid going to school on Fridays, it even got to the point where I had stopped eating, so I'd look a bit skinnier. So yes, this grew and grew and I shrunk and shrunk. So now there I was.... 6 months later and too skinny that even the draw string wouldn't hold up my swimmers.

"I looked about, at everything, and thought 'why is the glass half empty everytime?' I had one answer: Because you choose to see it that way."

So I gained an eating disorder, still gay and was starting to get depressed. This was cool for me I thought at first, I could accessorise my mental disorders with my fashion! So a few black nails, shoes, shirts and pants later...I was ready to face the world. Did I realise I was a walking billboard of teen-angst ? Most likely.... but I had spent $400 on my Doc Martins, so I had to get good use outta em.

I wanted help but something inside me made me refuse it. This would frustrate me to such a degree I would get mad and felt the need to hurt myself. So I started cutting. Cutting is a strange world to enter, a lot of people around me were like "Oh how cool man, punk rock!"... They are what I like to call "stupid". It lets out our repressed anger, but only temporarily... you don't realise at the time that it leaves you with permanent memories, scars.

The choice to do this really gained a lot of attention from my folks when they noticed it. It was family freak out time. Shrink after shrink kept repeating "Be constructive, not destructive". I heard it so many times over and over, it began to sound like a tacky song. But they were right.

Where had it gotten me?

I was pushing my eating habits, cutting habits to the limit. I had been doing this for so long and where had it gotten me? Absolutely nowhere! I remember the moment I realised this and I started to laugh. I could cut my whole freakin arm off, and still the only help I would get is the help I chose to receive.

Depression was a little different, and my mentality played a big part. It had a lot to do with positive thinking. I looked about, at everything, and thought 'why is the glass half empty every time?' I had one answer: Because you choose to see it that way. I understand depression, anorexia etc. are disorders and are quite complex, but you realise indulging in these things and not taking the help to get outta there, then you will never get out.

I turned around and simply asked for help. Instead of cutting, I took up kickboxing. Instead of fearing food, I learnt what was good for me and started following a low fat diet. Gay-wise.... I was so over been silent, I just blurted it out. You'd be suprised how many parents know years before you do! My mum was very accepting, my Dad had to get used to it and my sisters were like "About time he outed himself". So yeah... within a week of sitting down and talking, just to my parents, not even doctors, things seemed a lot better. It didn't hurt to smile, I didn't gain 100 pounds when I ate a sandwich and I didn't blow up in a ball of anger if I didn't cut myself.

I still have scars on my arms, but have no need to add to the collection. I've had a boyfriend for the past 3 years now, he's damn fine and in a band (what more can I ask for?). Life does go on... with or without you. So I suggest keeping your chin up, your eyes open and if you can't.... Don't be afraid to ask for a little help.

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Last reviewed: 26 June, 2015
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