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Spectacle, not Spectacular

July 25, 2012

Perhaps you heard this story recently …

I had seen Pauline Potter before this latest story a couple of times. I can’t swear to it, but I believe the first time was on TLC, when she laid claim to the “World’s Heaviest Woman” title. (At 640 pounds, I doubt she holds the record. I’m sure there are women who are heavier than her … but I digress.)

Ms. Potter did the show, she claimed, because she desperately wanted to lose weight.

Obviously, that TV appearance wasn’t the answer, because she turned up on Dr. Phil next.

That didn’t work either. (Are you surprised?) Now, she has come up with her latest sensationalistic shocker: sex as a weight loss cure. As you may have read, she claims to have lost 98 pounds after having marathon sex with her ex-husband.

Then, after she received all kinds of negative backlash for that exhibitionistic claim, she made THIS appearance on Dr. Drew, where she tried to soften her claim by saying that the weight loss wasn’t just attributable to the sex … apparently healthier eating and more exercise also contributed to the weight loss. Were those details even mentioned in the preliminary story? You be the judge.

After all this TV coverage, I have come to a few conclusions:

  • Pauline Potter has more than a food addiction … she has a TV-talk-show-appearance addiction
  • Pauline Potter is an extremely messed up woman and needs serious psychological help
  • Pauline Potter’s hyper attention-seeking behaviour makes us all look bad

Naturally, the weight-loss sex story attracted fat haters like flies to manure when the story was posted, and reposted, on Facebook. Even though I don’t approve of Ms. Potter’s ridiculous behavior, I certainly don’t approve of fat haters calling her names and making the inevitable degrading sexual references (despite the fact that she brought them on herself). Even though I cringed when I saw that initial boastful story, I put in my two cents and defended her on a couple of posts where I saw people saying typically horrible things.

However, I certainly am not about to defend her methods — which are primitive, childish, and, at their core, extremely sad. I believe her antics have probably put us back a few decades in terms of public perception. Seriously, Pauline … what the hell were you thinking? Did she honestly think that people would react positively to her  weight-loss sex claim, which would sound blatantly ridiculous to anyone with a brain — like locker-room bragging

And why the hell is she having sex with her ex, anyway? An ex is an ex for a reason, aren’t they?

Ms. Potter has issues. As I found out from a blogger friend of mine. She had been living a “feedee” lifestyle for some time. She had her own Yahoo! group of feedee supporters, and modeled on a BBW porn site under the name “Paulee Bombshell.” In 2011, she put out the call for “help.”

If Ms. Potter seriously wants to lose weight, that’s her business. If Ms. Potter seriously doesn’t to lose weight, that’s also her business.

But Ms. Potter, I have a request: please stop making a spectacle of yourself on television, because you make us all look bad. Thanks to you, for a couple of days at least, you made us all look like gluttonous, ridiculous, obscene fools.

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. vesta44 permalink
    July 25, 2012 11:48 am

    The really sad thing is that people like her are what’s remembered, no matter how few they are – and they are a very tiny minority of fat people. There could be a million strong, fit, fat people, and one person like her, and she would be the example held up to show what fat people are like because most people just don’t want to believe that we aren’t all like her.
    It’s her body and she can do whatever the hell she wants with it, but for crying out loud, she doesn’t have to be a television spectacle while she’s doing whatever she’s doing. Fat people are stigmatized enough without someone going on television and doing the things she’s done, saying the things she’s said. She’s adding fuel to the stereotypes, and she really needs to find out why she feels a need to do this (all the television appearances).

  2. Janet permalink
    July 25, 2012 12:41 pm

    Vesta, in some ways what you are saying is the same thing that other ethnic groups say about how they are profiled, and it’s true. A lot of ignorant folks believe that all Muslim’s are terrorists and want to kill all Americans. That all blondes are dumb. That all Chinese people are smart. And yet our society has this dual personality of conformity vs individuality. It’s okay to be an individual so long as you are the same as the rest of us. One bad apple and all that.

  3. lifeonfats permalink
    July 25, 2012 4:54 pm

    The majority of people don’t want to believe that most fat people aren’t like Pauline Potter. They want to believe that we are like her, or those that go on Maury trying to find out who fathered our kids, or the infamous “God Warrior” on Wife Swap, or Biggest Loser contestants crying and puking at the same time, or any fat person on Discovery Health. They want to keep their stereotypes instead of seeing us actual humans who go to work, or volunteer, or raise kids, or have spouses and partners, who have friends, who go out socially, who do anything in their lives that doesn’t revolve around food. The media fuels it, because they seek out the radical caricatures, not so much people like myself and those on this site. If Pauline Potter wants to seek help, she should do it privately, and not drag the rest of us down with her.

    • Janet permalink
      July 25, 2012 4:59 pm

      Amen sister…..and truer words were never said….I just wish they could teach empathy in school….because parents sure don’t teach it to their kids. Of all my peers and friends and family, I’m one of about 3 people who is able to feel empathy for anyone other than myself.

      • The Real Cie permalink
        July 26, 2012 9:02 pm

        My 300-ish pound bad self would end up vomiting if I tried to eat like Pauline. I’m not trying to condemn anyone with binge eating disorder, I have struggled with both straight binge eating disorder and bulimia. But it does amaze me that people think that we are all like this woman, sitting there cramming mouthful after mouthful in constantly. And as has been pointed out by others, she is NOT like the majority of heavy people. She has serious, serious psychological issues that are not being addressed properly.
        I doubt that most of us eat differently from the average person. There are days when I have to force myself to eat, either because of fighting with my eating disorder issues (I have periods of anorexic behavior) or because I’m simply not hungry.

  4. Mulberry permalink
    July 25, 2012 5:20 pm

    She wants the attention; she’s willing to exploit the stigma to get it. Many thin people exploit the stereotypes in various ways to get attention (to both positive and negative effect), and let’s face it, Ms. Potter hasn’t got many role models among fat people in this regard.*
    She is getting plenty of insults and derision. If she stopped making a spectacle of herself, she would still get insults and derision, perhaps less, but not much of a change of pace.
    Do you think she’s doing some of this for whatever pocket change she might get? She gives the public the freak show they want to see and goes home with a few extra dollars for her trouble. She’s not really required to change anything, just to come up with a good story. In that sense it’s probably more dignified than The Biggest Loser (setting the bar REALLY low here).

    *In the sense of a choice of roles one can play in order to get the desired attention. Fat acceptance advocacy doesn’t get this much attention, AFAIK.

  5. July 25, 2012 7:25 pm

    If anyone has read my blog, you will also know that I am NO fan of Pauline Potter and her 3 ring circus. Her story resembles another woman who purported to be representing for fat people, Ms. Donna Simpson. Interestingly enough, both Donna Simpson AND Pauline Potter modeled for the same BBW porn website? Coincidence? Don’t believe me, look them both up and make your own decision.
    What intrigues and saddens me most about these stories is that these women grab all of the attention, casting a dark cloud over healthy fat people, while Olympic athletes like Sarah Robles and Holley Mangold (subjects of several blogs in FFF) are BARELY allowed on television because they aren’t the body type that America associates with athletes.
    I believe that when these people end up with their 15 minutes of fame, it is my (our) responsibility to shout to the world that they are not representative of fat people in general.

  6. The Real Cie permalink
    July 26, 2012 10:29 am

    She is in the same category as Octomom–a sad person who is an attention seeker. Both of them need help desperately.

  7. July 30, 2012 11:51 am

    What you do with your body is your business, but when you’re exploiting both sides of the coin (getting paid to get fatter on BBW porn sites, then complaining to Dr. Phil about how fat you’ve gotten), then you deserve to be raked over the coals for your manipulative behavior.

    I don’t care what her motivation is (financial, attention-seeking or otherwise), people like Pauline Potter are doing a great disservice to fat people by using her personal choices to garner sympathy or airtime or whatever the fuck she wants.

    I know an author (not sure if she wants this more publicly mentioned, so I’ll keep it anonymous) who has been promoting a Fat Acceptance book and was supposed to go on Dr. Drew. Then she learned that her co-guests were feedees and equally sensational guests and she pulled out at the last minute.

    Whenever possible, we need to separate ourselves from those who seek to obfuscate the reality of being fat, and I applaud her for doing so, even at the cost of promoting her work.

    Peace,
    Shannon

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