Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

March 25, 2009

New Series by Francesca

Filed under: Big Reminder — Francesca @ 3:30 pm

Hello, everyone! Did you miss the Francesca? She missed you!

She is starting a fun and important new series: The Big Reminder. Check every day!

To begin, we will start with reminders about the basic health, because the basis of good fashion is not how the body looks but how the body is.

So Francesca reminds you: If you haven’t done so for a while, schedule a medical checkup!

If you have been avoiding your doctor because he or she — or the nurse or the receptionist — makes rude comments about your fat, or insists on weighing you if you do not want to be weighed, or blames all your health problems (such as a sinus infection) on your weight, or insists you lose weight even though you have suffered from eating disorders and really just want to live with the body you have come to accept and love — then Francesca says: either stand up for yourself, or find a new doctor! Do not let the turkeys prevent you from  managing your health!

Also, if you have a specific medical condition that necessitates many visits to specialists, it is easy to feel that, since you are always at the doctor, you don’t need to schedule a checkup. But it happens often that a person is so busy managing a dramatic health problem that he or she forgets the checkups, and then gets very sick with something else.

So, schedule a checkup! Francesca hath spoken.



  1. I’m not a medical professional, but isn’t the reason they insist on weighing you every time because a sudden (unintended) change in weight can indicate a change in health?

    Comment by class factotum — March 25, 2009 @ 5:09 pm

  2. Class Factotum-

    Francesca is not a health professional either. What she should have explained, to be more clear, is that some women find it more dignified to weigh themselves at home and report their own weight to their doctor, rather than be weighed at the office — often in a busy hallway in front of others.

    Comment by Francesca — March 25, 2009 @ 6:04 pm

  3. Francesca, now I understand what you meant. As someone who closes her eyes, sticks her fingers in her ears, turns her head and refuses to look when the nurse weighs her, the weighing at home and reporting to the doctor would not be an option. But for those who do not live in a state of denial, your method makes perfect sense.

    Comment by class factotum — March 25, 2009 @ 10:15 pm

  4. Amen, sister….since I’ve got a friend who just got diagnosed with Stage 0 breast cancer, I can’t emphasize enough the need for early detection.

    I’ve had numerous cysts removed that ended up being harmless because I check and head to the dr anytime there’s anything odd. Almost every problem I find isn’t a problem, but the doctor has almost always spotted something I didn’t notice that WAS a potential problem.

    Recognize he changes in your body…be sensitive to the potential problems that your genetics can cause … take charge of your medical care. You should know your ‘normal’ self better than your doctor….don’t let your doctor blow off something that you sense is a problem. (And, no, I’m NOT a hypochondriac.)

    Comment by that redhead — March 26, 2009 @ 12:19 am

  5. My mother worked in medical records for decades, and I know that when women are asked to report their weight, they consistently under-report by a significant degree. And for some like me, the ONLY time we get weighed is at the doctor’s. At least a decent doctor will give you the option of having a nurse do it.

    The doctor doesn’t really care about the absolute number on the scale; the doctor cares only for what the number tells him/her about your own health. That is the only reason you’re weighed at the doctor’s.

    And I certainly hope there’s no specific, personal reason you’re bringing this up now…

    Comment by raincoaster — March 26, 2009 @ 4:27 am

  6. I just tell people in doctor’s offices that I don’t care to be weighed, and I answer them honestly if they ask for a specific reason, like a medicine dosage. If all I had was a ballpark figure and they needed an exact number, I’d get on the scale, but not routinely. I try to be pleasant, and nobody’s ever hassled me about it, actually.

    Well, one doctor did say, looking at my chart, “You don’t want to be weighed?” To which I replied, “What would that tell you that you can’t tell by looking at me?” He said, “That you’re overweight?” I said, “No, that I’m fat.” He smiled, end of discussion, rest of the visit went fine.

    Comment by Mifty — March 26, 2009 @ 3:03 pm

  7. I use a version of Hanne Blank’s letter when I visit a physician for the first time. It explains why I won’t be weighed without a specific reason and sets forth some of my history with dieting, etc. It’s been very useful:

    Comment by Nicole — March 26, 2009 @ 5:31 pm

  8. I should add that one of the most important things about that letter (I think) is the section that sets forth who I am besides being a fat person. I purposefully include my advanced degree so that I am not automatically assumed to be stupid. I include the bit about calling my mom so whoever is reading it is reminded that I am a person and not just a body. I put in the flossing bit so there’s no doubt about my hygiene, since there are ridiculous assumptions often made about fat people and dirtiness.

    Frankly, when I break it down like that, it kinda pisses me off that I have to point these things out, even subtly, but I think it does help.

    Comment by Nicole — March 26, 2009 @ 5:37 pm

  9. I can’t stress enough the importance of the yearly Pap. Last spring, after 12 straight years of normal Pap results, I had my first abnormal pap which revealed precancerous tissue, requiring surgery and many, many trips to the doctor. One year from normal to surgery, seriously. Francesca is right: go to the doctor!

    Comment by Jennifer — March 26, 2009 @ 6:28 pm

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