This! In a Hospital!

I was in a new section of our hospital recently. While I was waiting, I noticed that the chair across from me was a strange size. It wasn’t like the regular sized chair I was sitting on and it wasn’t a traditional bench size that would easily fit two average sized adults. No, it looked like this. I took this with my phone.

I turned to John and said, “Hey, look at that weird sized chair. You don’t think that’s because so many people are overweight and they can’t fit into these chairs comfortably do you?” He looked at it and agreed with me. It was most likely for our new SuperSized Americans. There wasn’t just one of those chairs – they were interspersed among the waiting room.

Honestly, I don’t know what I think about this. Is this a sign that our hospitals are being more accomodating of us in general, or is it a sign that even hospitals have kind of “given up” on fighting the trend of our country’s growing girth?

Looking at those bigger than normal chairs brought up some sad feelings I had about myself when I was morbidly obese. I remember giving up on myself in terms of my clothing choices, my appearance and my food intake. I just quit trying and quit reaching for that seemingly elusive goal of getting to a healthy weight.  I tried to give up on myself and it wasn’t a good feeling.

It wasn’t a good feeling to see those chairs and think that parts of our society may be giving up and just accepting obesity as part of life. I know there is a difference between accommodating and giving up! I agree that airline seats are too small for most people, even people of an average weight. BUT, the hospital chair I was sitting in would have accommodated me at 300 pounds. It would have been tight but I could have fit.

And sitting in that tight chair in a hospital would have made me think again about my weight and that might have been a good thing. I know that every time I sat in a tight chair during my 10 year fight with obesity I thought about the fact that I really needed to do something about my weight. I’d look around and compare my fit in the chair with someone smaller and notice that their stomach didn’t stick out above the arms of the chair and that they had room around them.

I never felt that the chairs should have been bigger. I felt I should have been smaller.

So where do you stand on this issue? Should hospitals add chairs big enough for one and a half people when they remodel? By the way, John and I tried to sit in that chair-thing together and we fit, but barely.

Yes, to accommodating chairs in a hospital, or just stick with the regular sized chairs and benches? Diane

54 thoughts on “This! In a Hospital!

  1. AmandaLP says:

    Seriously? What are you thinking? Fat people feel so ashamed to seek medical care because of thoughts and opinions like this. I would much rather a fat person feel comfortable in a larger chair (or, hey, seats without sides), and actually seek medical attention that could make them healthier (which may or may not have them losing any weight), than have them stay away from medical establishments.

    If “shame” made people lose weight, no one would be fat. If we teach people to love their bodies and treat them well, we can all take a step closer to better health.
    .-= AmandaLP´s last blog ..LHAS Wednesday Walking Weigh In =-.

  2. Lyn says:

    People of every size should be able to go into a hospital or a doctor’s office and have a comfortable place to sit, regardless.

    There is a woman I message with occasionally who has over 500 pounds to lose. Once she loses 300, she will still need THAT KIND of chair in order to be able to sit. Even with the huge victory and hard work of losing 300 pounds, when she walks into a room people are STILL going to judge her as a fat, lazy woman who needs to stop eating so much.

    I think we should all withhold judgements and be kind and compassionate. I doubt anyone who is big enough to NEED that seat actually needs a “reminder” that they need to lose weight (i.e. getting stuck in a chair when they try to sit down).

    Kudos to the hospital for caring about their patients.
    .-= Lyn´s last blog ..The Walmart Cart =-.

  3. Laura Jane says:

    Interesting question. I see your point that we shouldn’t just accept being extremely overweight and unhealthy and do nothing about. I’m sure there are many overweight people who may not care and may not attempt to fix the problem. However, most probably have tried to lose weight a thousand times and are really struggling. They probably don’t need a chair to remind them that they are overweight. Plus shame and worry about fitting in a doctor’s chair doesn’t actually help people lose weight. The shame probably just makes them feel worse and want to eat more.
    .-= Laura Jane´s last blog ..Quick Update =-.

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