‘I don’t blame the girls. Not at all. I get it. All those jokes made everyone look at me as the fat guy.’

I don’t blame the girls. Not at all. I get it, I get it. But I’ve always wanted a wife. And kids. And as I get older it starts to get more real—I’ve never had a girlfriend.

I’ve always been the funny fat friend. It’s the one thing I’m good at. Making people laugh. It’s the greatest feeling in the world. Somebody is having a great time, and it’s because of me. I’ve always lived for that feeling: in elementary school, in middle school. But as I got older—something got twisted.

Luke featured on Humans of New York
Humans of New York

All my jokes became about myself. When it was time to eat the cake at a birthday party, I’d joke about the size of my slice. When it was time to jump in the pool, I’d joke about taking off my shirt. I’d say: ‘The moon is coming out.’

And it always got a laugh. Which felt good, but it kind of sucks. Because I don’t think I’ve ever taken off my shirt without making a comment. It’s my way of protecting myself. Like: ‘No asshole, you can’t make fun of me. Because I beat you to it.’

Luke as a child
Humans of New York

But I think it might have fucked me up. All those jokes, all those years. Because it made everyone look at me as the fat guy. It made me look at myself as the fat guy.

My twitter handle is ‘Fatrick Ewing.’ My bio says: ‘Fat white guy with glasses.’ It sort of became my identity. I’m just a fat, funny idiot. That’s what I think about myself. And I feel like that’s what everyone else is thinking too.

Luke attending an event
Humans of New York

Every time I’m in a waiting room, and the seat’s a little too small. Or when I walk into CVS. My anxiety gets so bad I can barely talk to the person behind the register.

My therapist tells me: ‘You’re a good guy, you’re nice, who cares?’ And she’s right, I get it. But I also think if I wasn’t fat, I’d probably have a girlfriend.

Luke graduation photo with parents
Humans of New York

But I’m trying to love myself more. Every day I’m working on it. I make deliveries for my job, and let’s say I leave my scanner in the car. My mind is immediately gonna say: ‘You’re a fat asshole.’

But I’m trying to stop myself. I’m trying to say: ‘No, you’re not. You just forgot. People forget.’ I’m trying to get back to Luke again. The nice, funny dude. Who loves his friends. And his family. Not Luke the fat guy. Just Luke, before he decided to bully himself.

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This story first appeared on Humans of New York Facebook page and is published here with permission. For more amazing stories and photography buy the book HUMANS by Brandon Stanton.

(If you wish to submit an essay (reflections on life), personal story (inspirational or humorous) or something that you witnessed that inspired you, please go HERE.)

2 thoughts on “‘I don’t blame the girls. Not at all. I get it. All those jokes made everyone look at me as the fat guy.’”

  1. You right it’s hard to ignore people’s comments and they get deep into our heads causing us to then beet ourselves up. People are not nice but that’s their insecurity. Weight does not make a person so each day love yourself for you not for others. Your great personality will take you to great places and give you all you need.
    If someone can’t see past your looks they are not what you want in your life anyway.

  2. Luke, most of us have some demons we battle growing up. They may be hidden from others, but our heart still raced when we were in social circumstances or if we had to stand in front of others. We just knew we were being judged…and harshly. Not pretty/good looking enough. Stupid!Stupid! STUPID. Why am I up here? Try to say the right thing in a group & they laugh at you! But not in a good way. STUPID. I hate my hair. I hate my face. I hate my body. Why can’t I be like her?
    Eventually, you realize you are your worse critic. Eventually I hope you will find people who love you just as you are. Eventually I hope you find someone professional to talk with who can give you ways to cope with those hateful voices when they pop up in your head. It will give you a head start on a happier you. I wish for you an extraordinary journey!

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