She confessed that changes in her customers' attitude towards her have made her feel "hopeless."
A bartender on TikTok is calling attention to the differences in how people are treated based on their weight by sharing her own post-pandemic weight gain experience. Cassidy Tweedt, known as @body_positive_bartender on the platform, broke down in tears as she explained how her changed appearance has drastically impacted her job as a bartender. Tweedt shared her story in response to another TikTok video from @lizagnabathwater who asked: "Hey if you've had pretty privilege your whole life can you stitch this and tell me what your world view is? Like do you think people are really nice?"
In a video captioned "We can all pretend it's not true, but we know it is," Tweedt said: "So I work in the service industry, right, I'm a bartender, and if you were unaware, the way you look influences it a lot, whether that's tips or how people treat you, it just does." The 28-year-old from Iowa went on to share how her "whole life changed" when she began recovering from her eating disorder. "When I tell you that my whole life changed when I started getting help for my eating disorder which resulted in weight gain after the pandemic..," a visibly emotional Tweedt shared.
Breaking down in tears, Tweedt detailed the ways in which customers' behavior towards her has changed in light of her weight gain. Once-friendly interactions have now become cold and unkind, she said, adding that some people—"especially men"—don't even look her straight in the eye anymore. "I really didn't expect this to make me cry but, people don't even look you in the eye anymore, they're not nice to you, especially men," she says in the video. "Like I would walk up and say, 'Hey, how's it going, how are you?' and I used to get, 'I'm doing really great honey, how are you?'"
"Now it's a little more [blunt]," she added, explaining that they now just relay their order and almost immediately dismiss her. Tweedt confessed that such changes in her customers' interaction with her have made her feel "hopeless" and question whether she will ever reach a place when she isn't judged solely on her appearance. "It just makes you feel hopeless, like am I ever going to be worth more than my looks?" she says in the heartbreaking video. Anticipating responses from people disagreeing with her opinion, Tweedt pre-empted their criticism, saying: "For people saying that doesn't actually happen, please raise your hand if you would like to willingly live as a fat person... The fact that nobody raises their hand makes the point."
Tweedt's video—which racked up more than 5.1 million views in a matter of days—was quickly flooded with comments from people who had similar experiences. "I've gained and lost weight so many times due to my [eating disorder] and people always treat me better when I was smaller," commented one TikTok user while another added: "And skinny girls wonder why we need the body positivity movement. We aren't treated as humans because of our weight."
Yet another TikTok user, who said that she works in retail, shared that she has experienced this kind of behavior even in regards to how she does or doesn't do her makeup. "Girl I've worked in retail forever and just the days I'd go without makeup vs with I noticed such a difference in the way people treat me," she wrote. One user praised Tweedt's candid content saying that her account actually made her feel better because "as someone who has been fat [her] whole life," it made her realize people being rude to her isn't "really a me problem."