There’s no doubt that modern dating is tough, especially on Tinder. It’s a sad fact, but unfortunately, the nature of dating apps forces users to be more superficial than they are in real life, and take more of an interest in physical appearance and superficialities than the real person underneath it all. But just imagine how much harder dating is for obese people, who have to wade through a ton of abuse and fatphobia to find love. Even if they’re trying to lose weight, they might still expect to be ignored or patronised because of their size. It sucks.
That’s the situation for Catrina Raiford, who used to have the unfortunate distinction of being the fattest woman in the entire world. Now Catrina has managed to shed an incredible 40 stone, and although she’s still got some way to go, she’s slimmed down enough to get out there and try and find herself a man. So how is the hunt for the dream bloke going? Well, according to Catrina, it’s a mixed bag.
At her heaviest, Catrina weighted an astonishing 70 stone, and was totally bedridden because of her size. When she needed to be taken to hospital, the emergency services were forced to bulldoze the side of her Florida house because she was too large to get out. This gave her the impetus to lose some weight, and she exercises for four hours a day now, and particularly enjoys water aerobics.
When Catrina was still one of the fattest women on the planet, dating was nigh-impossible; not just logistically, but also from an emotional level. Catrina’s self-esteem used to be dismal, and she was so lonely and desperate that she would use photos of other, thinner women to entice men into chatting to her over the internet. However, now she’s given up the cat-fishing, and has joined dating sites such as Black People Meet and Tinder.
Commenting on her dramatic weight loss in a recent interview, Catrina stated: “It was the worst time of my life. I just wanted to die. Each day I’d just eat and go online from morning to night … Being bulldozed out of my house was the worst thing that had ever happened to me. But it was also the thing that saved me. Now I’m a new woman …I was in bed for so long that now I’ve lost the weight, I just want to be free.”
Credit: Press Association
Although she’s been on a lot of dates to bars, clubs and restaurants, Catrina still hasn’t managed to meet Mr Right quite yet. However, she hasn’t been discouraged by this, and for now, she’s just enjoying the freedom of dating and a more outgoing lifestyle. She does have one complaint though, and that’s that men are always very eager to know how she managed to lose such a vast amount of weight: “They ask me for tips for their sisters, aunts, mums,” she says, “still, it’s amazing to think that a few years ago I couldn’t move and now I am dating.”
Let’s hope that Catrina meets her soulmate soon. I’m sure he’s right around the corner.