This piece was crossposted with permission from KittyStryker.com.
First, a little bit about me. I’m an American who has lived on one coast or the other, who has spent extended time in Poland and in London. I’ve been familiar with fatphobia my whole life, as my mother is fat, my grandmother is fat, and I became fat during my teenage years due to a combination of medication and genetics. I’m larger than the “average” size, which as of 2013 was about a size 14. I’m a size 24 US, size 22 UK. I eat about 1800 calories a day, snack on nuts and rice cakes, have a green smoothie a day, work out twice a week, and am reasonably active. I have mostly cut dairy out of my diet, never eat beef, and am about 50 percent gluten free.
I get at least 20-30 comments a week on average telling me that my fatness means I must be inactive, eat poorly, and am unhealthy. When someone wants to insult me, the first thing they turn to is my weight. The contents of my grocery basket is analyzed by people I don’t know when I go to the store and I regularly receive diet advice I haven’t asked for. I have had my ass grabbed, my stomach touched, and my arms pinched by strangers commenting on my weight. Keep reading »
Once upon a time — before URLs, handles, likes and shares — I put some good old-fashioned postage stamps inside an envelope and sent away for a zine (made of actual paper!) that was filled with some very big ideas. I was 16 and the zine was called i’m so fucking beautiful, a title that hooked me instantly because at the time I was quite literally starving myself of that sentiment. I was all punk rock by day, but I had a couple of dirty secrets that did not exactly jibe with the Manic Panic and combat boots:
- I thought calories were evil. Unfortunately this didn’t stop me from willingly and regularly consuming wretched diet foods that were almost certainly concocted in the bowels of hell. Listen, when a chocolate product in a plastic tub includes instructions on how it can be enjoyed frozen as “ice cream” or microwaved into a “shake,” it no longer qualifies as food, okay? But I ate (and drank!) that sugar-free, chemical-laden kryptonite sludge like it was my duty, each scoop and sip meticulously tallied in my Calories and Fat Grams Journal, which was really more of a disturbing collection of numbers and equations scribbled on Post-Its and scrap paper than an actual journal. Think “A Beautiful Mind” for the eating disordered set.
- I kept a stash of “thinspiration” featuring pictures of models I tore from magazines (‘90s-style! Old school!). I wanted to be that kind of beautiful. And the more I stared at those images, the more fervently I started to believe in that waifish brand of perfection. So I made myself sick chasing sizes that were smaller than the small sizes I already wore. I developed a mortal fear of weight gain. And while my weight fluctuated up and down and back up again as I abused it with brutal cycles of starvation, bingeing, and purging, I was never anywhere remotely close to being plus-sized, full-figured, curvy or any other palatable euphemism for that oh-so-terrifying F-word.
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I’ve been asked by people on different ends of the fat lover spectrum about advice being a good ally. From the “My lover doesn’t see how beautiful she is and won’t have sex with the lights on” to the “My lover uses the term ‘fat’ to describe themselves but I’ve always thought of that as a derogatory word … isn’t it?” For Fat Sex Week, I’ve highlighted some of the best ways to be a good ally to your fat lover.
This is all from my limited perspective, you should obviously be in good communication with your lover to find out what works for them and how they operate in the world. Communication is an essential sex toy!
This advice applies to folks of all sizes, not just thinner folks partnered (in all the myriad ways one can partner) with fat folks. And a lot of it is good advice for sex in general, regardless of whether or not your partner is fat. Keep reading »
People on the internet have been telling me I’m fat for at least a decade — since whenever the first full-body photograph of me appeared on a blog author page. I still remember one of the first times it happened. I was probably 22 years old, wearing a pink pencil skirt and cute black top, retro-style, in the photo.
“Just like I thought, she’s pear-shaped,” snarked one commenter, who apparently previously inferred from the quality of my writing that my body was not up to his high expectations, only to have it all confirmed by a photo.
I stood in front of the mirror in that same outfit, staring at my body from every angle, trying to figure out just how pear-shaped I was. Was it my thighs causing the problem? Had to be, right? I measured them. I calculated my BMI. I took more digital photos and compared them to the existing photo. I went through the size tags on all my clothes, trying to find the biggest one so I could prove to myself that I either was or wasn’t fat. Definitively.
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“I don’t think Adele would deny that she was fat. And I bet she doesn’t. Karl Lagerfeld used to be fat himself, so you gotta think about that. He’s obviously not proud of that fact. I also think that people give him way too much power! He’s just an eccentric designer who makes amazing art but doesn’t always say the coolest shit. …
I doubt, and I hope, and I’m pretty confident, that [Adele] does not think about Karl Lagerfeld, ever. I bet that is the last thing on her mind at night. She’s falling asleep on her 85 Grammys and however many millions of albums she’s sold and however many millions of dollars that she has, and is just probably thinking, like, ‘You know what – all right!’”
– Leave it to Beth Ditto from The Gossip to be the voice of reason on Karl Lagerfeld, aka Uncle Karl, aka that old dude who designs for Chanel and seems to get away with saying all kinds of horrible things like calling Adele “a little too fat” and fashion groupies French-kiss his arse anyway. I co-sign everything she said. [London Evening Standard via Fashionista]