The “F-Word”: Why Social Politeness is Transparent

fat girls

(Left to Right: Alyson Hannigan [Date Movie, 2006], Philomena Kwao, Essie Golden, Tess Holliday)

For the typical size 18 girl like myself, the summer months bring along the ever complicated dilemma: wear longer clothes that cover up “problem areas” but threaten to cause heat stroke, or throw caution to the wind and go for the shorts and tank top that show every jiggle and bump. Up until my senior year of high school, skirts and shorts were out of the question. The last thing I wanted was for everyone to see the bits of me that made me the most insecure about myself. It was a question of comfort. At least clothes left everything to the imagination; I would rather burn under the summer sun to please others than show everyone my chubby arms and legs.

And that’s when it hit me. It’s not like my body was a secret. Even under layers of denim, the size of my thighs never changed. My arms were still large, and my ass was still huge.

So why did I pretend like covering it up in the summer would change people’s opinions? And furthermore, why was it that my comfort had the potential to offend people I didn’t even know? Well, after a long year of soul searching and chats with intelligent people, I slowly began to include knee length things into my closet. With time, I eventually evolved to skirts that ended just above the knee–which ended up being somewhat of an achievement for someone who spent all of high school afraid of her own knees. I’m aware that people stare; I’m aware that people make comments about my body because I’m fat. No one wants to say it, but it’s true. It’s not a bad thing, merely facts.

My eyes are brown, the earth is round, lambs bleat, and I’m fat.

Just because I acknowledge this doesn’t mean I hate myself. And I especially dislike when people try to beat around the bush by telling me that I’m “curvy” because they don’t want to admit that I’m fat. To them, fat is synonymous with ugly, unwanted, worthless, and lazy. But I don’t fit that stereotype at all.

So, obviously, I can’t possibly be fat.

I hate to break it to you (not really), but I am fat. My body is fat.


Side note, I believe I should make a few things clear: Just because I call myself fat doesn’t mean I’m okay with a bunch of other people calling me fat. For one thing, it took eleven years for me to get to unlearn everything society has ingrained within me. Even then, I still have moments of absolute doubt. When others call me fat, I know for sure that it’s used as a form of humiliation. Second, unless this person gave birth to me or has a genuine concern for me, they have absolutely no reason to comment on my body.

That being said, this brings into question the word “fat.” Why is it an insult? Why do we fear it? Why do we deem it unattractive and the worst trait anyone can have? Why are fat people the subject of so much toxicity in the media? And why are fat people considered untouchable and a burden on the eyes?

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It’s no secret that people fear fat people, especially fat girls…it seems like a genuine phobia. Some people fear sleeping with fat girls, some women fear becoming fat, people fear looking at fat girls, and if a fat girl hits on someone then that’s the biggest insult to their ego. We’re stereotyped as easily screwable. We’re considered a last resort, an experiment, a one-time experience. Our enjoyment and self-love is frowned upon and made fun of.

All that this tells me is that our happiness and self-acceptance are a threat to other people’s perceptions. It is expected that we’re supposed to hate ourselves as much as others hate us. Our fatness doesn’t allow us the right to be sexy, or delicate, or energetic, or even aggressive. Our sense of sexuality is over-exaggerated, as we are painted as overly eager and desperate. On the off chance that someone actually wants to be with us, it’s because they have a fat girl fetish. We’re viewed as overly emotional women who sit in the corner and eat all of our feelings.

We eat full cakes…sometimes even whole pizza pies.

It’s funny when we cant fit in chairs, or when our clothes are too tight. It’s funny when we flirt, because it’s unbelievable that we’d have the audacity to try and find someone to be with.

We are not heroines.

We are not love interests.

We are not rebels or muses or poets or artists.

We’re just fat.

Some people believe that the hatred of fatness stems from the evolutionary desires within us. We want to mate with people who are healthy and strong; but because fat people (stereotypically) are neither, they’re immediately ruled out as potential partners. The problem lies in the fact that body shape doesn’t dictate quality of health. Ever. It’s very possible that someone at 300 lbs could have the same unhealthy conditions as someone who weighs 120. Likewise, they could both be incredibly healthy. The only person who knows for sure what a fat person’s health is like is a medical professional.

So unless you are one, or have an intimate knowledge of someone’s medical history, your assumptions are probably incorrect.

To be perfectly honest, I’m sure no one can truly say why they hate fatness. Some may say it looks gross, but when you get to the root of it all, people only think it looks gross because we were told to think that way. And unless it affects someone personally, there’s a very small chance that someone will put forth the effort to unlearn it.

And this is why I very rarely believe people when they try to be polite about their disgust with fatness. Just because someone doesn’t outwardly say how they feel doesn’t mean that fat people don’t know. We always know. Whether or not we choose to care is what makes the difference. And when people are only nice to the fat people they know/care about, but go on to make fun of those they don’t know, all it does is force us to look at them in a different light. Is this what you think of us behind our backs or when you’re angry with us? Sure, not all non-fat people think this way. But it’s not surprising when they do.

While I do believe that society is making some (albeit very small) advances towards body positivity, sometimes I feel like it’s not enough. Yeah, Tess Munster (size 22) has a modeling contract. That’s very cool, and I’m happy for her. But one person placed in every ad doesn’t mean we’re becoming a more accepting group as a whole. Especially when the majority of plus sized models (my problems with the term aside) aren’t even plus sized. In fact, many plus size models are below the average size of the typical American Woman. Some have even admitted that they used to do straight size modeling in the past, but had to give it up when they began gaining weight. When they realized that they were too small to fit plus size clothes, they used padding. In other words, instead of the plus size modeling industry actually hiring women who are a size 14-16, they hire women much smaller.

So not only do women larger than a size 10-12 have to worry about the typical standards of beauty, we have insecurities about being unable to fulfill the plus-size standard, as well. Not only are we fat, but we’re also the wrong type of fat.

How messed up is that?

I could go on forever about all the completely screwed up things that come with the normalized hatred of fat people. I could talk about how fat comedians typically thrive on jokes about their fatness, how fat girls in movies are only seen as desirable when they lose weight (because how many times have I heard the words, “you’d look so much cuter if you were skinnier”?), how fat men seem to have less of a difficult time finding work in mainstream media than most fat women do.

But since I’ve already rambled far more than I’d care to admit, I’ll end this entry with one last thing:

Your body is nothing to be embarrassed about. Other people’s desire to humiliate says more about them than it does about you. And just because people want fat people to hate themselves doesn’t mean we should. It’s difficult to push against the strong current of negativity. But it’s not impossible.

Lastly, if you want to change your body, cool. If you don’t want to, cool. Your body is no one’s business other than your own.

364 thoughts on “The “F-Word”: Why Social Politeness is Transparent

  1. malarc25 says:

    i loved the way it is expressed.. Being Fat never makes you lesser or cheaper than anyone. . The charm is in our attitude and values.. Its your body .. clothes are part of civilization .. they are not our mood setter.. If a girl who is slim looks cool in a dress and a girl wearing the same is made fun on wearing the it is obviously to ruin the happiness of her.. such people are really saddist!! Clothes are to hide our body it is not necessary that a fat person has to wear limited kind of dresses.. its our life ,.. its our happiness.. it depends on a persons comfort zone..

  2. malarc25 says:

    i loved the way it is expressed.. Being Fat never makes you lesser or cheaper than anyone. . The charm is in our attitude and values.. Its your body .. clothes are part of civilization .. they are not our mood setter.. If a girl who is slim looks cool in a dress and a fat girl wearing the same is made fun on wearing that.. then it is obviously to ruin the happiness of her.. such people are really saddist!! Clothes are to hide our body it is not necessary that a fat person has to wear limited kind of dresses.. its our life ,.. its our happiness.. it depends on a persons comfort zone..

  3. janeshinger says:

    it takes a lot of will power to be satisfy with your body.if we have our ways we all want to have figure of supermodel and will always be self concious cause nobody have the perfect body.
    to me it doesn’t matter if you are skinny or not so skinny or so called fat if you can perform all function a human body is designed to do.

  4. krono25 says:

    What a very good post, you touched on and addressed many stereotypes associated with “Plus Size”, including some I have never even heard of. It does suck that people are judged n the way they look, and I think a lot of it comes from ignorance. You can’t truly understand what another person sees or feels without being in their shoes. So people are left making uneducated assumptions. I wrote a similar post about the “F” word flattering if you wanna have a look. 🙂

  5. Grab the Lapels says:

    Ick. Clicking on the photos of Myla Dalbesio (plus-size model at size 10), who is the biggest girl ol’ Calvin Kline has ever worked with, is just infuriating. She looks so normal, so healthy, but because she’s dubbed “plus,” there’s a stigma on her and a weird representation of plus-size women.

    And does anyone else rage against these suit things (typically Spanx) that I always see plus-size women wear? I’m not into torture so that you can think I’m fat but smooth.

  6. NicoLite Великий says:

    So, naturally, when I started reading your article, I wasn’t initially thinking I’d be reading about “fat”. Nice one! And you’re absolutely right: being fat is nothing to be ashamed of. Now, I’m a man who grew up in Europe, so I had to actually look at pictures of women who wear size 18, and while I do think it’s kinda (not hella) fat, it’s not unattractive. That is, as long as the person carrying it is comfortable with their own body. Because what really makes people sick and unattractive is the self-loathing, be it 120 or 240 lbs.

  7. pndrgn99 says:

    I think the reason people are so mean to people who are fat is the same one that causes them to be unkind to those who are generally called “special”. My guess is that we fear that the cruelty being inflicted on them will be inflicted on us if we are associated with them. I saw this happen a lot in high school and I think we walk through our lives carrying the scars of social cruelty. I grew up skinny which, believe it or not in, is just as difficult and caused me to cover up going to the beach in jeans and a long sleeve shirt. I hope I’ve learned something because now I’m getting older and I don’t want to go through the “I’m not good enough thing” all over again. I think it is wonderful and courageous and that you took the whole subject out of the closet and put it on word press.
    Congratulations and thank you,

  8. RealisticallyRoisin says:

    A strange yet right concept I guess was my first though. People do beat around the bush and society has a stupidly stupid long way to go. I’m glad you’ve soul searched and got the knees out, thighs next year? Lol!! Loved all of this x

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I actually bought my first pair of shorts from Forever 21 this summer, and they’re pretty short. The first time I wore them, I freaked out. But I bought them anyway, because they looked cute and I got tired of looking like a golfer lol.

  9. motherandmadness says:

    I loved your post! I have to say that lately it drives me crazy that not only fat people are made to feel bad if they are not exercising constantly and doing the newest craze diet. I am pretty fit, but I get crap for eating whatever I want. If I’m trying to be fit I’m not “allowed” to eat whatever I want because then I’m not doing fitness right. I hope your post inspires people to love their body not matter what shape, size or color it is.

  10. Pheonix says:

    The body shaming that happens, at least in the U.S. is insane. There’s probably only a handful of people in the entire country whose, “normal,” is what media portrays it to be. I want you to be comfortable. If it bothers someone else, they can stop looking. That includes what you eat, wear, all of it. Do what makes you happy! To hell with anyone that tries to control what you do. Shaming is emotional abuse. It needs to stop.

  11. jtteop says:

    Great post! of course other societies and other times have prefered people to be fat or even force them to be so, so it is all culturally ordained.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      That’s what I’ve seen a lot, in the comments. I wish I could see when exactly people started seeing fatness as disgusting. Meaning, what gigantic shift caused that to happen?

  12. littlewonder2 says:

    You make very interesting points here, particularly about plus sized models and the lack of fat female celebrities. It figures that we as a society are still so rigid against female standards of beauty, and I found it rather telling when you said, “Just because I acknowledge this doesn’t mean I hate myself,” because it seemed to say that used to think this way. I myself always used to tell myself that love and beauty was worth nothing just because people placed such a huge emphasis on them and I resented it. It took a lot to stop ignoring those things so furiously, but I’m coming around.

    Your post did remind me of a few other things. First of all, there was this quote from JK Rowling on this subject about how fat seems to be such a dirty word to people as opposed to words like vindictive and so on. She said that among other achievements like releasing her book and having a child, a friend chose to compliment her on her appearance, and that was irritating. Apart from that, I’ve also recently seen a slam poetry video about loving a skinny boy, where she talks about how herself, a fat girl, and the skinny boy are perceived. It’s quite good.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I know what poem you’re talking about! It’s “10 Honest Thoughts On Being Loved By A Skinny Boy,” and it’s one of my favorites because of how powerful and vulnerable it is, at the same time.

  13. becauseican27 says:

    Not gonna lie, I read the entire post and looked at a couple of the links. I’ve never realized that you’re right! I’ve definitely seen the “hatred” (as you say a lot) shown in my daily life. It’s really appalling now that you’ve made me think about it, and I’ve never really thought that I judge people like that, based on their size. But I’m going to make sure I don’t, thanks for opening my eyes!

  14. ramblerz says:

    Love your post. I agree, the society especially the media (with the help of Photoshop) has created a specific image of what is and isn’t beautiful. Thank you for your voice of reason.

  15. Retired2Travel says:

    Well said. I like the comment that if someone makes a comment it’s more about themselves. It’s hard enough in life to be happy without added external ‘opinions’. Have a fantastic day 🙂

  16. ramonepennie says:

    It’s nice to see someone bring up this topics like this properly. Perception and representation in the media causes ignorant thoughts and ideas. I have my own personal things I’m insecure about and ignorant comments can dent ones confidence. There is beauty in all of us. Outside and in. We are capable of infinite progress in life but we have to phase out these fake standards of beauty, high class and push forward real concepts and ideals (ESPECIALLY IN THE MEDIA). I enjoyed reading your blog and I’ll gladly follow you ☺

  17. sonatano1 says:

    I don’t find fat people physically attractive, but my definition of “fat” is maybe different from other definitions. Maybe quite a bit more generous than Madison Avenue’s, or whoever is making these decisions about what commercially is considered attractive. My definition of attractive in general is pretty different from many other men’s as well, apparently, because I don’t care about Megan Fox or whoever they’re trying to push on us now through big stupid movies and idiot rags like Esquire and GQ.

    In fact, it’s not really my business, and it’s not their business who I find attractive either, is it? I can’t really help who I find attractive, but I don’t think that affects me in my professional or social life or changes how I treat people (though I could be wrong.)

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I think you can consider someone fat and attractive at the same time, though. It happens. Not all fat people look the same or have the same personalities, so when people say they aren’t attracted to fat people, I just shrug it off.
      I totally get what you mean, though. There’s no one set notion of what fat is. If you ask a Vogue intern, they might say a size 10 is fat. If you ask someone on the street, they might say 200 lbs. And even then, not all 200 lb people look alike.

  18. Lesha says:

    I love this! I’ve always felt the same way. My weight goes up and down all the time. I’ve been a size 8 and I’ve been a size 20. For the last few years I’ve been steady at 18. I was my smallest in high school but I didn’t even realize it. All the years of growing up fat and getting picked on, was embedded in my brain and the way I viewed myself. I was like you, on a 95 degree day, I was wearing jeans and a long sleeves hoodie. Now that I’m older and I’ve had three kids, I walk around with spaghetti straps and pretty sundresses that come above me knee. I could care less what the world thinks. I’m healthy and happy. Thanks for post! Hopefully other girls will learn what we have. 🙂

  19. MayReign aka A.S. says:

    I feel beauty is in the eye of the beholder. People that are too skinny have problems as well. Our bodies are meant to dwell in balance. That first starts with out mind. Love your body however it looks and embrace it each day. Life is too short to be worried about size. We all are beautiful just the way we are. We are alive and there is no greater gift than that. Love yourself because there is only one you and trust me there is a gal bigger than you wishing she was you and your size.

  20. susielindau says:

    I love this. I remember seeing a “curvy” older woman in Paris. She wore a tight top and short skirt while teetering on high heels. Most heavier American women wouldn’t have ever thought of wearing these form-fitting clothes, especially since she was older. But she exuded confidence. I could tell from her posture that she thought she was the bomb, so I did too! That was 15 years ago and I’ll never forget that super cool lady.
    I fought cancer two years ago, so I appreciate that I can walk around at all. It gave me a new perspective on life and most importantly, the “I don’t care what other people think,” attitude. That was such a gift. I wish I could give it to others. It is complete freedom.

  21. happyhanaaa says:

    Reblogged this on Don't worry, be happy! and commented:
    Fat or not, I don’t really care what people say anymore and this rant was beautifully built. I’m glad the writer feels just fine with her fat body. Everyone calls me fat back then and sometimes it can be a little too offensive when they brag about it but all in all, I was fine with it in the end because I learnt to accept that I am fat and I put no effort whatsoever to make a change about it. After having struggles with finding the right size for clothes and etc, as I grow up, I realise my lifestyle and diet isn’t healthy that is why I am determine to change it and live with a healthier body in the future to make myself feel good in and out. I think that people who were fat and became slimmer looks hotter or sexier not because of their figure in the presents but their motivation that was always positive and never-give-up energy that helped them lose all their insecurities and negativity fat bits.

    Overall, do what you want with your body, it’s yours. And if you want what’s best, then eat less fattening stuff and just live a healthier lifestyle in my opinion and suggestions.

  22. adrianneslife says:

    This is just genius. Thank you so much for this wonderful post and I can’t agree more with you. And being the “wrong kind of fat” is horrible, I know from first hand experience what that is like. I’m also having a hard time finding the words right now so I’m sorry if this comment is a bit jagged up and confusing. But yeah, brilliant. And true. And horrible. But mostly brilliant. ❤
    Love from Lisa in Sweden

  23. Developer says:

    Out of sight, out of mind is the go to decision for most. Covering it up is just the easiest way to hide it from ourselves.

    The thing about the word “fat” is that it hurts people’s feelings and inherently we do not want to hurt others.

    Overall is comes down to self talk…being negative through yoan inner voice will cause more discomfort than something external. Change how one talks to themself and they will change how they feel. Uplift from the the inner voice and you will change how they look.

    Clifford T Mitchem
    Advocare Distributor
    Nutrition + Fitness = Health

  24. culbia says:

    I love the bit about summer clothes – you’re so right, our bodies are not a secret and dressing a certain way won’t usually deceive others into thinking we are what we’re not. And why should people suffer under too much fabric at hot temperatures just because others may not want to look at them? Personally, I find overly skinny women in too little fabric much more disturbing, it’s sometimes es as if they’re rubbing into the rest of us that they’ve got what we should all be or at least try to become. Same as with big girls – if you’ve got a nice figure others will see this without you having to flaunt it at every opportunity

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I think that’s the key to kind of doing what you want. People are going to realize that I’m fat, regardless of what I wear. It’s not a secret. So why go out of my way to make myself disappear? It’s not worth it.

  25. whereshappy says:

    All hard truths here. I could go on and on about your post but I mostly want to agree about the use of the word fat. I have come to use it as a description of myself instead of heavy or curvy because it’s just true but people in my life get mad at me for using it. I know what I am, I didn’t just wake up this way yesterday. No need to sugarcoat it to make yourself feel better!

  26. what0a0lifee says:

    your so inspirational!!!!And smart!!!!Heres something that you may want to write bout i the future:People say fat like its a bad thing.Have you ver listened to that song All About That Bass? Well in some of the lyrics she states she wont be no silicone barbie doll and that boys like a little more booty to hold at night.Well if thats true then why is it so wrong to be fat?How come if your fat people constantly make fun of you? That could be you next topic. 🙂

    • anawnimiss says:

      You mean the song where she’s shaming non-fat people by calling them “skinny bitches”?
      Sorry, but that song is just as offensive, and you seem to have missed the point of this post entirely.

      The idea behind this post is not to say fat is better than skinny – but to say that one size (or shape) is not necessarily better than the others. We ALL are more than our bodies. Even us “skinny bitches”.

      • EtherealNoir says:

        I agree. Some of my best friends are skinny, and I’ve never once felt like I had to compete with them. While I do recognize that skinny people do have privileges (a lot of them), I don’t focus on comparing myself to them as much as I used to.
        And I also don’t like Meghan Trainor. I don’t like anyone who says things like “I tried to be Anorexic, but then gave up and ate a sandwich.”

  27. freejunk1016 says:

    Yes!!! This is fantastic!! I’m a size three, and sometimes I have trouble accepting fat people until I remember that they are people too! Their body does not change what’s inside of them! I’ll try to remember this the next time I start stereo-typing someone. Excellent and inspiring! Everyone should read this!!

  28. Michelle says:

    What a great piece of writing. We all need to be comfortable within our own skins, regardless of what size, colour or creed we are born to be. Embracing and loving ourselves is essential to wellbeing and our society will be a lot kinder for it. Society is cruel and demanding at times but positive attitudes and self worth must win through – at least that’s how I like to look at things – even if it does sometimes take an effort and some pain to reach that point.

  29. LargeRoomNoLight says:

    Wow. I never even thought about the fact that the plus-size models in magazines weren’t really a good representation of what they were supposed to be representing. And I could see how it would create an even more complicated and painful paradox. It’s hard to represent everyone, but it’s obvious the media and fashion industry aren’t really trying. Thank you for sharing this. ✨

  30. kogrady1263 says:

    Reblogged this on kaylaogrady and commented:
    Absolutely right: ladies, our bodies are our business. Do what feels good to you, and never let another person dictate how you dress, feel, or perceive your body. Be your fabulous self!

  31. srinjayi says:

    Hey there! I absolutely agree with your content and believe that social atrocities are both unnecessary and bring out insecurities in everyone of us! It makes me wonder if women are found interesting for the fats in their chest and hips why can’t fat all over them be appreciated!

  32. torikingslayer says:

    Amazing piece!! I hate it when people try to disguise disgust with concern. “Aren’t you worried about your wellbeing?” “We’re concerned about your health” Bitch please, the doctor is happy with my health, I’m happy with myself for the first time in years, I don’t need you pretending to be worried about me because you’re uncomfortable with my size.

  33. curiosetta says:

    A lot of people find fat people unattractive and they recognise that fat people lead an unhealthy lifestyle and they put a huge strain on the healthcare system. This is not the same as ‘hating’ fat people.

    Fat people (and thin people) who campaign for ‘fat acceptance’ are campaigning for society to accept something that is negative and has no real positive aspects to it. That thing being: excess body fat.

    ‘Fat’ is not the same as ‘people’. Inside every fat person is a person. Often they suffered some kind of trauma or abuse or adverse experience as a child and this caused them to over eat as a desperate form of self medication, comfort, act of control, attempt to disappear etc.

    If ‘body positivists’ are successful in forcing society to be accepting of excess body fat, and view it as normal and healthy, this just means the childhood traumas of fat people will never be addressed, they will never get the therapy they need and their over-eating will continue. They will suffer many unnecessary health problems, put a huge strain on everybody around them (from the taxpayer to their family) and they will die sooner than they needed to, often after spending years as an invalid.

    But none of this matters. The only thing that matters is political correctness (pathological altruism).

    • EtherealNoir says:

      If you’re going to talk about fat people putting a strain on the healthcare system (which…source?), you should also probably talk about alcohol (which skinny people can also abuse), drugs (which skinny people can also abuse), cigarettes (that skinny people can get over the counter at a CVS). Those all stem from stress and trauma too, yet fatness is the only one with a major stigma attached to it.
      And the problem with your comment is that body positivity isn’t about seeing fatness as “normal” or considering it “healthy.” The body positivity movement is about making people come to terms with how they look, and enjoying life when everyone else tells us not to simply because of how we look. Like I said in my post, not all fat people are unhealthy. Personally, I don’t take any medication because of my weight, nor do I abuse the health system in any way. This sounds like the regurgitation of hearsay rather than fact.

      • curiosetta says:

        Yes I agree that there are many lifestyle choices that put a strain on the healthcare system. I didn’t mention smoking or drinking because that was not the topic being discussed.

        So let’s talk about smoking and drinking. I agree that they are often induced by childhood trauma (and even trauma in the womb), which studies show can makes a person more prone to addictions of all kinds.

        So what is your point?

        Are you saying we must learn to embrace alcoholics and chain smokers for their self abusive habits, which put a strain on everyone else around them?

        Or do you agree that we should not pretend smoking or alcohol abuse is something to be proud of, and offer these people help to get better?

        Surely we should have the same attitude to people who over eat too? After all, that is just another destructive addiction which harms them, and puts a strain on society.

        Are you aware how many tens of thousands of pounds a fat person can drain from the health service / charities?

        Even a routine visit to the doctor can require a special ambulance, a team of ‘lifters’ and special wheelchairs. Then there is the daily care for those who cannot move. All of this money could be going towards other non-preventable illnesses and disabilities.

        Fatness IS preventable, treatable and curable. But forcing everyone to view it as socially acceptable will make it harder to prevent it, treat it or cure it.

        > Those all stem from stress and trauma too, yet fatness is the only one with a major stigma attached to it.

        Not true. Smoking and alcohol abuse have a social stigma attached to them. Much more so than fatness.

        > And the problem with your comment is that body positivity isn’t about seeing fatness as “normal” or considering it “healthy.”

        Yes it is.

        > The body positivity movement is about making people come to terms with how they look, and enjoying life when everyone else tells us not to simply because of how we look.

        That amounts to the same thing. You are not SUPPOSED to feel comfortable with being fat because being fat is unhealthy, it is a miserable existence and it puts a huge strain on the rest of society.

        Would you ever say a smoker or alcoholic should be encouraged to feel good about being addicted to fags and booze?

        > Like I said in my post, not all fat people are unhealthy.

        Yes they are. Medically speaking being fat is unhealthy. Some fat people can get away with it, just as some life long smokers and drinkers can get away with it. But they are all unhealthy lifestyles and there’s no getting away from it.

        > Personally, I don’t take any medication because of my weight, nor do I abuse the health system in any way.

        Yes but when you get older you will become more of a burden. Most people put on a bit of weight when they get older, especially if they already have that tendency. So the chances are you will keep getting bigger and bigger and this will make you more immobile and less able to shed the weight (especially as you get old and your metabolism slows). It is in old age when fat people are most miserable and also when they are the biggest burden. A lot of fat people are basically chair/ bed bound for the last 10+ years of their lives. And they obviously require full care for this time. It’s a miserable existence and a huge strain on society.

        > This sounds like the regurgitation of hearsay rather than fact.

        Have you ever cared for an old fat person 24/7? Do you have any idea how much time, energy and money they cost to look after?

      • EtherealNoir says:

        I’m far too tired to argue with you, so I’ll say this. There are varying degrees as to what fat is. You don’t know me, and I don’t know you. You don’t know what my day to day choices are. So you have no right to say that I (nor any of us) will become society’s burden. How dare you regulate us to just our bodies and the stereotype that all fat people are lazy and don’t want to be better? You very obviously sound like someone who’s never been fat, because EVERYTHING tells us that it’s not okay to look the way we look. Nothing you’re saying is new, because it’s shit we constantly have to hear. The body positivity movement (another thing you clearly know nothing about) isn’t saying “Hey just eat all the shit you want because you’re beautiful anyway and who cares if you’re unhealthy!” It’s saying, “Hey, I know you’re struggling to love yourself because you look different. But you need to have a stable mind and soul, too. So don’t fucking kill yourself just because uneducated people like to deem you a burden on society.” Mental/Emotional health and physical health are connected, always. Since you’re the health expert, I’m sure you know that. So how exactly is someone going to take care of themselves properly when they’re mentally or emotionally berated, on a large scale, by people they don’t even know? The first thing they tell you when you start working towards weight loss or healthy eating, is that if you don’t love yourself now, you never will even after you lose weight (which I have seen happen). Secondly, they tell you that healthy eating and exercise are ways to reward your body.
        Now onto the topic of drinking and smoking, I brought it up because they are two things that are usually pretty much acceptable to people, because it’s considered glamorous to drink and smoke to the mainstream. No one ever points to smokers and says, “Don’t look, it’s not natural.” In fact so many women smoke to avoid becoming someone who is considered a an ugly group in society. But, no, I’m not equating smoking and drinking to being fat. I didn’t pick up this fat and put it on my body, by choice. Smokers and drinkers chose to start smoking and drinking which led to other things. You could equate poor eating to smoking and drinking, but then you couldn’t just talk about fat people either, in that regard. Because poor eating isn’t something JUST fat people do.
        You can support someone who’s fat if they’re not living a healthy lifestyle by helping them change, just like you would a chainsmoker or an alcoholic. Idk why so many of you associate support with acceptance, because they’re not synonymous.
        Which brings me back to your initial post on here. You said that you don’t care what I said, all fat people are unhealthy and a burden on society, and going to use up the nation’s resources. Why the hell did you even brother commenting, then, if nothing I said had any change on anything you already felt pre-reading. You’re allowed to disagree, that’s fine. But when I’m presenting facts and the perspective from someone who is healthy and also fat, how can you claim you know my body better than me just because you’re 123 lbs and have never been fat? And on top of that, you’re speaking about this without the full knowledge of what it means to be fat, what the Body Positivity movement is, and the fact that people who hate fat people exist. That just leaves your comment pointless and super vapid. Even you say you don’t hate fat people, but your comments alone say otherwise. Especially when you essentially call us useless wastes of space, who can’t take care of ourselves and rely on others to do it.

        Edit to add: You’re taking about morbidly obese people in your comment. How many morbidly obese people do you see on a day to day basis? Most people are overweight, this is true. But where are you getting this notion that morbidly obese people who require specialized ANYTHING is common? It’s really not as common as you think it is. Not enough to drain the country’s resources and charities or whatever. Cancer is more prevalent than extremely morbid obesity.

  34. faithkabora says:

    i definately love your article…..i know how it feels to be deemed unattractive because of your size and complexion…but the thing that keeps us moving is positivity…thanks for inspiring my monday

  35. aaronsr says:

    THe best thing is to love our Lord that gave you that body, for the women my family were larger women who did not worry about what people think. They dressed well, carried themselves with dignity and married well, have children and gran children. Keep on stepping and you can lose weight if you are having or are worried about your health.
    Get your vitals checked and do it yourself, also. Being larger, portly or, as you put it, fat, you are the woman that comes from genetics. Just keep your spirit, high, love yourself and do not agonize over your size, so love the body you are in and support yourself with positive reinforcement.
    Our Lord has blessed us all so and has brought us all this far and do not let that nagging worry occupy any more of your time. IN THE NAME OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR, JESUS OUR CHRIST…LOVE AND PRAYERS TO YOU AND YOUR…AARON SR.

  36. Raquel says:

    I loved your text! In portuguese the word fat (gorda) is a taboo too. I’m using it more often when I refer to myself, and I see in people’s eyes they never get used to it, and will never use the word if they like me. Once in a while I get caught in the middle of a diet talk, and with me around they use other words not to ofend me.

  37. gibme says:

    I like your conclusion of the matter “if you want to change your body cool. If you don’t want to cool. your business is no one’s business other than your own” keep it up.

  38. aprillynn35 says:

    I can almost always agree with someone to some point. But you seem to be very angry about the fact that idk why because your fat. you said the word hate an aweful lot in your post like i myself would hate you because you are fat. No, see I could care less what you weigh but its your own fault not anyone elses and yes some people look at you and think what a fat ass but hate because your fat no and i live with a man that does not date fat women at all never would. Because your not in good health no matter what you said in your post I do weigh 123 lbs i have worked hard to stay at that weight my entire adult life. I would love to sit down and just eat the entire choc ice cream gallon but i now that if i do that i will become 300 lbs. Hate is the wrong word to use we do not hate we just were taught not to stare and when we see someone so much different than what we are we tend to look and stare. Not because we hate but we are seeing something about you that turned our heads. Social politeness crosses many boundaries and cultures here in the united states alone so its not that The F word is a social politeness that is transparent its cultural or maybe even go as far to say our christian beliefs say not to eat too much gluttony and our culture says different. Sorry if i have offended but hate is a very strong word to use please refrain

    • EtherealNoir says:

      You’re entitled to your opinion, and that’s fine. But my choice to use the word “hate” stems from what I’ve seen and heard OTHER people say. I didn’t just make it up.
      Secondly, I don’t blame anyone for the way that I look. I never have. I don’t find it my “fault” either. It just is what it is. If you genuinely don’t want to be fat, then that’s okay for you. I didn’t actively choose to be fat either, but now that I am, it’s either be miserable for the rest of my life, or accept my body while I work towards a healthier lifestyle.
      Thirdly, you don’t know what my health condition is, because I don’t know you. Just because I’m a size 18 doesn’t mean I’m on the brink of death, and the only reason you believe that is because you buy into the myth that fatness = death. While that can the case, there are also quite a few people who that rule doesn’t apply to. So…

      • aprillynn35 says:

        I wanted to lets say start over I did not write what it is i was wanting to say exactly. I feel that hate is a very strong word and i feel bad to hear that you choose the word from experience in life. I do not feel that anyone should be judged at all by anyone else especially solely on the weight bust size breast size. I have been fat I was a size 22 and that is why i do believe we can change i have stayed the same weight now between 120-135 for 4 years now. At my fattest one lady at church said oh i had no clue when are you do? She was not making fun of me being fat she was asking an honest question without relevant knowledge. It hurt me so bad that i stopped taking the medication that had caused my weight gain and in turn i lost my weight yes I also lost a marriage and two young sons. The medication was for a mental illness and i chose to be skinny over family unknowingly of course. You are a very strong person to accept yourself as you are.. i have not ever looked at anyone and thought wow look at her fat ass or look she is so skinny she would fall through the commode and hang herself. I just felt that you think people actually hate you for fatness and if that is correct why do they and how could anyone think they can catch your weight so what they will hug you and wake up fat how stupid of someone to believe.. Etherealnoir, Please accept my sincere apology for sounding insensitive towards you. I feel that you wrote a very well thought out process blog. I have been ft and my ankles would hurt my heart rate was so fast i needed medication it caused me to get diabetes i am told my doctor has said that my weigh caused it. Now that I have lost 100 lbs I feel less tired ankles do not hurt and my diabetes is taken care of without any medication. So this I pray will show you why I said the things I said.

      • aprillynn35 says:

        Ignorance for saying the word hate is strong and i fee misused. Yes I am an adult and once i heard why she said the words hate i wrote another post so likebigbraids specify since i am so ignorant be very specific as to in what way because i must be so ignorant that your improper use of a properly written sentence makes no sense at all to me

  39. nekochan24 says:

    Thank you for posting this. I struggled with accepting my body when u started to gain weight from the medication I was on. I would wear hoodies and lose fitting shirts because I felt I was unattractive. I’m slowly starting to wear skirts, dresses, and whatever else I feel like wearing

  40. The FashionTraveller says:

    There is no such thing as ”fat” . Weight is just stereotyped . Every single one should not compare their body to some model that is wrongly considered as the perfect body type. It is just so sad that us- new generations – are raised to believe ; wrong things are good . And not only not to love ourselves just the way they are but to loathe them as well.

  41. tabwimberly says:

    Your words could not have been true. Men, women, and especially social media has ruined what beauty is by highlighting the “perfect woman” and not highlighting what is actually beautiful….uniqueness. The beauty about people is that we are all so different, different sizes/shapes/height/hair/skin!!!! It’s the most beautiful to be yourself, and love yourself!!!!!!

  42. Mounim KH says:

    “Lastly, if you want to change your body, cool. If you don’t want to, cool. Your body is no one’s business other than your own.”

    This part say it all ^^

  43. stayyoungbro says:

    Reblogged this on meteorshower516 and commented:
    Obviously I am one of so many girls who keeps worrying about my size and seriously I have no idea about why i have to. Perhaps that’s the rule that has been rooted in girls’ minds for centuries.

  44. The College Blogger says:

    I agree with your sentiment. I think that the only reason the word “fat” is an insult is because of the negative connotations society places on it. Fat should just be used to describe a person’s features as opposed to a person’s competence, beauty.

  45. Laila says:

    Thank you! I say I’m fat and then people go “oh, your not youre just… To me fat aint a bad word (depending on how it’s being used) to me their way of trying to say in in a “nicer way” is worse. I’m fat – period. And no, it dosent mean that I hate or even disslike may self. Would I like to loose some weight? Yes. But only because I think my knees and back would be better of in the long run. Not for how it would make me appear to others!

  46. Ashleigh Montford says:

    I absolutely adore your insight and I am so glad that someone finally spoke about it! Growing up I had to deal with bullying because I was bigger than the average size girl for my age in height and weight, but some times we just have to come to the realization that people are just cruel for no reason a lot of the time just because they can. But this blog post here, is something special!

  47. shyutgal says:

    Amen to this. And you share very valid points! I’m a lot older than you are and I remember vividly the fat girl in my brother’s 5th grade class who was tormented and hated. My brother was a skinny kid – not now – he’s old and older people are genetically predisposed to become ‘fat’ or “plump” – maybe it’s nature’s way of apologizing for one gearing up to die – me, I think it’s because grandparents are supposed to look comfortable and cozy and chubby is both . Anyway I joined the ranks of the ‘fat girl society’ when I was about 21 and I now enjoy a size 22. I fought the battle hard though, because we were told by society and our own families that to be ‘big’ was to be lazy, slobby, unwanted, unlovable. I tried to be that size 10 my mother always told me I SHOULD be. My bone structure gave lie to that fantasy and the size 14 that I was through most of my young adult years should have been something I could embrace. I’m glad to be old tell the truth because now “those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind”. It’s great.

  48. GigTog says:

    “Not only are we fat, we’re the wrong type of fat”. OMG! Yup! I’ve experienced this over and over again. Too many times, it occurs in my own head. I’m committed to ending the self shaming thoughts that stop me from enjoying life and the relationships I value. Thank you for writing a wonderful and honest post!

  49. hakeem says:

    Such an inspiring read. I am not very fat, but I am a bit overweight. I have never accepted this fact. I try to deceive myself but exercising a bit, but slowly I’m accepting this to be my normal body size. Did you ever feel like hitting the gym cos you wanted to feel “normal”?

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I do go to the gym from time to time. I prefer walking/jogging. But not necessarily because I want to feel “normal.” Out of all the things that make me feel abnormal, my weight isn’t high on the list lol. I go to the gym because I like how I feel afterwards. I think that should be the main reason why people work out; not because they’re trying to be accepted by society, but because they want to feel good. If you go to the gym and you hate it, you’re never going to want to go.

  50. jlouisemac says:

    Agreed, but could supporting ‘fat’ people be the same as supporting your friend who you see smoking? Doesn’t it come down to a health issue?

    • EtherealNoir says:

      Smoking and fatness aren’t similar. Smoking is something someone willingly takes up. It’s an addiction and something someone has to overcome. I don’t know anyone who willingly decides to be fat. Likewise, not all fat people are unhealthy. But all people who smoke are doing damage to their bodies.
      It sounds to me like you’re referring more towards supporting people who don’t lead healthy lifestyles, and that’s not what I’m saying at all. If you have a friend who’s overweight and eats poorly, and you’re worried about their health, bring it up to them (gently, and only if you’re really close). I had a friend who asked if I wanted to workout with them, and another who would ask if I wanted to try some of her organic food. There are ways to be supportive without being dismissive, for sure. 🙂

  51. Eerily Cheerily says:

    When I was 10 years old, they taught us a song in music class at school which has always stuck with me:

    ‘My body’s nobody’s body but mine. You run your own body – let me run mine!’

    A jiggle, a lump, massive wobble, muffin top. Whatever. Love yourself before others, I say. Thanks for this post.

  52. Iona says:

    So much of our standard of beauty comes from the society that we grow up in. I wonder what our grandchildren’s standard of beauty will be?

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I’m glad that plus size clothing brands exist, and sell cute clothes for girls over a size 12. According to my mom, plus size clothes were absolutely hideous about 20 years ago. So they’re improving quite a bit.

  53. samuelwordsmith says:

    I think you’re right. The semantics of the word ‘fat’ are mystifying. There is no size of shape that quantifiable equates to ‘fat’. It is completely self defined. Or, more commonly, media defined.
    I do however think that there are heath implications that shouldn’t be overlooked if someone is overweight. I adamantly disagree with the idea that someone should be told, “As long as you’re happy, you’re fine,” if that someone is eating four takeaways a week. I think that by doing that we are just fulfilling a phatic, social procedure, which, is potentially more damaging.
    What I agree with is encouragement. Encouragement to lead a happy and healthy lifestyle. Let’s not forget, you can be overweight and still be healthy. It’s the more extreme circumstances can be damaging.
    I think the biggest issue is how people say things. Passing comments and passive aggressive (and sometimes just aggressive) discussions about people s weight is not the way to do it. But is there a hard and fast rule about how to say it? Maybe not. Maybe it’s just intuition and humility. And maybe some people just don’t have any?

    Fantastic article!

  54. jeraldene says:

    Reblogged this on thebigissueblog and commented:
    This is the best thing i’ve ever read. It speaks to me personally, having had to deal with being ‘overweight’ my entire life, just because society has dictated to us that we are lesser beings than skinnier people. I even heard on the radio once that fat people are less likely to be successful. Society has a long way to go, in terms of accepting fat people as normal. This is the very reason why I have stalled the start my own blog because I feared that people would think I’m not skinny enough to hand out fashion advice. However i am now more inspired than ever and if ever I have a bad day from now onwards I will refer back to this article. For the love of fashion!

  55. jeraldene says:

    Love love love. Thank you! These concerns are shared by so many people and women especially, needless to say that this has inspired each and every person who has read this and will get to read it.

  56. tanya0x0x0 says:

    Wow! Ur words are so inspiring and just wow, I’m speechless! I don’t believe in the f word and if someone calls them selfs fat, I would disagree cuz I honestly don’t think that anyone is fat, people can say there fat but I slightly disagree, a lot of people tell me that I’m skinny and I know that I am but honestly nobody’s perfect!

  57. vitanova360 says:

    The importance of embracing a healthy attitude towards my own body image only really manifested itself after having my own daughter. It is so important to me that she be apart from societal norms as to what is acceptable or not of her size. As long as she is healthy, in the sense that she is able to pursue her hobbies and interests; and in doing so is happy, that is all that matters.
    Truly her self acceptance is largely attached to my own self acceptance and the beauty of the innocence of childhood is that they are too young to judge you by societal norms:)

    • EtherealNoir says:

      That last part is so true. When mothers stand in front of mirrors and poke at themselves or call themselves fat, kids pick up on that. The same goes for mothers who make fun of others for being fat. Kids see it and think that it’s acceptable to treat others that way. So they copy it.

  58. lond4n says:

    Wow all I’d like to say is that I have never read anything more honest (besides a book full of facts) and I hope you don’t find this creepy but I adore you’re words. I just wish you were around to talk some sense into my little sister

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I think that this stuff is learned through experience and talking to like-minded people. When I was younger, I had so much self-hatred. I still struggle, but I don’t ever talk badly about other people’s bodies anymore.

  59. MadameShirleyP says:

    Great read, I admire ur honesty and confidence. There’s nothing wrong with being a larger than a size 16, the only concern that I think about is health concerns. I think that health should be a #1 priority. So my opinion being overweight is not bad , but eating cheesesteak, pizza, and wings and being overweight is a problem.
    Lastly I do think that society made it this way and as if being skinny was beautiful but we both know that’s not true at all.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I get what you’re saying, but those who are fat and continue to eat badly know what they’re doing. Sometimes there are other factors like Depression or Eating Disorders. That’s why I don’t comment on what other people eat.
      I also feel like, if people are willing to comment on fat people eating poorly, they should do the same to skinny people eating unhealthy foods. Because skinny doesn’t mean they’re healthy.

  60. randalg7 says:

    Nicely written piece. I like this and I feel like this message should be carried on to other people. Especially to the people who feel insecure about their bodies. This post what people should read about because I feel it would boost their confidence.

  61. queenellen33 says:

    Love this. I too am fat and used to have the worst self esteem in the world. I now am comfortable in my own skin and truly believe that I am beautiful. But, I am losing weight due to health issues. I am changing my body not because of low self esteem but because I want to be able to live my life and not let my health weigh me down. Don’t understand, see my blog!

  62. May says:

    Have you seen the UK campaign “This Girl Can”? It’s basically encouraging women (mainly young women) to do whatever physical exercise they enjoy, regardless of body shape. I think it’s great, both the message and how it’s communicated.

  63. mariegriffith says:

    I say I love fat people. But do I really? I have fat friends, but we don’t talk about their fatness. I have two teenage daughters and I don’t want them to be fat. I don’t want them to experience all the things you talked about… just makes life harder.

    But I don’t want them to drink too much, or date dumb guys, or tan too much either. Yes, I love my fat friends, and my skinny ones, too. I love my friends who drink too much and the ones who need to take a break from the tanning bed.

    I don ‘t talk to my tan friend about her leathery skin, or my 100 pound friend about her scrawny thighs. And they don’t talk about their perceptions of me either. I’m glad. I don’t want to know.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I mean…you don’t want them to be fat. I’m sure my mom didn’t want me to be fat either. But sometimes things happen. That doesn’t mean you don’t address it. I think that, since you recognize that you’re uncomfortable with fatness, you can kind of teach yourself to not see it as something ugly. Because bigger people exist, and we really just want to live our lives in peace lol.
      Not to say your girls will end up fat. But if that does happen, they should still consider themselves to be beautiful. It’s hard to deal with the things we do, but we survive.

  64. Natalie King says:

    Wow. This really hit home. You articulated a lot of things I think about while staring off into space – it’s reassuring that I’m not the only one who thinks like this. Also, I’m glad I’m not the only one who wears cardigans in 100+degree weather with the blind hope of camouflage.

  65. tahtahme says:

    It is definitely a culture thing. In many tribal and islander societies, they treasure a bigger woman and see larger people as successful, healthy, and attractive.

  66. Belle Sketchley says:

    I love this! Honestly brilliant post and so so true! Flaunt your body it isn’t a secret or anything to be ashamed of! Love it!

  67. bubbleskg says:

    I’ve never really had thought about how often I judge someone just by their weight, but after reading, I realize that I do. I’ll try to human race a little harder the next time before i use the (weight-related) f-word.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      Honestly, it’s something I’ve always thought. I just tend to keep my feelings to myself, because I know people don’t really like to address some of this stuff. It’s hard to say and hard to hear. But I thought I would share, because I know that I’m not alone in my feelings.

  68. kdrmurray says:

    Very interesting read. The “F-word” had been used and thrown around by everyone in the wrong way. Everyone is different that’s all it is. Why must we all look like barbie dolls to be looked at as beautiful. I myself have always been that thicker girl growing up always made fun of because I was not a size 1 but a 7 as a young child. After having children became a size 24. The most miserable days of my life due to pain and just being ’round’. So I’ve worked hard to getting back into the best shape I could to keep up with my children (4 in total now). Now a hundred pounds lighter and a size 10 still miserable. Not classified as a plus size nor can I pass as a regular sized woman. I’ve learnt ultimately that others opinion doesn’t mean a thing because it is you that has to deal with your body daily. I am learning to love my body regardless my size or shape (dents and rolls included).

  69. biochemlife says:

    I think your points are more than valid. Most of what you say could apply to other body issues such as spider veins ( I have many on my legs that I cover by not wearing shorts). I hate it when others call me fat or suggest that I am pregnant when I am not.

  70. Adaeze says:

    I live in Nigeria, it’s almost as bad as the US in the way fat girls are treated. You’ve raised salient points, why are people afraid of seeing fat girls happy or having fun? I can’t even drink a coke in peace! How much more ice cream without condemnation.

  71. adulting4dummies says:

    You’ve made some great points here, such a good piece. It’s all about being happy in your own skin, and you deserve to be! If you have a few spare minutes read my blog, it’s brand new!

  72. tessadoghor says:

    There’s nothing wrong with being fat, if you have discovered you and are confident, no one can make you feel like less.

    People make fun of fat people, of rape, of people with mental illness.
    Life is a battle
    Ignore the ones who make fun of people, it is just their insecurity speaking out.

  73. sistermae says:

    What bothers me the most is that so many women because of their size choose to dress like they pulled all their clothes from a rag bag. I am 5ft 3in and weigh 180 and I choose to dress neatly fix my hair and wear make-up. Fat or not we can choose to feel beautiful and well be beautiful.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      Are you considering mental illness as well? Or just physical illness like thyroid disease? Because…people who aren’t mentally healthy tend to not eat well or exercise because a) they don’t give a damn about their bodies and b) they don’t have the energy, nor the motivation to work out.
      Also, you’re not factoring in people who don’t have access to high quality, high nutrition foods because of where they live and how pricey it is. If you’ve ever been to low income neighborhoods, you see that there are low-priced fast food chains and bodegas on every corner. Produce is expensive.
      There are so many factors to people not eating healthy.

  74. Hodgepodge 4 the Soul™ says:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Set these people straight! 😀 Your energy contagious. I glad that I stumbled upon your post today.

  75. Sakeenah Aleem says:

    Yikes! This hurts my soul! I had to stop reading! I myself will admit I am guilty of at least thinking mean thoughts about overweight people. But having been picked on as a kid for other reasons, I know my judgements are wrong. And I’d never gossip or support fat shaming social media posts or conversations. In fact I’m studying nutrition! I commend you for your sincerity in your post and look forward to reading more from you! Much love ❤️

  76. cazdawnie says:

    thank god your post is featured in freshly pressed… this is amazing 🙂 keep up the good work! we need more voices like you and more voices on this to increase the visibility of this issue… ‘The wrong type of fat’ – My god I know what that means. kind of. It’s simply when it’s not approved by society… UGH. Never mind. Getting angry for nothing. Great work 🙂 love this

  77. A man about cars says:

    This is a great post. It’s not my typical read, but today I decided to go exploring and I’m glad I did. I never thought of how universally acceptable it is even now to discriminate and say such prejudicial things about fat people… but at the same time, I even find it hard to say the term “fat people”. But that is only because we as a society have decided to attach so much bad to the word fat. In the end, fat just is. Just like, skinny or tall or short isn’t it.

  78. bassdocta says:

    I wonder if aversion to fat has some biological basis as well. For instance, in a hunter gatherer society, where a fat person would underperform chasing game ( o.r running away).
    One more: you may not be as noticed as you think. “Overweight” is now common.
    Last: I put fat people in my art. Much more interesting. But just getting started so none yet….

  79. keyfra06 says:

    This is so great Im not going to lie after having my twins I was 228 lbs and I have done all in my hands ti loose and I did and such yet I still have people saying #1 even im still fat for them or #im to skinny now so my conclusion was just about the same im going to make me
    Happy what I want for my body. About being attracted to fat guys I think they are awesome and there some pretty hot now Im my case i love intimacy with bones but it has to do more about certain bones hitting some spot haha not about physical beauty but geez there is some fat guys hot !!! My husband being the first one hehehe I think society is very but very superficial what is the point of me having a channin tantum if he dont treat me well let me with my gabriel iglesias and treated like a queen 😊

  80. aturba says:

    Great post! I love your language; most people chalk articles like this up to a snooze on body-shaming from one side or another, but the angle with which you took this– straightforwardly–was very refreshing.

  81. sailwme says:

    Omg this is amazing. Thanl ypu lots for this. It just proves a point that needs to be proven. If I could I would’ve given you ha hug or an applaus or something. Great job!

  82. anawnimiss says:

    You make a very valid point. “Fat” has somehow come to mean “ugly”, and “skinny” is somehow equal to “bitch” (yes, I’m referring to that thoughtless All about that bass song).

    I am a size 8, and I have to work very (very) hard to keep it that way. It’s not because I want to be a bikini model or please crowds – I have a hypothyroid condition and I need to ensure that my body’s metabolism and overall functionality are working at an optimum level so I can do all the things I want to do. At this point, I am in excellent health. That being said, I know several people who are in the size 12-14 range (and therefore considered “fat” by some) but are healthier than I am and can kick my ass at sports.

    What I’m saying is that our bodies are merely tools that allow us to get work done – and I think we ascribe way too much value to aesthetics, the standards for which keep changing each passing year. Just when you get a flat stomach, people start judging you because you don’t have the much sought-after thigh gap. This is so belittling and so infuriating!

    Why do we owe so much to society? Shouldn’t our only yardstick be whether we are healthy and kind and generous and compassionate? Shouldn’t these qualities be considered more “attractive”?

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I agree with most of this, except for the skinny = bitch part. The only people I really see get called skinny bitches are women who constantly let everyone know that they’re skinny and talk about others that aren’t in a condescending manner. I doubt the random girl standing in line for the movies is going to be called a skinny bitch for no reason.

      • anawnimiss says:

        While I want to believe that nobody thinks of me as a bitch unless I rub them the wrong way, it seems that I’m always rubbing them the wrong way. Things as simple as wearing good clothes warrant a jealous I could never pull that off. I can’t actively participate in discussions around shopping because “oh please, you must find it so much easier to find clothes your size”. Hell, I can’t even mention my health issues without being told I have it “so much better than the others” because they have put on “x times more weight than you”. I can’t talk about an exciting new workout because if I do, I’m “showing off”. I have overheard conversations between my colleagues where I’m being called the b-word for being happy about a compliment and telling someone else about it.

        I realize that it’s not something I am doing – it is almost as if my being is the real problem.

  83. WordwithMindy says:

    Love all the points you have made here – many made me stop and question my own thoughts. I am a recovered bulimic, but have never been more than 10 lbs over my “healthy” weight. I have struggled my entire life to remain that way. I have always hated the never-ending negative comments about “fat” people, as well as “ugly” people and applaud you for boldly calling them out. When fashion designers quit feeling the need to unquestioningly control their models, and thereby cease the need for starving girls too weak to stand up for themselves, then our love affair with “fear of fat girls” will cease. We need more articles like yours – thanks!!

  84. shugarkayn says:

    Thank you for this post love . It was a refreshing read . I also have a similar post titled online vs reality : be your own kind of beautiful i would really appreciate it if u take a look

  85. sightofangels says:

    This article reminds me of being a child and having to tread carefully around my mom, because of her fat insecurities. We were once at an amusement park and our family got on board a submarine ride. Mom got on last behind dad. I was in the middle there were five of us.Being the last ones to board the vessel and there being six seats remaining. I made the comment in my little six or seven year old voice “look mom you get two seats.” I was thinking this was good because she had two Windows and could see twice as much. Thank God My dad was between us to remind her she loves me. This made a few of the other folks on board chuckle. How was I supposed to know?

    • EtherealNoir says:

      Little kids are so blissfully unaware. I never remember making comments about bigger people as a kid, as there were bigger people in my family, so I was used to it. But as I got older (like 10 or so) I do remember making comments about my mom’s body that seem insensitive in retrospect. I know that moms know you don’t mean anything bad by it. But I imagine it’s super embarrassing.

  86. faunapup says:

    My parents have struggled my whole life to lose weight it’s and unfair up hill battle that I’ve sat side lined an watched.
    They just moved into a more walk friendly community and have been walking everywhere I’m actually seeing change now they’re slimming down!!

    Keep trying yall never give up

  87. Conduit to the Muse says:

    Have you seen paintings from earlier periods of art? Bigger women were the subject and muse. As an artist, I honesty find beauty in many places, some rare that people may not expect. But I realize I’m not much different than most. I have problems with looking at overweight people without having more-than-rude thoughts in my head. I try not to.

    At any rate, thanks for this. You’re a big woman which you freely admit. I’m bipolar which I may as well freely admit. Manic-depression doesn’t mean I’m crazy. Just different brain chemistry. I did learn from this post. You are fine with your weight and lambs bleat. 😀 …I had no idea what lambs do!

  88. Brewing Translation says:

    Nice post, I really enjoyed reading it! I love language, everything from grammar to semantics, and have read lots of articles about body positivity in the media over the last few years. Fat is as interesting as it is complex, especially when used to describe women. Some plus-sized women have even commented the biggest crime you can commit as a women is being fat, while others fully embrace their ‘curviness’. I can’t help but to think that many women who identify as fat really mean that only they can call themselves fat…yet, like you pointed out, if others don’t acknowledge their size (agreeing that their fat), they get mad. Acquaintances, friends and family may not want to call a woman fat if it’s out of context or may otherwise come across as an insult. Likewise, you commented that your body is no one’s business, but you’re writing a post about your size. Women are very sociable and have acute body-awareness, so conversations about body positivity and diversity thereof in (social) media is inevitable. Do you think language and connotation of ‘fat’ can change, or will it always be at conflicting odds in mainstream media

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I wasn’t saying that if people don’t acknowledge our size we get MAD. I was saying it’s annoying when people beat around the bush when I acknowledge my own fatness. I.e. “I’m fat” “No you’re not, you’re just curvy!” And my body is and always will be my business, but my fatness is something that’s kind of obvious. That being said, just because I volunteer myself ONCE to talk about my body doesn’t mean I want to talk about it all the time/want everyone and their mother to discuss me. If I open the conversation, I’m in control of it and it doesn’t have to go anywhere I don’t want it to.
      I think it’ll take a long time before people don’t see fat as a negative, but rather descriptive language. Because, when we’re in Pre-K, we learn it that way (“The cat was fat” not insulting the cat; merely describing it). But as we get older, we learn it’s something bad. Since fatness has been considered a flaw for so long, who knows when that will end.

      • heyjude6119 says:

        What would be the favored response once you say to someone else that you’re fat? What do you expect them to say? That is a hard position to be put in and I’m not imagining any response would be seen in a favorable light by you.

      • EtherealNoir says:

        Considering the fact that I rarely talk about my body with people other than my best friends and my mother, it depends on the context of the conversation. There’s no “pre-written” response for every comment. They could choose not to comment at all.

  89. csinalaska says:

    Best article I’ve read in a while about #plussizefashion and what society and industry is telling women what they look like, what they should wear and how others should treat them.

  90. BawseLadee says:

    OMG!!! You touched a soft spot for me.. So I have been self conscious about my weight for some time now so I wouldn’t date I felt all would be focused on was my weight bc that’s all women are categorized by is how. Big or small they are. Then I started to dress for my body not hiding it or being ashamed just wearing what looks good to suit others. Man fuck these people.

  91. technicolourbrain says:

    I think fat girls look sexier in pictures. They have curves and when they doll themselves up right they look fabulous. And this is coming from a skinny girl. I had two friends in school who were bigger in size than me. They never went clothes shopping. I always felt guilty for being the skinny one. It’s just my body type. Luckily now one of them has grown up. She is still big but she has fantastic taste in fashion and always looks really well. In fact sometimes I feel jealous that she can pull things off better than I can!Nice blog!

  92. udbhavi28 says:

    I am fat too and I love myself! Every bit of my fat body! The society can be cruel but it is upto us that we let it affect us or not! Really an awesome article! Especially loved the part where you have stressed that we are not heroins ….poets etc .. We are just fat!” Very inspirational!

  93. kalison0515 says:

    Interesting post. You touched a little bit on health, but that’s the real deal concern with obesity. While you get to choose self-acceptance, something’s happened with a whole generation of children who aren’t even getting a fair start at health and aren’t mature enough to make the same choice. Furthermore, the choice is really out of their hands because of the poor quality of our foods and whatever they’re being fed. So many kids are obese at very young ages and it is not simply “baby fat.” I agree that overweight people can be healthier than a lithe and slender woman. I saw a great post on a fat woman who showed off her headstands, plank, and splits in yoga poses. I can only do plank — the rest is beyond me. I play tennis and there are plenty of overweight women on the courts, and they have seriously strong games. Self-acceptance is cool, but for many people obesity will lead to a health crisis, like diabetes and cancer. You may end up with joint replacements at a young age, etc. You mentioned how you can feel the recriminations of people because of your size, but there are moments when EVERYONE’s uncomfortable: Example – airplane seats (which airlines have the nerve to make smaller), the food tray, and arm rests. And there’s one more thing, and this isn’t aimed at you, but is it self-acceptance or resignation? It is damn hard to lose pounds. I managed to lose weight seven years ago and kept it off. I finally managed to do it because I had estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer. Excess estrogen loves to dwell in fat (adipose tissue). I made lifestyle changes for health.

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I don’t think it’s resignation at all 🙂 If you (not you just anyone in general) hate your body, you’re less likely to take care of it? So if someone hates their current body and want to lose weight, they sometimes don’t make healthy choices on the path to weight loss. As someone who spent a good portion of HS trying to starve herself, the Body Positivity movement did a lot for me. That’s not to say that I still believe I shouldn’t lose weight. But, essentially, until I lose weight, this is the body I have. While I have it, I don’t want to hate it. And I think a lot of people think that I mean “Who cares what people think! Eat all the junk food and get diabetes” and that’s not what I mean at all.
      I definitely do agree that we need to start finding healthier options for children though. Because so many children are bombarded with junk food, because it’s cheap and easily accessible.
      Not even just children, either, most neighborhoods don’t have easy access to health facilities and nutritional foods. Something should definitely change on that front.

  94. anniede7 says:

    Do we really need to say more about this subject? I’m asking because the subject is only a subject if we need to justify our beauty? Need need need … Who gives a rats about whether someone else has a negative , or for that matter, a positive opinion about what we look like? Whose opinion counts more than our own about our own magnificence? My body is the vehicle that has allowed me to step with awe on this planet. It has stayed with me during all its stages and bows itself into the shapes of my experiences. It has contorted itself to please me in the past when I mistakenly pushed its barriers to make it fit the magazine diet beauty. I honour it now with warmth, movement and nutrition to love it’s extreme beauty and acknowledge its great journey. I am woman. deepstillmove

    • EtherealNoir says:

      I feel like it’s easy to say “who cares what other people think,” and another thing to actually practice that mindset. I commend you for being so secure in your body, because I know it’s not that easy for everyone. I can’t blame people for feeling insecure. And, believe me, if I could say “screw everyone” and mean it, I would. But it’s definitely easier said than done.

      • anniede7 says:

        Dear Ethereal, I was once a person of veils and measuring sticks. The veils were in the forms of the things with which I covered myself… my roles, my children’s successes, my partner, fat. Anything rather than look at or allow another to look at the me underneath. That one was smothering in shame. I measured everything, from the moment I rose in the morning, I weighed myself, I doled out my food in diet-sized portions, I meted out time to punish my fatness at the gym. Believe me, I judged me and found me wanting. That woman has come to life since late last year. I have spent so many years being insecure and wishing to be the one that I have discovered I actually am. So, it is possible. I just want to affirm each visitor to your page and you, Ethereal. You are beautiful. You are enough. I do not want to measure myself anymore because I am these things I was measuring for. I have made a journey, I am making a voyage. I would love to have you and all the beings that come to this page along with me – trust your own inner knowing of the beauty that you are. Bless.

  95. Fred the Needle says:

    What an interesting – thought provoking post. Society is uncomfortable with weightier women mostly because we never really see them in a positive light. Tess has done some wonderful work – she has put herself out there and declared her beauty with no apology. And I think that is the key, all the time we wander around apologising for who we are, hiding parts of ourself that we are ‘ashamed’ of then we are giving off that energy. I think we should take courage from Tess, and others like her, she makes no apology for who she is. Easier said than done, I know.
    But for me, the key thing, is if you are ashamed of you, then how are things going to change? You need to love you, down to your deepest bones, your core, that is what shines out, and once you love you… no one else’s opinion matters half as much. Loving you is simply telling yourself every day that you are loved, looking in that mirror and loving all those parts of your body. It begins with love.. that is all I can say.

  96. sybileejoy says:

    I remember when I found out about the padding thing they do for “plus-sized” (I hate that word too!) models, and thinking to myself hat I always knew my sneaking suspicion was correct in that their bodies were also misrepresented. Mostly due to the fact that unless a woman is super super fit and toned, there’s no way bits of fat here and there don’t protrude through clothing. Our bodies should be enough as they are, so thank you for addressing this subject.

  97. Spam and Rice says:

    Reblogged this on Spam and Rice and commented:
    Outstanding post, I am a guy who adores fat women, not just as a way to snub the jersey shore train wreck our “culture” has become but because I love the way fat girls have more developed personalities, stronger character and deep intimate knowledge of the big lonely void inside that comes from being a room full of people. I love fat girls because they are real and in a world full of siliconed, starved and stupid tarts that means everything. My girl is big jiggling and I love every bit of her….I only wish more women would realize that their existence does not begin and end with their body type.

  98. shedforthewed16 says:

    Really honest and welcoming read. The bottom line is nobody should be judged!! We all have our own stories to tell and reasons for our choices yet in the same instance, we shouldn’t have to feel like we owe an explanation to anybody for anything we do!! Live and be happy! I’m currently on a weight loss journey but I’m very realistic about it! There will be good and bad days! Check out my blog if you are interested: xx

  99. Making Mrs. Miller says:

    So refreshing! It is so nice to finally read an article written with such pride and zuberance! I’ve always been thin but my very best friend and sister growing up was very heavy. She had so much self hatred that she closed herself in and shut herself off in a way that made it hard for others to show her the love that they had for her, b/c it was love she didn’t feel like she deserved. Thank you for this. It was a pleasure to read.

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