Thursday, March 23, 2006

Madder than a Hornet

In the maelstrom of posts on "fatness" I am finding myself more and more enraged. Why? Well, because friends, I am a chubster. I also really like myself as a person. I think I am intelligent, funny, kind and a myriad of other really wonderful facets. Do I think my value is in indirect proportion to my weight? Fuck no. Yes, I am doing the SBD, but only because I don't like the health ramifications that come with carrying so much extra weight. And the reality is, folks, taking off 20 lbs is not quite going to cut it.

When you read my blog, how do you see me a person? Imagine you haven't seen any of the photos of myself I have on here. Am I trim? Am I fit? If so, and then you meet me and see I'm not trim and pert, do you like me less? Was I advertising a self that wasn't accurate? A life long commitment to one person in terms of marriage or otherwise, I believe is grounded in friendship. It's true-- sexual attraction comes in here-- but would you like your best friend less because she gained 50 pounds? 30 pounds? Less or more? Would love her a little more to see her starving herself to look "good"? Would you be less embarrassed to be with her with her bones jutting out or more embarrassed to be out with her if she showed her chub? Hm? I don't know-- not me-- Maybe I'm a freak and I've chosen my friends and my Partner because of who they are. Not their looks. If you're falling in love with someone because of his/her weight or looks, then I'm fearful for you.

And I'm not some goody freaking two-shoes-- I have my crazy shallow moments (well, longer than moments sometimes), and I'm not denying for one minute the role that weight or attractiveness plays in today's world. I'm not the Pollyanna around here.

I have a lot more to say about this, but I can't sit around here and write about any longer than this. I have to get out and do the life things I need to do. But don't worry-- today I'll be extra aware of how judged I am by so many people just on my weight alone-- a superficial, surface judgment. And let's face it: if that's how you want to judge me, I don't really want you to be a part of my circle.

19 Comments:

Blogger Beaver Girl said...

couldn't agree more.

11:29 AM  
Blogger Kate said...

What you said. I used to be pretty thin--I modeled briefly in high school--but then they wanted me to lose ten more pounds and I just quit (I have always liked eating). At the time, the idea that someone might think that I was pretty enough to be a model was much more important than the fact that I had always been very smart and very good at school. I now weigh *70* more pounds than I did then (I am now in my late 20s). I work out, but I don't diet (although I should probably lose some weight). I am a much more confident, interesting person than I was 70 pounds ago. There are people who probably think less of me because I am not thin--I don't want to know those people anyway. My husband thinks I am sexy--what do I care if anyone else does?

You are going to be such a great mom.

12:49 PM  
Blogger DD said...

There is where blogging has such an advantage. We make our friends based on personalities, not appearances (at least the blogs I read as hardly anyone openly posts pix of themselves). But now someone can make the leap that I'm a blogging snob: what makes me read her blog and not hers. Whatever.

Once I find a blog I like, I wouldn't care if the author was abald, buck-toothed, unibrowed, mouth breather (like me). I'm here to laugh, cry, learn, and share regardless of one's jean size.

1:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I weigh 50 lbs more now than I did when I started my "fertility journey". The nicest thing my partner has ever done to support me is *not* mentioned the extra weight. Other people have, though, and it sucks. They treat me like a fat person, I think there are people in my family who are embarrased by the weight gain. Some have said I'd get pg if I lost the weight. It's ridiculous. In fact I used to be quite thin, which of course went unmentioned. My *rule* is that if you didn't tell me how great I looked then don't tell me how bad you think I look now. My weight doesn't bother me, other than as a very visible marker of the many ways that multiple IVFs have changed who I am. I love your blog, and I liked the pic of yourself you posted the other day. I wish you well.

3:13 PM  
Blogger Emilin said...

Homophobic trolls like to comment on how fat lesbians are, have you noticed that, too? Lots of credibility right there.

However, I now sometimes have guilt about my post-partum body, that being so close to my pre-pregnancy weight so soon after having a baby sets up unrealistic expectations for other women. That's the Lutheran in me, I guess--the guilt, not the pp figure. My merit is in the way I love and respect other people, not in my pants size.

4:29 PM  
Anonymous Manuela said...

Heh??? Maelstrom??? Where have I been... I have missed this storm of fat!

Anyway... of COURSE I agree with you. Of COURSE. I personally happen to find women with a little meat on their bones MUCH more attractive. And when I say meat... I don't mean, "OMIGOD! I'm like 5'8" and I weigh 140 pounds... I'm a WHALE!"

No. That's not what I mean. I mean Rubenesque in the true sense of the word. So long as you are HEALTHY... who CARES!!!!

And I've already given you more than one drunken comment where I gushed about how beautiful I think you are... so I'll stop now.

9:10 PM  
Blogger mermaidgrrrl said...

I'm fat. I was fat when Little Mister met me and I'm fat now. But now I have long hair instead of short funky hair. Oh my god - I grew my hair without asking her! Good thing I'm still fat cause otherwise it would have been false advertising if I'd become thin since then ;-)
That womans post made me feel sorry for her and others like her. There must be insecurities in those relationships if they feel that the relationship hinges on them staying thin. I know for 100% sure that LM would stay with me if I got hideously burnt, became paraplegic or had a mastectomy. Can those women say the same?

7:10 AM  
Blogger frog said...

I don't know what happened, but I'm ready to kick ass and take names for you--and I knew you before I ever knew that you blog. The first day I saw you and Partner, I knew I wanted to be your friend--it just took me a while to figure out how to start to do that. I'm just like that.

8:53 AM  
Blogger Soul Searching said...

I must've missed that one as well. Please tell me where so I can get all worked up, too!!

I remember when I posted my pic on my blog for the first time. For days afterwards I had a huge battle with myself on whether or not to take it down or leave it up. I thought FOR SURE nobody would read anymore now that they knew what I looked like. How could they?! But everyone came back and continued reading. And that's when I realized that people who truly like you will be there regardless of how you look because they're not there because of how you look. Really, a great way to weed out those I wouldn't really want in my life anyway, ya know? Life's too short for those kinds of surface-level friendships, but some people are so uncomfortable with themselves that they can't even begin to accept other people as they are.

1:30 PM  
Blogger TPK said...

As long as you're happy with yourself it doesn't really matter what society says. There will always be people that judge and quite frankly, I'm with you, I have no time for their ignorance. My partner and I have gone up and down in the scales and honestly she's always looked to me like the same person I fell in love with 8 years ago.

4:22 PM  
Anonymous Mary said...

Whoa. Missed something, didn't I?

I agree with everything you said. Some people we come in contact with (in 'real' life AND while blogging) aren't worth the effort.

Hugs to you, dear.

2:15 PM  
Blogger Career Guy said...

A chubster,you say? Thank goodness I found out in time! I must quickly delete you from my "favorites" links! Or not. How silly. As long as you are OK with you, that's the important thing. We all love you no matter what.

11:20 PM  
Anonymous MFA Mama said...

I picture you as nice to snuggle up to on the couch. I don't think I'm wrong. I would, however, be disappointed if I met you and I was totally off the mark, just so you know. Hmph.

12:44 AM  
Blogger Pamplemousse said...

You know that I adore you anyway. Ignore the nasty people and carry on enjoying (?!) all the beautiful things and people in your life.

5:27 AM  
Anonymous thalia said...

I missed the maelstrom but am so glad you wrote this. it's funny, but unless ppl specifically say "I'm fat" or "I'm thin" I assume all bloggers are kind of normal weight, but don't imagine them physically much at all. So then when I see a picture I sometimes have to readjust slightly, and sometimes that feels a bit odd, but it in no way changes my engagement in what they are writing and in their story going forward.

Speaking as someone who has battled with their weight, I think I do tend to project the judgements I make about myself onto others. But not as much as I make them about myself.

9:15 AM  
Anonymous thalia said...

I missed the maelstrom but am so glad you wrote this. it's funny, but unless ppl specifically say "I'm fat" or "I'm thin" I assume all bloggers are kind of normal weight, but don't imagine them physically much at all. So then when I see a picture I sometimes have to readjust slightly, and sometimes that feels a bit odd, but it in no way changes my engagement in what they are writing and in their story going forward.

Speaking as someone who has battled with their weight, I think I do tend to project the judgements I make about myself onto others. But not as much as I make them about myself.

9:16 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

Late to the dance (as per usual) and I missed the maelstrom it appears - I seem to be getting it on the periphery.

Enough of that, I really do have a point. I prefer real people in my life, sure people can diet for health, etc. but I can't stand to see people starve themselves on principle. Personally, I think you are beautiful. And I thought it before I even saw a picture of you. I like *who* you are, not what you look like.

7:48 PM  
Blogger WordsRock said...

You know, I don't think I had a clear mental image of you at all. It's nice to now have some curves to go with the fuzzy outline. :)

Suzanne

11:38 PM  
Blogger LilySea said...

I hate all the weight crap thrown at women and girls. I'm chronically underweight (not as much lately, but historically). Other women/girls used to squeal "my god you're so SKINNY!!!!!!!!!!!!" at me and I was so offended. I was trying to keep the weight ON. I can't help that I inherited my mother's house wren metabolism. I mean, I was unhealthily thin for most of my life. People used to gossip behind my back about my having an eating disorder (which it so happens, I fortunately never did).

And now I turn around and judge the skinnier-than-healthy girls around this college town and project eating disorders onto them too.
Why do I do that?

Meanwhile, one of my best friends has the exact opposite body as me and has fought all of her life to keep weight off. In a way, it's great because we get to see the other side (and thus get a more balanced view) of the stupid weight hell that is womanhood in America. Also, we get to live vicariously through each other's clothes which is fun for a couple of femmes!

I get so pissed at the emphasis on weight per se. All this b.s. about obesity among children drives me nuts. I'd like to see a focus on nutrition and exercise among children rather than weight loss. And it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure which gender of "children" everyone is so concerned about, either.

Some people are made to be bigger, some smaller, some in-between. They can eat and exercise exactly the same, all be healthy and guess what? Look different from one another!

Frankly, as a lesbian, I have to say I love that women's bodies are all so different and beautiful in so many ways. Not that you'd know that from watching t.v...

Well, that was a rant-and-a-half. I too missed whatever hullabaloo set this off, but it is definitely a sore spot.

12:05 AM  

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