Archive for July, 2014

So I feel a bit like a fraud sometimes, when I’m on here, blogging about fat acceptance and positive body image- but it’s not like I have all of that figure out and am always loving my body! My actions, and especially my thoughts, are often not in sync with my ideals of fat acceptance and body love and all that. I still equate looking fat with looking bad to myself sometimes. I try not to, but I still look in a mirror or look at a picture and think “I look so fat!” and I don’t mean that as a good or neutral thing. And I’m not very good all the time at being ok with my body.

I was thinking about this when I was out for a run. It’s been a bit cooler out recently so I wore a tank top with a light weight but long sleeve hoodie over it (hoodie mainly because it has pockets and until I get a new spibelt or something similar, the hoodie gives me pockets to put my keys in. ). When I have short sleeves on I will take the hoodie off when I get hot and tie it around my waist. But I don’t like wearing sleeveless stuff. I realized as I was thinking about this, my stomach isn’t the part of my body I have the biggest trouble baring- it’s my arms. I’d actually rather have a belly shirt on, with my arms covered, than a sleeveless shirt.

So here I am, out walking/running, feeling hot and uncomfortable in long sleeves, thinking how nice it would feel to take the hoodie off and feel a breeze on my arms, but still thinking how I don’t want to be seen with my flabby upper arms hanging out of a shirt. I have a bit of muscle on my arms, but also a bit of fat. I have visible biceps if I flex, but you won’t (thus far at least) find any photos of me flexing my arms online, because below those biceps is arm flab. And I still have trouble being comfortable with that.

And I feel like a fraud. I’m on here blogging about accepting your body, when I can’t even deal with wearing a sleeveless shirt.

I did eventually talk myself into taking the hoodie off about a little over a quarter of the way into my walk/run. So success on that?

But, I think it is worth noting I blog about body love and such from a place of still working on these issue myself, not as some expert who has it all totally figured out and doesn’t still struggle with it myself.

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Ok, so this post is going to talk frankly about nudity and sex so if that makes you uncomfortable, stop reading. *cough*family I shared this blog with *cough* So you’ve been warned.

 

Now, this post was inspired by reading something elsewhere about fat people’s sex lives and the question some pose of if fat hurts sex lives. Of course one of the biggest ways they seemed to be saying that being fat ruins people… well, mainly women’s sex lives is through not feel comfortable and confident. Making folks either not want to have sex because of it, or having sex but still being plagued by self-conscious feelings that detract from the ability to fully enjoy it.

And it makes me sad how many women’s sex lives suffer because they can’t imagine themselves as being attractive. I’ve met women who insist on lights out, shirts staying on, trying to cover as much of their body as possible during sex and constantly afraid their partner isn’t really attracted to them or won’t be because of their size.

 

And I’ve fallen into that before too, found myself ruining the mood mentally for myself when suddenly all I could think during the act was “are they going to be turned off by my fat? omg is my stomach jiggling in this position?” and similar thoughts.

And it seems that maybe I just got lucky in a way because for the longest time I never saw hiding during sex was an option. I guess because my first partners were folks who liked lights on, it never occurred to me that turning the lights out to make it harder for them to see me was an option. Actually until a recent ex who would always turn the lights off, I kind of thought that was just a joke- a myth. I didn’t realize there were people who really did only have sex with the lights off. After that experience I started talking to people about this and found that it was actually incredibly common! Of course every person I talked to who only felt comfortable having sex with the light s off was a woman.

It also had never occurred to me to stay partially clothed during sex to hide my fat. Even when I’ve been less than confident in my body, I’ve always approached sex with a feeling that if you want to have sex, you just gotta suck it up and get over it because you are going to be naked, they are going to see you naked. They are going to see you naked up close! That’s just what sex is. It was kind of a culture shock almost when I discovered that it was so common for women to do all these things to try to stay hidden during sex.

And it makes me really sad that people feel that unhappy and uncomfortable with their bodies. Especially women in long term, loving relationships, who still find it too hard to believe that their partner really does love their body just as it is because we are so surrounded by and beat over the head with this message that there is only one body type that is attractive and people are never really attracted to anything else.

And to me, how could this not hurt one’s sex life? How could feeling ashamed of your body, afraid to be seen, and questioning your attractiveness to your partner not affect sex negatively? Like I said, while I was never a shirt on, light off girl, I’ve had those negative thoughts during sex and yeah- it ruins it a little. The problem there is not obesity, the problem is being told we are not attractive, that no one would find out bodies sexually appealing, and being told these things so many time,s from so many media sources and individuals, that we internalize it and believe it ourselves. Like many things blamed on obesity, the real culprit actually seems to fat hatred. If this is a bigger problem for fat women, it’s a bigger problem because fat women are taught to hate their bodies and view them as unattractive. Of course like most body image issues, thin women aren’t totally unaffected either. And certainly one area where weight loss is clearly not a solution- one woman used as an example of obesity ruining her sex life, lost the weight and still experience the same problems because she still didn’t see herself as beautiful. And yet, somehow people still think the solution is blaming obesity, and making fat women feel even worse about their bodies?

Ridiculous!

There is a spoken word poet I saw on youtube who has a really great piece related to this:

My favorite parts:

Fat girl don’t hate her body, fat girl hate the world

&

Fat girl dance anyway.

Fat girl shirt off.

Fat girl lights on.

Fat girl LIGHTS ON!

Sounds like a great motto to live by to me! 🙂

I wish all women had the confidence in their bodies to be naked. Be naked alone, be naked during sex, and maybe be naked in other scenarios too if you want. I wish we all were comfortable in our own skin, realized not to hate ourselves but hate the messages that say we aren’t good enough. Dance anyways, take your shirt off, leave the lights on. Do it regardless of your size, regardless of stretch marks or scars. Be naked as you are and be confident and happy and have awesome naked sex!

New Blog!

Posted: July 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

Apparently I just can’t get enough of blogging, because I made a new blog:

http://hardfemmebeautyhacks.wordpress.com/

Not replacing this blog or anything, different topics. Just posting about hair and makeup and stuff there. 

That is actually my third blog. That was my second. My first, though I haven’t really used it like I planned, is a professional blog on research under my real name (and thus I am not linking that). 

I have stated previously here that I am not interested in advice on how to lose weight, or comments on how I should lose weight. It’s my body, what I should do regarding it is for me to say. If I want someone else’s opinion or advice on my body, I am capable of asking.

For some reason this is very hard for some folks though. Some folks cannot get past the idea that fat need to be told they are fat and need to lose weight by complete strangers.

So I thought I would take a moment to talk about why unsolicited weight loss advice is rude.

And I’m going to use a conversation I had online as an example here,and walk through the problems with this. Remember I mentioned in my last post how I commented online that despite gaining weight, my clothing is fitting loser and I want to get new clothing, when I can come up with funds for it, that is smaller and thus fits me better

Well, as I mentioned someone replied this with:

“You’re trying to lose weight correct? Then why are you gaining weight?”

I replied to him:

“I’m not trying to lose weight.”

Like I said yesterday, this should have been the end of any discussion of weight loss. You mistakenly thought I was trying to lose weight (well that wasn’t actually the case here, as we will see), and I clarified I’m not. The end.

But that of course was not the end.

He replied again with:

“Why not?”

Ok, so we have already started to cross into problematic territory here. Someone just told you they are not trying to lose weight. Why would you feel this stranger owes you an explanation about that? Fat people do not need to offer explanations to strangers for why we are not trying to lose weight (for those of us who aren’t). Women do not owe every stranger they encounter an explanation for why their body looks any particular way.

I respond with:

“because I’m not interested in trying to lose weight. why do my goals matter [to] you?” (typing on my phone, I accidentally a word)

Ok, great. End of that, right? … right? We have established that I am not trying to lose weight, that I am not interested in trying to lose weight. But of course, I think we all know that was not the end of it.

He responds:

“They don’t. But you are 5’0 and I believe according to your blog you are over 200lbs. So you are already quite a bit overweight, I’m just wondering why you would want to continue gaining weight. And if you are gaining weight, why would you buy tighter clothing? You may eventually fit into the clothes you currently have.”

I’m “overweight”? WHAT!?! WHY HAS NO ONE TOLD ME THIS BEFORE!?! I mean, it surely makes total sense to think that I, as someone who has a blog with “fat” right up there in the title, who wrote a blog post on my weight, which included pointing out that my weight and height puts my BMI quite squarely in what is considered “morbidly obese”, need a total stranger on the internet to inform me that I am “quite a bit overweight”. Obviously I had simply never noticed I was fat, and no one else in the world had ever thought to let me in on that secret. Clearly.

And then the question of why I would want to buy smaller clothing if the clothing I currently have it too big on me. Why would I want to own and wear clothing that actually fits my body.

But if a number on a scale went up some, then obviously I need bigger clothes even if my clothing is too big on me, right? Why let something like my body size/shape determine what size clothing I wear instead of a number on a scale.

I want clothes that fit my body as it is because I like my body, and I want to wear clothing that makes me look and feel good. I love my curves- now that my sweaters and other clothes are too big, they hang wide around my curves making me look more boxy. I don’t like that. I want clothing that shows off one of my favorite attributes of myself. Having clothing that shows my curves makes me feel better and more confident. So duh, I want clothing that actually fits me. And weirdly enough, what fits is better judged by my body and how clothes fall on it, than what number pops up on my scale.

Ok, so what I said was:

“I didn’t say I want to gain weight, but I’m not horribly bothered by it either. Since one of my primary goals is getting stronger, gaining muscle (which has weight) is not really a bad thing to me.

I want to buy smaller clothing because it would fit me better, and as a result look better on me. (And if you’d read, you’d notice that while I gained weight, I did not go up in inches or clothing sizes- my clothes are not getting any tighter, if anything they feel looser even if my tape measure says that shouldn’t be.) Why should I wear clothing that is too big for me based on a number on a scale, rather than what actually fits my body?

Also if you read my blog I’m pretty clear in there about my feelings regarding trying to lose weight, so I’m not sure why you would even be asking that. In fact from the post you are talking about: ‘if I lose weight as I continue working out that’s good with me, and if I don’t I’m ok with that too’ I’m fine if I lose weight, fine if I don’t, and even fine with gaining so long as my clothing isn’t getting tighter, and it’s not. The only problem I have with my weight is it means I have more weight to lift on body weight exercises- but that just means I need to be stronger!”

So to be clear, initially when he asked about me wanting to lose weight, he wasn’t actually misinformed thinking I wanted to lose weight- he’s already read posts here on this blog where I very clearly stated that I am not trying to lose weight. I also clearly stated in those posts that I was not interested in weight loss advice. I also in the the thread with him stated I was not interested in losing weight.

And yet:

“You are somewhat of a beginner to weight training right? Gaining strength while losing weight should not be an issue. In my first year I was able to lose 100lbs while going from deadlifting 185lbs to 500lbs. As for your muscle gain, if you told me you have gained 1lb or maybe even up to 2lbs (much more likely for men then women to gain 2lbs of muscle) over the course of a month, then perhaps you can call it muscle, but nothing more. As for measurements, If you went from 200 – 205 there is a very good chance you wouldn’t be able to measure the difference, I can fluctuate 10lbs or more and not notice a thing.

I have read a few of your posts, and I have read some of your comments, you seem to champion the thought of acceptance no matter what, and if that’s what you want to do, then fine. I remember thinking how happy and confident I was when I was overweight. But I look back at it and remember how my back would get sore if I had to stand for any length of time, or how my feet would ache because of the excess weight. Now that I have lost the weight I don’t have those issues, I can run without pain, walk around or stand for hours with no issues. I see you have some of these issues, have you thought perhaps your weight is the cause? To me it doesn’t really matter whether you gain weight or lose weight, gain strength or lose strength. It doesn’t affect me at all. I only inquire out of curiosity.”

Weight loss advice! Look, I just told you I am not trying to lose weight and I don’t want to try to lose weight. I did not say I want to lose weight but think it conflicts with my other goals. I said I don’t want to try to lose weight. So I do not need to be told that I could still try to lose weight while also trying to gain muscle.

This is rude. I have stated already multiple times prior to this I am not interested in weight loss advice, giving it after that is rude. It’s like me stating repeatedly that I’m not interested in converting to your religion and you continue to tell me about converting.

And of course we also have the condescending “you may think you are happy, but you really aren’t, you just don’t know you are unhappy because you would have to be thing to know better”. And what a convenient argument! Set it up so that I cannot possibly claim to know myself better than this stranger because we’ve established that only the opinions of thin people count. Even when the opinion is on the fat persons own body, their opinion still doesn’t count.

And we also have the assumptions that my weight is causing me pain and severely limiting my activities despite the fact that there is no reason for this stranger to think that I have back pain when standing, or that I have difficulty standing or walking long periods.

I have, on the site this conversation took place on spoken about having foot pain when running, which I believe is plantar fasciitis.

My response to him:

“You’ve read my blog post about my weight which means you already read this:

‘I am not interested in any weight loss advice . . .[I am] not interested in unsolicited weight lose advice so if you were thinking of giving some just move along.’

I also just told you in this thread that I am not interested in trying to lose weight. So why are you giving me unsolicited advice on how I can lose weight?

You’re experiences are your own, they are not mine. Don’t assume that just because you felt one way at a particular weight I must feel that way at my weight. I can stand just fine, I do not get back pain from standing, I can easily stand and/or walk for long periods without those things causing pain.

My feet have started to hurt when running, and maybe my weight is a factor- I’m still not interested in trying to lose weight. I do also know that already stretching has made a huge difference and alleviated a lot of the pain.

I’ve explained many reasons why I’m not trying to lose weight in my blog, if you’ve read it already you know them, if not feel free to go back and read through it. Though really, I don’t owe you an explanation for why I don’t want to try to lose weight. My body, my decision.

I’d also like to note that I didn’t say anything about how much weight I’ve gained or over what kind of time period, so I’m not sure how you feel at all qualified to determine what amount of that weight gain was muscle, water weight, or fat”

Even if my weight is a factor in the plantar fasciitis- still my body, still my choice, and my choice alone, on if I want to try to lose weight.

I have my reasons for not wanting to try to lose weight. I’ve talked about them here. I’ve spent most of my adult life trying to lose weight- not trying to lose weight is a much newer thing for me. Newer than weight lifting even. And since I stopped actively trying to lose weight, I am happier. I am finding it easier to stick with my fitness goals because a number going up on the scale doesn’t mean “I am doing all this hard work and seeing no results!” Actually, no- I’m seeing lots of results, just not weight loss. I’m doing all this work and as a result I am seeing the weight I lift continuously increasing, I am seeing my body in a more positive way, I am feeling stronger a result, and in terms of changes to my body I am seeing more muscle on my legs and arms. Not defining my success by the number on a scale has been hugely beneficial to me. I also am not interested in trying to lose weight because as a person whose struggled with an eating disorder, though in recovery I find things like counting calories to still be a little triggering. I also have found that since I gave up dieting, I eat better! I eat better when I focus on eating nutrient dense foods, and eating what makes me feel good, and trying to think of food of fuel for my activities.

Also, fun fact- I’ve discovered I eat “junk food” less when it’s not off limits! I love Ben & Jerry’s icecream! And I always hear people joke about how ridiculous it is that a pint is 4 serving, when everyone knows a pint is 1 serving. The funny thing is, when it’s not off limits to me, and I feel free to eat Ben & Jerry’s icecream everyday if I want to, I don’t sit down an eat a pint of it. When I eat icecream I eat 1 serving based on the serving size, or less. Usually less. Most of the time I eat a few bites, maybe a half a serving, and I feel satisfied with that and put it away. And a big part of that is not feeling like I broke my diet. Because when I felt like I broke my diet by eating ice cream it was more likely to trigger the idea that I might as well eat the whole thing then because I already ruined my diet that day anyways. And I would get back on track tomorrow. And then tomorrow icecream would be off limits. So I need to eat it now while I can! But when I stopped trying to lose weight, stopped counting calories, and stopped making any food “off limits” in my head, I stopped thinking and eating like that. Because now, if I eat a few bites of icecream, and tomorrow I want more icecream- I eat more icecream! And while foods are never off limits to me, focusing on how they make me feel, leads me to not wanting to eat certain foods. Actually just the other day I decided it had been ages since I ate some captain crunch and I really wanted some. So I bought captain crunch cereal and ate some. … And I felt so sick after! And I’m not craving captain crunch anymore. It’s not off limits because I’m on a diet. I don’t not eat it because I’m not “supposed” to eat it. I don’t eat it because I don’t want to because it doesn’t make me feel well.

This is working for me! It may not be working at causing me to lose weight, but that’s ok, because I don’t care if I lose weight anymore. It is working for me though in all other respects, which I find more valuable than weight loss. I’ve also successfully lost bits of weight before too, btw. And I’ve lost weight before by starving myself, by not eating well, by not eating to fuel my activities, and I’ve lost weight will feeling miserable and hating myself. I see much more success in eating well and feeling good, and being happy with myself, than I do in a making a number on the scale shrink.

So those are a few of the reasons I don’t want to try to lose weight. A few of the reasons that I didn’t actually owe anyone. Because it’s still my body and I don’t owe strangers and explanation for what I do with it.

So back to this dude, because we aren’t at the end yet:

“I should have known better than to talk about anything somewhat related to fitness on this site. You said you are gaining weight, you assume it is muscle because you have not gained inches anywhere. I just told you if it’s more than 2lbs a month it’s most likely not muscle. I gave you a hypothetical number of 200-205, key word is hypothetical, and it was only regarding the fact that you probably wouldn’t see much of a difference with a measuring tape. You said you have a goal of gaining strength, I told you that you can gain strength while losing weight, and I gave some personal experiences. I did not say that they are 100% transferable to you. In your running comments it is clear your weight is causing you issues. You just refuse to accept it. And your “do not give unsolicited advice” tells everybody that you do not care about anybodies thoughts if they do not agree with yours, but yet you pretend to be open minded. If you want to stay overweight then go ahead, continue pretending you are happy, continue pretending that it does not affect your life or health in any way. I wish you the best of luck in whatever your goals may be.”

Yeah- he should have known better than to talk to me about weight loss (not fitness- weight loss. The conversation was not about fitness). And actually, he did know. He knew prior to any of these comments that I did not want weight loss advice. He still asked me about losing weight. I then told him again, I wasn’t interested. Despite this he continued with advice he knew was unwanted. So let’s be clear about that- he knew it was unwanted from his very first comment. And now he’s mad it wasn’t well received. He’s mad someone would not be appreciative of his comments about what they should do with their body after being told repeatedly they did not want his comments on what they should do with their body?

And as for me not being open to his opinion- let’s also be very clear here in remembering this was not a discussion of opinions on a particular general topic- it was opinions on my body. MY body. And when it comes to my body, no one gets a say in it except me. I am trying to be very clear that I do not care about anybody’s thoughts on what I should do with my body except my own. And despite me being very clear about that, he insists on telling me what he thinks I should do with my body, despite me repeatedly stating such commentary was unwanted.

There is lots of information available on weight loss, if I wanted to try to lose weight I could seek it out. And as someone who has spent most of my life trying to lose weight (something he would also already, too,  know reading my blog), I know a lot of it, and I certainly know how to go about seeking it out if I wanted to. In fact, on the site this conversation happened on, there are groups specifically on the topic of weight loss! And yet,my comment was not posted in a weight loss group. Similarly, had I wanted this guys advice specifically, since he seems to think he possesses special knowledge of weight loss no one else has, I could have and would have asked him for that advice if I wanted it.

And let’s keep that in mind too, in terms of his actions. He is on a site with weight loss groups where he could have spent this time offering his advice, he is on a site where there are a lot of people who are trying to lose weight, and he could have spent the time he did commenting to me, offering his advice to any of those people. But no. Instead, on a site with weight loss groups, and lots of people trying to lose weight, he specifically choose to target someone who had been clear about not wanting to try to lose weight, and ignore all of her comments stating weight loss advice to her was not wanted, and decided that was that person he should focus his energies on giving weight loss advice and commentary on her body to.

I don’t know about you- but none of that sounds well meaning to me. What he actually doing is actively disregarding my wishes. But it’s all done as well-meaning advice, to seem nice. But there is nothing well meaning or nice this. There is nothing well meaning or nice about actively regarding people’s express wishes and requests on this matter.

This applies not only to his comments there, but any suggestions of weight loss here or on other FA blogs. With so many places online dedicated to talking about weight loss, and so many people out there asking for advice on how to lose weight- consider what it actually says about someone that they would skip over all those places and head somewhere with a specific focus on fat acceptance, and choose that as the place to offer advice on weight loss.

So what are my goals?

I was thinking about this tonight, after a conversation online.

I posted that although I’ve gained weight, my clothing seems to be baggier, and I don’t like how I look in it and hopefully manage to afford smaller sized clothing that fits better soon-ish

The resulted in someone asking why I am gaining weight if I’m trying to lose weight.

I clarified that I am not trying to lose weight.  Which I feel like that should have ended there- you assumed my goal was weight loss, I clarified that it’s not. The end.

He continued asking “why not?” and a bunch of unsolicited weight loss advice.

But anyways, this got me thinking about what my goals are. We know weight loss is not a goal. Weight isn’t part of my goals in any way- I’m not trying to lose weight, I’m not trying to maintain my weight, I’m not trying to gain weight. My goals are simply not weight related.

 

My Fitness Goals

  • Get stronger/lift heavier weights
  • Run further and faster
  • Increase my flexibility
  • Try new physical activities
  • Utilize fitness for stress relief and overall mental health wellbeing

My Nutrition Goals

  • Eat nutrient dense foods
  • Eat enough protein to support my getting stronger goal
  • Eat foods that make me feel healthier

Of course these aren’t all my goals, because there is more to my life than fitness and nutrition, so on we go:

General Health Goals

  • Meditate more often
  • Get as much sleep as possible
  • Be aware of changes in my mental health and take action when needed
  • Take my medications, follow up with doctors, get necessary tests done, and whatever else is needed to manage my health
  • Have fun and do things for me to stay mentally well, including getting out of my house and doing things with other people

School Goals

  • Read more
  • Get As in all my classes
  • Do more research
  • Get Published
  • Present at conferences
  • Write in my research blog
  • Survive this next year (that’s not hyperbolic btw. I literally mean survive as in not die as a result of the stress this program puts on my health.)
  • Oh, and pass the rest of my quals.

That the shortened, basic version of it all. Also clean and paint my house.

I’d also say in a general sense that one of my goals is to NOT live my life around my weight. I want to just just live my life and be as healthy as possible without everything coming back to what I weigh/trying to lose weight. With the above lists, I have enough going on in my life, I don’t need to be obsessing about my weight all the time.

Post-Its Challenge Update

Posted: July 28, 2014 in Post-It Challenge
Tags:

So I’m still doing the postit thing. But I don’t think I will post them on here anymore. It’s starting to make me feel vain and conceited sharing them, which isn’t the point. So hopefully the few I did share maybe inspired or will inspire some folks to try something similar and learn to see themselves more positive, but from here out I think I will keep mine to myself 🙂

Ok, if it’s not clear from the title, this post is about sex. If that make you uncomfortable *cough*family I shared this blog with*cough* just skip this post.

 

Ok, so with that out of the way, most of this is taken from a comment Ieft on another blog, but figured I’l make it a post here (sorry to anyone who already read this in that comment.)

I really hate the whole stereotype that women who have casual sex don’t have any self-respect. In fact, th way people talk about women having sex is generally pretty godawful. I wish I had some brain bleach to erase all the times I’ve heard men talk about “sloppy seconds” when they have sex with a woman that had sex with another man they know first. Here’s a radical idea- women are not objects! We don’t lose our value as people, or even sexual partners, by having sex (while on that topic, quick anatomy lesson- the vagina is composed of muscle. It is not a sock that gets worn away with frequent use. A quick google search brought up this article on the topic and I like the analogy the author uses of stretching the sides of your mouth open. So sick of hearing how women who have too much sex are less valuable partners because of being “loose”. Also annoyed with how people normalize the idea that virgin women are so tight that pain is inevitable- tightness in virgins is going to due largely to not being relax. And expecting pain just increases nerves the first time.)

Back to the self-respect thing though, we always feel the need as a society to tie up women’s worth with how little sex we have. And so, we reason, if sex devalues a woman, then for her to have lots of sex or any kind of casual sex, she obviously doesn’t respect herself.

Bullshit.

I like casual sex. And I respect myself plenty, thank you very much. In fact, I found that being able to enjoy casual sex came out of developing a strong sense of self-worth, self-confidence, and respect.

I respect myself enough to not place my value as a human being on how low the number of people I’ve had sex with is. I respect myself enough that if I want to have casual sex with someone who is only after sex with me, because I’m only after sex with them, I’m going to do it. I respect myself enough to know that I like sex, sex is fun, and I like casual sex. I respect myself enough to do something I like regardless of sexism. I respect myself enough to not let sexist notions about women’s worth dictate my life and happiness.

While this stereotype of casual sex being caused by lack of self respect applies to all women, it seems to be applied even more strongly to fat women. Because fat women are stereotyped as being desperate. The stereotype says that fat women are so used to be seen as undesirable that we become completely desperate for any and all attention, and so we will sleep with anyone just for the attention.

So much wrong with that. First off, there are plenty of folks who find fat women attractive, trust me- as a fat woman, being told we are attractive is not an unheard of thing. I’ve also had the awful experience too of men telling me I was attractive and then getting confused that I didn’t fall all over them. Seriously. I’ve had this happen numerous times where men seem to expect that if they pay me a simple compliment, I will fall all over them because I’ve been waiting my whole life for a man to tell me I’m beautiful. So no, not going to fall all over you for saying that. It’s nice and flattering to be told your beautiful, and don’t get me wrong, I like compliments, and I will thank you. But, don’t be surprised that it’s not the first time I’ve heard that. Don’t act surprised that I didn’t immediately drop to my knees and start sucking your dick because you complimented me. And while I’m sure it’s true there are some folks out there who will have casual sex they don’t want to be having just to feel like they are getting some positive attention (and that is bad because sex is something you should be having because you want to have sex), that is not the only reason to have casual sex. Some of us just like sex.

And being fat does not mean that me liking casual sex is because I don’t have confidence (actually I find that casual sex requires a fair deal of confidence), that I don’t respect myself, or that I think I’m undeserving of real love and real relationships. Of course I’m deserving of real love and commitment. Casual sex is not how I go about finding love. It’s how I go about having sex because sex is fun, when I meet someone and we mutually want to have sex with each other but also mutually are not interested in anything else with each other. Finding someone you fall in love with and who falls in love with you is awesome, and it’s also fairly rare. And in the meantime while I’m waiting on finding that special someone, I’m going to meet other not-as-special someone’s who I don’t want a relationship with, and who don’t want one with me, but we have some mutual attraction and mutual interest in sex, and so I will have sex with those people. Because sex is fun.

So I’ve gotten a bit behind on posting my post-its, so here are 3 post its.

Day 4:

I love my STRONG legs!

I love my STRONG legs!

I’ve always liked my legs in appearance, and I love even more adding muscle and seeing what they are capable of. My squat is up to 145 lbs (5 sets of 5 reps), btw. So I’d say my legs can do some pretty cool things!

Day 5:

I deserve people in my life who truly care about me.

I deserve people in my life who truly care about me.

Ok, so this one is a little different than the others. I’m letting this “challenge” be an organic thing for me. The goal of this, again, is to recondition my brain towards positive thinking and self-love. Most of these have been about things I like about myself and my life- focusing on the positive to drown out the negative. For day 5 though, this seemed like what was most important that I remind myself of and focus on. While it isn’t about the positive in my life right now, per se, it’s a reminder and reaffirmation that I deserve positives in my life.

And I need to remind myself that what I truly deserve, is people who actually care about me. This stems from stuff in my personal life at the moment, I’ve somewhat recently made some big changes in my life and big changes in who is in my life. Sometimes I feel bad and down about letting to of negative people, and so I need to remember this. I need to remember that what I deserve is people who care about me, and so there is no reason to feel in any way negative about letting go of people who don’t.

Day 6:

I am very intelligent

I am very intelligent

It comes as a surprise to some people that I don’t often feel this way. Because most people who know me wold easily describe me as such, and I have two degrees and am working on my PhD- I surely don’t need reaffirmation of this, right?

What most people don’t know is that I’m mildly dyslexic. Something that was not diagnosed when I was a kid. So I grew up with a lot of difficulties associated with dyslexia- trouble knowing right from left. Eventually I just memorized which hand has a small scar on it. I still, mostly out of habit these days, look for the scar on my hand when someone says right or left. In writing I would often mix up “d”s and “b”s or even more common for me was “b”s and “p”s. And when I tried learning Hebrew in college I had similar problems- I believe gimmel and zayin where two I had trouble with (I sadly don’t remember how to write in hebrew anymore). I can look back now and realize that was just the dyslexia, but at the time, I remember when I made these mistakes getting looked at as if I was stupid, or sometimes directly asked if I was. And I really internalized that and spent a long time thinking that whenever I was doing well in school or the like it was just because people felt bad for me and were afraid to tell me how stupid I really was.

Which is also an important lesson in how you can never tell from the outside what people are struggle with internally.

Baring It All

Posted: July 24, 2014 in Body Image
Tags: ,

Ok, so not exactly.

I did something unusual yesterday, I shared this photo online:

shirtlesThat’s me with no shirt on. I was getting dressed to workout, and looked in the mirror and liked how I looked and snapped a photo.

Of course I usually find that I don’t like how I look in photos as much as what I see in the mirror in real life. And photos make me so much more attentive to every little detail and flaw. And of course photos add their own flaws not present in real life too- like the weird dotting pattern across my skin (and everything else) in this photo.

But in an effort to accept myself as is, and not be ashamed of my body I decided to put all that aside and not look for flaws here, instead I summoned some courage and shared this on a social networking website. And now I’m sharing it here too. And then I will share it some more after this.

And so far the responses have been positive, and also limited. Because of course to me this is groundbreaking. This is a huge fucking deal. That’s my abdomen… visible… straight on… no flattering angles… no fabric… just my fat stomach… for everyone and anyone to see. But to anyone else, just another mirror selfie. Not a big deal. It’s funny how we make so much more of these things in our minds than they really are in reality, in practice.

See, even though I do love my curves, my stomach has always been the part of my body I’m least comfortable with, and most afraid of anyone seeing. even moreso as I’ve gained weight and gained stretch marks on it.

But I’m working hard to recondition that thinking. Working to like what I see in the mirror and in pictures. Working to not feel like I have to hide any part of myself. I’m fat. I have a fat stomach. And I still like how I looked standing there in my sports bra and yoga pants. So there!

 

I was googling gym memes recently. I enjoy a few, such as:

A meme about squatting deep based on one of my favorite movies? Love it!

But of course in the course of looking up such, I found a lot of sexist memes.

Most of them fall i the category of saying that if women wear skimpy clothes, tight clothes, or makeup to the gym then they are clearly asking for men to creepily ogle them, or make sexual comments. Victim blaming at it’s finest! And we all know there is no other reason to wear tight clothing or skimpy clothing to workout in except to attract sexual attention. And of course also the memes that claim that if you wear tight or skimpy clothing, or makeup to the gym then you cannot possibly be there to workout.

… which certainly explains me working out in a  sports bra and booty shorts in my home gym by myself. I’m not really there to work out, I’m just doing it to get sexual attention from the nonexistent men in my basement. Obviously!

Because it’s not like tight clothing is comfortable and easy to move in without getting caught on things or bunched up when you are working out. And skimpy clothing couldn’t possibly serve a valid purpose of keeping cool. Nope. Only reason is to get sexual attention from all men in the vicinity.

Of course though, in reality, women know that it’s a damned if you, damned if you don’t. Wear baggy, raggity clothing with no makeup, with no regard for looking nice, and you are easily subjected to rude comments about that.

Anyone remember how folks reacted when Robin decided that she didn’t need to bother looking nice at the gym?

Of course that leads to the second mot common type of memes about women at the gym- images of attractive women in skimpy clothing at the gym that suggests that ogling women is the only reason men bother going to the gym.

Because remember, women exist purely to fuel men’s sexual fantasies, if you aren’t attractive you have no value. And if you are attractive, then you are just asking for rude sexualized behavior and comments.

And that’s not even getting into the body shaming in many. Because what’s the point of working out if not to make fun of other people’s bodies, right? And as I’ve already mentioned several times in this blog, everyone who works out always has the exact same body size/shape.