“Don’t tell thin women to eat a cheeseburger. Don’t tell fat women to put down the fork. Don’t tell underweight men to bulk up. Don’t tell women with facial hair to wax, don’t tell uncircumcised men they’re gross, don’t tell muscular women to go easy on the dead-lift, don’t tell dark-skinned women to bleach their vaginas, don’t tell black women to relax their hair, don’t tell flat-chested women to get breast implants, don’t tell “apple-shaped” women what’s “flattering,” don’t tell mothers to hide their stretch marks, and don’t tell people whose toes you don’t approve of not to wear flip-flops. And so on, etc, etc, in every iteration until the mountains crumble to the sea. Basically, just go ahead and CEASE telling other human beings what they “should” and “shouldn’t” do with their bodies unless a) you are their doctor, or b) SOMEBODY GODDAMN ASKED YOU.”—
1. Your body is in flux for the rest of your life. Think of your body as fluid instead of static — it’s always going to change. So get comfortable with those changes.
2. No one will love you or not love you because of your body. You are lovable because you’re you, not because your body looks a certain way.
3. The most intensely personal relationship you’ll ever have is with your body. It’s a lifelong relationship that’s well worth investing in and nurturing the same way you would with loved ones.
4. You don’t owe your body to anyone. Not sexually, not aesthetically. Your body is yours. Period.
5. What someone else says about your body says more about them than it does about you. Look past the actual snark to the person who’s saying it, because it’s only a reflection of what they think of themselves. That’s when you’ll see how little power their words have.
6. Your body is not a reflection of your character. It’s a physical home for the complex and wondrous and unique being that is you.
7. Take up as much space as you want. You don’t have to be small, or quiet, or docile, regardless of your physical size.
8. Everything you need to accept your body is already inside you. There’s no book, or diet, or workout routine or external affirmation that you need to feel good about your body right now.
9. Your body is a priority. It’s always trying to tell you things. Taking the time to listen to is of the utmost importance.
10. Wear whatever you want. Your body shape does not dictate your personal style, and fashion rules that say otherwise are wrong. Dress yourself in a way that makes you feel happy and confident and beautiful, because guess what? You are.
I feel like the body positive movement has a lot of flaws but we need to figure out a way to have better body affirmations that take into account the social experiences of bodies.
Like I’m transgender and I experience a lot of dysphoria and that goes to war with my need to feel good about my body as a fat person. I’ve accepted my fat body but I can’t accept my feminine body, even though my affirmation would be “there’s no such thing as a feminine body”. And as a disabled person I also have issues with my body because it can feel like it hates me. I don’t even have a body affirmation for that.
And I know that there are all kinds of people who experience a war with their body either based on messages from society or their own experiences. I feel like the body positive movement needs to focus on that.
I love this post being about younger bodies because wow I could have used some of these when I was younger.
What are some body affirmations you use? What are some that you need?
I was recently started on a new medication to help treat a hormone imbalance I’ve had for as long as i can remember. I should also mention that I have reactive hypoglycemia, which makes it super important that i eat small meals/snacks throughout the day so that my blood…
Today a mother will talk about how “disgusting” fat people are and her child will internalize it. Today a father will tell his wife that he will divorce her if she ever gets fat and their child will internalize it. Today a grandmother will shame her grandchild for getting pudgy and that child will internalize it. Today a teacher will make a fat joke and his class full of children will internalize it. Today millions of children will be bombarded with messages about how thin is good and fat is bad and they will internalize it.
The “war on obesity” is creating a shock wave of weight bigotry that will be felt for generations to come.
"We’re raising a generation of kids to see fat as the ultimate failure and the ultimate sin."
My fat body is far too valuable to be treated like a car whose worth is lowered because of some wear and tear. It’s far too astounding to be a metaphor or a political statement. It’s far too complicated to run on the same formula used to fuel a lawn mower. It is far too profound to be reduced to a ratio of weight and height. And it is far too amazing to be judged by anyone.
My fat body is not a representation of my failures, sins, or mistakes. My fat body is not an indication of my level of health or fitness. My fat body is not up for public discussion, debate or judgment. My fat body is not a signal that I need help or input to make decisions about my health or life. My fat body is the constant companion that helps me do every single thing that I do every second of every day and it deserves respect and admiration.
If you are incapable of appreciating my body and treating it with respect and admiration that is your deficiency not mine; work on it or not, but I do not care. Nor am I interested in hearing your thoughts on the matter so, if you want to be around me, you are 100% responsible for doing whatever it takes to keep those thoughts to yourself. If you are incapable of doing that I will stop spending time with you – I spend my time with people who can treat me appropriately.
I will wield my beautiful fat body like a weapon. I will love it, I will care for it, I will move it, I will show it in public, I will viciously defend my body against anyone who seeks to classify it as anything but amazing. You’ve been warned – back the fuck off.
“My fat body tells the story of my strength. My fat face sings the truth of my beauty. My body flouts “conventional wisdom,” destabilizes a hundred years of lies and half-truths spoken from the mouths of charlatans. My body resists colonial rule; it refuses to be subjected to state-generated ideas of fitness or femininity. I am complete. I am hot. I am complicated. My body holds a lifetime of pain and joy and love, and you can’t see me as whole because my fat body is so powerful that it would shatter your world view, make you question the very reason for your existence, thrill your heart, incite your soul.”—read more: virgietovar.com (via fat-grrrl-activism)
[Original post found here. All content following is authored by the maker of Big Liberty, the source blog.]
DISCLAIMER: This links list is always in the works, and is not comprehensive or complete. If evidence is not listed, it doesn’t mean it does not exist. If you have any links to add, please insert them in relevant comments and they will be reviewed.
For a general resource on debunking the junk science behind obesity, please see:
“Until eating can be divorced from value judgments, it’s going to be difficult to repair a broken food system. Individual dietary choices are not made in a vacuum, but a world filled with pressures, and those pressures must be acknowledged in a discussion of what people eat, how, and why. There’s nothing morally superior about eating one thing and not another, and people need to stop acting like their fridges contain proof of sanctification.”—Eating as Performance of Moral Superiority – this ain’t livin’ (via brute-reason)
Are you Fat?! Are you a person of color?! Are you sick and tired of being made to feel bad about either or both of those things?!
If you answered YES to the above WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!!
Asam will be at NOLOSE this July taking video submissions, so if you are attending come say hi and record your message/rant/journey to be posted on this blog in the near future.
We are always looking for submissions - video, text, drawings, audio (or however you choose to express your thoughts) that discuss your personal journey to loving your body, or any issue you want to discuss involving fatness.
And we don’t just want to hear from folks who are well on their way - we also want to hear from folks who are just starting out.
One of the main goals of this project is to create a community (virtual or real) of like-minded individuals so that all of us feel a little less isolated and alone when we face the many different forms of fatphobia that manifest in our lives.
We want to hear about all the different ways fatness intersects with the other isms you already face - for instance, fatness & desire, fatness & ability, fatness & gender, fatness & queerness etc., etc., etc.
If you don’t feel comfortable submitting publicly, you can also drop us a line via the tumblr ask or at email@example.com and let us know that you are out there. We hope one day we will all feel safe sharing our stories on the interwebs with the big FAT world!
It pains us to inform you that Jackie has decided she can no longer organize with the It Gets Fatter collective. Transitions are always hard, but this one is especially so because it has happened so quickly and in such a difficult manner.
We want to make it explicitly clear that Jackie would like the collective to be disbanded and that for us to continue organizing as this collective is going against her wishes. However, we feel that this space we have collectively created is truly magical for queer & fat people of color, and we are not sure that putting it to rest makes the most sense right now.
We don’t think It Gets Fatter belongs to any of us. It belongs to the collective of people who have shared this space with us, to everyone who has sent us a submission, everyone who has emailed us to share their struggle with body shame, everyone who has attended our events, everyone who has promoted and supported us, and every person of colour who has seen themselves in the stories that have been shared through this collective. We want to acknowledge that.
We have made a number of commitments to organizations and collected donations from people to attend NOLOSE, and we will of course be upholding those commitments. This means the IGF project will be operative until those commitments are fulfilled, and we will make a decision about the state of this collective at that time.
In the meantime, we want to thank you all for your support, generosity and love. Our lives have been changed and uplifted by the ways in which you have held this space with us, by your stories and by your presence. If you have any feedback, input or ideas on how to move forward, please send us an ask or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It Gets Fatter at Canada's First National GSA Summit!
This weekend Sara & Asam will be presenting two (2!) sessions of our brand new “Queer Desirability & Fatness” Workshop!! We are so so so excited to be part of this amazing conference and can’t wait to take up space as fat people of color!
If you will be attending the conference we encourage you to come check out either one of our sessions (or both!). We will be presenting on Sunday, May 19th, in session 1 & 2. Here is a little blurb for our workshop:
Fat doesn’t have to be a bad word. Let’s breakdown fatphobia 101 then delve more deeply into issues of queer & fat desirability. For many of us, it doesn’t get better, it gets fatter! Instead of hating ourselves (& our bodies) or clinging to false platitudes about how much better it might get in some vague far off future, we want to celebrate ourselves and our bodies the way they are now. We will create a safe(r) space for fat queers of color and their allies to talk about the importance of rethinking queerness and desirability through the lens of fat positivity. Through various interactive activities, we will look at the different ways fat (queer) bodies of color are impacted by class, racism, sexism, ableism, transphobia & queerphobia, and how fat bodies undermine normative *and* queer modes of desire.
When I was 21 I studied abroad in Rome for three months as part of my university’s Italian language studies program. Because I was studying Italian language and culture, I was assigned to live with a host family (instead of in campus housing), which in my case meant a cantankerous little old lady named Paola who spoke almost no English… which would have been fine (I was there to learn Italian, after all!), except that Paola thought she was SUPER FANTASTIC at speaking English, which usually meant that all of our conversations ended in her screaming at me (in Italian) that I didn’t understand anything.
But Paola is a story for another time. This is about my fat.
When I first arrived at Termini train station, I met up with the rest of my cohort and, one-by-one, we were picked up by our families. When Paola laid eyes on me, she smiled big (or was it a grimace? I can hardly remember) and said “Ciao Margitte! Come stai?” (hello, how are you?) and then immediately said about five other things that were well above my Italian 101 knowledge. She helped me cram my (laughably oversized) bags into her teensy car, and we zipped off to her apartment in San Giovanni. After a traumatizing experience with her elevator (it wouldn’t fit the two of us with my luggage), she showed me to my room and I took a nap.
I awoke three hours later to the smell of delicious Italian cooking. Paola excitedly ushered me into her itsy-bitsy kitchen and sat me on a rickety chair in front of my dinner.
Which consisted of three plates of food.
THREE plates of food.
Now I had learned that it was customary in Italy to eat a lot of food at dinner, but Paola herself only had one plate. Not wanting to be rude, I smiled, said “Grazie,” and proceeded to try and eat as much of the food as possible. At a plate and a half in, I just couldn’t eat anymore. “Mi dispiace, ma non ho fame.” My Italian was pretty shaky, but I basically said that I was sorry but I wasn’t hungry.
“Mangia!” (eat!), she insisted. But I couldn’t, and Paola was shocked.
“Ma… come mai sei cosi grassata*?”
“Grassata” was not yet in my vocabulary, so I couldn’t answer. She just kept asking, over and over, “but how come you are so….?”, growing increasingly aggravated with my puzzled looks.
Then came the hand motions. “GRASSATA!!!” She exclaimed, making a curvy shape with her hands while giving herself a double-chin and sucking in air to make her face look bloated. She then grabbed her chunk of her belly. “Grassata!”
I finally realized what she was asking, but went to get my dictionary just in case I was imagining things. Horrified, I found out that I was right—she really had decided that asking me why I was fat was an appropriate topic of conversation (*the actual Italian word for fat is “grassa”… “grassata” literally means “greased” but is often used to describe fat people, from what I understand). I shrugged and said “Non lo so” (I don’t know) and tried to leave it at that.
Over the next few days, Paola badgered me about why I was so fat, growing more and more frustrated when she realized I didn’t eat a whole lot and that I was fairly active.
One night during that first week, I had a friend (who just so happened to be vacationing in Rome at the time) over for dinner. This time, Paola decided to askLauren why I was so fat. Was I lying about my eating habits? Did I really exercise? Lauren and I were, I think, equally horrified at this line of questioning. Then Lauren had the bright idea to take out the dictionary and look for the word “thyroid”.
“Tiroide!” I exclaimed, pointing to it in the dictionary.
Amazingly and suddenly, Paola was satisfied. All was right in the world, because it finally made sense to her WHY my fat body was so fat—because I had a bad thyroid. (In later years I would come to find out that I did not actually have said problem with my thyroid, but that is also another story.)
The It Gets Fatter Project, a body-positivity project started by queer fat people of color for fat people of color, is now offering workshops in Toronto & Montreal!!*
We know that there are so many young people in our cities who access community services, attend after-school programs and other community groups that would benefit from a Body Positivity workshop. Most people today have never even been told that being fat is okay. The main goal of these workshops is to begin to destigmatize the word “fat,” deconstruct the messages and images that teach us to be ashamed of our bodies, to discuss our own experiences with fatness and to talk about ways we can build a healthier model of body positivity and self love. If you run and/or are a part of a group that you think could benefit from the work that we do, we encourage you to book a workshop with the It Gets Fatter Project!!
We are currently offering Body Positivity 101 workshops, but are also looking to develop workshops on more complicated issues like fat desire, fat trauma, and the relationship between queerness/race/class/ableism and fat bodies.
We organize all of our work within an anti-oppressive and anti-racist framework. If you’re interested, please contact us to discuss fees!
If you are interested in booking a workshop, please email us at email@example.com.
Big Big Love,
Jackie, Sara & Asam
*Of course, we would love to come to your city and present these workshops for you (NYC, anyone?!?!?). If you have the budget for such things, talk to us and maybe we can make it work!!