Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Over on my tumblr I received a question. And my answer was so well liked that I thought I'd share it here as well. In case it helps someone.

Anonymous asked:

Fat acceptance. It's a concept that has never even occurred to me.
My fat is killing me. It's rather all the eating disorders and my mental image of myself that is destroying me, I know, but I hate every single fat cell in my body and I know people are disgusted with me. I realise how much brainwashed I am by the media and all those industries that make money on my dissatisfaction with the way I look (after all I wrote an entire MA thesis on it) but still... I think the fat is all I am. How do you start accepting yourself? What's the first thing you do? And something not involving other people cause there are no people in my life. I'm sorry to bother you with my issues and I'm sorry I do it anonymously. You seem to be a nice person that could push me in the right direction... are there some sites or communities helping fatties accept themselves?


You are valid.

Say it. In your mind or out loud. “I am valid.” Say it again. And again. And again. Because it's fucking TRUE.

I don't care if you weigh 150 pounds or 550 pounds. I don't care if you just ate a salad or if you just ate two meals from McDonalds. I don't care if you can walk five miles or if you can barely move. I don't care if you think you're ugly or if you think you're beautiful. Because NONE of that matters in determining your value as a human being worthy of dignity, respect, and love.

You are valid.

You are valid.

You are valid.

You are valid.

Say it. Say it a million fucking times if you have to.

You are valid.

You are valid.

YOU ARE VALID.

Even when you know you've been brainwashed, it's hard. It's so hard to love yourself when the entire world seems to tell you you shouldn't. Just because you can identify the bullshit, doesn't mean you're not still susceptible to it. There are going to be days – even when you believe you've reached complete acceptance of yourself – that you're going to stumble and fall. There are going to be days you look in the mirror and STILL hate what you see. You are not a failure. Not now and not then.

This culture wants you to hate yourself. But now? It's time to say “no.” They've taken every day before today as their own. They've stolen you from yourself. They've stolen your ability to recognize that you're worthy of love and happiness. Today is the day you take it back. Today is the day you start fighting, not to fit in, but to stand out.

You've spent your entire life hating who you are. You've spent your entire life angry at yourself for not being what they tell you to be. Here's the thing. You will never be completely acceptable. I know it's hard to hear that. I know you think, as we all do, that if we just try hard enough, we can be what they want. But we can't. Because they will never, EVER, be satisfied by who we are. So all that anger you've been feeling towards yourself? All that loathing and hate? It's time to redirect it. It's time to get angry at a society that tells us we're not good enough. It's time to get angry at a world that trains us to hate ourselves. It's time to get angry and take back the life that's been stolen from you.

The hardest thing you'll ever do is make the decision to love and accept yourself. There are so many reasons for you not to. But at the end of the day? The ONLY person who has to feel the sadness and the pain that comes from self-loathing is you. The idea that you – yes, YOU – can love yourself as you are is revolutionary. When I realized there were people who were fat and happy, it blew my fucking mind. I'm working on a post about how, exactly, that came about. Everyone's journey is different but we all take the first step for the same reason...we just can't handle hating ourselves anymore.

Check out the following links. I'm including everything from politics to fashion to just some general bad-ass fatties. I know I've probably missed a million great ones but this is a start. Just pick one at random, pick the one that sounds the best, go alphabetically. It doesn't matter. Just make the decision YOU are worth fighting for.

I know you won't believe it when I tell you this but...you aren't alone. You have an entire internet army behind you. An entire army of people who are rooting for you to love yourself, to accept yourself, to discover your own power and worth. And we'll be here, every step of the way.


Acceptance is Not "Giving Up"
Adipositivity (nudity)
Axis of Fat
Bellies Are Beautiful (photos)
Big Fat Blog
BMI: The Reality (photos)
Chubstr
The Chubster Gang
Definatalie
The Embodied
The Fat Body (In)visible (video)
FatCast (podcast)
Fat Dinosity 1 and 2 (videos)
The Fat Experience Project
Fat. Fit. Flabulous! (nudity)
Fat Girl Speaks
The Fat Nutritionist
Fat Rants 1 2 and 3 (videos)
FemmeCast (podcast)
Full Body Project (nudity)
The HAES (Health at Every Size) Manifesto (pdf)
It's a Big Fat Revolution
NOLOSE
Red Vinyl Shoes
The Rotund
Sex and the Fat Girl
Shapely Prose (archives)
Two Whole Cakes
Toil Gilrs (fatty girl pinup art)
Who's Watching the Women?
Women en Large (nudity)


And on tumblr!

Amber
Amelia Butter
Big Boy Fashion
Bon Bon
Buttah Love
Death Fatties
Fat People Art
Fat People of Color
Fuck Yeah Chubby Butches
Fuck Yeah Chubby Girls
Fuck Yeah Chubby Guys
Fuck Yeah Fat Positive
Hey, Fat Chick!
Inner Fat Girl
Jessie Dress
Kyla the Great
Riots Not Diets
STFU Sizists
Tangled Up in Lace
Tender Heart
Tropigalia
Uppity Fatty (nudity)

I'm not the best at these kinds of questions so I hope I've offered some help and support! You're not bothering me. At all. Sometimes I'm slow to respond but that's due to lack of emotional energy, not lack of interest.

I hope this helps in some small way.

xoxo
Heidi

5 comments:

  1. This is beautiful, Heidi. Thank you.

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  2. That was beautifully said. Have you considered writing a book about your experiences? I'm sure I have asked this question before. You are very articulate and can certainly bring so much information to a large segment of our society. Great words.

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  3. Amazing! Thank you for putting into words what I so often struggle to explain to people. <3

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  4. Lesley Kinzel over at Two Whole Cakes (http://blog.twowholecakes.com/2011/05/friday-fluff-me-andoprah-and-a-very-amenable-beluga/) is my hero(ine). :D Seriously, she rocks.

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  5. Wow, this post is incredible. I'm practically cheering out loud!!! I am Thin, and I hope I am an ally, and your words help give me a vocabulary to support my friends in the FA movement.

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