The Fat Rights community in the last week has been a flurry of activity after the whole ‘Fat people are gross’ debacle and the answering ‘Big Fat Kiss-In,’ which I thought was amazing as far as the organization and amount of people who participated on such short notice. It was in many ways it was a huge ‘fuck you’ to the rampant fat phobia that the article proves still exists today.
This week has also brought me back to how we often spend so much time skirting around the issues instead of talking about how we live in deviant bodies while our lives, apart from our fatness, is as socially acceptable as possible. Do I love that there are people out there who are huge supporters and enthusiasts of HAES, the Fatshionista livejournal community and showing fat people in ‘socially acceptable situations?’ Yes, but not participating in HAES, fashion or living ‘normal’ does not mean you should be considered socially unacceptable. Our society as a whole teaches us that we need conformity to survive, with fat acceptance you have reached one level where you can feel comfortable not conforming to societies dictation that you must have a certain body shape and size.
What happens after people in our movement reach a level of body acceptance while they still find that their own personal lives are still not deemed normal by society? To be honest it isn’t as though with body acceptance your life automatically becomes hearts and rainbows. More than likely you are still going to face rejection by people due to your body for numerous reasons. The difference is that if you don’t succeed because you’re being personally discriminated against it doesn’t mean it is your fault.
To be particularly honest I am not interested in showing or demonstrating to others that I dress, act or live ‘acceptably.’ I am, in fact, a 25 year old virgin who is quite content with this fact because I reject the notion that I am somehow less of a person due to my sexual inactivity, or that I am somehow lesser than because I don’t have a relationship or care about how I am viewed as a person because of it. I am not interested in playing normal to fit in or feeling shame because my sexual history hasn’t followed the timetable of social acceptability. (I’m still looking for that timetable so I can light it on fire.)
This is in much of the same light as those who feel that fat rights isn’t for them because they don’t live a lifestyle that is congruent with HAES. Again no one should have to prove that they are worthy as a person by being as ‘normal’ as possible. It is yet again feeding into societies own desire that we act like monkeys and dance for them in hopes that they invite us to the ‘cool kids’ table. Well I say fuck that table.
You shouldn’t have to defend yourself if you are by chance living a lifestyle that most people wouldn’t deem ‘healthy’ or have your sexual orientation put into question because you are not forthcoming with your relationship status. Your self worth is not defined by your body, the relationships you have, the food you eat, how much you exercise etc.
Only you can define your worth, and if someone tries to define it for you, tell them to fuck off.
“Only you can define your worth, and if someone tries to define it for you, tell them to fuck off.”
This sums up exactly how I feel about so many issues in life. I am the only one who can decide how I feel about myself and no one should be allowed to pressure me into feeling something different because they think they know better! Great post!
Great post! I, too, find it awesome-yet-horribly-problematic when fat people use themseles as examples of how you can make super healthy choices and still be fat, or be fat and care about fashion, and so on. Also, much love from one 25 year old virgin to another=)
yes to all of this! i may steal that last line and use it every single day.