So I was alerted to this article in cosmo earlier in the week by my fat bro Bethany from arched eyebrow, and she claimed that this was one of the the most realistic and relatable article she had read on being a fat woman. I read it and had to agree, all the experiences sounded like mine, and this is refreshing. I have been thinking about blogging again, and Black Heart Creatives has gone in a totally different direction than I thought it would do when I closed this blog and started a new one about crafting. I didn't really fit in those circles, so I have now re jigged and re designed and moved blog posts about over THREE different blogs and I am now just left with this one, and I am pleased that my first proper post is about being fat and fashion again.
Claire over at A Monkey Fatshionista did a great suggestion that the PS Bloggers all answer the same questions the two women were asked on the original cosmo article. So here are my answers!
How do you feel when other women around you complain about feeling/being fat?
Usually and I genuinely mean when I hear someone say this 9/10 that they aren't as fat as me or other plus size women I know, so I would rather they kept their opinions to themselves. Unless you have to shop in specialist shops or sections of straight shops or have been abused verbally or physically for being fat, then I personally don't feel you can identify as such. I also feel sad, echoing a lot of what other people said, I wish they were not unhappy. I see so many people on social media sites outside the PS community talking about dieting and being miserable doing so, and I just want to shout about body acceptance!
How has your body image changed since high school? College?
I am fatter now. I was never ~skinny because I am just so tall and have massive shoulders and massive feet, I was always at least a 14/16, but I 'carried it well'. I put on a lot of weight due to a very destructive relationship, inactivity, comfort eating and I honestly feel to do with contraception, and issues I have had surrounding that. I do remember always thinking, well at least your arms aren't fat, that is when you know you have gone past the point of no return. Now I have big chubby arms.
Have you tried dieting? What happened?
Yes. Right before I started that destructive relationship I was at college and I was bigger than I wanted to be, and joined slimming world and it worked really well and I lost two stone? I was how I wanted to look, I could fit into the larger end of straight shops and I felt fantastic. Then I put it all on again. I tried slimming world again but gave up as it made me miserable. At the start of 2012 I wanted to start again as I was getting married, so I did slimfast because it is easy and I haven't got to think about food all the time, and went to the gym. I lost close to 3 stone but have put nearly 2 back on now. Every single day I was dieting I was unhappy.
Do you think in your case your weight is partly or entirely genetic?
In no way is it genetic, my entire family, immediate and both sides are super super thin, but I think I might be predetermined to being chub though as my body sort of settles at this weight.
Do you consider yourself healthy? Have there been instances where people assumed you were unhealthy?
I am unhealthy and I know it. I can't walk for ages without getting sweaty and out of breath, but I smoke as well, albeit very few a day. I hate getting sweaty and out of breath and this is something I try and avoid, but is something I want to over come. I hate cardio exercise so I need to find something that works for me. I would just like to be able to walk up a hill without feeling like I am going to die! I don't think anyone assumes I am unhealthy, or at least not to my face, because I haven't not participated in anything, and I will actually just grin and bear it if we have to walk miles with friends because I don't want to be perceived as unhealthy in anyway.
Are your parents both supportive of you at the weight you’re at? Have they always been?
Nope, my mum actively dislikes it and cannot believe that I have accepted my size, and doesn't believe in fat body positivity. She doesn't comment on it now but she used to try and say encouraging things. My Dad doesn't comment, I believe this is because he has lived in a house with three women for the past 28 years so probably knows not to say anything! My Mum is a firm believe in flattering things, and for my face to be thinner. My weight does fluctuate and she always comments on how much nicer my face looks, or sometimes will say IF YOU JUST GOT RID OF THAT TYRE ROUND YOUR MIDDLE.
How do you think retailers can improve clothes for plus-size people?
Make all the things in your ranges go up to a 32. There really isn't anything more to it than that. If you aren't going to do that, then follow ASOS's lead. Also don't hide us away in PS sections in the back of shops like outcasts.
Do you think plus-size women are judged differently than plus-sized men are? How?
Yes, very much so. Usually perceived as unsexy, undesirable, lazy, smelly, stupid, lonely, binge eaters, unhealthy women. I don't really think the same stigmas attach themselves to larger men, and to be quite honest I am not really interested in their plights.
Do you think there’s an assumption made/stereotype that exists about plus-size people? How would you respond to it?
As per above, and I would respond to it the same way when anyone makes assumptions about any one marginalised in society, you are basic and shallow and need to treat everyone as you expect to be treated yourself.
Do you think there’s ever a right way or time to express concern about someone’s weight?
This is tough. Yes and no. Unless you are a doctor or have had lengthy conversations with said fat person and have concrete evidence that their weight is the cause or at least a major factor in the problem then you have no place to say anything.
What are the worst things people have said to you about your body?
I have always lived with people staring at me as I walk down the street because I am 6'1" and I suppose what you might have once called 'alternative'. Quite honestly I think I have had a few men say fatty but more people comment negatively about my height or when I was being a goth. Sometimes in a busy pub on a Saturday I will hear someone, usually a young lad, make a snide joke about fucking me, but I have luckily never had any major abuse that sticks out in my mind.
How did you respond?
Oh I always tell them to fuck themselves or take a photo it lasts longer, or usually, very loudly say WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU JUST SAY YOU LITTLE UGLY PRICK? They usually don't say anything back, I think I look quite aggressive anyway on a day to day basis haha.
What have people said (or do you wish they’d say) that would compliment your body or appearance?
This is hard without humble bragging right? I used to be fixated with looking pristine, and my ultimate compliment would be to be told I look pristine. Those people who's hair and makeup stay perfect all day long and wear beautiful clothes and just always look well turned out? My makeup always slides off and my hair goes into a birds nest after an hour. Turns out those people just reapply though out the day and brush their hair constantly, how boring. I do get complimented a lot about being beautiful. I know that sounds really big headed, but I love the way I look and my face is, I genuinely would not change anything and am a bit of a narcissist. I would get a flatter stomach though.
Do you find yourself hanging out with women who are closer to your size?
Not really, only when I see people from the PS community. Most of my friends are between an 8-16, I am the fat friend, it used to bother me and I am sure that sometimes that nagging voice comes into my head but I managed to squash it down knowing that I am gorgeous and fierce.
How has your weight affected your sex life, if at all?
NOT ONE BIT. I have never ever ever had problems pulling men or women. Actual physical sex wise, I am really flexible, admittedly my husband did say he didn't expect someone as chub as me to be able to get my legs behind my head but they do!
When you’ve been single, has your weight affected your dating life?
Nope, but like most fat girls I am sure whenever there has been rejection in life you do ask yourself if it was because you were fat.
Do you feel weird if the guy you’re with only dates larger women?
Yes! Like me for who I am bro, not because I have rolls eurgh.
Do you feel weird if he’s only dated slimmer women before you?
I think it would play on my mind a teeny bit, but no not really. I have asked previous partners if they would date other fat girls after being with me and they all said yes, so :3
Other lovely ladies who answered questions!