Commercialism, Feminist musings, Gender stereotypes, I am a girl, Passing Woman, Stereotypes, Volatile bodies

Fat, Plus-Sized or Normal?

Do you know what I think, when I face the discussion on American Apparel’s contest for the next plus sized model? Well, it’s obvious that the fashion industry would consider Nancy Upton, a size 12, to be, well, plus and not of moderate, normal or skinny size. But the commenters, oh the commenters. Since when has size twelve been the indication that someone is FAT?

It’s a fat girl crazy for food.

Writes Jill. I read it here, on Feministe, for the love of spanking! She also makes some good points, but keeps undermining the inherent positivity of the fact that this is an intelligent woman, who decided to show herself off to raise some questions and happens to have a body like most of us do. Which is why you can call her fat, I guess, because really, you obviously don’t look like that or if you did, you’d better get a whip cracking wouldn’t you?

I know fat people, when I, rarely, see them. But I don’t stop in my footsteps and gape in awe. If she (or he) decided to live her life the way she had and be content with it – what’s it to me? There was this woman yesterday trying to sit behind me on the bus and she chouldn’t fit in the space, because my seat was half reclined. It made me think about body weight issues and how they affect life very much in the way I ponder about certain kinks that are not my own or that are, but freak me the fuck out, and I though. Huh. She must be okay with it. She’d probably do something to change it otherwise. So, why wouldn’t I be?

But the woman on the bus wasn’t anywhere near size 12. Does this, really, seem fat to you?

Maybe I’m missing something. Maybe it’s been photoshopped or there’s actually more of her from behind… Shes’ pretty sexy to my eyes, and I don’t believe I have a kink for fat. But it doesn’t even matter, if I find her sexy or not. That’s besides the point. I really don’t see any judgmenet in saying that size zero or two would be really thin. I’d say sizes up to 14, at least, would be normal healthy bodies, and not even necessarily curvacious depending on the person.

When all else fails I’m glad there’s always Hugo to turn to.

Also, April Flores’ masturbator pussy is the hottest fake pussy I’ve ever seen. It just looks so real and enviting. I wonder why that is…

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19 thoughts on “Fat, Plus-Sized or Normal?

  1. Damn right. What really makes me wonder is the fact that I picked the line out of Feministe, a feminist blog meant to advocate a not so narrow-minded (body) image. Is Jill trying to be sarcastic when she says that or what?

  2. As a woman who has struggled with body issues most of her life, this type of thing is somewhat disheartening. I am a size 10/12. Most of the time I feel great about the way I look, but sometimes it can get me down. Which I think a lot of women deal with. I think it’s messed up that someone called her “fat”. If I heard someone actually call ME that, it would be a huge blow, and completely untrue.

    But- maybe that commenter was being sarcastic like you said?? Who knows..

  3. and I though. Huh. She must be okay with it. She’d probably do something to change [her fatness] otherwise.

    Statements like this make me uncomfortable because they imply that peopel get fat solely because they lack discipline. Yes, most sedentary people could probably lose a few pounds and firm up a bit if they exercised, but a diet and exercise regime is not a magical cure that can turn absolutely anyone into a supermodel. The woman you saw on the bus might very well have tried everything in the world to try to lose weight but it just didn’t work. She may not be “okay” with her weight at all; she may hate herself for being too lazy or weak to change it.

    I have a friend who used to be tiny but then she went on thyroid medication and it made her gain a lot of weight – even though her diet and exercise routine didn’t change. I knew a personal trainer who most people would classify as “fat”; she taught aerobics classes several times a week, and her body barely jiggled when she moved because she such great muscle tone under the “padding,” but she had a big ass and a big belly nonetheless. Meanwhile, people assume I’m some paragon of virtue because I have sixpack abs – even though I’ve been known to consume a 750ml container of mayonnaise within a two day span. Frequently. (I crave fat when I’m ovulating.) Sometimes a person’s weight is just luck of the draw.

    A huge part of society’s “fat hatred” seems to be wrapped up in the idea that a person’s fatness is inevitably their own fault. I’m here to tell you that it’s simply not true.

  4. I’ve been really surprised by the same thing. The average size for an American woman is 14.

    I have very low expectations for American Apparel, but it is disturbing to see feminist blogs just accepting the labeling of a size 12 woman as fat.

    However, one thing does occur to me – what about the standard acceptance of “fat” as a necessarily negative thing? Leaving health issues aside (because I really do not want to get into that!), I’ve seen people at size 14, 16, even higher who are really sexy.

    Actually, I have to say that perving fetlife has been amazing for my own attitudes towards non-thin bodies. There are a lot of women with bodies significantly larger than a size 12 and it’s great to see how much positive feedback many of them get on their sexy photos.

  5. I know you’re right, PC, with some people at least. But I don’t want to start medicalizing strangers, either. “She probably has a kidney failure” I think is a tleast as obtrusive as “Look how fat she is, she must be lazy”. I know that most of the people who do not fit the norm are not happy with themselves.

  6. Femsub, I don’t think we can claim the term for “fat” people. And a size 12 just isn’t fat, not even in the objective health thinking way. But yeah, big people can use the term fat as they just, just like gays can call each other fags etc.

    I’m just about her size, though, if someone was wondering where this is coming from.

  7. But I don’t want to start medicalizing strangers, either. “She probably has a kidney failure” I think is a tleast as obtrusive as “Look how fat she is, she must be lazy”.

    Totally true – which is why I wish people did neither. I think that in an ideal world, people would register the fact of someone’s body size neutrally, without any assumptions about their habits, the same way we’d think “that person is blonde” or “that person is wearing red socks.”

    I’m not sure we can ever get there, but it’d be nice. 🙂

  8. I’m totally with you there, PC. Also, it irritates me to no end that strange people start acting more nice every time I lose a few kilos. Really? I’m not different on the inside. But it’s the outside that counts.

  9. Femsub, I don’t think we can claim the term for “fat” people.

    It’s not really about the word fat, but it’s about being able to see larger bodies as attractive. So that instead of saying (not necessarily about this model, but maybe someone larger) “she’s not that big!” we’re saying “yep! she’s bigger and she’s sexy!”

    Also, by even the definitions in this comments thread, I’m on the “fat” side. I’m a size 16/18. And I’ve been finding lately that it’s a lot healthier for me to be able to say “yep, I’m on the fat/bigger/whatever side, but I can still look attractive.”

  10. On an mostly related note, I’m happy that you are saying this. I’ve got the idea that you both habit and idolize (dig) pretty skinny bodies. It makes me happy that you can still be ouraged by the body image issue, even if you have the ideal body. My sister, who is naturally very, very skinny, is often more… moralist about different body types.

    I’ve become mostly happy with not being skinny, but I’ve paid my dues. I’ve had an eating disorder and been a nutrition obsessed weightlifter. I’m no thinner, but boy did I screw up my metabolism and intestines for goood.

  11. Yoursong…

    Me too. It was pretty usual for guys to call me (and other girls) fat in high school and it’s still a thing I obsess over, when I have to dress up nicely. It’s the easiest way to bring someone down and make them insecure. Even some thin girls can be bent out of shape with just a little bit of fat shaming.

    And what’s enough anyway? The actresses in today’s tv shows look like skeletons to me, because I rarely watch tv, so I’m not used to it anymore.

  12. Actually, I have to say that perving fetlife has been amazing for my own attitudes towards non-thin bodies. There are a lot of women with bodies significantly larger than a size 12 and it’s great to see how much positive feedback many of them get on their sexy photos.

    This makes me quite happy, actually. Maybe kinky people are not afraid of being drawn to non-idealized body types then?It makes sense.

    Also, what seems to be Wonderboy’s ideal body for a woman is me with I think more or less the same weight but in different places. 😉 If you get my drift. So, why would I want to look like they do on AA’s pages? I don’t.

  13. Femsub,

    Oh, I totally didn’t get your point. That is so important. It’s just that when I look at pictures of these so called bigger women, I rarely think “wow, a big, fat woman, but also pretty!”. I just admire like I do when I see a thin girl worth mentioning. See the pictures from the Tom Allen link below and tell me what you think about the women portrayed there.

    Tom Allen from Edge of Vanilla has also addressed the body size issue I think more than once, and his approach is perhaps more in the lines of Yeah, hot big babes, yeah. But of course in his dry sarcastic tone.

  14. Femsub,

    I think it’s brave that you mention being bigger than the rest of us. (Although we don’t really know except for the ones voicing their size here.) When discussing weight and body image issues, every woman usually suffers from them, but only the pretty normal ones are allowed to discuss it. Skinny ones should be happy and big ones should stop being lazy and get a grip. The expectations are not healthy for anyone, and I don’t even think that being thinner is healthier for everyone.

    Example from my own life.

    When I was smaller by two sizes, I could only eat a 1000 calories per day. If I ate more, I’d gain weight no matter how much I worked out. Just the way my body is, I suppose. The thing is at a certain point in my life I decided that I’d rather be a little plump (according to some sources) than live on 1000 calories for the rest of my life. A 1000 calories is just about enough to keep my intestines working, not my brain, for example, and possibly not the fertility business either. So, I gained weight, but wasn’t devastated by it, because I knew I was healthy, worked out a lot and ate healthy, home-made food. What more can anyone ask? The cost of being skinny is unbearable to some.

    Also, I do think that bigger than the exact average (or whatever) can be pretty fucking hot. I just wish I’d see more fat asses going around in skimpy wear, I’m telling you. 😉 But fat shaming will keep all the nice things closeted, I’m sure.

  15. Thanks for calling me brave, although I think the initial confusion was caused by the fact that I sort of weaseled around my own investment in the issue, making it sound like I was talking about other people, when I was really talking about myself.

    When I was smaller by two sizes, I could only eat a 1000 calories per day. If I ate more, I’d gain weight no matter how much I worked out.

    It’s the same for me. I’m currently on a health kick (eating well, doing yoga, walking 15-ish miles/week), and I may get down to a size 12, but it’s unlikely that I’d ever be smaller, because, frankly, I’m built like a brick s*** house. Wide hips, shoulders. So being “thin” is not a productive goal for me.

    Also, what seems to be Wonderboy’s ideal body for a woman is me with I think more or less the same weight but in different places.

    😀 How many times have I wished I could take the fat on my belly and put it on my boobs or, yes, my ass? Ha. But I do think it’s super important to find a partner who appreciates your body. I once broke things off with a guy who hinted that he’d prefer I be smaller. (I do think it’s a bit different in a long-term relationship where it’s well-established that there’s a strong attraction – this was in the early stages and it seemed like an enormous red flag to me, and it turns out I was right.)

    Hot, right?

    Totally! Tumblr has actually been awesome for me – there are a bunch of super-sexy “plus-size” blogs. Make me feel so much better about my own size.

  16. How many times have I wished I could take the fat on my belly and put it on my boobs or, yes, my ass? Ha. But I do think it’s super important to find a partner who appreciates your body.

    Yeah. I hate the fact that I have a tendency for developing a gut rather than a huage ass. It’s changed a bit though after I stopped using the pill and started eating less carbohydrates. Seems to work for me. I will get the gut back, it seems, in only a couple weeks, if I start on wheat again… Like now. But I expect I’ll be rid of it as fast. I believe it to be mostly water.

    About the body type, though. I was even less what Wonderboy wanted when we met. I honestly was quite heavy for my size. But he wanted me anyway. He has encouraged me to excersice, and it has also resulted in ahuge fight, but lately I’ve given in on it, because frankly – I want him to stay in shape as well. Also, I don’t mind the groping and fucking and eyeing and ooing, when I lose weight. 😉

    I once broke things off with a guy who hinted that he’d prefer I be smaller. (I do think it’s a bit different in a long-term relationship where it’s well-established that there’s a strong attraction – this was in the early stages and it seemed like an enormous red flag to me, and it turns out I was right.)

    God, that would be just so wrong to tell that early on. Good of you to get rid of him. Especially with the dynamic we crave, I think we need to be very careful who we give our trust to.

  17. When I was smaller by two sizes, I could only eat a 1000 calories per day. If I ate more, I’d gain weight no matter how much I worked out. Just the way my body is, I suppose. The thing is at a certain point in my life I decided that I’d rather be a little plump (according to some sources) than live on 1000 calories for the rest of my life. A 1000 calories is just about enough to keep my intestines working, not my brain, for example, and possibly not the fertility business either. So, I gained weight, but wasn’t devastated by it, because I knew I was healthy, worked out a lot and ate healthy, home-made food. What more can anyone ask? The cost of being skinny is unbearable to some.

    This is what I meant by saying earlier about the big lady on the bus that “she’s made her decision”. I did too. I chose to lead a healthy life with lots of yammy experiences with food. I can understand, if someone doesn’t want to become an orthorexic work out maniac for looking conventionally good or even just acceptable.

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