Category Archives: dating

waking up skinny

possible trigger re weight loss talk

Remember when you were younger and would go to bed and think, “what if I woke up skinny? Like, what if magic actually exists and I wake up tomorrow morning looking exactly how I wanted to look??” Anyone? No? Was that just me? I remember thinking just how amazing that would be. Well, that question has started to pop back into my head lately and my answer increasingly is, “holy shit that would be amazing.”

As in, sometimes I wish I could magically wake up tomorrow and look like a different person. It just seems like things would be easier.

I’ll just let that sink in for a bit.

What I wouldn’t give to not think that. I feel such shame for thinking that. I HATE that I think that. I don’t even like typing it here. It makes me feel ashamed, feel like a failure, feel like I’ll never get to where I want to be regarding my body image. And shouldn’t I be much further along in this journey, as I started writing publicly about it over two years ago? I know, I know. I answered my own question…this is a journey and some days are better than others.

I have no deep thoughts here, only a renewed promise to post here more often, and that means posting some dark shit sometimes. Folks who know me would likely agree with me when I say that I don’t like it to appear as though I don’t have my life together. I’m much better at being a public mess than I used to be (yay public messes!), but my default is certainly to clam up and be all “lalala, no no, everything is delightful! puppies and rainbows!”

So yes, I’m owning it. Owning the fact that I want to live in a magical world where you could just shut your eyes, open them, and see a thinner person staring back at you. Intellectually I get where this is coming from. I do. I think that if I was skinnier, I would have loads of dates, I would have awesomer clothes, I would I would I would. And clearly there is no use wishing for THAT world, when I live in, you know, the ACTUAL world. But if there’s one thing I learned through this process of fat acceptance (I’m actually starting to not use that phrase as much anymore, but that’s for another post), it’s that trying to suppress the thoughts you wish you weren’t having doesn’t do any good. In fact, it often does more harm than good, so go on, let that shit out! *aaand scene

Update: fabulous reminder from commenter G about the amazing “Fantasy of Being Thin” by Kate Harding. It was one of the first FA blog posts I read, back in 2007. I’m gonna go read it again right now.

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wisdom for the ages

Every so often, i check out the ways people find me here using various search engines (yay site stats!). some of them crack me up. some of them make me sad. some of them i just don’t understand. so i thought i’d respond to a few of them and if ya’ll have any additional advice, throw ’em in the comments!

common searches that lead folks to my blog:

1. “I was set up with a fat girl” or “why do my friends fix me up with fat women” or “why do I always get set up with fat girls” or some variation on that theme.

I’m assuming this person isn’t comfortable with the fact that s/he has been set up with fat women. Perhaps not, perhaps s/he’s looking for intel on how to date the species…”what do fat people talk about?” “do fat people kiss like regular people?” “will i be able to eat any of the food we get at dinner, or will she hog it all?” You know, the important questions. To the person who gets set up with fat women, I say this…fat women, on the whole, are very much like non-fat women! it’s amazing how that works! there are nice fat women, and mean fat women. fat women who are great kissers and fat women who suck at kissing. fat people talk about all sorts of things! trains, the weather, politics, clothes, religion, food, movies, and more. trust me, if you date this fat woman like you would date any other woman, i think you’ll be ok.

And to the people asking these questions because they’re pissed that their friends set them up with fat women? piss off. get over yourself, your ego, and your desire to make sure you date “appropriate” women. you may even, gasp, have a delightful date with a fatty!

2. “met online i’m fat” or “dating while fat” or “how to make friends while fat” or “best friend isn’t attracted to me overweight.”

Yeah, I feel you. I’ve been there. shit, sometimes i AM there. sometimes it just sucks to be fat. there really isn’t any other more direct way to say it. Here’s the thing: dating is just generally awful for a lot of people, regardless of your weight. It can be awkward, it can be forced. And even if you put a legit picture of yourself (read: full body or one where it’s very clear that you’re fat) on your online dating profile, there are heart palpitations and sweaty palms when you think about him/her seeing you in person and running from the table screaming. Because even with online dating, a lot of us want to say the “right” thing. “Absolutely, I would date someone ‘overweight.’ Look at me, I’m so open-minded.” But then, when an actual fat person is right in front of them, they think “oh, wait. i thought you meant ‘fat’ like jennifer lopez. like, curvy, big ass. nevermind.” Sometimes the thought of meeting new potential partners freaks me the fuck out, I’ll just say it. But you know? It wasn’t until i finally said to myself, “um, this just isn’t worth it. who CARES if someone doesn’t like me because I’m fat? I may not like them because they’re mean! or dumb! or conservative!” that I began to really relax. The beauty of it is…when you take your power and agency BACK from other people, they can’t hurt you. You don’t LET others make you feel badly because you are perfectly happy with who you are. jesus, that is SUCH a self-help book thing to say, isn’t it? but it’s true!

As to the “how to make friends while fat” piece, I can only say that much of my advice is the same. focus on yourself, find things you love about YOU. also? there is this totally awesome FA community just waiting for you, so start poking around the interwebs!

3. “i have really fat friends, will i get fat.”

yes, probably. watch out, that shit is contagious.

This was fun! I’ve saved some for next time, stay tuned!

do friends set fat friends up?

I’ve been thinking about this question a lot lately.

I was at a wedding a while back and the bride put me at a table with this rather cute single guy, but told me when she and I were going through the table listings (I was getting the low down on all of her friends, all of her fiance’s friends, the family drama, and such) that she was hoping to set him up with one of her friends from college, despite the fact that she knows I am single and “looking,” whatever that means. so, yeah. she mentioned it, we moved on, and ordered another round of drinks.

then, the wedding. it was so lovely and i had a great time. chatted with this dude for a while, danced my ass off, ate good food, and just generally rocked it. my necklace received a lot of compliments. as well it should, it’s a fantastic necklace.

A couple of days ago the same friend wanted to set that same dude up with another person we both know (good christ, I sound like I’m in middle school). so anyway, this nagging feeling has been hanging around me for a while and i’ve figured out where it’s coming from. i’ve had this happen before – my best friends set up another friend of mine with this single guy they knew. turns out it was just about the most delightful and perfect match ever, as they are gloriously happy and i love to see their partnership and love for each other. the fact that i wasn’t set up with him isn’t the point. and the fact that the bride tried to set up her single friend with two other people isn’t technically the point either. the point is that it makes me feel invisible. in a very stark and raw and and hit-me-over-the-head kind of way. I have never been set up with someone through a friend. I actually asked those friends (the non-bride friends) why they never set me up with anyone in all the years that I had known them, and the short answer I got back was that no one was “good enough” for me. Which of course is coming from a place of total love and adoration, but it certainly doesn’t allow me to decide who is and isn’t “good enough.” I hear time and time again from my friends how awesome i am, how much i make them laugh, how caring i am, how great blah blah (i know, rough life that i’m just FORCED to listen to people tell me all the things they love about me, bear with me).

I’m not sure, however, that my friends see me as a partner/lover/girlfriend to anyone they know.

And it’s not their fault. We live in a world where the fat girl isn’t seen as a suitable partner/lover/girlfriend most of the time. Shit, sometimes I don’t see myself that way.

Before I go further, I feel I should state unequivocally what this post is NOT saying:
1. I am not saying that any of this is done with intention.
2. I am not saying my friends are responsible for finding me a man.

What am I wondering is…do people set their fat friends up with other people? I realize this is an incredibly general statement, and that there are individual experiences that vary a great deal from mine. So, I’d love to hear them! Is this your experience as well? And if you aren’t single, how did you meet your person? Maybe people just don’t set people up anymore, skinny, fat, or otherwise? maybe that is an antiquated way of doing things and I just don’t have a barometer for these kinds of things? Totally possible. School me!

A compliment is never just a compliment

I was given a compliment the other day. By a guy. he said I look great. I said thank you, was flattered, and moved on. Since then, however, I’ve been thinking two things. one, my first thought when he told me that wasn’t “oh he’s just trying to make me feel better, he’s just lying, he feels badly for me” or something along those lines. that’s huge. as in, HUGE. The second thought, however, and the one that’s really been burrowing in my brain for a while, is that that compliment may have been the first one about my appearance from  a guy since high school. High school was 12 years ago. This breaks my heart. All at once I feel immense pity for myself and anger at myself for needing/wanting the external validation.

I want to wallow in the pity for a moment. Think about this for me – in 12 years I haven’t received a single compliment about my appearance from a male person (I’m excluding married/partnered friends who may say “your hair is gorgeous” so maybe I should clarify – I haven’t received a single compliment about my body from a male person who is single and who I may or may not be into). On top of this silence from my male counterparts I have society telling me in subtle (and not so subtle) ways every. single. day. that I am not the ideal body type – from advertisements to small seats on the bus to tight booths in restaurants to seatbelts that won’t fit to jokes about fatties (not to me directly, but that’s another post) and on and on and on and on. Jesus fucking christ, it’s no wonder I feel shame about the way I look.

I am jealous of my friends with partners. At the heart of it is the fact that their physical appearance is validated by their partners on an almost daily basis (I realize relationships don’t consist of two people staring lovingly into each others eyes for 5 hours a day, whispering sweet nothings to each other while caressing each other’s faces, but still). It seems to me that it just must be easier to deal with the harsh realities of the world when you know that your partner adores and supports you. The bad place I go in my head is when I start to tell myself that I should adore and support myself and that if I don’t do either of those, how can I expect anyone else to. While sure, there is some truth to this, it is incredibly dangerous, for it discounts the incredibly powerful nature of external validation. External validation is not a bad thing. We are human and we want to be desired. On “good” days, I adore and support myself. On “bad” days, it just sucks.

I don’t have any more deep thoughts on this at the moment; I just wanted to recognize in a semi-public way that body acceptance and body image work is the hardest shit I have ever done (and likely is for others as well) and it takes incredible strength to live in this world that’s telling you that you are not attractive.

dating while fat

I started online dating several months ago. It took me quite some time to even get to a place where I felt comfortable saying that I was thinking about online dating. Intellectually I get that tons of people find their partners online (I can think of 5 couples off the top of my head who have met online and have what appears to be a great relationship). I completely get that we live in a world where meeting people online is par for the course. Yet when I throw myself into the equation? I immediately go to this dark place where I just know that people are thinking I’m doing online dating only because I can’t snag me a man the real way (whatever that way is).

My ideal self can say with a straight face “I am fat and don’t have a problem with it, so if you do, please don’t apply to be my boyfriend. I am active, play racquetball, go on the occasional bike ride, and cook and eat healthfully. I’m also fat. And sometimes I sit on the couch and watch tv while eating dinner. Like a normal person, not because I’m fat.” This is true – about ¼ of the time. For some reason I think I need to be this “with it” every day of my life. Because otherwise…what…a guy will need to be able to look past all of the laziness and the fat and the wavering self-esteem and the eating on the couch? He’ll see that and flee the fuck away as fast as he can? What I really want is to be able to come off (and actually BE) as confident as I see other women in the fatosphere (wonderful, gorgeous, inspiring examples here). That’s my goal. Or at least to recognize that the whole thing is a process and some days I may feel like I am completely unworthy of love and that that’s ok – focusing on how I feel (and honoring each of those feelings) in this equation is what matters most right now.

I had a great experience with online dating before I left Seattle for the bay area. I had been emailing/texting/IMing (jesus, I sound like a tween) with this guy who seemed very delightful. Our communication was super flirty, witty, and snappy. I was loving it. We met up and…meh. We talked non-stop, but he was very much in love with his own stories and advice so I barely got a word in. My old self would have assumed that once he saw me and my hideous fatness, he decided I wasn’t worth trying to charm anymore. And while some of that language snuck in to my head, I walked away from the evening with a much more powerful thought – I didn’t really like him. Wait a minute! Dating and meeting people isn’t just about charming HIM and doing everything in my power to make sure that I can create enough of a distraction from my fat with my wit and charm. I get to choose. And he was kind of an asshole. Tada! Thank you therapy.

So now I live in a new city and want to meet people, yet I’m feeling the same thoughts come creeping back…no one will want to date me once they see what I look like, I need to lose weight before I throw myself into this oh so lovely world of dating, etc. I’m choosing to take it easy on myself and know that these thoughts, while not helpful, are natural and should not be beaten down with a stick. I’m choosing instead to take this time to get settled in, find some routines, find a damn APARTMENT, and all of those other things that help one feel at home. Dating will come, and it’ll be good and bad and awful and wonderful and exciting and boring.