Misconceptions about Fat Acceptance

Why oh why is it that some people see the words “Fat Acceptance” and automatically assume that what we’re promoting is sitting on the couch all day, eating baby-flavored donuts and Mickey Dee’s, and very little else?

The most recent post over at Eat a Cheeseburger got me thinking about this again, but it’s come up before.

I’ve read some of our most common trolls talk about us using the words “nuts” “crazy” and “insane.”  You know the ones – the ones that seem to pick one of us at random, blast us with as many troll comments as they possibly can, and then (seemingly) get bored and move on.  Almost like they have some sort of awful rotation they use or something.

They honestly seem to think that’s what we’re all about: gorging ourselves on any and every UNhealthy food available and never – under any circumstances – getting any sort of exercise.

Really?  I mean, come on… REALLY???

These are the same people that went to great lengths to find a blog that I started nearly 5 years ago, find out my children’s and husband’s names, and tried to scare me with comments mentioning something that I know I’ve never blogged about here at The Long & Winding Road.  You would think that if they’re going to go through all that trouble, not to mention time, that they’d be able to find a little more about what we’re really all about.

They’d see that most of us espouse Health At Every Size – healthy eating and exercise for HEALTH’S sake, not weight loss.  They’d see that the vast majority of us are actually quite healthy and active.  I mean REALLY, how many of us blog about keeping ourselves healthy EVEN THOUGH we happen to be fat?  Most of us, if not all of us.

It makes you wonder: just WHO are the crazy ones here?  The ones who say “eat right and exercise and if you still happen to be fat, that’s okay”?  Or the ones who read the words “Fat Acceptance” and automatically get visions of supersized people sitting on a couch in their sweats with a baby-flavored donut in one hand and a Big Mac in the other?

Heh.  Like that question actually requires any thought at all.

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Fat Positive thoughts in the oddest places.

What do YOU see?

What do YOU see?

I just got on the desktop computer* and opened up a webpage, which is set to iGoogle under my username.  I have it set to “random themes” and I get a different one every day.  This is one part of what came up today.

At first, I just looked at the colors and thought “oooh!  I like that one!”  But then I looked at it a little closer.

I do believe that this is just supposed to be some abstract pattern, but when I looked at this one part that I’ve sectioned off for you to see, what do you think my brain saw?

A beautiful fat body, that’s what.

Now what’s so strange about that, you might ask?  Of course I’m going to tell you, that’s the whole point of this post!  🙂

You have to remember that I’m still fairly new to FA.  It hasn’t even been a year yet since I read my first FA post.  The change in me has been fairly slow, in terms of that <year.  However, when you consider the entirety of my life, it’s been fairly quick.  Especially when the changes in me go unnoticed until one day, it jumps up and slaps me in the face.  Like today.

I, like probably most fat people, internalized the fatphobia just as good as the next person.  Oh yeah, I didn’t just hate myself, I hated fat in general.  Of course there were always fat people that I saw and looked at and thought “wow… s/he’s fat AND beautiful” but I have to admit that it was very few and far between.  For the most part, the internalized fatphobia dominated my thinking.

Now I’ll admit that I’ve gone out of my way to try and change that thinking.  Not for anyone else, but for me.  I didn’t want to think that way about anyone, including myself.  But it was only today, when I saw that design on my iGoogle page, that I realized just how far I’ve come.

Never before finding FA would I have been able to actually think the words “beautiful fat body.”  I might not have reacted to a fat body with disdain or contempt, but those three words would have eluded me no matter what I did.  But today, I see that, and I am immediately overcome with an image of a beautiful fat woman, all roundness and curves and sensuality.

The whole thing.

The whole thing.

I realize that you might look at it and see nothing.  Or you might look at it and see a beautiful fat man instead of a woman.

But you know what?  I like the fact that I saw a beautiful fat woman.  I’m glad.  When I realized the change in my thinking, I smiled and got the warm fuzzies inside.

🙂

* – we have 3 computers here at home.  The desktop is commonly referred to as “Daddy’s” computer, the laptop is mine and mine alone, and the other computer is The Little Helper’s.  Lately, though, Daddy’s been spending a lot of time in the bedroom on my laptop, so I’ve been using “his” computer almost exclusively.