Why Size Acceptance Won’t Succeed (For now)

Most of you know that I belong to several size acceptance groups on Facebook and other social media, and support other bloggers in the cause, by linking to their sites and occasionally reposting one of their many extraordinary blogs on my page.  Supporting others in this cause can give one a sense of community.

But is there a true size acceptance community to speak of?

I think generally yes, but with an explanation.  I believe that most of the bloggers and the true size activists serve to support each other in our efforts, and as best I can tell, put aside most personal differences for the greater cause.  With that said, there is another part of the “community” that I feel do more to hinder size acceptance than to help.

Case in point.  Allow me to introduce you to a guy named Big Jack (name changed just to keep the dirt mongers wondering who I’m talking about).  Jack is a “PROUD” FA (not fat activist, he’s a fat admirer).  He’s married to a fat woman, and waxes poetically about her beauty, and the greatness of all fat women.  According to Jack however, he’s a realist and evidently “struggles” with his attraction vs. the notion that fat = unhealthy.  From a recent post of his in a BBW forum:

Coming home from work today I stopped for groceries at the market. As I walked by the handicapped parking I noticed a family loading up their van. The family consisted of mom, dad, and two young adult daughters.  I estimated Mom and dad to be about 50 and were both a little on the chubby side. The daughters were both obese (large enough to have earned the handicapped designation for their vehicle). The smaller one  was at least 450 pounds, the larger about 600.  They were obviously suffering in the 100 plus degree heat. In an effort of fat sibling cooperation the smaller sister helped push the larger into the van. Then the larger sister then helped pull her smaller sister in.

It occurred to me that these two girls were totally dependent upon their aging parents. Once their parents can no longer provide care and transportation these women are going to be in a very difficult situation. I know that this is a size positive site but I’m not seeing anything positive about the situation these young women are in.

I think there’s a dichotomy in the social part of the fat community……you know, the part that calls themselves the BBW/FA community.  It’s a different mindset than those who are active in true size acceptance.  Remember that I came to size acceptance through the BBW/FA community, but through the various relationships I’d had in my time there, I developed an understanding for what fat people have to endure on a daily basis, and decided to crusade on their behalf.

Those that remain in the more social (and sexually charged) BBW/FA community really don’t give a shit about size acceptance, or if they do, it’s quite superficial, almost dishonest.  For me, they guys who are motivated by the attraction deep down likely feel the way this guy does in his post.  While he’s attracted to fat women, and the idea of women getting even fatter for their fantasies, the “reality” told to them by the rest of the world is that fat people are doomed because their fat, and they struggle with these two mutually exclusive ideas:

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Yet, many of these people vocally proclaim that they support Fat Acceptance.  Not a great representative of the cause, are they?  Just as important, they date others in the BBW/FA community, and many break up (or relationships never take off) because of the above, and psychologically harm the other person, which can cause them to buy into the same mutually exclusive ideas.  I have a friend on Facebook who’s said in the past (and she’s no longer very active in the BBW/FA community) that she felt better about herself BEFORE she came to that community.  Go figure.

And that’s the point of the blog today, although I could go on and on about the comments made in response to his original post, which were filled with personal attacks on others who attempted to discuss the actual merits (or lack of) the guy’s post.  That’s a whole other blog that I really don’t want to discuss in this blog, except to say that some people in the BBW/FA community seem more intent on promoting themselves online, which causes these kinds of flareups.  The real point of the blog is that we really need to make a distinction between those who walk the walk (and work towards size acceptance) and those who talk the talk, but don’t really believe what they’re saying.

We also need to let others outside our community know the difference.  I don’t know about you, but I sure as hell don’t want one of those people speaking for me, especially if they don’t feel the way they should about what size acceptance should be.  If you’re truly behind size acceptance, work at it, read and learn and talk with others who share your mindset.

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NOTE-Before work today, someone sent me a link to a video that moved me tremendously.  Some of you are well aware of the work of Dr. Peter Attia, but until this morning, I wasn’t.  To listen to a man from the medical community who ADMITTED to his own prejudicial notions about obesity, now speak about how his own personal health situation had become compromised and changed his way of thinking about the obese almost made me cry.  Most of you know that I’ve been diagnosed with a pre diabetic condition, and working hard towards improving my own personal health, much like Dr. Attia.  I’m walking several miles a day, doing calesthenics, and altering my dietary habits.  While weight loss (14.5 lbs) was a side effect for me, it wasn’t a goal (though my personal physician doesn’t share my feelings, after all….he’s from the traditional medical community), the thought of getting back to where I was before my bilateral pulmonary embolism seems more reachable now than ever.  Maybe I’ll show my own doctor this video, but for now I will share it with you…..

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2 thoughts on “Why Size Acceptance Won’t Succeed (For now)

  1. I’m not exactly certain that you’re not falling into the same trap by fingering those who, in Lenin’s words, wish to go back to the swamp, are the reason fat-positivity won’t succeed. Revolutionaries always speak of long struggles for a reason after all. Did anyone engage “Big Jack” in ways which both speak to his concern for these girls’ well-being but also make clear that it is one-dimensional and giving them and their parents short-shrift to make it all about one single aspect of their life experience? We want everyone to be as healthy and joyful in life as possible. The weeds are in, again to quote the Bolshevik, what is to be done? Those parents probably live a life of feeling to blame for the body shape of their daughters. Shame, guilt, embarrassment: these are now quite well documented to be correlates of almost every single health issue classified as “obesity-related”, and thus I think one step of, forgive me but I must do it again, “party discipline” is to make it clear to someone agonizing over this apparent contradiction of “love/lust vs health” of where the actual contradiction is: a social infection which badgers the highly adipose for sedentary ways of life, after making them feel under eternal threat out of doors!

    1. While I’d love to give an equally well crafted answer to your response, I will make a few quick points.
      First, the title isn’t defeatist. It says “Why Size Acceptance Won’t Succeed (For Now). I didn’t say we should give it up.
      Second, I wouldn’t be fighting the fight if I felt it was a waste of time. I’m passionate, but not insane.
      Finally, all struggles take time, and within every political, religious, and social group there are people who deviate from that the goals of each of those groups are. I do believe they delay the inevitable, provided the majority of the group is united in mission, but the deviants can make the road towards that quite bumpy.
      Thanks for reading, and your response.

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