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*nod* Indeed.

I don't know if this is going to make sense. I've always been *average* - though I did get VERY big (for my stature) at one point, and am working on losing baby weight now (which is harder than the previous times, because I'm considerably older). I'm a firm believer in *body* acceptance - not just fat. Two of my best friends in the world were the "fat girls"...and I was probably their biggest defender. To me, it was who was inside of them that was beautiful (not to mention, they were and are *stunning* beauties regardless of size)...their hearts were/are what shine to me. Still do. Now, one of them got morbidly obese (and in this, I am referring to the clinical term), and she took serious and active steps to get *healthy* - she's now thinner than I am. The other is approaching that point, and I worry for her health - but could care less about her appearance. Makes sense, I hope, so far...

Okay -- I have a couple of other friends, and these women get scorned 17 ways from Sunday. The one who is hit the hardest by this is about 5'2"...and she cannot, no matter how hard she tries, get to 100 lbs. She's not anorexic - I don't mean that (she has never starved herself), but she is considered clinically *underweight*. She is embarrassed by how she looks ("I can only buy clothing in the juniors section - and if I want something adult-looking, I can NEVER find anything") -- this is an educated woman with 3 kids and a wonderful husband...with whom she would like to go to formal engagements --without looking like a tween pageant contestant. Further, other health concerns exist -- not the ones we "routinely identify" with obesity, like diabetes, joint pain, etc...but problems with her thyroid, kidneys, and reproductive organs. She has been to several doctors, tried several no avail. Yet her "friends" tell her..."What I wouldn't do to have your 'problem'"... More than the health issues, she's embarrassed by how she looks (and she is lovely - looks about 12 or 13 honestly, despite a 10-yr old & 4-yr old twins). She is frequently asked if she's their big sister or babysitter.

I have worked tirelessly to help my friends (in both categories) to throw the "societal expectations" playbook out the nearest plate-glass window, and focus SOLELY on health. It's been an exercise in frustration at times. When our hyper-sexed media focuses on impossible proportions as a definition of "perfect"...and both men and women buy into it (with men less worried about their own size than women, but not without concerns either)...we create a backlash for *all* people. Size acceptance is important...fat OR skinny.

Thank you for posting a thought-provoking entry.


I LOVE your "before-and-after" Simpsons avatars.

You continue to be an inspiration to me as I go steaming out into the open waters of real weight loss by choice. I think of your story pretty much every day.

Thank you.

Sunshine Love

Like you, I was pretty okay with my size until I couldn't walk down the stairs in my house without holding all my weight on the rails with my arms because my knees and ankles hurt so bad.

Speaking of, it took me over two years to heal a sprained ankle back then, and it still gives me problems. I like being able to move and do stuff now.

Technically, I'm probably still fat, as my BMI is right at the borderline between overweight and obese. But I look and feel pretty good. I could be lighter, and I will, because I want to have a stronger, more functional body. I can do more now, and I love it.


This is a fantastic article. Congratulations on achieving your weight loss! It's a difficult road, and it takes all kinds of will power to succeed at it.

For a long time, I've had difficulty with FA that I haven't been able to put my finger on it. I've been trying to write an article about it for a month now, but every time, it just didn't came out right.

This article says everything I was trying to say, and much more. Shame on those that are slamming your decisions. It is hypocritical and frankly discouraging to those of us that would like to champion FA as a part of a greater Human Acceptance Movement.

Bravo. I'll be passing this on.


What Jessica said. I've run into the FA movement before, and liked some parts, but been completely turned off by other parts of the message. You articulated both sides perfectly. I think body acceptance is a lovely concept and can help a lot of people. Thanks for this very insightful post!

Kelly W.

"As long as they're making it with their eyes open -- as long as they understand the costs and risks of fatness, and decide that they're willing to accept them -- then I support them."

Maybe I'm just having a bad morning, but that sure does rub me the wrong way. Your body is your business. My body is my business. I do not need anyone's approval or disapproval to be fat. That's where the judgements creep in--I don't understand placing conditions on the acceptance of a person's size. What I don't understand is why anyone should care why I'm fat and that I am fat. So what?


Congrats for your courage (on multiple fronts!)

I have had a very similar experience. Ever since childhood I was the chubby child. I also had chronic knee & joint problems. It continued into college when I stopped focusing on the negatives of my body and just started moving it. Started eating unprocessed foods rather than diet foods. For me, change in mindset and the added self-love paid off and slowly over the next 15 years my BMI dropped. Today I'm 3-4 clothing sizes smaller. My knee problems went away (which was a huge incentive to keep at it!).

Since that time I've had women tell me that I can't participate in a "body acceptance" support group because it was only for FA individuals and I didn't fit the description, and I have had women make negative, self-abasing body image comments in front of me, assuming that I know nothing of what they talk about because today I look athletic.

Thank you for speaking out about how overweight can (not always!)lead to health complications, that "thin" people can belong to the FA movement, and that no one ever, ever should be judged for their personal choices of what's best for their bodies.

Greta Christina
Maybe I'm just having a bad morning, but that sure does rub me the wrong way. Your body is your business. My body is my business. I do not need anyone's approval or disapproval to be fat. That's where the judgements creep in--I don't understand placing conditions on the acceptance of a person's size. What I don't understand is why anyone should care why I'm fat and that I am fat. So what?

Kelly W.: That's a valid question, and I'm going to do my best to answer it.

Ultimately, of course, you're right. The "why" of other people's weight isn't any of my business, any more than the "what." But with people I care about -- primarily family and friends, but to some extent everybody, since to some degree I care about everybody -- I do care somewhat about what's motivating fat people to not lose weight. Here's why.

From my own experience, I know that, when I make decisions based on rationalization, denialism, willful ignorance, etc., I usually wind up being pretty unhappy about it. I feel stupid, I don't feel very good about myself, I'm filled with regrets -- and I have a hard time shaking all that off and moving on. And, because of the self- perpetuating nature of rationalization, I often get even more mired in my rationalizations, and find it hard to admit that I was mistaken and need to change my mind.

On the other hand, when I make decisions based on good evidence, clear thinking, and a reasonable evaluation of the pros and cons, I'm usually at peace with those decisions -- even if they turn out badly. I find it easier to accept the consequences of my decisions, and to live with them with some sort of peace. And I find it easier to change my mind again, if circumstances demand it.

And from I've seen of the world, this is often true for other people as well.

So that's why I care about whether fat people who decide not to try to lose weight are making that decision with their eyes open, with a clear understanding of the pros and cons of being fat versus losing weight, and a willingness to accept the consequences of their decision. I care because I think making decisions out of denialism causes suffering -- and I care about suffering. Ultimately, of course, it's none of my business -- but if I see suffering, and I think I can say or do something that might alleviate it, I'm going to.

Teer Wayde

Thank you so much for opening up about this, its nice to know I'm not the only one who has been attacked about loosing weight.

I use to be a lot heavier and lost weight for surgery, then i've dropped more for the health of my spine and knees. Whenever people see my modeling shots they either say I look great or I'm not fat enough.

If I was any bigger I'd be in a wheelchair so I have the right do do whatever I can to make my body feel good.

I'm sick of being told I'm not plus size also as I'm a size 12US. I'm curvy, real sized and proud and people have no right to judge me.


I lost 40 pounds and it's debatable whether I look "better" in the usual sense or not--my bosom went AWOL and I've always had a long face, which looks like a really long face now that it has less padding--but I feel better. I don't feel better physically since I didn't feel bad before, but I'm happy that I'm no longer abusing myself with bad eating habits; I'm modestly proud of being able to run five miles instead of 50 feet; I've started lifting small weights and I think my little starter biceps are cute. I'm not a better person, but I'm in a better state of mind.

I have an ex-boyfriend who was once about 350 out-of-shape pounds. I didn't know him then, but I've seen pictures. He looked awful. Not unattractive, but seeing somebody whom I liked (and still like as a friend) so well in such a dire state of health almost made me cry (and I am not a cryer in general). Thinking that he looked "better" at 180 had nothing to do with him being "hot"--it had to do with me not having to worry about him so much.


I'm totally late to the party, but this is a great article. I've never been an an activist in the sense, but as an overweight girl these are issues important to me.

I think you have pointed out two important things
-what bother me about some of the FA movement
-but that a positive attitude towards fat people is still something we should strive for.

I think you pointed out what bothers me about some FA: denial of health issues. My mother got diabetes a few years back, and I myself, much like you, have a damaged knee that is now paying the cost of my weight - more than 10 years after my teenage self fell a few feel down a few feet, damaged her kneecap on a rock but thought she was young and strong enough not to be bothered down it...

I know now that the weight IS making it worse and the last two years my blood pressure has been on the rise. I am now, again -with moderate success- losing weight again.

On the other hand, I know full well the discrimination because of it and I am almost certain it is the reason I was turned down for one job in particular - possibly several.

When having a snack in public, I have actually been commented on by passers by - One particularly rude man said that "I was never going to get thin that way". People can be absolute asshole about it.

So in short: I think we should be honest about the risks of obesity and promote a healthy lifestyle - but that should not be an excuse foe fat-shaming and generally horrible behaviour towards overweight people. In the end, it is our own body. And nobody ever got thin by being made miserable - on the contrary.

Account Deleted

hello dear i don't agry with you because i thing this si totaly depend on us thats all dear thanx for this

Gastric Bypass Man

I just sent this post to a bunch of my friends as I agree with most of what you’re saying here and the way you’ve presented it is awesome.

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Allen Carlos

Nobody ever got slim by being created unpleasant - on the opposite.

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