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Fat Acceptance 101

I don’t believe I’ve ever actually gone into what fat acceptance entails. For me, I consider fat acceptance to be like any type of acceptance – accept me for who I am. Not in spite of. I deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, as every human being deserves to be treated.

Many other people have discussed fat acceptance in more eloquent terms than me. Here are, what I think, are the three best written discussions about fat acceptance.

Elizabeth over at Spilt Milk describes it as:

“…Rather, we wish to strip away any notion that there is a particular body type that is inherently superior. What Fat Acceptance does is for all people, not just fatties. Fat Acceptance makes all bodies acceptable, honours diversity, and calls for an end to body-shaming.” (Emphasis hers).

Natalie at Definatalie describes it as:

“To begin with, one must understand that human beings have different body shapes, racial backgrounds, medical conditions, and socio-economic circumstances (amongst other things) and fat is not just a result of eating too much or exercising too little.” (Emphasis hers).

And, the original fat acceptance 101 post I read, when I first started learning about the fat acceptance movement from Kate Harding at Shapely Prose:

“9. In any case, shaming teh fatties for being “unhealthy” doesn’t fucking help. If shame made people thin, there wouldn’t be a fat person in this country, trust me. I wish I could remember who said this, ’cause it’s one of my favourite quotes of all time: “You cannot hate people for their own good.” (Emphasis hers).

For the record, I completely agree with these women. I define it in much simpler terms as I am still learning how to express myself and the fact that I identify as fat, and why that isn’t a “bad” word. Whenever people challenge me in person about these beliefs, I tend to splutter or flounder over my words and I feel it makes me look like I don’t know what I’m talking about. On a post like this, I can come up with a metric tonne of links and evidence to back up what I’m saying, but in person, it’s much harder to think of the research and discuss it rationally. It is so emotionally linked for me (as I’m sure it is for others) that I find it very hard to discuss without getting teary or rage-y. And that’s ok. There’s nothing wrong with getting emotional about a topic that is close to your heart. There is nothing wrong with getting frustrated that people aren’t listening to you. I am not a “whine-y, overly emotional female” because I am passionate about a topic.

Hopefully, the next time the issue comes up; I can remember these links and theses posts and am able to utterly decimate a person’s preconceived notions and arguments in a well-informed, but passionate response.

(Image Credits : 1.)

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