Fat Shaming

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Now, I don’t like to bring negativity to my blog. I’m always trying to stay positive and keep fighting the fight to take back the word FAT; but I need to address something today.

I recently shared a Daily Mail article on my Facebook page, about how women are fat-shamed three times a day – a sad reality.

The outpouring of comments that I received truly touched me, because so many of you have dealt with being humiliated based on your sizes, just as I have in the past.

I was tormented by my peers in grade school. I endured teasing, name calling, cow noises… You name it. And when I look back, the saddest part of it all was the brave face I had to show till I got home and could cry into my pillow.

I thought the bullying of my school days was behind me, until coincidentally, last night I was publicly, and directly FAT SHAMED, while enjoying one of my favourite unhealthy treats, poutine; and for those of you who aren’t familiar, it’s a sinful Quebec specialty, consisting of French fries smothered in gravy, and curd cheese – definitely not waistline friendly, but it’s my weakness. That and an ice cold Coke.

I posted about it on Facebook almost as soon as it happened, because I was just so taken aback by it that I felt an overwhelming need to share it with all of you.

As many of you know, I recently shared an article on fat shaming, and your wonderful, and heartbreaking comments blew me away and really touched my heart. I haven’t been TRULY made fun of in many years, and just tonight, while eating out (poutine of all things) a drunk jerk made waddling and fat belly gestures at me and yelled out “oh yeah, eat that poutine” (in French). I thought I would have been less humiliated than I was, in all honesty, and while I’m not upset, I was really embarrassed, and felt like finishing my food in my car. I didn’t, but the fact that I thought about going to hide to finish my meal makes me realize I still have a lot of work to do.

Just thought I would share…

It felt like elementary school all over again. That feeling of being mortified doesn’t change. Same anxious ball of stress in the pit of my stomach, same feeling of fighting back tears, same anger. I had forgotten what it felt like to be coldly, and deliberately humiliated. I’ve been embarrassed in other life situations, due to my size, the mortifying airplane seatbelt check, for one; and people have made comments or assumptions that have bothered me. “You really shouldn’t eat that”, or servers in restaurants asking me if I want Diet, when I odered a Coke – like, would you ask a skinny person that if she ordered it? Maybe, but when you ask me, I can feel your judgement as I say “no, a regular Coke, please”. Is it so unbelievable that I would want to treat myself to something that I love?

Now, I know that the server could have just been checking, to make sure she got my order right. And yes, it’s possible that it had nothing to do with my weight; but here’s the problem – fat shaming has now become so ingrained in people’s minds, that they do it unknowingly, without even realizing that they’ve been programmed to see us as weak, undisciplined, incompetent, and unworthy.

Big words, I know. And I’m sure my server had no idea how she was making me feel, and probably never thought of herself as someone who humiliated fat people, because society as a whole had told her that viewing me that way was normal.

The @#$hole last night, was doing it on purpose, his buddies snickering along with him, and I’m ashamed to admit it, but all I could do was look down and pretend I didn’t hear them.

Like is said, I still WE STILL have a lot of work to do, because through years of humiliation, we’ve learned to just accept being laughed at; and I know we’ve probably all been the victims of our own imaginations before, but the double takes in the street for eating an ice cream cone, or when you can’t fit in the booth at a restaurant and the other patrons can’t help but steal a second glance at the fat girl trying to squeeze in, the walk of shame to a different table as people whisper amongst themselves, they’re real. That @#$hole in the street – he was real.

But we’re real too; and we deserve to be treated just like everybody else.

Although I’m disappointed in myself for not speaking up last night, I know that I’ve come a long way. The journey continues, and I’m so thankful to have all of you, my amazing followers, alongside me for the ride!

Who wears short shorts?

Who wears short shorts?

I wear short shorts! I DO!!!

Before buying these adorable printed shorts from Forever 21+, I hadn’t worn a pair since gym class in my early teens. I had long believed, been told, and heard said that they were reserved for thin legged, gap-thighed ladies with no cellulite – that a girl like me had no business subjecting anyone to such a sight. But lately I’ve been feeling inspired. I’ve been seeing more and more voluptuous, curvy, plus size ladies breaking through society’s beauty barriers and rocking short shorts confidently, and I just had to try and get in on some of the action!

I have to say, it was not the easiest task… When you’re fat, your thighs tend to rub together while you walk and things can get a bit tricky. Wearing my shorts wasn’t as simple as I would have liked, but I found, once I stopped trying to pull them down constantly and gave into their short short length, the bunching at the crotch stopped being an issue. To my absolute joy (and moderate disbelief) I was actually able to wear them without looking like I had a banana in my pocket!!! (Or was I just happy to see you?)

But in case, due to body type or style, your shorts refuse to cooperate, there exists, a product called NoRiders, which I am now dying to try! The product consists of iron on and sew in strips for your inseam, which are apparently very effective at preventing shorts from riding up at the crotch. I will definitely be letting you know how they work out once I’ve gotten my hands on some!

Anyway, all fat girl, thigh rubbing, crotch riding (sounds like some new painful Olympic demo sport) aside, I felt amazing in my new shorts!  I paired them with this great boohoo.com black, oversized t-shirt dress, (seen in cream color and styled differently in my older post “Winter Is Coming, And Coming…  And Coming“) belted at the waist, and accessories like this beautiful statement ring from Forever 21, my favorite black turban from BABOOSHKA, and these amazing, inexpensive black and gold sandals from Walmart, to create the perfect boho-chic, summer look that works for anything from a day at the park chasing after the kiddies to a sun-filled afternoon on the lido deck with your glorious, dimpled upper thighs proudly on display, letting everyone know that you have the right to be cool and comfortable in the heat too!!!

The Right To Bare Arms

The Right To Bare Arms

I have struggled with accepting my body my entire life. I’ve learned to accept my tummy, made peace with my love handles, and I’ve even grown to adore my big, round hips; but the one aspect of myself that I still have difficulty trying to come to terms with, are my arms.

I don’t remember the last time I wore something sleeveless without a cardigan, jacket, bolero or shawl. I think I was already self-conscious about my upper arms by the end of elementary school. In fact, I still can’t shake the feeling that they are in some way hideous, an embarrassment… Disgusting. I hate to feel this way though, because I deserve to show my arms just like anyone else – without shame, or the fear that someone might laugh or be offended.  So, I am making it my mission to get over my lingering insecurity and allow myself the right to bear my bare arms for the whole world to see.

So, here they are in all their chubby, bat-winged glory!!! And, to show them off in style, I’ve chosen this beautiful, turquoise colored, scuba knit dress from Forever 21+. The fabric is dense, yet lightweight and luxurious feeling, and the color is simply divine. I’ve paired it with a gorgeous chain fringe necklace from Addition Elle, whimsical knuckle ring from Forever 21 and simple, white patent, cork wedges by Marc Fisher, for an chic, sophisticated look.

I cannot yet, in all honesty, claim that I feel 100% at ease with my bare arms, but this is definitely a starting point.  And, who knows? Maybe one day I’ll learn to love my arm wattle as much as I love my hips!

Harem Pants

Harem Pants

I don’t know about you, and I know everyone is shaped differently; but depending on what I wear, I have, what I like to call “bumtum”. Bumtum, you ask?

Definition of Bumtum: noun \?b?m?t?m\
When your tummy takes on the appearance of a bum when wearing clothes (usually pants) with a seam up the front, thus giving the impression that you not only have butt in the back, but one in the front, too.

So, now that that’s cleared up, lets talk about harem pants. They are everywhere, and have been trending for a while now.  But I’ve been hesitating, and if you’re anything like me, you’ll understand, they can be a bit tricky, because not only are they high-waisted, they also have saggy fronts which can only accentuate your bumtum!  That being said, don’t give up hope!!!  With a little help from shapewear (which I briefly discussed my love/hate relationship with, in my recent post, “Fat Girl Problems“) and the right top or belt, it is possible to make them work!

When I saw these leopard print harem pants from Forever21+ I knew they would be a challenge, but I just wanted to try so badly!!!  I quickly realized that they would be more difficult to wear than I had thought…  My Spanx alone just weren’t cutting it.  I had to break out the big guns and wear my faux leather peplum belt from Addition Elle, which I had nabbed about a year ago, but never really found the right way to wear.  I had tried a couple of looks with it, but they just always looked off, somehow.  Anyway, I figured it was worth a shot, so I went for it, and I think it was exactly what these pants needed!  Since they have a very bold cut and pattern, and the belt is also quite a statement on it’s own, I went with a very simple black top, and black & gold flats to draw some of the attention away from my mostly disguised bumtum.  I can’t say that I was able to hide it completely, but I definitely felt confident with the end result; and, who am I trying to fool, anyhow?  It’s not like having a flatter tummy would trick anyone into thinking I’m skinny!  Haha!

So my advice to you is, if you are a fellow bumtum sufferer, and are looking to try and get in on the harem pant trend:  Always wear shapewear underneath, and try to find a great peplum belt, like this one, or a cute peplum top, which you can belt or wear on its own.  The reality is, with just about every look, even if you think it won’t flatter your body, it never hurts to try, because you may actually be surprised with what you can do to make it work for you!