Swiped from awesome tumblr lady: everysmilealie (who is freaking awesome)

I originally posted this as a response to her post sharing the same title, but I wanted it to be easily findable on my own blog so I’m posting it stand-alone as well.

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I think my biggest peeve about anti-fat-acceptance folk is this right here.  Because that’s what people assume when you tell them you fight for fat-acceptance.  They think you are handing out cards with oreos attached that say “eat what you want, be as unhealthy as you want, don’t move, just sit and be a complete leech”

      And the truth is, if that’s what someone wants to do then so what?

      But the point is, that’s NOT what anyone is advocating.  If you look carefully at fat acceptance  what you’ll see is either very little about health, or LOTS about health that contravenes what we’ve been bullied into believing in the first place like… “fat equals unhealthy.”   Fat acceptance is about realizing that you have no idea what someone’s story is just by looking at them.  You have no idea what someone’s level of health is just by looking at them.  You have no idea what someone’s diet is just by looking at them.

     FAT does not automatically equal unhealthy.  It just doesn’t, the science isn’t there. The drug companies, the magazines, the news programs, society in general would like you to BELIEVE that… because they make more money if you live in fear of being fat.  But it’s just. not. true.  And it’s certainly not universal.

    Fat acceptance is about teaching people to love the body they’re in.  Right now.  Not 5 pounds from now, not 10 pounds from now, not 100 pounds from now.  Not in a size 2, or 6, or 0 for that matter.  But Right. Now.  And I think a lot of what gets missed is that (at least for me) I want ALL people to be happy and have good mental/emotional health in whatever state they’re in.  If you are a size 0 BE GLAD.  Be happy with the shape and size of your body… after all, it shuttles you around well enough doesn’t it?  It grows and responds and reacts and runs and jumps and walks and works.  If you’re 300 pounds BE GLAD.  Be happy with the shape and size of your body… after all, it shuttles you around well enough doesn’t it?  It grows and responds and reacts and runs and jumps and walks and works. 

     The thing people don’t see about fat-acceptance (because they get all caught up on the FAT part of things) is that it IS about health.  It’s about Health at EVERY size.  It’s about living a life that brings you health and happiness.  It’s about accepting that a life of health and happiness isn’t limited to a size 8.   It’s about accepting that a life of health and happiness isn’t limited to an “average” BMI.  It’s about accepting that a life of health and happiness doesn’t necessarily have ANYTHING to do with the numbers on your scale.

    FEED your body.  Eat food that is good and good for you when you can afford it.  Move.  Dance, run, walk, wiggle, jump for joy, play an adventure game on your wii, take up yoga (even if you’re bigger than the rest of the class all combined!), stretch, lift weights, cycle.  Just EXIST and ENJOY your life.  It’s the only one you get.

    And if you are not part of the fat acceptance movement, or you just don’t understand it… ASK.  Read, research, there are so many resources now to find information about health and size and weight.  Resources that will blow your mind about the paradigm that we currently “follow” as the formula for right and wrong about your bodies and their size and shape. 

     The thing to keep in mind, (and this is something I struggled with a lot for a long time) is that if you can’t find a way to be happy as you are NOW… whatever that encompasses— it won’t matter if you find a miracle cure to lose 100 pounds and keep it off forever.  Because the problem is never about your weight, lovelies.  It’s never about your size, or if you have to shop at Lane Bryant.  It’s not about your ass or  your flabby arms or your belly.  The problem begins, and ends, with YOU.  If you can’t find a way to love the person you are right. this. second…. then you will never be able to love the person you “want” so badly to become by not being Fat.

    People who rage against fat acceptance forget that mental and emotional health matters too.  Sometimes, more than the physical.  Because how many people do you know who are physically in “perfect” health… but whose lives are destroyed by their emotional or mental health?  The people who rage against fat acceptance, who rage and ridicule the fat— do far more harm to ALL people than a fat person promoting fat acceptance will ever do.  Because one theory is founded in the idea of loving yourself, and the other is founded in the fear that we will never, ever, ever, be enough to be worth loving.

     So you tell me what’s more damaging?  My loving myself as I am, fat and all— or Jane Doe screaming that I’m fat and ugly and unhealthy and lazy?  Because I’ll tell you… Jane Doe makes me want to bury myself in a tub of ice cream.  And isn’t that exactly what she’s trying to stop me from doing?  If hatred was an adequate motivator for weight loss— there wouldn’t be ANY fat people.  Ever.   Think about that.

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