“1. Please Don’t Tell Me I’m Not Fat.
2. Please Don’t Assume I Hate My Body.
3. Please Don’t Make Fat Discussion About How Hard It Is For Thin People.
4. Please Don’t Concern Troll Me.
5. Please Don’t Tell Me How Fat You Are.”—
Hey yall! check out my new photography site. My current goal is to focus on portraiture with people of color displaying distance and intimacy in my community, so give me a holler if you’re interested in collaborating or sitting.
“Society, however, does not see all fat as being equal. A man can be much, much fatter than a woman and still be viewed as comfortably within the standard deviation; most department stores carry men’s pants up to a size 42, which is the rough equivalent of a women’s size 24—a size that a woman would have to visit a specialty big-girl store or “Women’s” department to find. Men are comfortable on beaches with their beach-ball bellies hanging over their swimsuit waistbands, bronzing their fat in the sun, whereas my fat women friends struggle to find swimwear that does not feature a skirt.
So me, I’m transgendered. It means that the gender I present in the world is not congruent with the sex that I was assigned at birth; in practical terms, I mostly look like a man but have a body that some would consider physiologically female. Even though I don’t identify as a man (I am a butch, which is its own gender), I am taken for a man about two-thirds of the time. And when I am taken for a man, I am not fat.
As a man, I’m a big dude, but not outside the norm for such things. I am just barely fat enough to shop at what I call The Big Fat Tall Guy Store, and can sometimes find my size in your usual boy-upholstery emporia. Major clothing labels, like Levi Strauss, make nice things in my size, and I am never forced to wear anything that appears to have been manufactured at Mendel the Tentmaker’s House o’ Fashion. (Although those things do exist for men, too. Those terrycloth shirts with the waistbands? Oy.) I can order extra salad dressing or ice cream or anything else in a restaurant and have it arrive without comment; I can eat it in public without anyone taking a bit of notice, even if I am shoving it into my mouth while walking down a crowded street and getting crumbs all over my chest in the process. I can run for a bus or train without anyone making a snide remark.
As a big guy, I’m big enough to make miscreants or troublemakers decide to take their hostility elsewhere. As a woman, I am revolting. I am not only unattractively mannish but also grossly fat. The clothes I can fit into at the local big-girl stores tend to fit around the neck and then get bigger as they go downward, which results in a festive butch-in-a-bag look—all the rage nowhere, ever. No matter how clearly I order a Coke in a restaurant I must be on a diet, and so I get a Diet Coke—usually with a lemon floating in it accusatorily, looking up at me as if to say, “This is as good as it’s going to get, lardass.” Wait staff develop selective amnesia about my side of fries or my request for butter, and G-d help me if I get caught eating (or even shopping) in public as a woman.”—S. Bear Bergman, “Part-Time Fatso” (via wretchedoftheearth)
“You guys know about vampires? … You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror? There’s this idea that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. And what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. It’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves. And growing up, I felt like a monster in some ways. I didn’t see myself reflected at all. I was like, “Yo, is something wrong with me? That the whole society seems to think that people like me don’t exist? And part of what inspired me, was this deep desire that before I died, I would make a couple of mirrors. That I would make some mirrors so that kids like me might see themselves reflected back and might not feel so monstrous for it.”— Junot Diaz (via callmebrandy)