Of course people in all kinds of bodies have body image issues. But there's a real difference between having body image issues because you're terrified of looking like (and being treated like) a fat person, and being that fat person.
Your thin and average-sized body image is bad because the world tells you that if you don't shape up, you'll be a fat person, with all the negative traits associated with fat people: gross, slobbish, gluttonous, immoral, lazy, liar, sad. And that if you are (or become) a fat person, you'll *deserve* to be treated like fat people are treated.
If my fat body image is bad, it's because everyone around me considers me to be all those negative things, and treats me the way fat people are treated. AND THAT I DESERVE THAT TREATMENT.
I'm right here. I don't have those negative traits, but even if I did, I would not deserve to be treated the way we treat fat people.
So here are a few things you can do to help end weight stigma this week:
👉 Stop responding to fat activists with, "But people of all sizes have body image issues!" as if it invalidates our work. It doesn't.
👉 Take a hard look at how you've thought about fat people in the past. Are we mean and "divisive?" Are we pitiable? Are we invisible? Work out those feelings in a way that doesn't demand labor from fat folks. A fat-positive or Health at Every Size® therapist is a good place to start.
👉 Take a hard look at how you've treated fat people in the past. How is fatphobia woven into your actions (or lack of action)? Work out a strategy for change in a way that doesn't demand labor from fat folks.
P.S. Share this week's letter or save to read later here. It's only possible to offer the Body Liberation Guide and all its labor for free because people like you support it. $1 USD per month helps out, and $5 and up gets you access to the full Conversation, event listings and more.
Thank you to new Patreon supporters Traci Allen, Eartha Jones, Yulia Krilyk, Emily, Ilene Marker, Pepsi, Kaleigh Doan and Lisa Oldoski!
Here's what's being discussed this week in the world of body acceptance and fat liberation:
» Why do they say that "obesity" is a chronic disease like asthma and type 2 diabetes? (more)
» “I was bullied for being fat in every situation, in every outfit, at every celebration”: A qualitative exploratory study on experiences of weight-based oppression in Qatar (more)
» fun media literacy exercise: in any headline about this topic, replace the term "obesity" with the phrase "the existence of fat people" and see how it sounds (more)