The only shaming I endorse is shaming people who jeopardize your personal well being (physically and mentally). I’m not talking about sense offenders. Screw your delicate senses! I’m talking about smokers who smoke in non-smoking sections, assholes who can’t drive, people who smell like body order and cat pee, and hateful shamers. If I can’t breath fresh air and ride in a car without fear of death, or be happy without being bullied, then shame on you!
One of the things in this world that I actually do hate, is haters… fat shamers, nerd shamers, gay shamers, etc. They aren’t just shamers… they’re HATERS. Don’t try to justify your hatefulness by claiming you just want people to be healthy. If you really gave a shit about someone’s health, you wouldn’t bully them and make them feel like shit. Mental health is every much as important as physical health. You want to help people be healthier? Then do something positive, supportive, and encouraging. Be a workout buddy!
If someone wants to be fat and happy, why is it such a hated thing? It’s unhealthy? They’ll die younger? It’s their own fault? You know NOTHING. You don’t even know if they are unhealthy at all, because *GASP* you can be fat AND healthy. There are fat people in the world who are more athletic and live healthier than lazy unhealthy skinny folks. Yes, you can be skinny and unhealthy. Some folks act so surprised when they find out that I enjoy snacking on raw carrots, drink water an awful lot, and don’t eat chocolate or candy all that much. I also happen to like going for walks, bike riding, swimming, dancing, and trips to the zoo! I don’t have the best stamina and I still like McDonalds, but that doesn’t mean I’m just a fat mess! I have a lot of healthy habits that I enjoy too.
You don’t know what those fat people have been through, what they’ve tried, or if it’s “their fault”. You don’t want to believe that it’s possible that a fat person could actually eat healthy, exercise, and still not lose weight. How would you feel if you gained weight and couldn’t lose it no matter what you did? What if you tried so hard that you were starving yourself and exercising for hours a day? What if you were hungry and tired all the time, and on top of that, you felt like a failure? First of all, you’ll die younger living this way too. Second of all, what kind of life is that? I’d rather be fat and happy.
This is where body positive comes in. The haters hate body positive because it perpetuates being unhealthy. What it really means is just being positive about the body. When you can’t fix what you hate about yourself, you can either be miserable with hate, or learn to accept who you are and love yourself. Body Positive doesn’t mean you’re not trying to live healthy and lose weight. It just means being positive about your body, whether it’s what you can’t change, or what you’re in the progress of changing, successful in changing, or what you love about yourself (skinny or fat). You can be health conscious and still be body positive. It doesn’t mean you have to like or praise fat, it just means not being a dick about it.
Now, to be fair, we know there are people in the world who don’t have an excuse. They could lose weight if they tried and it’s not that hard. Perhaps they just don’t want to eat healthy and don’t like to exercise. SO FUCKING WHAT?! So what if they don’t want to live healthy or prolong their life? It’s their choice and you don’t have a right to bully someone for choosing a different lifestyle. There’s something to be said about quality over quantity. You might judge whether being fat and unhealthy is quality… but it is to them. I love eating Mc Donalds. I love drinking coke. I love watching movies on the couch and surfing the net. Why fill my days with workouts, diet food, and things I don’t enjoy? What kind of life is that? Stop imposing your hate on people. Let people be happy.
My grandmother was very overweight. She had diabetes, lost a leg, and died when I was a teenager. A lot of fat shamers wield fear tactics to justify their hateful behavior. Maw Maw loved food and that was her choice. She once told my mother (and aunts) that if she ever couldn’t enjoy food, to let her go. So when it was time to chose whether to take her off life support, we knew it was time to let her go. No, it wasn’t easy, but we can be assured that Maw Maw enjoyed her life. I know that you’re scared to lose the people you love, but would you rather have a long life struggle with misery, or a short but fulfilling happy life? No matter your choice, maybe you should focus on what makes you happy instead of raining on other people’s parade.
Furthermore, a lot of people have a fucked up skew of body imagine. Being anorexic is just as bad as being fat. Also, having fat isn’t unhealthy. Curves are sexy! There are a lot of people who are NOT fat but are still fat shamed. When I was 120 lbs as a teen, I was fat shamed A LOT. I was made to feel like a whale. I had such a bad body image. I wore baggy clothes all the time. Now that I’m an adult and I’ve gained a bunch of weight… I now know what fat is. I’m kinda pissed about how I was treated. I wasn’t fat. All that time that I spent feeling like shit and hiding away! If I had been treated better, I could have been happy. Ironically, now that I’m fat, I officially no longer give a fuck and I’m doing what I want, eating what I want, and I’m happy. I was treated bad regardless if I was fat or not, so why even bother? If I’m going to be bullied regardless of whether I’m fat or not, I might as well do what I want and be happy with myself. Fat and happy it is!
This is why your shaming and bullying is ineffective, because the root of the problem isn’t our bodies, it’s your hateful attitudes. I hate to break it to you, but no one is perfect. If you have the perfect body, then I promise that you have flaws somewhere else (probably in the personality dept). If you have a perfect body and a perfect personality (still a flaw), then you go with your awesome self because you’re obviously not being a hateful fat shamer (or other assorted hatefulness).
I imagine that some shamers were once bullied to an extreme and were so unhappy with themselves that they take out that hate on others who remind them of what they hate about themselves. Maybe if you didn’t hate yourself, you wouldn’t be such a dick. Some shamers were taught to shame, just as most haters teach their children to hate race, sexual orientation, etc. You call it shaming to make yourself feel like you’re not a hater, but don’t fool yourself, that’s what it is… HATE.
Fat shamers are in the lime light but there are lots of different kinds of hateful shamers. You think someone’s costume looks like crap? You think you could do better? Then why not help them make it better instead of nerd shaming! Not everyone has the skills or money to build quality cosplay. You have to start somewhere and you might as well enjoy it. If it takes me a week to create a cardboard and duct tape masterpiece, regardless of how tacky or awful it truly is, I’m going to have fun doing it and I’m going to parade it around like a float in a parade!
Sure, I get a kick and laugh out of seeing badly done costumes and props but only in the most positive way imaginable. It makes me feel good to see people doing cute and silly things. When I laugh, it’s in genuine good fun. Don’t bother trying to justify your mocking and hurtful comments as “good fun” or “joking”, because you’re not fooling anyone. We know the difference between being laughed at and laughed with. You don’t have to compliment or praise bad costumes or props, but you don’t have to be a douche nozzle either.
My crew knows how to build badass props and put together awesome costumes… but are we above cardboard and duct tape atrocities? Nooop! We’re a silly bunch of nerds and sometimes, you have to let go of the perfectionist and just have fun making something. If it turns out amazing great! If it turns out badly, who cares? Be proud of actually trying to do something at all. It is better to have tried and failed, than to have never tried at all! You can’t succeed if you don’t try (and other such motivational phrases). Be proud of your dedication and teamwork.
Sometimes, those fat shamers and nerd shamers team up to bitch about fat people in costumes. Sure, I cringe at the sight of a 400lb ugly guy in a slave Leia costume, but am I going to be an asshole about it? No! You don’t think he knows he’s a fat guy in a princess costume? He knows. He’s obviously got a sense of humor and I probably had a good laugh too. At the end of the day, it was something to talk about and it’s not a big fucking deal. Let’s be honest again shall we? I have never seen a 400lb man in a sexy costume at a convention. It’s usually just average people in average costumes. Haters are more common than a drag-queen Sailormoon. No matter what you (or your costume) looks like, it took courage to put it on and show it off. I commend you for your bravery. If I honestly don’t like it that much, I can choose to look away because there’s plenty of hot cosplayers roaming the floor. Why focus your attention on something you don’t like over gawking at the ones you do like? Because you’re a hater and you like being hateful. Again, the problem isn’t our bodies, the problem is your hateful attitudes.
To steal a thought from my friend, the only time I get irritated by someone regarding their weight is when they bitch about it incessantly and don’t do a damn thing about it. Still, the morale of today’s post is don’t be a dick.