My friend Kelli Dunham, a stand-up comic and nurse, posted a video she made about planning for unplanned health care and I think it is one of the most brilliant things I’ve seen about how complicated it is to have a non-normative body while trying to navigate the health care system. I absolutely had to share it with my readership.
One of the biggest motivating forces behind my work as a body liberation activist is getting people to love their bodies enough to take care of them and to dismantle the system that pathologizes fat people just for their fat. My beloved step mother died at age 48 after being prescribed fen-phen–she was being treated for her fat not her actual symptoms. What a fucking hassle to have a body that is immediately targeted and treated incorrectly because people buy the myth that fat is automatically unhealthy. This happens far too often.
Mary Lambert, the hot tattooed queer singer brought to the stage of the Grammy’s by singing the hook on Macklemore’s “Same Love,” song has released a new video about Body Love!
It’s a gorgeous piece of spoken word about loving your body and finding your value within and I was super stoked to see lots of different types of bodies in it, including a trans*gentleman lovingly stroking top surgery scars.
Click here to read the whole article.
It’s hard to have a body at any old time of the year but especially given the trigger fest of eating and family and large meals and seeing people for the first time in a long time.
I was asked by Melissa A. Fabello of Everyday Feminism to be part of a Body Activist conglomerate on Twitter to provide support through a hash tag all day and evening on Thanksgiving!
I’ll be posting from the intersectionality of my work–about learning to love your body, being queer in the world, gender, and developing authenticity around family of origin.
All the information is below! Please signal boost!
The gateway activity for me and Heart Beets Holistic health coaching was her seasonal cleanse. I was initially extremely dubious. I have heard about cleanses people have used before and they often seem like fad diets or fasting. Many people say “cleanse” as a euphamism for radical diet. As someone who is body positive, fat positive and virulently opposed to diet culture, I am not prone to want to jump on eating trends. Cleanses seem trendy right now.
She’s the first health practitioner I’ve ever been involved with who is pro fat but she is right when she tells me to put butter on stuff. It’s the opposite of how I was raised. It was a non-fat milk, low fat food kind of lifestyle, even though I was always fat.
The cleanse was appealing to me because it was about eliminating the most inflammatory foods. Sugar, dairy, wheat/gluten, corn, peanuts, eggs, and soy. I have kicked sugar before and I felt great, so I knew this would help me reinvent my eating.
Our culture normalizes talking about bodies all the time. There is especially a lot of value placed on weight gain or loss. Turn on a television and just listen to diet chatter. It’s pervasive, obnoxious and well-meaning individuals perpetuate it in our personal lives all the time.
I like to create an environment in my life that is about substance over small talk, where compliments are genuine and weight is value-neutral.
“Oh, but Bevin,” you may be saying. “I really mean it as a compliment when I notice you’ve lost weight!”
But, well-intentioned friend, just because you’re well-intentioned doesn’t mean what you say doesn’t have a harmful impact. Weight loss doesn’t mean I look good. I believe I look good at all of my weights–all bodies are good bodies. And I know your perception of me might have changed because you are socialized to believe smaller is better, but I would like to gently invite you to do something different with your nonpliments of “You look so good!” when someone has lost weight.
He loudly said to my back, “You should go on a diet,” as I was getting off the train. I had a pause waiting for the doors to open. Usually I ignore these kinds of things, but this time I turned to the 20 something white dude, looked him dead in the eye and said, “My body is none of your business, nor is anyone else’s.”
Plus Size Pageant Documentary–There She Is and some questions for my readership about being fat and expressing gender
I’m wondering from readers what they feel like about wearing make-up, whether they find it compulsory, if they feel comfortable in public spaces or specifically queer spaces without it (if they are a make-up identified person)?
In what ways do you feel “in your gender,” and how does that present? How does that differ from day to day, moment to moment?
How do you respond to weight loss in your life? Are there ways that you make it value-neutral?
FAT SEX WEEK: Three Books To Help You Have Better Sex While Fat (Regardless of Whether Or Not You’re Single)
You can keep the learning going, single or while in relationships, with a cadre of lovers or while between regular bouts of getting banged. Doing the work of getting to know your body and getting to know yourself sexually is a gift you give yourself for the rest of your life. There are lots of different ways to learn about sex–there is so much knowledge available to willing explorers. Below are three body positive resources that will help you get in touch with your sexuality from a body positive perspective!
In mainstream porn, I am seen as a plumper or BBW, ebony or urban. In queer porn, I am just me. I don’t mind being labeled because I am ebony and I am of size, but I am also a hell of a lot more than that and in queer porn the other parts of me are valued as well. I have said this many times, porn is the only industry that can get away with being sizist, racist, classist, homophobic, ablest, and bigoted. However, if you surround yourself with empowered, fierce people it’s not a problem. In mainstream, I am not small enough to be in ‘regular’ porn and I am not big enough to be in most BBW porns. But in queer porn, I am accept for my style, beauty, and sex appeal. I have not experienced direct negativity from being in porn when it comes to my size or ethnicity, but I have experienced indirect negativity as well as seeing my friends and others deal with it. My goal is to make my own queer fierce femme realness genre versus trying to fit in with one. I also enjoy being able to educate my heterosexual cis gendered male fans about what queer is and how sexy it can be.
I’ve been asked by people on different ends of the fat lover spectrum about advice being a good ally. From the “My lover doesn’t see how beautiful she is and won’t have sex with the lights on,” to the “My lover uses the term fat to describe themself but I’ve always thought of that as a derogatory word… isn’t it?” For FAT SEX WEEK I’ve highlighted some of the best ways to be a good ally to your fat lover.
This is all from my limited perspective, you should obviously be in good communication with your lover to find out what works for them and how they operate in the world. Communication is an essential sex toy!
This advice applies to folks of all sizes, not just thinner folks partnered (in all the myriad ways one can partner) with fat folks. And a lot of it is good advice for sex in general, regardless of whether or not your partner is fat.
Watching porn that represents people whose bodies look like yours and who are doing sex the way you like to do sex is incredibly self-affirming. I thought that the intro to the video, where a fat girl (Courtney) is engaged in some serious self-loving body worship, was extremely powerful from an artistic and embodied point of view. And also just totally hot.