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Saturday, 16 October 2021

Dealing with Pushback When Setting Boundaries Around Fatphobia

Image Text: When I say “It is not ok to talk about my weight or food, if it continues I will leave," I’m not trying to control what people think, I am stating clearly what behavior I will and will not tolerate, and what I will do if they continue behavior I find intolerable.
Image Text: When I say “It is not ok to talk about my weight or food, if it continues I will leave,”
I’m not trying to control what people think, I am stating clearly what behavior I will and will not tolerate, and what I will do if they continue behavior I find intolerable.

Sometimes people worry that if they set a boundary, like saying “It’s not ok to body shame me or I will leave” that other people will think that they “can’t handle the truth” and are “trying to control what I think.”

People may well think or say those things.  If there’s anything that I’ve learned from my trolls, it’s that people will go to any length to justify their prejudice to themselves and anyone who will listen.  We cannot control what people think of us, nor can we control their behavior.  For me in these situations, I’m less concerned with what people think, and more concerned about how they treat me in my presence.

So when I say “It is not ok to talk about my weight or eating. If anyone says one more thing about it I’m going to leave.”  I’m not trying to control what people think – they can think whatever the hell they want, I am stating clearly what behavior I will and will not tolerate, and what I will do if they continue behavior I find intolerable.

If they continue discussing my weight or eating and I leave, it’s not to control what they think – it’s to remove myself from a situation, to keep myself safe and well, and to make it clear that I’m serious about my boundaries.

People who want to ignore and break our boundaries will use all kinds of tactics, including suggesting that we are trying to control them, that we are creating the problem etc. We don’t have to fall for that.

If people want to spend time with me they have to treat me a certain way, which includes not body shaming or food policing me. So while they are allowed to think whatever they want about me, my body, and my food choices, they are, at the very least, 100% responsible for keeping those thoughts to themselves if they want to talk to me.

It’s not that I “can’t handle” what they think is the truth, it’s that I don’t have to, and so I won’t.

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:

Dealing With Fatphobia At The Holidays

Between in-person and online family gatherings, work parties, New Years bashes, New Years Resolution, and a ton of diet ads… the holiday season can be a perfect storm of fatphobia. Plus this year all the talk of COVID-related body changes adds another layer of nonsense All that diet culture can really get you down. In this workshop we’ll talk about tips, tricks, and techniques to help us deal and have a happy holiday season on our own terms – whether we celebrate any holidays or not.

Full details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members – login info is on the member page
Become a member here!

Missed one of my monthly workshops? You can still get the video here!

Like This Blog? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) I speak to healthcare, college, corporate, and general audiences about topics including weight science, weight stigma, and the Health at Every Size paradigm. You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3FTmP1l

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

A Big Big Love

The face of a pug will always elicit a response, no matter its current configuration. Its eyes are ever seeking, ever wanting. To have and to hold and to love a pug of one’s own is a gift from the universe that is truly unmatched. There is no greater love or sense of belonging that could compare. When nothing in this world makes sense, to look into the sweet face of a pug, you realize that all of the answers are right there. To love. To connect. To be silly. To take pleasure in the smallest acts of life. To rest. There is nothing else but this very moment. If you try to hold on for too long it will all surely slip away. 


When out in public with a pug, strangers will stop and stare in delight. They will gasp and sigh, they will squeal and whisper. To glimpse a pug “in the wild” (not the actual wild, they are not the most rugged of creatures) is to get a secret peek at absolute joy embodied. If they notice you in return they will most certainly tilt their head in order to hear you better. Their eyes will widen in preparation to make a new friend. They may even approach as if to say hey I see you too what’s up new friend. 


To share your life with a pug is to never feel alone, no matter how long it has been since you’ve seen another human. You will never be without someone to talk to, sing to, dance with, snuggle with, and always always share a meal with. You will have your very own personal security detail for every late night trip to the bathroom or morning shower. If you are feeling down they will cheer you up, it’s like they can’t even help it. Their mere existence is just love and joy in a soft little body. When ill, you feel the warm weight of their body pressed against you. I’m certain it shortens the healing time of nearly any ailment.   


My beloved puggo, my shadow, my sidekick, my baby, my entire heart, passed away in the ICU on October 8, 2021. We spent twelve years together, growing and learning as we went along. He became very ill, very quickly and while he seemed to be recovering and doing well for a couple of weeks, things took a very sudden turn that his little body just couldn’t handle. Science did all it could to save him. Love did all it could to keep him. No amount of money or tears could make him feel better and finally he just stopped breathing. I was in the shower when the doctor called, I jumped out and grabbed the call, dripping water everywhere. I was on the phone with the doctor when it happened. 
No heart break has ever felt like this. No loss has ever felt like this. I am grateful that he is no longer suffering. His physical absence is unbearable. My every thought and consideration, both mental and physical, was always him. When I was out of work and dealing with the return of some terrible CPTSD symptoms and terrified of the world, he was the for me. When I had a panic attack at my ex husband’s wedding reception, my puggo calmed me down when I got home. He always knew just what I needed. If I cried he would get me to laugh by making silly sounds and flopping around on the bed. 


I have to learn how to be a human again. When my stomach gurgles I look for my sweet boy, thinking it is him. When I drop a crumb on the floor I expect to hear his paws fast approaching. I can’t bring myself to go into my backyard. I only have it for him. The worst is when I come home from work each day. He used to do a big stretch and then squeak at me and I would pretend that he was telling me about his day and respond, “Oh yeah, and then what happened?” and then walk between my feet as I scratched his back and little butt. “My baby butt!” I would say as he would quickly turn around and do the whole thing again. Now I just come home and cry.


My whole life revolved around him. Now he’s gone and I’m not sure what’s left. I’m still me but I feel like my soul is gone. I’m glad I have work, though I did take two days off, because it is a good distraction from my shattered state. Sure, it’s always there just beneath the surface, but I can cover pretty decently at work and no one’s the wiser for it. And I have a big project starting that I’ve been excited about for some time. It is in the small moments, when there’s no pretense, just mundane life things like filling the Brita pitcher or turning over in bed, that it dawns on me that he’s gone again and again. There was no greater joy in my life than coming home to that little muffin.


I cannot imagine loving anyone or anything as much as I loved him. He drove me crazy sometimes and somehow knew how to get into just the right amount of mischief. He was my reason for getting out of bed and for going to bed at a decent hour. He kept us both on a tight schedule. He didn’t get the concept of daylight savings time so I just tried to keep things as consistent as possible, regardless of what the clock said. He would never let me forget dinner time, that was always precise!


He was no big adventurer, though he had been to Gorn Rock and stayed in a Wig Wam in SoCal. I called him a shade seeking missile, he just understood what mattered in life. When he was done with something he made it clear and there was no convincing him otherwise. I appreciated that in him even when we butted heads. We had our routines down pat and had our own flow of doing things together at home. He hated baths but would always just go along with what I asked of him. I would always take those opportunities as an excuse to hold him, he wasn’t a fan, but he knew I loved it so would allow it. I would hold him up to the bathroom mirror and tell him how handsome he was.


Having the bed all to myself is confusing and torturous. I haven’t had a bed to myself since the 90’s. Well, there was that one year when my ex husband and I first split up but he was only a couple of blocks away and I saw him several times a week. No one in the world was ever as happy to see me ever than my puggo. Not family, not friends or lovers, no this tiny pug person was always SO excited to see me! I mean, he liked everybody, but I was always just as excited to see him too. 


No matter what’s going on in your life or the world, you just cannot help but get excited when beholding the face of a pug. 

***

I’m here for realness and sincerity, honesty and vulnerability, I’m here for the good and juicy bits of life that shine for me when I know I’m heading in the right direction.

Rad Fatty Love to ALL,
<3
S

Check out the Fat AF podcast on your favorite podcast app for all things fat sex with me and my BFF, Michaela! (We only recorded a few episodes but they were good!)

Donate to this blog here: https://ift.tt/2zKvPnQ currently donations will be given directly to Black women in need through my network.

My blog’s Facebook page for things I share that aren’t on this blog (updated frequently and not just about fat stuff): http://on.fb.me/1A18fAS 

Or get the same “shared” content on Twitter: @NotBlueAtAll

Are you on MeWe? I started a fat-feminist group there called, Rad Fatties Unlimited, look for it! I’m also on Space Hey “NotBlueAtAll”

And as always, please feel free to drop me a line in comments here or write me an email, I love hearing from readers. (Tell me your troubles, I don’t judge.) notblueatall@notblueatall.com



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Breaking Body Biases in Fitness

I had the chance to be interviewed by and chat with Christine DeFilippis for her Breaking Body Biases podcast. Christine is an anti-diet fitness entrepreneur, and so our discussion centered around dismantling fatphobia and toxic fitness culture. As always, a reminder that nobody is obligated to participate in fitness, and participation does make people better than others (I’ve done both and can tell you for sure that completing a marathon and watching a Netflix marathon are morally equivalent activities.) So, again, nobody is obligated to participate, but everybody should be welcome!

You can listen to the podcast here!

If you want to learn more about weight inclusive fitness (and/or want to earn continuing education credits!) I’m teaching a class on creating inclusive fitness spaces on October 30th at 10am Pacific as part of Lawrence Biscontini’s StayVention series! (Note – I cannot guarantee that the other presenters will come from a full fat-affirming perspective, but I certainly will!)

You can see the details here.

And you can sign up here!

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:

Dealing With Fatphobia At The Holidays

Between in-person and online family gatherings, work parties, New Years bashes, New Years Resolution, and a ton of diet ads… the holiday season can be a perfect storm of fatphobia. Plus this year all the talk of COVID-related body changes adds another layer of nonsense All that diet culture can really get you down. In this workshop we’ll talk about tips, tricks, and techniques to help us deal and have a happy holiday season on our own terms – whether we celebrate any holidays or not.

Full details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members – login info is on the member page
Become a member here!

Missed one of my monthly workshops? You can still get the video here!

Like This Blog? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) I speak to healthcare, college, corporate, and general audiences about topics including weight science, weight stigma, and the Health at Every Size paradigm. You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3ACCMFF

Thursday, 7 October 2021

What’s All This About Fat Being A “Chronic Lifelong Health Condition?”

I got a question emailed today from reader Renee. “I’ve been seeing articles that say that being fat is considered a “chronic lifelong condition.” Can you explain what’s going on to me?

I’m happy to try! The word is getting out that intentional weight loss doesn’t work to make fat people thinner or healthier, and that almost everyone gains their weight back long-term. That’s not great news for the diet industry, including companies who sell “treatments” that are extra dangerous and extra expensive, like drugs and surgery.

So these companies have been pushing a narrative wherein being fat is, in and of itself, a “health condition” regardless of health status (Gary Taubes recently, tragically, showed us how this is done.) . And that it is “chronic and lifelong.” They’ve pushed this narrative though many channels, perhaps the most insidious is through organizations that claim to be “advocacy groups” but are, in fact, fully funded by (and function as lobbying arms of) the drug and surgery companies (looking at you, OAC.)

This narrative provides a lot of benefits to these weight loss peddlers, including:

1. Expanding their market (to literally anyone who is fat)
2. Helping them make a case that health insurance should cover their dangerous and expensive “treatments”
3. Helping the drug companies work around the fact that as soon as people go off the drugs they gain their weight back 4. Allowing drug companies to sell drugs to people for their entire lives

There’s just one itty bitty problem…it doesn’t make any sense. There are people of the same weight who have vastly different health statuses, and there are people of vastly different weights who have the same health statuses. And blaming health conditions on fat bodies rather than on the weight stigma, weight cycling, and healthcare inequalities fat people experience is beyond dubious.

While this concept drives a ton of profit to the weight loss industry, it drives a ton of harm to fat people. There is absolutely no shame in having a chronic lifelong health condition – or health conditions of any kind. There is no shame in getting treatment. This is isn’t that. Pathologizing a body size subjects fat people to “interventions” that drive profit to the weight loss industry while risking our lives and quality of life, all under the guise of “healthcare.”

So if someone tries to tell you that simply existing in a fat body is a “chronic, lifelong health condition,” you might tell them that whatever they’re selling, you’re not buying it.

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:

Dealing With Fatphobia At The Holidays

Between in-person and online family gatherings, work parties, New Years bashes, New Years Resolution, and a ton of diet ads… the holiday season can be a perfect storm of fatphobia. Plus this year all the talk of COVID-related body changes adds another layer of nonsense All that diet culture can really get you down. In this workshop we’ll talk about tips, tricks, and techniques to help us deal and have a happy holiday season on our own terms – whether we celebrate any holidays or not.

Full details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members – login info is on the member page
Become a member here!

Missed one of my monthly workshops? You can still get the video here!

Like This Blog? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) I speak to healthcare, college, corporate, and general audiences about topics including weight science, weight stigma, and the Health at Every Size paradigm. You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3uQh5k6

Friday, 1 October 2021

Body Truth – The Truth About Weight Loss

I had the chance to chat with Katelyn Parsons on her Body Truth Podcast. We had a great time and talked about everything from being a fat dancer, to practical tools to set boundaries around educational social conversations!

I was honored to get to be a guest on the podcast. and you can listen to the full episode and read the full transcript here!

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:

Dealing With Fatphobia At The Holidays

Between in-person and online family gatherings, work parties, New Years bashes, New Years Resolution, and a ton of diet ads… the holiday season can be a perfect storm of fatphobia. Plus this year all the talk of COVID-related body changes adds another layer of nonsense All that diet culture can really get you down. In this workshop we’ll talk about tips, tricks, and techniques to help us deal and have a happy holiday season on our own terms – whether we celebrate any holidays or not.

Full details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members – login info is on the member page
Become a member here!

Missed one of my monthly workshops? You can still get the video here!

Like This Blog? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3CTyUS6

Thursday, 30 September 2021

Pug Liiiiife!

Oh my sweet lovelies! These last (nearly) four weeks have been absolute torture as my beloved puggo has been incredibly ill. I’ve had him since he was a teeny puglet and he’s nearing his 12th birthday in two months. He’s always been stout and healthy, with only ear infections and a dry eye to worry over. This was something different all together, I won’t get into the gory details, but at a certain point my food obsessed pug stopped eating and I panicked. It took 3 weeks, 4 veterinarians (2 specialists), lots and lots of tests and several thousand dollars (get pet insurance now so you don’t have this happen to you) but my baby is going to be okay. He has a terribly severe case of irritable bowel disease, he’ll likely be on meds to manage it for the rest of his life. Facing this alone has been absolutely terrifying and exhausting. Doing all I could to keep him comfortable while the experts figured out what was going on was absolutely heart wrenching. When he was admitted to the ICU last Thursday as his little system went into shock, I was home just beside myself not knowing what to do without him home with me even for one night. Just two days later he was back to giving me the full pug attitude and trying to get into the garbage can like he used to. Ha!

I came so close to losing him that I am still sort of in shock. What is an appropriate gift for a veterinarian??? I have a few I need to send. The way two vets specifically handled this tricky situation was beyond impressive. I mean, one really went the extra mile to get a specialist involved even though they are all booked through October. I know for a fact that one vet spent over an hour on hold with two different places at least and even worked late to make it happen for us. They were all so kind and patient with me and my questions. I know they deal with such difficult situations only to have to put the animal down, but not my babyman. I had to keep saying that I wasn’t concerned about the money aspect of it, I just wanted him to be okay. I could hear the relief in their voices every time. And while money actually is a major concern and this ordeal has set me back financially (and can I just say fuck credit scores and how they are measured!), I cannot imagine going through this without the small safety net that I do have now. It is an impossible position to be in, but I know I made the right decisions for me and puggo.

I am beyond grateful to all who assisted in his care, my friends and loved ones for their prayers, woo, and moral support. After having just gone through my own health crisis for so many months and to finally be done with it, having this come up for my lil’ guy nearly wrecked me completely. Steroids and antibiotics are amazing medicines, when used properly. I mean, I had to watch my sweet muffin wither away in pain for days on end until we finally got the answers needed to start some kind of treatment. When he had his follow up yesterday the dogtor couldn’t believe how well and how different he looked! I have no doubt that his usual slight chonk-ness helped in his healing and handling of this. 

I am taking the last week of October off work for “vacation”. While I was originally going to take a road trip up north to bask in the magic of the redwoods, now we will simply be home and trying to get as much fucking sleep as possible! I am so sleep deprived I am waking up most days with broken capillaries around my eyes, despite my commitment to my skincare routine. Ha! Seriously, the sleep deprivation is brutal, but worth the temporary craziness to have a better and longer life with my favorite person (my dog is a person, I will fight you). May the rest of this awful year be without upset or loss, because I am not sure how much more I can handle. Hopefully my 18 year old car can hold on another two years while I recover financially. The loan rates right now are terrible! I’m glad I got the small one I did in March or I would have been absolutely screwed.

2022 is shaping up to be exciting in a positive way at least. My employer is moving offices again and it is a project I have been excited to take on for awhile now. This will be my third big office move and the planning and design parts are my favorite! It reminds me that I am capable of so much more than a “front desk” person, as many see me as. I’m an office manager by title, but I wear a few hats and am coming up on four years in my current role, I love it.

Things are changing, and I am ready for all the goodness! Are you?!

***

I’m here for realness and sincerity, honesty and vulnerability, I’m here for the good and juicy bits of life that shine for me when I know I’m heading in the right direction.

Rad Fatty Love to ALL,
<3
S

Check out the Fat AF podcast on your favorite podcast app for all things fat sex with me and my BFF, Michaela! (We only recorded a few episodes but they were good!)

Donate to this blog here: https://ift.tt/2zKvPnQ currently donations will be given directly to Black women in need through my network.

My blog’s Facebook page for things I share that aren’t on this blog (updated frequently and not just about fat stuff): http://on.fb.me/1A18fAS 

Or get the same “shared” content on Twitter: @NotBlueAtAll

Are you on MeWe? I started a fat-feminist group there called, Rad Fatties Unlimited, look for it! I’m also on Space Hey “NotBlueAtAll”

And as always, please feel free to drop me a line in comments here or write me an email, I love hearing from readers. (Tell me your troubles, I don’t judge.) notblueatall@notblueatall.com



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Wednesday, 29 September 2021

Fat People Don’t Owe You Justifications

Image Text: Weight stigma and diet culture can fool fat people
into believing that we owe explanations and justifications for our body size, food choices, and health
to anyone who thinks they deserve them. We don’t.

Weight stigma and diet culture work hard to to make fat people believe that we deserve to be treated poorly and that, at the very least, we owe explanations and justifications for our body size, food choices, and health to anyone who thinks they deserve them.

The truth is that commenting on someone’s food choices, body size or health without invitation is completely inappropriate. And we are under no obligation to act like it’s not.

We get to respond to this in whatever way we want. We can choose to try to educate (though it’s helpful to remember that we can’t control whether or not they take advantage of our generosity by learning.) We can react in ways that are snarky, or angry, or even “rude.” We can laugh in their faces and walk away.

No matter how we react (and sometimes it’s not in our control in a given situation,) the important thing to remember is that our bodies aren’t the problem – their inappropriate behavior is.

We don’t need to change, they do.

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:

Dealing With Fatphobia At The Holidays

Between in-person and online family gatherings, work parties, New Years bashes, New Years Resolution, and a ton of diet ads… the holiday season can be a perfect storm of fatphobia. Plus this year all the talk of COVID-related body changes adds another layer of nonsense All that diet culture can really get you down. In this workshop we’ll talk about tips, tricks, and techniques to help us deal and have a happy holiday season on our own terms – whether we celebrate any holidays or not.

Full details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members – login info is on the member page
Become a member here!

Missed one of my monthly workshops? You can still get the video here!

Like This Blog? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/2XXDXlc