Sunday, December 2, 2007

The big issue.......maybe

I'm not so sure I agree with the writer's premise here. He seems to be saying that women are their own worst enemy when it comes to size and accepting/loving themselves. He also seems to be saying that thin women aren't womanly, only women with "curves" are womanly.
Since this is a British newspaper, and his main "woman with curves" seems to be Nigella Lawson (and I don't have a clue who she is since I don't watch British tv, hell, I don't even watch that much American tv), I can't say if she's "average", "thin", "overweight", "obese", or whatever.
I will agree that women are harder on themselves than they should be, and we are prone to judging each other by size/shape/hair color, etc. But, and I think this is a big but, has it gotten so bad because women are naturally so judgmental of other women, is it because we are competing against each other for whatever it is we want out of life, or is it because we've been programmed by the entertainment industry, the diet industry, and the cosmetics industry to try to reach some unattainable ideal of beauty and fix every little teeny tiny flaw we have (or maybe all of these)?
I will admit, that before I found FA, I was as guilty as the next one for judging on the basis of looks alone. I don't know how many times I saw a thin woman and said "I hate skinny women (actually, it was skinny bitches), they don't know how good they have it" or a fat woman and said "Damn, I'm glad I'm not that big (or: "fuck, I wish I was her size", if she was smaller than me)." I never stopped to think that the issues I had about my body applied to every other woman out there, no matter what her size happened to be. I never stopped to realize that the perfection we are supposed to strive for and attain is impossible for all but a very few (and they have it because they were born with it). And even though those born with that supposed ideal beauty probably still have issues every day that they aren't perfect either. I'm not proud of the fact that I used to think that way, but I'll tell you what, I am damned glad I found FA and that I can see the way I used to think is nothing but programming/brainwashing/whatever and that I have the ability to realize that and change my attitude about myself and other women.
“I don’t think that it has necessarily got worse: my mother was obsessed with weight,” says Feltz. “But now, nobody ever says, ‘Handsome is as handsome does, and so what if she’s put on few pounds – she’s still fascinating.’ That’s the real difference.”

I wonder though, even when people said that, did they really mean it? Did they really apply it to the people they knew, the people they met? And did a person's weight, back when that quote was popular, have little bearing on how handsome/beautiful a person was considered? I don't know how many times I was told "you'd be so pretty if you just lost some weight" (and all that did was make want to punch out the lights of the person who said it).
Everyone has biases, and it's impossible to eradicate all bias, but just because you have a bias about some aspect of a person doesn't mean you get to treat them as less than human. Everyone, no matter their size/looks/intelligence/ability/whatever, is worthy of being treated with respect and dignity. If they're an asshat, on the other hand...........


  1. first of all, Nigella Lawson is frickin' hawt. She's not thin by anyone's standards, but she's hardly fat. If I had to say she's like anyone, oo, she's not as statuesque as Marilyn Monroe, but she's definitely got the 'land of plenty' voluptuous lushness thing going on.

    Seriously, she's gorgeous. And the fact that she cooks and has beautiful children and eats with clear enjoyment of full fat food? She's like a modern Earth Mother Of All That Is Good. I like her a lot.

    Now, the article ends with Vanessa Feltz, who again, is no small woman, but who clearly has issues with her weight - no matter what she says. Add to that her outspoken opinions (she used to be a talk show host) and her constant use of hair dye (her sister looks just like her, but with natural black hair, again, is not thin, but is stunning) and she's pretty much calling the kettle black.

    Unlike Nigella, Vanessa clearly is affected by what the press says about her. In the article it says she's recently lost 4 stone (56lbs), which isn't, sadly, the first time she's lost a great deal of weight, and only compounds the issue.


  2. Yeah, I'd say Nigella is probably on the high end of the "normal" range, if not slightly overweight (guesstimating based on BMI ranges, not what MOST people would think of as "normal" or "overweight"). But she's beautiful. Gorgeous dark hair, seemingly flawless skin, curves in all the right places (and apparently none in the wrong ones)... most men in this country would kill to have her, and women (more than would admit it, I'm sure) would kill to look like her (and yes, I admit it: I'm one of them). (

    I have to agree with hekateris - Vanessa definitely has some body image issues. I often wonder if she's lost the weight because of her new husband (to keep him? Because she's happy and wanting to take care of herself?).

    But I have to say, I think the author of that article was referring more to the women who starve themselves to look thin, not naturally thin people. From a man's perspective, I would be willing to bet that any woman who starves herself thin would be seen as vain. I don't think most men would "get" the amount of shame, pain, and low self-esteem it takes for a woman to get to the point of starving herself thin.

    I definitely think he's got the right idea, though. Women are their own worst enemies, with other women running a close second. I'd be willing to bet that most women who think of themselves as fat/ugly/unattractive/what-the-fuck-ever wouldn't be seen as such by the men in their lives. MOST men are more forgiving to women and women's bodies than the women themselves are.

  3. Oh yeah, most men who love their fat wives don't even see fat as an issue. My DH is a case in point (2 of his 3 ex-wives were not even close to being thin or even average), and he tells me every day, several times a day, how sexy I am and how pretty I am. When we first met, and he would tell me that, I would tell him he needed new glasses (nothing like putting yourself down). Now, however, I'm beginning to agree with him. There are days when I don't think I'm sexy, but he grabs my ass when I walk by and tells me how much he likes it, and that I-don't-think-I'm-sexy mood seems to evaporate. Thank all the powers that be for men who aren't afraid to like what they like and to hell with what the rest of the world thinks.

  4. Oh, Vesta, I'm so glad you found a man like that! :D Having a man who will compliment you like that, just out of the blue, can do wonders for your self-esteem! One of my exes was like that, and he single-handedly raised my self-esteem a good 30%, at least.

    Totally off-topic, but I wanted to say I love the slideshow you added! :D

  5. I had quit looking when I found him, so it just goes to show, there is someone out there for everyone. It just may take a little longer to find him/her.
    And that slide show thingy is neat, isn't it? When blogspot added it, I had to use

  6. I agree with hekateris, Nigella is hawt...very curvy & womanly looking....almost enough to make a straight woman turn around & go in the other direction!

    That is a very cool slide show thingy!!

  7. Oh Lordy...I don't think my last comment came out just like I meant for it too! It just sort of a sneeze.

    It is true that Nigella is a lovely voluptous soft looking woman...not skinny, not fake, not plastic...real. And she doesn't seem to want to hide her curves. And like hekateris said, she loves her full fat food & isn't afraid to talk about it. And when she is talking about it, she is absolutely mesmerizing.

    THAT is more what I meant to say!

  8. Kat - I figured you meant she was hawt enough to turn a straight woman into, if not lesbian, then at least bi-sexual (and after looking at her pics, I totally agree, she is one hawt woman).

  9. Size doesnt matter- its personality! I don't have any preferences for fat, slim or skinny. There are plenty of people who like overweight girls. They think those women are womanly with curves. My friend David is mad for plus size woman and is dating on

  10. Nukkingphutz, ha, I picked out that same piccy as my fav of Nigella, too! Great minds and all that...


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