What is Fat Heffalump All About?

Published June 25, 2011 by Fat Heffalump

Well… how do I follow on from that last post?  It is the most viewed, most commented on and most widely shared post I’ve written in the history of Fat Heffalump.  I’m both gobsmacked and thrilled.

Firstly, let me welcome all of the new readers who have come along thanks to that post.  Just a little bit of housekeeping – there is a comments policy, probably a good idea to go take a look at it, just so we’re all clear.  It’s there to protect you as much as it is to protect me.  But I am thrilled to see so many new faces popping up here, and for those of you lurking, please feel safe to comment and say hello.

I think I’m going to give you a few resources today, because I know quite a few of the new folks who have popped up here since my last post are new to fat acceptance (also known as size or body acceptance, because it really does encompass all body sizes – I simply focus on fat acceptance because I am fat myself.)  I would also like to invite the more seasoned Fat Heffalump readers to leave their favourite resources (and their own blogs in fact) in the comments for our new readers too.

Where shall we start?  I guess the basic premise of fat acceptance is that all bodies, be they fat, thin or in between, deserve to be able to live their lives with dignity and respect, and without being singled out as “abnormal”.  Even the “unhealthy” ones, I use quotation marks because really, health is totally subjective and can’t really be measured by anyone but the individual themselves.  To share a lovely quote I saw on Hanne Blank’s post about “real” women today, from the fabulous Mr. Glenn Marla:

There is no wrong way to have a body.

That’s what it boils down to at it’s very core.  Of course there are a lot of other complex subjects within that, and fat acceptance does intersect with all other social justice movements.  That’s a really important thing to understand – that when we talk about our own rights, and the marginalisation of ourselves as people with fat bodies, that it intersects with all other marginalised people and their rights.  Marianne from The Rotund has a very good post about intersectionality that also explains why we don’t go down the road of saying “Fat hatred is the last acceptable prejudice.”  Cos you know, it’s not.

There is a lot of work around basic human rights, and taking it up in one place does benefit all, so long as you acknowledge and work with that intersectionality.  As well as benefiting oneself, it benefits the world.

For me personally, the reason that fat acceptance is so important to me is about self esteem.  I come from a place where I had absolutely no self esteem.  I thought I was the most worthless human being on the planet simply because I was fat.  Then I found fat acceptance, and a world opened right up for me.  I started to believe that I was worthy of simple things, like adequate medical care and help for my depression and non-existent self esteem.  I started to believe that I had a right to live my life happy and abundant, and without being discriminated against or vilified for my body.  I began to believe that I was worth taking care of myself.  From there, I’ve grown so much and my life has opened up in so many ways.

I really do believe, that with strong self esteem, a person’s world is always made better, no matter their circumstances.  It’s such a difficult thing to cultivate, but the benefits of it are incredible.

So I want to give back where I benefited from.  I want to help other people find strong sense of self esteem, to find their confidence and point them in the direction of  all the amazing things I found through fat acceptance.

And what resources did I find that brought me to the world of fat acceptance?

Well, I think the first was the very Awesome Frances of Hey Fat Chick!/Corpulent.  Hey Fat Chick! was so revolutionary to me, to see bodies that looked like mine portrayed as beautiful and happy and strong.  There was the aforementioned Marianne Kirby with her blog The Rotund and the book she co-wrote with Kate Harding, Screw Inner Beauty (known as Lessons from the Fatosphere in other parts of the world).  There was the most wonderful Marilyn Wann and her book Fat! So?

Close to home, there is Bri King from Fat Lot of Good and Elizabeth from Spilt Milk.

Some of my current favourites that regularly get me thinking, blow my world open and inspire me are Lesley Kinzel from Two Whole Cakes, Ragen Chastain from Dances with Fat, Sarah from Not Blue at All and Elizabeth Tamny from The Extender.

Another aspect of fat acceptance you might like to get into is fatshion.  That’s fat fashion!  My lovely friends Nicole of A Well Rounded Venture and Anna of Bargain Fatshionista are a good place to start.  But others I love are Cupcakes Clothing, Pocket Rocket Fashion and we can’t forget the fabulous Bloomie of 30 Dresses in 30 Days.

Oh, and if you want to hear from the fellas, you can’t go past Brian at Red No. 3 and the amazing big dude fashion resource, Chubstr.

This is just a small selection of the amazing work that is being done out there by some really incredible people.  But it will get you started and I’m sure bring you some amazing information, ideas and perspectives.

I regularly post links on my @fatheffalump twitter and the Fat Heffalump Facebook page to articles and information that interests me as well, so feel free to follow there!

Again, welcome to all of the new people who have popped up as readers here at Fat Heffalump recently, and if you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below.

8 comments on “What is Fat Heffalump All About?

  • Thanks for the mention! There are a lot of people doing great things in the world of fat, and they’re pretty inspiring. It makes what we’re trying to do with Chubstr that much more fulfilling.

    You’re doing some great stuff here at Fat Heffalump. It’s great to see people recognizing that and following you. It’s great to know there are people out there who care about these things in a similar way. I can’t wait to see what’s next!

    Bruce

  • Well, here’s my blog if any readers are interested: http://fatgirlposing.blogspot.com

    and i’ll also say welcome to all the new people- this blog is a fantastic one (i never skip a post!) and I’m sure you’ll all love it!

    Great post and I’m glad your blog got so much attention! (even if you did have to deal with so much trolling.. i’m sorry about that part..)

    • Ooh thanks Heather! You’re a great leader of fat visibility, your blog is a shining example of just how amazing fat people can be visible and represented in several medias.

      I was lucky – the last post got no trolling at all!

      This one has been hit by bucketloads of spam I’ve been fighting to keep out all day though.

  • Thanks for the linky love, Kath!❤ So glad you're getting loads of new people from that last amazing post. I hope they stick around a good long while in order to see that you've been posting quality stuff for ages!❤

  • I thought I’d drop by this post and introduce myself. I’m Amy, I’ve been following your blog for a long time now but never commented. I’d actually like to thank you for everything you’ve had to say and have done. When I first found out about the world of FA I had no confidence and really poor self-esteem and I think it was through a Livejournal community (?) that I was lucky enough to find your blog. It’s been one of the most important things to bring me to the realisation that just because I am fat, it does not mean I’m worth less than anybody else, I should not accept below standard healthcare or let anybody bully me.

    I hope I don’t sound like a gushing imbecile but genuinely, your blog has helped me to have so much more confidence, I wear what I want- no more black! I’m closer to my friends as I can spend more time with them, without worrying how people in public might judge me and I’m able to shrug off criticisms and meanness which would have, at one time, had me holed up in my bedroom feeling sub-human. Again, thank you, from the bottom of my heart. I hope your words reach more and more people, please keep up the good work!

    • Ahh Amy you have completely made my day. You don’t sound like a gushing imbecile at all. I’m deeply touched that you feel I have helped you in so many ways. To be honest, I remember feeling all of the things you mention of feeling about yourself. My whole raison d’etre for this blog is to give back to people who feel like I did when I discovered FA.

      Thank you so much for your support and encouragement and for reading my little blog!

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