Last week I had a run-in with a body-shaming fat-phobe. Happily it's been a while since I had to deal with one so she blindsided me a bit, and I've been stewing over it more than I should.
But that stewing time made me realise something shocking. I think she might have been right. And if she is... that probably means you want to be a plus-sized butt. This is a longer read from me this week, so get comfy and let me explain...
In a lovely Facebook group I'm in, someone shared the fabulous poster that's been released by the Spanish government. It features women of all different shapes and sizes on the beach in their bikinis, and a slogan which translates to: “Summer belongs to us, too.”
(Since then various issues with the poster have come to light but at the time we didn't know this.)
The post in the group was to remind everyone that they shouldn't worry about having a "beach body" this summer and should just get out there and enjoy themselves. Cue lots of affirming, body positive comments from lots of fabulous women. Yay.
Until... enter Body-Shaming Fat-Phobe stage left, who had taken umbrage at the fact a plus size woman dared to appear on the beach wearing a cozzie that didn't fully cover her body. "Being massively obese is not being beach ready" she declared, followed by a long and boring diatribe about taking responsibility for our weight and not "flaunting" our horribly offensive fatness. Yawn.
And then along it came. The inevitable, lazy fall-back I've heard so many times.
"I don't think obesity should be promoted as a good thing."
You won't be surprised to know I gave it to her with both barrels. I told her she was ridiculous for saying that - by simply daring to have a body and be seen - the woman in the poster is "promoting" her body type.
And then I walked away from the argument... but couldn't help stewing. Which is when it hit me. What if she was right? Not in her views about fat bodies of course, I haven't completely lost my mind! But what if, to promote who we are or what we do... literally all we need to do is be seen?
The popular fat-phobic argument that seeing a plus-size woman will have us all stuffing our faces with cake to emulate her is obviously nonsensical. But the Spanish poster was promoting body
.. and yes, again, I know other issues have since been raised... but it was still promoting the belief that we should all wear whatever we like on the beach, no matter how we look, and enjoy our summer without worrying that we don't look like Instagram models. The poster girl's body was promoting all kinds of awesome things... and all of that delicious promoting had happened simply by being seen.
So as we head into the summer I've been inspired by the Spanish poster in two ways... firstly as a reminder that I don't need to swelter under too-hot clothing while I try to cover my big fat body. And secondly, to promote my business like a plus-sized butt.
Are you with me?
If you're nodding at this in theory but know you're not quite brave enough to put it into action, send me an email or drop me a message below and let me help!