You are worthy. You are loved. You are beautiful.

I have a friend who hates the way he looks. He hates that he is fat. He thinks women aren’t attracted to him sexually because he is short and fat. He sees men in relationships who are thinner or taller or more muscular and he thinks the fault is his. That he needs to change physically. He thinks that women will want to date him if he is thinner. Every time I see him he talks about being lonely, and if he loses the weight then someone might finally want to be with him. I wish I could help him see his worth. I write this entry for him.

First off, I hate that we live in a society which devalues people who don’t fit the cultural ideal of attractive. Fuck that attractive, seriously. A person’s worth should not be judged on what they look like. All people are intrinsically worthy whether they are fat, thin, short, tall, young, old, black, white, brown, yellow, or fucking polkadot. Or anything else! You are worthy of love just as you are. You are beautiful just as you are. You do not deserve to be judged by yourself or others because you are better than that. You are worth more than that.

If you think you should lose weight so you can date more people, you should be asking yourself if those people are really worth dating. If they only want to get to know you when you are thinner then they do not deserve the brilliance that is you. They don’t deserve you – it’s not the other way around if they are judging you on how you look. If they can’t see how fucking beautiful you are, then hold out for better because you deserve it. You deserve the best. You deserve exactly who and what you want. You are worth more than your body, even though your body is more beautiful than I could ever convey.

Losing weight isn’t going to make you any more attractive. It’ll just to make you thinner. Real attraction comes from loving who you are, as you are. Real beauty comes from within.

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  • TrabbsBoy

    Ain't that the truth! And then the vicious circle is that it may actually be a factor in girlfriendlessness that your friend is so lonely and insecure about himself. I know a lot of women that are afraid of taking on the burden of being wanted so bad. So what do you do?

    When I was younger, I did what a lot of insecure women do — made myself sexually available. Got me lots of attention from men, but it wasn't the kind of attention that makes you happy for very long. What worked for me in the end was setting a firm goal for myself — three years, no men, focus only on loving myself. Lots of self-examination, time spent having fun with friends, plenty of self indulgence and a determination to push my mind away from any thoughts about partnership until I could enter into a relationship from a position of self respect.

    And it really did work. When I stopped focussing on getting a guy, I figured out what I wanted to do with my life, I figured out how to stand up for myself, I figured out how to laugh at myself. There was so much loveable stuff about me that I ignored when I was busy trying to become the person I thought would get me loved. Be yourself and be for yourself. Find what's awesome in you and show it to the world. It is in there, and there are people that will be thrilled to meet it.

  • BigArmsEve

    So my boyfriend is short and fat, and I think he is hotttt! He's a little shorter than me. His whole family is short. I'm 5'6″ and when I hang out with them, I'm the tallest one there, which I think is hilarious.

    I think the old, tired advice is really true: To get a great partner, you need to be a great partner.

  • Notblueatall

    I wish I could hug your friend and tell him my personal story. Because I'm 300lbs +/- and have never felt better or been happier in my life! I've been with my husband for 12 years, but have been fat since 15. I used to be that person with the dark cloud over their head who thought they sucked in general and that life was torture, yadda yadda yadda. When I finally realized that I had control over my moods and self-esteem and that life is what you make of it (it sounds so simple, but it's been true for me) I somehow snapped out of my gloom and became a cheerful small business owner! I never would have believed it, but it's my life and I wish I could tell sad fatties everywhere that it's not their fat that makes then unattractive, it's their sadness. I've been there. It's all about self-love first. The rest will follow!

  • Khat74

    Janey's Friend….
    You are wonderful just the way you are. You need to know this so you are able to look outside yourself and see yourself as others do.

    I am fat – sure, but that doesn't mean I am also adorable and articulate, brilliant and bubbly – and utterly desirable – (I do question the last one, but, I assure you the men who think me so, remind me.)

    There are women out there who will love you – for you. No matter the fat, short, thin, squat, slender or outside of you. There is so much more than just the outside.


  • Stephanie

    My boyfriend is 3″ shorter than I am, and weighs slightly more, and I think he's dead sexy the way he is. Neither of us is dainty. We love each other as we are.

  • http://randomette.blogspot.com ErinAree

    It's hard, because when you're stuck in that mindset it's very hard to believe it when people say you're beautiful just the way you are. You push away all of the compliments and believe only what society has conditioned you to believe.

    I've been fat all my life. When I was growing up, I imagined that when it was time for my 'first time', I would have to at least keep my skirt on because the guy I was with would be totally turned off by my belly. During high school, when all my skinny friends were having their first, second and third boyfriends, I was conversely starving myself to make myself skinny so that 'that guy' would like me, and then bingeing when I realised he would 'never see me that way'. Even as I entered adulthood, I watched my friends around me fall in love and was in love with my best friend, who I figured would never feel that way about me because I was fat, so I did nothing about it.

    Through all of this time my friends would tell me all those things that Janey has said above – that everyone is beautiful, we don't have to measure up to some societal yardstick. That anyone who didn't find me beautiful wasn't worthy of my love anyway. That I was pretty and cute and sexy.

    But I didn't believe it, because I figured that they were just doing it to make me feel better. And because I didn't believe them myself.

    I think what turned things around for me was having someone in my life who totally and wholeheartedly believed in me and communicated it to me at every opportunity. She made me actually sit down and listen to the compliments people were giving me and analyse whether or not they were true. I started with 'You have the most beautiful eyes'. I looked in the mirror at my eyes and realised 'Yes! I do have beautiful eyes'. Then it was my hair. Then it was my singing. Then it was my songwriting. Then it was my intellect. Then it was my breasts (which are, of course, phenomenal). And then it was 'you're beautiful', and suddenly I believed it.

    Of course, I didn't immediately become attractive to the opposite sex … it took time and conscious effort. But once I was comfortable with myself, it was much easier for people to be comfortable with me.

    I totally and wholeheartedly agree with you in this post Janey, but I know from experience that when someone is in the headspace that your friend appears to be, 'you're beautiful just the way you are' is a broad statement and is very difficult to believe. It comes down to challenging beliefs – why he believes he is unattractive and why he won't believe that he is.

    I really hope that your friend can start to believe that he is attractive and worthy of love just the way he is. Because even though I haven't met him, I know he is. I know it, because he and I are the same.

  • skeptyk

    Years ago, when he was preteen, my short son was asked to be in a growth hormone trial. It was pitched to him with the evidence that jobs and romance are better for “normal” and tall boys/men than for short guys like he was destined to be (due to his complex medical history he was not going to grow to the heights his genes code for, would be lucky if he broke 5 feet). Mind you, this was proposed to a chronically ill nine-year old transplant patient and his parents. Nine years old. The therapy included some significant known risks, and some possible risks, which the study was designed to figure out, including sudden rejection of his transplanted kidney.

    His response: If someone doesn't want to go out with me because I'm short, why would I want to go out with them?

    At nine years old, he had more self-respect and insight than some. Perhaps because he had lived literally a third of his life in hospitals, and because he'd grown up around the GLBTQA community, and because disability rights advocacy was already part of his way of making his way in the world, and because he is a second-generation Science Fiction fan/creator, but it was a pretty impressive and incisive comment.

    Off topic, about fatphobia in medicine, an anecdote:

    On the blindness even the best and kindest docs have: when his transplanted kidney was failing (after 17 years, which was a great run for a transplant he got when he was a tiny 5 year old), his MD did not believe he ate as little as he and we claimed. He was fat and getting fatter, after all. She even, at one point, brought up WLS, which astonished me speechless (then pissed me off). His loss of appetite, his inability to eat without feeling sick, (all common with a rising BUN level, part of kidney failure) and our description of his dietary habits were not credible in the face of the evidence of the scale. He MUST be overeating.

    Nothing like being called a liar. Call my kid a liar, too?!

    When his kidney failed and he began dialysis he lost 65# in 17 days. It was water, of course. All extra fluid that was held by his crazy electrolytes: interstitial, compartmentalized, hiding all over his body. Amazing it did not give him congestive heart failure.

    Not fat, not a liar, and he made sure the doctor who had implied he was a liar knew about the dramatic weight loss. On dialysis he ate more, had an appetite, yet lost that astonishing amount of bulk. Really not such a surprise when you think about the physiology, although more fluid than most folks in renal failure can “hide” this way.

    The renal specialist had years of experience and science on her side and her reasonable assumption was based upon that, but she too handily discounted our reports and written records of his diet, not even entertaining alternative explanations. I am glad she learned from his dialysis dry-out, and hope she examined her fatphobia in the process.

  • http://bbgetsherbounceback.blogspot.com/ Bianca

    Its really hard to love yourself when you read crap like over on another blog (which is on a pretty major news site, The naughty corner is the blogs name). She's pregnant and going on and on and on and on about “how could anyone let themselves get like this?” etc etc, even worse are the comments from her readers.

    Gotta love how people put being fat down to laziness and how we can't possibly be happy or heaven forbid actually LIKE the way we look!

    Its amazing how in society skinny = attractive, successful, worthy. Really? When are people going to finally realise there is more to life than a size 8.

  • Betty

    Great article. You’ve put thing back into perspective for me. Thank you! Loving who you are and being the best you can be is what’s important. Our self worth does not come from others. I just came across a website called Looks Great Naked by Grace Adams. She is a really funny writer who’s blog is about learning to accept yourself – lumps, bumps, flaws, wrinkles, bad attitude and all. Who you are is gorgeous. Trying to be something you’re not isn’t.

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