Hi, guys. It’s me, the resident fat, beautiful black woman and writer from The Root coming to you with an important message about fat-shaming, sex and the supposed undesirability many of you impose on fat women because of your own insecurities.
In a word: Stop that shit.
I was browsing Twitter on Monday and caught wind of Usher’s latest accuser coming forward in the ongoing saga of his alleged-herpes-exposure lawsuits. I didn’t get very far before I saw this tweet from self-proclaimed funnyman Lil Duval, in which he included a picture of the young woman and said, “I refuse to believe Usher fucked this.”
The young woman in the picture is full-figured. Plus size. Pleasingly plump. Whatever cute descriptor you can use to describe her, it all boils down to one thing: She’s fat, and that’s OK.
What’s not OK is shaming her or imposing your own insecurities onto her, which is what Lil Duval did. He doubled down in his next tweet by saying, “I’ll believe Usher gay before I believe he fucked that girl.”
What the fuck?
We all already know Lil Duval is a gaping herpes sore on the ass of black comedy, so while his comments didn’t catch me by surprise, they made me think about the similarity between his words about this young woman and things I’ve experienced as a writer and sex-positive, body-positive black woman who is highly visible on the internet.
I’ve written about this before. There is something about fat women—but, most especially, fat black women—that makes people extremely uncomfortable. Why is that?
Every day, no matter what topic I am writing about or discussing, it is inevitable that detractors will come along and try to fight me. They realize very quickly that they are not going to be able to successfully argue with me on the merits of my points, so when all else fails, they fall into fat insults. It happens every time.
Never mind that in my profile on every social network and here on Kinja, I am wearing a shirt that proclaims my chubby physique proudly. Never mind that I’m actually mostly just top heavy with a pudgy belly. Never mind that they know nothing about my personal physical health; they want to attack it every time. I am used to it by now; it’s par for the course.
Those fat insults, however, turn even more vicious whenever the topic I am discussing is sex.
If you follow me on Twitter, then you know that I am sex-positive and discuss various topics related to sex all the time. It’s no secret that I am openly nonmonogamous, a believer in polyamory and a size queen with no gag reflex who loves a big dick.
I talk about it all the time, and when I do, there is a chorus of idiots who fall into my Twitter mentions to tell me how undesirable I am. They swear up and down that no one wants to fuck me. I, a fat, beautiful black woman with large, pendulous breasts, a girthy waistline, long legs and a sweet smell, am somehow less desirable and unworthy of sex because they said so.
This is what they tell me.
There are politics involved in labeling. I alluded to that earlier when I used all the flowery descriptors for Usher’s accuser. For most people, there are two categories of big girls: fat and thick.
Let’s get right to the shit.
As Twitter user @hausmuva aptly pointed out, “thick = respectable fatness.” Think Beyoncé’s post-pregnancy body and Rihanna’s Carnival body. Both women are slightly heavier in all the right places, and everyone, including me, is in love with the thickness.
I mean, be for real—both of these women are looking like snacks right now, as if they didn’t already on a regular basis.
But here’s the deal: As @hausmuva continues, we are OK with the added weight on Rihanna and Beyoncé because they are “vacationing in it.” The expectation is that they will shed the extra pounds and go back to the bodies that we are used to. But what if they didn’t? Would that make them less sexy?
No one is concern-trolling Rihanna or Beyoncé over her weight gain. As one Twitter user put it, their gains are viewed as “responsible,” and therefore not unhealthy like the rest of us fatties.
Listen. Don’t let fatness fool you. We get more sex than you guys think. Some of your faves not only desire our sex but prefer it. I have the DMs, private messages and sexual track record to prove it.
There are those who fetishize it, otherwise known as chubby chasers, and there are those who simply prefer plus-size women over everything else.
There are also those who just don’t allow a person’s size to be a factor when feeling desire toward them. They simply see a person, they feel attraction and they go for what they know.
I have experienced all of these in my lifetime.
The thing about me is, I have never let my size be a hindrance to me. I have never let it make me shy away from going for what I want, because as a heterosexual woman, I feel that any man I want can be had.
I am the perfect combination of pretty, sassy, funny, intelligent and champion code-switcher. I can fit in with any crowd with ease, and I have found myself hit on by men of every ethnicity and culture because of it.
But according to the fat-shamers, I shouldn’t be this confident. According to the fat-shamers, no one wants me based on my weight alone. According to the fat-shamers, I should stay humble and in my place.
A lot of this is based heavily in the white male gaze and the white male standard of beauty. We know this because a white man made a post on Instagram and wanted applause for loving his wife, a plus-size white woman. He got the accolades he was looking for, but what is that shit, really?
In writing that Instagram post, he basically tells the world that he is special because he is brave enough to go against the norm and love his wife anyway, despite her curves and thigh dimples. He essentially fat-shames his wife and uses her as a prop to get kudos for himself.
Fuck that guy.
The fat-shaming does not just come from men, however. Women actively participate in it, too.
The pervasive competitiveness between women where it comes to the male gaze, black or white, is always amplified when the woman being gazed upon is fat. The smaller woman feels a need to shame because, for whatever reason, a fat woman who is getting attention over her is taken as some sort of personal affront.
This has got to stop. What I (or any other fat person, for that matter) eats don’t make you shit. Who chooses to bed me (or any other fat person) should not be of concern to you.
If I’m not your cup of tea, that’s totally cool, but why do you insist on imposing your own insecurities on me and all the rest of the fatties?
What are we doing that makes you feel like there’s not enough sex to go around for all of us? I can get mine, and you can get yours, too.
Why does the fact that I am fat make you think that I am undeserving of love, affection, enormous erections and hot, sweaty sex?
Why does the idea that I am getting that on a regular basis make you so uncomfortable?
Just because fat black women have fixed your plates, kissed your knee scrapes, ironed your clothes and hugged away the pain doesn’t mean that we don’t like to fuck and do it well.
You look at fat black women as being mothers and aunties. And if we aren’t maternal—because the expectation that we must be is some bullshit—that doesn’t make us any less desirable. We can still kiss it and make it better.
As April Reign said on Twitter, “Meanwhile, there’s a reason why they call your grandma ‘Big Mama.’”
Implying that fat women are wholly undesirable and unworthy of sex or sexual attention betrays your own insecurities.
It’s one thing to have your own personal preference of what you like and don’t like; it’s entirely another thing to impose that preference on other people, especially when it is not already there for them.
Fat women aren’t going away. We are moving more and more into the mainstream. Perhaps that is what makes you uncomfortable.
Whatever it is, now is the time to get over yourselves, because not only are fat women here to stay, but we are here to claim all the love and sex that is being showered upon us.
No amount of fat-shaming is going to stop that.
You can turn up your nose, make your snide comments, and wish you were in control of our bodies and our sexual autonomy.
We will be over here minding our business, enjoying our sex lives and not worrying about what you are doing in yours.
*Laughs a great, big belly laugh.*