It’s “Say Something Sunday,” a day dedicated to personal Size Diversity activism. I’ve got some suggestions below and/or of course you can do your own thing and feel free to leave a comment about it. If you have ideas of things to do for Say Something Sunday I’d also love for you to share those.
I did the math and if everyone who views the blog each week did one piece of Size Diversity Activism a week, it would add up to over 1.5 million body positive messages put out into the world this year. Multiply that times the number of people who might see each of those messages and things start to increase exponentially. To be very clear, nobody is obligated to do activism so if this doesn’t appeal to you that’s totally cool, I’ll be back tomorrow with your regularly scheduled blog post!
My ideas for this week (these are just suggestions, feel free to change them to make them work for you, and if they don’t appeal to you feel free to do your own thing!)
Speak up for healthcare without size discrimination.
- Update the Cat Dragon Fat Friendly Healthcare Providers List with a practitioner you know who works from a fat friendly perspective
- If you’ve had a bad experience with a doctor, leave negative reviews on yelp/Zodoc etc. (you can search your doctor’s name to see what review sites they belong to)
- If you had a bad experience with a doctor, make a complaint to your local regulatory board
Post to Social Media and/or tell someone who is body shaming you under the guise of being “concerned about your health” that if they are really concerned with your health they will trust you to make decisions for yourself and honor your request that they not body shame you – because shaming, stigma, bullying and oppression are bad for your health.
Leave a comment on an article that shames people based on their body size that just says that size-based shaming, stigma and oppression is wrong, and do it with absolutely no qualifiers (ie, no need to talk about reasons why people are fat or thin, or people’s health or anything else)
If you want to do more of this kind of thing, consider joining the Rolls Not Trolls group on Facebook, it’s a group created for the specific purpose of putting body positive things in body negative spaces on the internet and supporting each other while we do that. It’s a secret group so if you want to join just message me on facebook (I’m Ragen Chastain)
Have a great Say Something Sunday!
Let’s Hang Out!
Schools are back in session and I’m booking talks for Spring and Fall of this year. If you want me to come to your school, business, or organization (even if you’re not sure how to get it done), just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org and we’ll talk about the options. If you want to bring me to your community but don’t have funding or an organizational affiliation, I can help you with that too – e-mail me and we can talk about the possibilities. See you soon!
Like this blog? Here’s more cool stuff:
Become a Member For ten bucks a month you can support size diversity activism, help keep the blog ad free, and get deals from size positive businesses as a thank you. Click here for details
Buy the book: Fat: The Owner’s Manual The E-Book is Name Your Own Price! Click here for details
Book Me! I’d love to speak to your organization. You can get more information on topics, previous engagements and reviews here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!
Dance Classes: Buy the Dance Class DVDs or download individual classes – Every Body Dance Now! Click here for details
I’m training for an IRONMAN! You can follow my journey at www.IronFat.com
A movie about my time as a dancer is in active development (casting, finding investors etc.). Follow the progress on Facebook!
If you are uncomfortable with my offering things for sale on this site, you are invited to check out this post.
9 thoughts on “Say Something Sunday – Fourth Edition”
I love Say Something Sundays! It’s great to see more opportunities for activism being presented. It also gives me that “Nudge” I need to get off my arse and DO MORE when it comes to fat activism. Of course, no one is obligated to do activism of any type, but for me I WANT to do more, so getting posts like this once a week is a great reminder! 🙂
Im in. Ill commit to one per week.
I did the second thing! Over the summer and through the fall I saw a terrible orthopedist for a broken foot who would NOT shut up about my weight despite my telling him explicitly several times to cut it out and focus on my actual problem. I left him bad reviews on Angie’s List and Healthgrades. I actually should go back and update those — he refused to prescribe me physical therapy, and now I’ve developed tendonitis because I’m off-balance and not walking properly. Douchcanoe!
Don’t forget ratemeds dot com. I’ve left a few reviews on there myself.
So I had a failed activism attempt last night and I am feeling really discouraged.
A “friend” of mine posted the following on Facebook:
“It’s a beautiful day, so I decided to walk to group. I’m walking down the street behind a woman who is as wide as the sidewalk.
Do you know why this makes me happy?
Because she’s out for a walk”
“She was getting it, too. It was inspirational. The determination was intense.”
And I called him out on it and said “… Yeah it’s difficult to just you know exist as a fat person without all the judgy assholes who think they’re being nice.” and then “So you don’t think you’re being condescending by calling her “inspirational”? Come on.” To which he replied that he wasn’t because it wasn’t his intention. And I said “Well patting yourself on the back for seeing the good in someone “as wide as a sidewalk” comes across like that to me.”
At this point I left the comments because all of his friends jumped to his defense. I did try to message him outside of it, and he said he respected my opinion even though I was “overreacting”. There was the usual hand wringing concern trolls who went on about OMG OBESITY and then his “fat” friends came to the rescue and said I didn’t speak for them and that they weren’t offended and that the imagery was inspiring. And when my best friend (a skinny guy) stepped in and agreed with me, apparently to this guy I was suddenly “hypersensitive” and “trying to start a war”.
He then took to messages to tell me that he had many “obese” friends on his friend’s list and none of them were offended. And that I was embarrassing myself because so many people disagreed with. He continued to attack me saying I shouldn’t try to speak for all fat people since it wasn’t about me. Also that I brought it on myself and I was “too emotional” and had to “get off my high horse” because I was “too PC”.
He personally attacked me and made me doubt myself. And when I was in tears about it still trying to get him to see my point of view, he kept attacking me. I can’t force myself to read the rest of the comments, but I was up almost all night distraught about it.
Ragen, I admire the strength you have to have to face this every day. Because the one opportunity I thought I had to actually reach someone I completely failed at. 😦
I am so sorry that this happened to you. Whenever anyone speaks out about how effed up this kind of “inspiration” is, people who are trying to get their “Save the Fatties” badge get all defensive and pissed off, and in my experience using every single derailing technique that exists including all of the ones that you talk about experiencing, along with a heaping helping of bullying.
Feel free to ignore this, but when I read about the activism that you did, I’m super excited for all of his “obese friends” who read what you wrote and (while they didn’t comment because they didn’t want to get attacked by people who were being super defensive because someone called them out their bullshit) felt vindicated, and supported and have found a new role model and hero in you. And I’m excited to think of all of the people who didn’t say anything but saw exactly what was going on and thought “She’s right, that’s totally fucked up and I’m not going to do that anymore.” And I think of how much you inspire me to want to speak out about this (I feel a blog post coming on.)
One thing that makes it easier for me is that I never expect to change the fatphobe’s mind, I stand up for myself because it makes me feel good about myself, and I provide another option for other people which is exactly what I think you did. I don’t in any way intend to tell you how to feel about the situation, that’s just my perspective.
Thanks for inspiring me,
Thank you Ragen. I hadn’t thought of that perspective before. 🙂
You could unfriend the guy, if he’s a derailer. Like Ragen said though, others who read and didn’t post saw your comments and might respond in themselves.
Ugh. I am really glad I missed that, Jen. So not oversensitive, or I am.