Fat Girl,

Microaggressions and fat-shaming.

September 10, 2015 17 Comments

It is no one’s god­damn busi­ness what I eat, except for me and my doc­tors. I owe no one expla­na­tions for my food choic­es. I owe no one an expla­na­tion for my body. I’m not oblig­at­ed to share my finan­cial avail­abil­i­ty for Good Food, nor my health sur­round­ing abil­i­ty to lose weight or process nutri­ents in a way igno­rant peo­ple think I should. My body does not require an expla­na­tion or an apol­o­gy, and it shouldn’t elic­it the spout­ing of erro­neous infor­ma­tion or mean­ing­less advice from friends, fam­i­ly, or strangers alike — and it most cer­tain­ly shouldn’t inspire com­plete strangers to pres­sure me into eat­ing things I don’t want to eat and adjust­ing my restau­rant orders to some­thing they’re more com­fort­able with a Fat­ty McFat­per­son like me eat­ing.

If I ate noth­ing but fruits and veg­eta­bles, I would not be wor­thy of more respect.

If I ate noth­ing but fried foods and sweet, I would not be wor­thy of less respect.

If I incor­po­rat­ed reg­u­lar inten­sive work­outs into my dai­ly life, I would not be a more wor­thy human.

If I did noth­ing but sit on the couch and eat Chee­tos all day long, I would not be a less wor­thy human.

And I hate so much that, despite work­ing con­stant­ly on body pos­i­tiv­i­ty and self-care for the past 4 years, all it takes is one ter­ri­ble per­son to make me sec­ond-guess the valid­i­ty of my exis­tence and self-worth as a fat femme per­son.

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You matter.

September 7, 2015 1 Comment

No mat­ter who you are. No mat­ter who you’ve been. No mat­ter what you believe. You mat­ter. Just as you are, you are wor­thy of love, respect, and com­pas­sion. You intrin­si­cal­ly — by sheer virtue of exist­ing as a human being — have a dig­ni­ty that no one can take from you. Your life mat­ters. Your voice mat­ters. Your phys­i­cal,…

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On treating depression.

August 3, 2015 8 Comments

I’ve been on anti-depres­sants for about 2 months. On the one hand, I’ve been far more pro­duc­tive than I’ve known it pos­si­ble to be in my life. I’ve been able to work on clean­ing and orga­niz­ing my house. I’ve been able to do laun­dry. I’ve been able to write and make art and live a…

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White Supremacy in America and me.

June 28, 2015 5 Comments

It’s easy for us, the white chil­dren of the Col­or­blind Gen­er­a­tion, to con­tin­ue to focus on indi­vid­ual prej­u­dice while deny­ing sys­temic oppres­sion. It’s how we were raised. It’s how we were taught. Sure­ly, we are inno­cent. Sure­ly, we don’t ben­e­fit from white suprema­cy. Sure­ly, we don’t per­pet­u­ate it.

And yet, white suprema­cy is alive and thriv­ing in Amer­i­ca today. It exists as a sys­tem, per­haps even more than as a skin col­or. It rewards not only those who work to sup­port the sys­tem, but also those who do noth­ing to impede it. Those who sit silent­ly in the face of oppres­sion. Those who step up and affirm the sys­tem that oppress­es them. Those who don’t even think to ques­tion the sto­ries we’re told about white­ness, black­ness, and our place in the world.

White suprema­cy cre­ates an envi­ron­ment where gen­er­a­tion after gen­er­a­tion are unin­formed about the vio­lence it takes to main­tain their safe­ty, then rewards them for nev­er ques­tion­ing what they’re told.

White suprema­cy cre­at­ed the envi­ron­ment that allowed me to reach the age of 21 with­out ever ques­tion­ing it. For decades, I did noth­ing to try to stop it.

I ben­e­fit from white suprema­cy.

And if you’re a white Amer­i­can — so do you.

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Of masculinity & abusive breeding grounds.

June 8, 2015 0 Comments

This post orig­i­nal­ly appeared on Ply­mouth Brethren Dropout on May 26, 2014. An updat­ed ver­sion appears below. It’s been just over a year since the tragedy at Isla Vista that prompt­ed the orig­i­nal pen­ning of this post. So many things have hap­pened since then that illus­trate the points made here­in, includ­ing but not lim­it­ed to: the large­ly…

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A tale of male entitlement.

May 29, 2015 6 Comments

This com­plete stranger, in the span of 90 sec­onds, demon­strat­ed that he felt enti­tled to a) my atten­tion, b) my pos­ses­sions, c) my good­will, and d) my body. 

My clear ret­i­cence for social inter­ac­tion didn’t mat­ter. My body lan­guage regard­ing my pen­cil didn’t mat­ter (con­sid­er­ing he lit­er­al­ly pried it from my hand). My dis­in­ter­est in stroking his ego was the high­est affront, to which he respond­ed by touch­ing me with­out my con­sent (and pro­long­ing his touch when I phys­i­cal­ly pulled away).

Peo­ple. Don’t do this. It’s super not okay. Respect per­son­al bub­bles. Don’t force peo­ple to inter­act with you when they’re giv­ing every indi­ca­tion that they’d real­ly rather not. And don’t take their stuff while they’re using it — that’s kinder­garten lev­el stuff. AND DON’T TOUCH ANYONE WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD IN THIS WORLD.

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The journey in and out.

May 15, 2015 5 Comments

There had always been a dis­con­nect between what I was taught and what I observed and expe­ri­enced, between blind faith in invis­i­ble things and repeat­ably testable evi­dence. But as a child, as a teen, even into ear­ly adult­hood, I wasn’t giv­en the words to rec­og­nize the dis­con­nect, or even the tools to inspect or decon­struct my beliefs to see if there was any mer­it to them out­side of want­i­ng them to be true.

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Let me hide myself.

March 30, 2015 3 Comments

I was 15 years old, sit­ting in the front row of the church, star­ing skep­ti­cal­ly at the woman who was preach­ing to us. This wasn’t my youth group, of course — the assem­blies would nev­er allow a woman to speak like this. I deter­mined that per­haps she was like Balaam’s don­key, and did my utmost to pay atten­tion to what­ev­er word of the Lord she might iron­i­cal­ly speak despite her unfit­ness for lead­er­ship.

She walked over to her pro­jec­tor and held up a trans­paren­cy sheet. “This rep­re­sents you,” she said sim­ply. “Your lives.” She picked up a few dif­fer­ent mark­ers and start­ed doo­dling on the sheet, explain­ing that our sins and deci­sions and actions were like the marks on the page. “Every­thing is here — from the clothes you wear, to the words you say, to what you do in your every day life. They all show up here.”

The speak­er placed the sheet back on the pro­jec­tor and turned on the light. “This light is Jesus,” she con­tin­ued. “Notice how you can’t see him through the ink, only through the clear parts?” I stirred in my seat, aware of how it seemed the Spir­it was mov­ing with­in me.

She took an eras­er and slow­ly began mov­ing it across the mark­er draw­ings. I watched, mes­mer­ized, as the marks dis­ap­peared. “This is what the blood of Christ does” — she point­ed to the now-clean sheet — “so that all that can be seen through you is Jesus.” She spent the rest of her time with us explain­ing how impor­tant it was to make sure that our trans­paren­cies remained clean, that our deci­sions and words and lives were so clean that we would only reflect Christ to those around us.

As I got in the van with the car­pool that brought me to church that night, I was deeply con­vict­ed to start chang­ing my life so that I would bet­ter reflect Christ. It occurred to me that this meant becom­ing a dif­fer­ent per­son. But wasn’t that what Chris­tian­i­ty was all about to begin with, becom­ing a new cre­ation in Christ?

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No more faith: the whys and why nots of my deconversion.

December 31, 2014 22 Comments

It’s real­ly rather rare for peo­ple to ask me why I decon­vert­ed from Chris­tian­i­ty. Like, real­ly rare. It’s far more com­mon for them to assume they already know, whether they’re talk­ing to me while they’re express­ing this assump­tion or not. How­ev­er, in a sin­gle week, I’ve had two sep­a­rate unaf­fil­i­at­ed peo­ple ask me a vari­a­tion of the same ques­tion about the role fun­da­men­tal­ism had in my decon­ver­sion. Of course, I’ve been try­ing to fig­ure this out for myself on a less-spe­cif­ic scale for the bet­ter part of two years, though much of it has been in my own head. Per­haps it’s time for me to work out of my thoughts here with you.

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Black lives matter.

December 24, 2014 1 Comment

This is not a print I’ll be sell­ing, but it’s avail­able for you to down­load and dis­perse as you will. I have no words to add to the onslaught of tragedy this year that has been police vio­lence against black peo­ple. I know that it’s not just this year. I know that it stems from…

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