Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fat Beauty Contests

I saw this on Fierce Fatties
"Thanks to Fat Acceptance, a fat pageant backlash has risen in the past decade in response to the arbitrary thin beauty standard. Ranking fat women in order of beauty was supposed to give fat women hope that they, too, could be seen as beautiful and desirable. 
Whether someone chooses to seek self-acceptance through beauty pageants is completely up to them, as bodily autonomy is one of the central tenets of Fat Acceptance. But a recent short-film documentary has given us a glimpse inside fat beauty pageants and it should give women pause before staking their self-confidence on a sash and crown. 
“There She Is” follows the story of two fat friends, Allison Kopach and Jenny Flores, as they compete in the Miss American Beauties Plus Pageant."
Here is the trailer to the "There She Is" documentary:

There She Is - IndieGoGo Video from There She Is on Vimeo.

Fierce Fatties are right about their concerns about a fat beauty contest.

I hate all beauty contests ranging from the Honey Boo-Boo and Toddlers and Tiaras set all the way to Ms. America. Total meat market objectification of women that helps advance more image obsession in a culture that cares only about looks. Whatever happened to the days where women stood up against this thing and thought character and improving your mind was important too? I wish they'd cancel all of them.

Proverbs 31:30 - Favour [is] deceitful, and beauty [is] vain: [but] a woman [that] feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.

While I like to wear a nice, comfortable dress and nail polish on occasion, I always hated the idea of beauty pageants. Make-up, fancy hair styles, heels, I always found this stuff boring though oddly painted nails and fashion always appealed to the artist side of me. That said, how come all these beauty pageant people dress all alike?

I remember in high school, how all the beautiful and thin girls were constantly paraded about, like they didn't get enough attention, love and praise from their families and those surrounding them with homecoming queen contests and the top 20 events at my high school [smart AND BEING BEAUTIFUL required as well] So wonder very few come out of high school with an intact self esteem? What do all these contests do to women who may have more plain or even homely looks?

My family told me I was ugly for being fat over and over, and did a complete number on me. I wasn't ugly, but it was part of the put-downs and overall invalidation and extreme focus on appearance. Development of the mind and intellect was ignored. Don't ask me how someone who read 15 books a week studying everything from history to anthropology for fun got born into such a family but it happened to me!  Looks were the focus of my upbringing after all I was there to bring narcissistic supply via looks and achievement, and when I turned out to be a fat nerd instead that got very ill, I didn't fill the desired role.

Before I went no contact due to their abuse, on a social websites, I saw the matriarch and others, all taking smiling pictures standing next to thin relatives including cousins of mine that I seem to share no DNA with, as they are so thin no fat would dare to stick to their bones. I never saw the same kind of photos with fatter relatives, which by the way include cousins that seemed to have skyrocketed from weighing in the low 200s all the way up to the upper 300s. I noticed the thin ones were preferred by far.  It said a lot to me. Also too if you are poor or lack money for fancy clothes, grooming, hair-dos, etc, this focus on looks can even be more painful.

I am working now on rejecting a long list of expectations, I did not meet and have worked for years to survive emotionally replacing them with my own expectations and what God desires over those  I was taught. Women as a whole in our society suffer enough from the YOU MUST BE THIN AND BEAUTIFUL MATRIX. I suppose having a subset of "YOU MUST BE FAT AND BEAUTIFUL isn't much different. Stay midsized for the decent fashions and make sure your face retains enough beauty and no lymphedema legs allowed! Ah the irony!

I don't post pictures here for various reasons, but I am not an ugly person. My body is scary and the stuff of nightmares even size wise, but not everything came out bad and horrible. I've been hit on in the street, with a man here and there asking me out or complimenting me. The latest time, was a two years ago sitting in front of the public library. Hey a few nice voices among all the "Hey you are fat and ugly messages", can feel like a relief. There's more men attracted to fat women out there then you'd know and in my case being married I did not want their attention. Now I've gotten older and no men [not closet fat admirers] are going to go running after the "walker" set. I'm shy anyway and don't feel like stuttering out, "Thanks but I am married". 

I had people in a support group the other day tell me, that "you are a beautiful woman", I did end up with a "pretty face", which got better looking with age ironically, but even praise like that makes me feel "funny" because so much of life was spent being abused for "looking" the wrong way! I don't want physical attractiveness to be what gives me worth or anyone else for that matter! It's a prison, one that even for the ones who get it, eventually is lost in age, and focuses on the shallow.

I told my friends and others the best thing for women as a whole would be to escape "the beauty prison" and not look back! If there is anything I hate about being female, is this whole focus on looks, just the way my personality works, my interest in life was more focused on developing the mind. Men seem to have a certain freedom, I always have envied, while looks matter to a point with them too in this society it is not all encompassing.  Old school feminists used to rally against this stuff, but the new school ones, it's all about looks now.

Hmm it looks like fat beauty contests are not something new. These women are barely fat by today's standards, more along the lines of being PLUMP!

Anyhow one thing about beauty contests and the rest, I am tired of a person of this age and experience, being tested, measured, compared, and all the endless expectations. Women suffer from the beauty prison fat and thin. 

Beauty on the Inside?

The Body Isn't Everything!

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