Friday, November 1, 2013

A Testimony On Fat Shaming

North Dakota woman, in an attempt to "take a stand against obesity" handed out "fat letters" to children who don't fit her ideal of what bodies should look like. She might have thought her intentions were good, but in reality they were cruel and demeaning. I have always struggled with my weight and never reach the ideal image of what people wanted me to look like. I was always either too skinny or too fat. I got sick with gallstones, was hospitalized and eventually needed surgery to remove my gallbladder, which led to a significant amount of weight loss. But no one cared about my health because I had finally reached the "perfect size." I was congratulated by my weight loss, and some even felt it was appropriate to warn me of future gain weight. And even though I have always felt uncomfortably with my body there are those who have it much worse, like my friend Veronica. Below is a statement she made after reading about the "fat letters" handed to children on Halloween. She gave me permission to share it because she is tired of being fat shamed.

Monday, October 28, 2013

A note to readers...

In the world of blogging you will never be able to satisfy everyone.

Someone will always be pissed because you spoke openly on an issue. Others will be pissed because you didn't. No matter how hard you try you won't be able to speak for all people, and even when you try you will be deemed not an expert on others' experiences (because it's impossible to be.)

My blog is my personal space to write about my life-- the good, the bad, and the ugly. When I want to talk about feminism in the context of the United States I seek out other platforms.

My life is not beautiful, free of violence, and cookie-cutter. My family members have been victims, and sometimes the perpetrators. The only way I can address that is by writing honestly about it.

Does that make me an expert on all Latino issues? No. I am only an expert of my life.

As a woman in science, a Latina born with light skin, an immigrant, and a heterosexual woman, my life is an amalgamation of all those titles. Sometimes they give me the platform to shine, sometimes they relegate me to the status of almost nothing.

I write about what matters to me, knowing very well that I won't and can't make everyone happy. When I mess up, I try to learn from it and move forward. And I work hard every single day of my life to be genuine and empathetic, to acknowledge my privilege, to speak up for myself, to work on my faults, and to remember to tell myself how much I love ME.  If I don't love myself and my achievements no one else will do it for me.

I welcome and listen to all critique, but it doesn't come at the expense of insulting me. If I say something that pisses you off so much you want to call me a whore and a bitch, you've lost the opportunity for dialogue.

If you don't find me interesting, radical, exciting, or worthy of praise...don't. Really, I am not looking for fans. If I wanted to excel at something I would be testing building materials in a lab, because I was really darn good at it! I don't aim to be amazing, I aim to be me.

If my life story speaks to you, I am here for you. If you can't relate to my life, that's ok! My feminism is not about "kumbaya, we are all sisters." We really aren't the same and if I attempt to equalize all women I would fail at the most important part of my feminism: acknowledging women's varied and complicated lives.