Let’s be honest, it’s not easy being a fat gay man these days. Especially not when the media and society dictates that you should look a certain way, with perfect abs, a gorgeous smile, and a head of hair enviable of pretty much everyone. That you’re supposed to look like some Ken doll-like underwear model, and any deviation from that stereotype is considered social suicide.
What a load of bullshit, huh? If everyone was meant to look alike, then we’d all be boring drones with nothing to do or say to one another.
But the crap thing is we’ve bought into this mind set and we spend our lives criticising others based on their appearance, be it friends or strangers. And as much as you might say you don’t do it, you probably do it more than you realise.
I recently read an article on Buzzfeed via Facebook about this exact same topic. About how if you’re fat and gay, you’re less likely to be included by the other gays, and you’ll probably be made fun of or made to feel bad about yourself regardless of how you look after yourself.
The article was mostly about how degrading it is when people criticise you about your weight, as it if it’s such an easy thing to change. And about how society seems to have accepted that it’s okay to criticise an overweight person, as if it’s helpful instead of hurtful.
But when you wonder out loud why I can’t just lose some weight, you’re looking out for me. At least, that’s the perception. The hurtful degradation becomes socially sanctioned, because being fat is considered to be innately wrong. And suddenly, otherwise good people feel no shame in condemning us fatties. It’s not bigotry if we deserve it.
Just like the author, I too have had people comment about my weight in regards to my looks. That if I just ‘lost a few pounds’ or ‘tried a little harder’ then I would be so much better looking, or that it would be so much easier to find a boyfriend. Of course these people generally know nothing about my life or eating habits, so really have no right to make these comments.
And when you’ve grown up being the fat kid with low self-esteem who’s been working hard as an adult to become more confident and comfortable in your own skin, that really hurts. As if your looks are the only thing that matters when it comes to finding friends or partners. As if you’ll only be successful in life if you’re fit and good looking.
And it’s hard not to buy into that mentality sometimes..
Unfortunately, as interesting and insightful as the author was trying to be, it ended up coming across as a bit too whiney and I’m not writing about this to have a whinge myself. As a friend pointed out when I posted the article link on Facebook:
‘..you make the best of it, you don’t wallow and go “wah none of the cool kids will touch me”, you realise the “cool” kids are arseholes and go find a circle of friends who like you for you..‘
And that’s the whole point, right? Finding and surrounding yourself with people who accept you for being you, without it being all about how you look or if you fit into a certain stereotype.
And yeah, there are men out there who do like bigger guys, almost to a point where it’s a fetish, so perhaps there is some hope in the end. Although if you ask me, I’d rather someone was with me (either as friends or otherwise) because I’m me, not because of my big belly or chunky butt.. but I suppose I’ll take what I can get.
As long as they like me for being me. 😀