Tag Archives: love your body week

Does this Blog make my Butt Look Big? Why “Fat Talk” may be Bad for your Social Life.


La, la, la I’m not listening…

“Fat talk” is a bonding ritual that many of us learned at our Mother’s knee.  Many of us have participated in fat talk over the years because we felt social pressure to do so.  But according to a recent study, moaning about the size of our thighs or asking if our butt looks big, might not be the best move for our social lives.

We’ve long known that fat talk is bad for your self esteem (and the self esteem of those around you).  We’ve talked about that in the blog a fair bit.  But a recent study led by Alexandra Corning, research associate professor of psychology and director of Notre Dame’s Body Image and Eating Disorder Lab seems to indicate that fat talk may make you less likable to your peers.  In the study, college students were shown pictures of noticeably thin and fat women.  Each of these pictures depicted women engaged in body talk–either positive body talk or fat talk.  Those participating in the study were then asked to rate the women in the photos in a number of dimensions including likability.  When the results were tabulated, it seems that women who engaged in “fat talk” were considered less likeable than those who engaged in positive body talk.  In fact, according to the study, the fat women who had positive things to say about their bodies were considered the most likeable.  This result is very interesting to psychologists who have long thought of fat talk as a way that women “strengthen social bonds”.  But the study seems to indicate that women who engage in this behavior may be perceived as less likeable than their peers.

But, and this is a big but*, it’s important to remember this test simply measures personal perception.  It doesn’t indicate what is actually happening in a social setting where fat talk is happening or measure anything related to peer pressure.  This may explain why many of us may still feel pressured to engage in fat talk even in an environment where we may privately be perceived as less likeable for doing so.  And it is only one study.

That said, I am encouraged by the results of this study.  I decided long ago to refrain from engaging in fat talk with my friends, family and colleagues.  I’ve taken heat for not participating.  I’ve been teased for it.  But I for one, will choose to believe that I am also secretly liked and respected for my refusal to fat talk.  Because believing the best about myself seems to be working pretty well for me so far.


The Fat Chick

*You see what I did there?

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Love Your Body Week TRAVEL Edition (sigh…)

funny-elephantBaby elephant metaphor day 2.  Yup, last night and this morning’s travel kicked my butt.  Not gonna lie to you.  Started out in Harrisburg, PA at around 6PM EST last night and finally got to my home in my bed at 4:00 AM PST (That’s 7AM EST) this morning.  Wanted to get up early but was feeling like that little elephant guy in the picture up there, with my head under the pillows, saying, “I don’t wanna get up and you can’t make me!”  That, my dear friends is why you are getting The Fat Chick Sings After Dark Edition.

I was really pleased and proud of the way I got through things last night though.  I got through the first leg of my trip okay and landed at Washington Dulles right on time.  Our flight for LA boarded on time and we just got settled into our seats when we heard an announcement.

The pilot told us there was an issue on the plane but they thought they could get a deferment.  He said that the deferment would probably take about 30 to 60 minutes.  I was bummed but determined to just stay calm and make the best of it.  Ten minutes later the pilot made another announcement.  He said that he was told the deferment, if we could get it at all, would take much longer.  So they found another plane we could take to LAX.  Unfortunately it was a long way away in another terminal.  A lot of people groaned and complained, but again, I resolved to make the best of it.

We hiked the 15 minutes to the other plane, and as we went a lot of people were still angry and complaining.  But I KNOW it could have been so much worse.  A lot of people in the last 3 or 4 days have faced delays of 10, 12 or even 24 hours.  In the past, people have been trapped in their plane on the runway for 2, 3 or even over 4 hours while repairs or mechanical adjustments were made.  So  I decided to see this as a minor setback and a chance to stretch my legs.  After about a 40 minute wait, we all boarded the new plane (in exactly the same seat configuration) and soon got underway.  All in all, we arrived about 50 minutes late into LAX.  It was pushing 2AM by time I got my bags.  But I got back to my husband safe and sound, and all was good with the world.

So many times I have faced situations like this with anger and frustration.  So many times in the past I have cursed and muttered and fretted. But this time I made a special effort to be calm and to make the best of it.  And you know what? It really did make things better.  There were plenty of people around me who were plenty angry.  But they didn’t arrive in LA even one minute sooner than I did.  In fact, the trip probably seemed a lot longer to those folks who were really mad.

So I took that as my karmic lesson for yesterday.  I decided to take a deeeeeeep breath and just roll with it.  This is one of my real-life resolutions for this year, and I think it’s a good one.  So what do you think? How do you cope with life’s copious pain-in-the-butt moments? I’d love to hear your thoughts and/or stories.

By the way, The Fat Chick’s internal clock is infernally messed up right now.  Expect schedule changes from my usual posting times for blogs, videos, The Right Now Show and hours of consciousness. There are will be no meal vouchers or refunds available.  Thank you for your patience.  That is all.


The Fat Chick

P.S. Speaking of travel, the Fit Fatties are aiming for Vegas baby!  Help us gather those few hundred miles needed to get us to Sin City by Friday.  Click here to learn more!

Why I Love “Love Your Body Week”


I’m having such a great time presenting at Love Your Body week at Dickinson college this week!  I feel just like that joyful little baby elephant up there.  The students are enthusiastic and I too am learning a lot!

I was invited to speak for the college’s “Love Your Body Week” and I’m just one part of an amazing number of fun and meaningful activities.  I”ve been impressed with the “Love Your Body Week” theme and it’s a great tool for the college campus for a number of reasons.  Here are a few:

1.  I think it’s inclusive.  It’s not love fat people week or love think people week.  It’s not just for boys or girls.  It’s not just for athletes or artists.  It’s love your body week.  Everybody with a body is included.

2.  It’s positive.  Rather than telling us what not to do, it’s telling us what TO do.   This is the Health At Every Size (R) way, which tends to focus on positive, definitive, loving and nurturing things that you can do for yourself.  It’s hard to think of something more positive and nurturing than loving your body.

3.  It brings attention to eating disorders on college campuses.  There is a LOT of disordered eating on college campuses.  This is a serious and dangerous problem for both men and women.  Love Your Body Week brings attention to eating disorders in a very gentle way, which does not call people out or shame them for disordered eating, but rather allows everybody access to this important information.

4.  It’s joyful.  See?  Look at the baby elephant.  That’s how I feel!  We’ve talked about some very serious subjects this week.  But we also chatted, laughed, sang, played and danced together this week at Dickinson College.  An awful lot of this was fun.  And I’m hoping that fun will bring young men and women back for more year after year.

5.  It’s planting an important seed.  I am not naive or egotistical enough to believe that I can change anybody’s mind about body love, self acceptance, size acceptance or Health At Every Size with one speech.  But I can say I wish somebody told me about it back when I was a college kid.  I had to wait until age 30 to even be exposed to this idea.  Love Your Body Week allows us to plant the seed of why it’s so important to love your body at every size among young people.  Nobody knows when or if that seed will bloom.  But at least the seed has been planted.

That, my dears, is why I love “Love Your Body Week”.  Are you having a “Love Your Body Week” at your college campus or workplace?  If not, why not institute one of your own.  Let’s work together to make every week “Love Your Body Week!”


The Fat Chick