Monday, September 27, 2010

"They Don't Date Fat Women, Do They?"

Being the "benefit of the doubt" kind of girl that I am, I made the repeated mistake (you'd think I'd learn) of responding to Mr. Forward's email.  I think I go through these speed bumps of unintelligent thoughts where I figure I have nothing to lose and, in want of male attention, throw my morals to the wind and overlook blatant red flags.  Although I continued to give him the time of day, I did not answer his inappropriate question regarding a rock in a stream and my potential activity on said rock.  (Confused? Click here.)  Glossing over the top and answering all the rest of his G-rated questions, I stupidly responded in hopes that maybe my attempts to steer things back in the direction of a conversation less likely to come out of the mouth of a fifteen year old boy would prompt him to do the same.  Sweet, Melanie.  Simple, sweet, hopeful Melanie.

Mr. Forward wrote me back and answered my question regarding why he tended to date outside of his own race by making very generalized statements regarding particular ethnicities of women.  Most white women, he told me, are just after the dream of the big house, the fancy car, the husband who pays all the bills and the over-the-top Christmas parties.  Nice.  Asian women take good care of their men.  Black women are strong and independent.  Indian women are "well kept" and fun loving.  Latinas are hardworking and enjoy "pumping out babies."  Oh, I found a winner here, Singletons...a real Grade A racist.  I'm not impressed.  Nor am I stupid enough to write him back.

Although he completely overlooked the question I had regarding his religion or the lack thereof on his profile, he did take delight in telling me that he's not a virgin and has a pretty scandalous sexual history with his ex.  As in currently.  As in, he didn't imply that the history had come to a close.  He told me to feel free to ask him about it and his divorce, he was happy to share.  Ha.  I am not happy to share, with anyone let alone an ex.

You'd think that after all this I would have read enough to know that this guy wasn't going to make it into any chapters of my autobiography.  At first glance, I was actually considering writing him back (I obviously needed a healthy shot of self-esteem at that point) until I got to the last paragraph of his email.  Remember that my photos hadn't posted to when I first heard from Mr. Forward?  I was impressed that he had given me the benefit of the doubt considering my usual lack of response to "Ask me for a Photo" profiles.  The benefit is dead.  Mr. Forward asked me if I could share my Facebook page with him ( because he wanted to see more pictures of me.  He said that since I listed that I was "Full figured" on my profile (don't lie about body type, people, it will always come back to haunt you), he wanted to get an assessment of "just how Full we're talking."

Now, I'd usually have a full-fledged, major problem with this anyway, but throw in the fact that Mr. Forward is no bodybuilder himself and seems rather stout (to put it kindly...why am I being kind?  He's big.) in his own photos is even more of an insult.  Why does this double standard exist in dating?  I was willing to see past the size of his body and consider him for his personality and traits that he may have that would compliment mine, so why does my body size play a determining factor?  If you can't love me whether I'm 100 pounds or 500 pounds, then that's a character flaw in you.  Mr. Forward is so against "white women who only want 'The Dream'," but seems perfectly fine with his pursuit of "The Dream" woman?  Why are men so willing to date a woman who has countless other flaws, but a couple of pounds extra and I'm automatically scratched from the list?

Granted, I don't think it's any real great loss not being included in Mr. Forward's list of dateable women, but I've run across this issue my entire adult life.  And the media only instigates this double standard. Watch television and tell me how many sitcoms or commercials have overweight, borderline unattractive male main characters married to thin, beautiful, younger female characters.  Then watch for the reverse.  You won't find it.  So, what that's telling us is that we, as women, have to accept our men regardless of their physical features, but the men don't necessarily have to do the same...?

Here's my thing.  I could stand to lose some of this plus-sexiness, I'm well aware of that, for my health and to feel more comfortable in my own body (and for the fashion options).  But, I will not do it to appease or attract a man.  I don't want to be one of those women who can't eat an M&M in front of her husband for fear of ridicule, insults or being left alone if I gain an ounce.  I will not be miserable just to have a guy stand next to me and claim he loves a pseudo version of myself who happens to be thinner.  Plus, I'm sure there are plenty of things about these prejudiced men's bodies that they wouldn't want to be judged and excluded for by women.  Just so happens that their pants do a good job of covering it up.

*Writer's Note:  The title of this post is in tribute to one of the greatest and most talked about episodes of television in history:  Designing Women, Episode #4.11:  "They Shoot Fat Women, Don't They?"


  1. I stumbled across your blog from 20SB. I love your writing! And I completely agree, why should a few extra pounds trump all of my awesomeness? Especially when the other person isn't in the running for a GQ cover! Also the media will show some frumpy or "unattractive" woman with a good looking man, but she will ultimately undergo a transformation from ugly ducking into beautiful swan.

    I call BS!

  2. Hi, E! I'm so glad you found my blog and that you enjoy it! I'm still so flattered that I'm able to get and hold people's interest with this silliness. Oh yes, I forgot about the ugly duckling/transformation storyline. Although those women are usually only "ugly" because they wear glasses or something frivolous. Glad I have this blog to vent such frustrations and readers who get it and are on Team Melanie! Hope you stick around!

  3. Upon further review, I hope you all always realize that when I say "men," I'm usually referring to a select few. I know that there are plenty of men out there that not only don't mind Plus-Sexy women, but there are even some that, quite frankly, enjoy it. I just wish I could find them! I apologize for generalizing!

  4. personally, I don't think being sexy is all about having a slim/slender body. it's more about exuding a confident aura. like having a positive outlook in life just like what you're doing. you don't feel bad about being a full-figured woman and try to kill yourself with slimming pills just so you'd look pleasing to men.

    so, way to go Melanie! :D

  5. Thanks, Sinthea! I try my best to exude that confident aura on a daily basis. I kind of like the idea of having to work at it, though...if it's not completely obvious and easy, then it makes it worth the attention that I (hopefully) get. ;) Staying positive, staying positive!

  6. I have a plus sexy friend who will put on her swin suit and walk to the pool with a cover, like she is Miss America. Then on the other hand I have always been thin, I never walk to the pool without a towel or cover. This lady can start a conversation with any man, me not so much. I guess what I'm trying to say is it's not all about your figure, it's what you do with it.

  7. @Anonymous, I completely agree. I try daily to live by the "plus-sexy" mantra, instead of just "plus." If I'm confident in who I am as a person and how everything about me comes together to make me beautiful in my own way, then other people won't be able to help but see that. But, if I walk around with my head down with an Eeyore attitude, then nothing good will come of that. But, I would like your friend to teach me how she can start a conversation with any man... ;)

  8. Aloha,

    I love your BLog I can so relate to everything! I live in HAwaii an I want to say something about the men here.... They love big women! NOw with that being said yes i date lots but nothing on gong. Anyhow I went to the mainland recently and noticed that I was That may sound funny, but it is true. I felt nasty over there. Men sneered at me as I passed. This was a new thing for me because here on the islandsI get cat calls and waves from across the street. Culture does play a role in what men see as beautiful. FOr instance I thought I would try e-harmony and did the whole get to know you thing, but as soon as my picture was sent (I am not kidding) I would recieve "Oh, I am so sorry but you are to fat for me." SO I brought this up with e-harmony (the first time) Then I noticed te next day I had a totally diferent in box, every man in there was black (my preference anyway). Well this went on for a bit then things changed again and I recieved all Asian and Caucasian Once again I got that I was to fat for them. I talked to e-harmony again and they told me that they were sory but their matching strategies work from te inside out and basically if my beautiful insides could not match my outsides, then maybe e-harmony wasn't for me. Wow fat people are not allowed on e-hrmony? or wait only my beautiful insides are allowed on e-harmony. SO when I read your blog I was very interested.



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