Being the Fat Friend (#SvelteHeaux2017)

Bonjour, fancy faces! Comment allez-vous? (see how a heaux is bringing you bilingual bougie bitch this sunny Monday afternoon via Google translate! Jheez!)

I hope are you feeling as fabulous as you already know you are because we’re about to get into it today, yes lort!

If you remember from my first post, I mentioned that as well as speaking on the struggles of a weight loss journey, part of #SvelteHeaux2017 is going to be about spilling the tea about the reality of what it’s like being a big girl, so bitch get some gluten free, sugar free, wheat free, vegan friendly biscuits ready (because obviously…svelte heaux init –I recommend Nairn’s Fruit & Seed Oat biscuits. You’re welcome) and get ready to sip on this.

Now hunty, I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been a skinny bitch. I exited the womb like LaTrice Royale -chunky and funky

-and for the most part, it’s cool –well it is now anyway. Growing up, bumbling through the awkward teenager phase where you don’t really know yourself properly, being a big bitch was challenging at times (for some of you, it may still be that way, and that’s okay boo. A bitch is here to help you through that) because the feeling of not ticking the ‘right’ boxes of what is considered 'beautiful' in society has a way of making you feel less than, especially when there are other girls in the mix who are half your size.

No one wants to be the fat friend. When I say that, I don’t mean that you necessarily have a problem with being a big girl, because there are loads of amazing plus size women loving the skin they’re in, I mean specifically fulfilling the role of the fat friend- bitch, there’s a difference. Due to society’s attitude towards overweight people, the fat friend is the equivalent to being *Marga Man voice* the butterz friend (god, do you remember that song?), and ain't nobody here for being seen as the butterz friend, especially when big bitches stay cute too, can I get a halleu?!

These days I’m too lost in my own sauce to be phased by it, but growing up with the stigma of being the fat friend left the residue of those thoughts of inadequacy somewhere in the back of my mind. This is not to say that I feel any less around smaller women (all this sauce won’t allow it), but those experiences have a way of creeping up on me sometimes to make me aware that I am the big one.

*SIDENOTE: Most of the things I touch on in this post are thoughts I had growing up though some are still relatable today.

Growing up I had a habit of gravitating towards big girls, not because they looked like me, but because they were funny as shit with no behaviour (I LOVE me some badly behaved women). Being surrounded by big girls meant that I didn’t have to fill the role of the fat friend because we we’re all large and in charge. We were the fat friends. Developing friendships with bigger girls meant that I was less aware of my size. It contributed to my confidence that I had girls around me that I could relate to on a deeper level, who celebrated me as I was (sometimes…I’ll spill that tea in another post), and vice versa.

Towards the end of secondary school and early college days, I branched out from my circle of plush pals and planted myself amongst the skinny bitches. I was now the fat one and it was something that was harder to ignore back then because of the shift in body weight ratio dynamics, my hormones starting to kick in (making me notice real life boys and not just B2K and Lloyd), not really knowing how to dress myself (there are some tragic outfits in my past), and my confidence being nowhere near what it is now. If we went out together -from clubbing, to shopping, even to things as mundane as grabbing some lunch -I was constantly reminded of my size.

SHOPPING AS THE FAT FRIEND

Shopping with your skinny bitch friends is a recipe for rage, especially back then because brands weren’t catering to bigger girls as much as they do now (though some of them still need to work on that). It’s frustrating enough to not be able to find your size or items that don’t make you look like you own ten cats and have given up on life, when you’re shopping by yourself. We all get shopping rage from time to time, but shopping with women who slip easily into sizes 8-10 amplifies it. You’ve spent the afternoon browsing the racks, and now you’re under that harsh changing room lighting, trying shit on only for it to look like it has your stomach in a fucking choke hold so you have to put it back and hope that they have the next size up (which amplifies how fat you feel because you thought that the size you picked up was your size but apparently now you are even bigger), meanwhile your skinny friend is freely twirling in the mirror like Kenya Moore in the booth next to you in a crop top that you didn’t even bother to look at in the store because you knew the shit was not meant for you.

This cycle is repeated store after store –her arms are full of bags of new outfits, meanwhile you’ve only managed to accumulate accessories and you’re wondering if maybe you should give Evans a go.

EATING OUT AS THE FAT FRIEND

You and your friends go out for a meal and it’s stress from start to finish. First, you have to pick the right seat, and that is the seat on the outer side of the table, bitch, because ain’t nobody got time to be doing suck-in-belly and ‘excuse me’, trying to squeeze yourself through a gap so small that you have to ask your friends to move in more so you can use the damn toilet only to return and go through the ordeal again in reverse.

Then comes time to order food and you don’t want to order ‘too much’ because you don’t want people to look over at your table and see the big girl with the biggest plate and wonder why you’re not eating a salad.

Your food arrives and then shit gets even more complicated because if you finish it all and your skinny friends don’t, you look even more craven, but if you don’t finish everything you get this feeling that people think you’re doing image. On top of that, actually eating it…oh my god. This is the real life Hunger Games because you don’t want to look fat while you eat, so you take a bit more time and you’re a bit neater about it, these times if it was you in your yard that food would have been boxed off in half the time.

Fam, it’s all long. Plis, I just want to enjoy.

GOING OUT AS THE FAT FRIEND

It’s time for a night out and you’re dressed, to impress, spark da man dem’s interest…but it’s all for nought because all the man dem are interested in your skinny friends and it leaves you feeling like you’re too big for any guy to look your way.

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This is one of the most prominent times when you feel like you are the fat friend, the butterz friend –when men are involved - and it fucking sucks. You get used to awkwardly standing off to the side, sipping your wine, fake looking through your phone…just trying to find something to occupy yourself with to make the lack of attention you’re getting seem less uncomfortable while your skinny friends get chatted up and you don’t, or being the one dancing alone while they’re getting daggered right next to you.

To make a shit situation shittier, if the guy talking to your friend has a friend, he’s obligated to play the role of the wing man to keep you occupied so you don’t say or do anything to cock block

**Quick side note: man dem, most women only cock block you if we know our friend is not interested or if she’s too drunk to smart choices. Some of you roll up with ashy lips, creased clothes, you didn’t wash your hands after you used the toilet, you have bad credit and you just wanna waste our friends time, but then have the cheek to call us haters when we stop you. We’re not haters, we’re heroes. We want our friends to get quality dick and some of you nah mek it. You’re welcome.

If he’s a seasoned wing man (it also helps if he’s cute) it’s calm, but if he’s not, or he really just can’t be fucked to charm you, you both stand there awkwardly, making dead small talk, wishing your respective friends would just hurry up and fucking exchange numbers already so you can exit this situation you never wanted to be a part of in the first place.

This is something every girl goes through but, in my humble opinion, I think the level of discomfort is different because when you’re the ‘fat friend’ all you’re thinking is, “I’m fat and that is why no one wants to talk to me.” It’s so dead.

On the flip side of that, when you do get attention, it’s from drunk guys or the kind of guys you have zero interest in, which only adds insult to injury. Example –raise your hands if you’re tired of washed up old men who have no business looking in your youthful direction, trying to move to you. It’s like, ‘I’m big so this is the standard of men I am forced to be subjected to.’ And bitch, if you turn some of these crispity, crackety, crunchity men down they will be so offended, as if you should be grateful that they spent one second of their precious time to stare at your tits and tell you how much they like fat girls (well fucking done for you!) in the hopes that you’re insecure and lonely enough to take what you can get.  

Shit like that fucks with your head a bit, especially when you’re young because you’re made to feel like you are less desirable due to your size and because of that you are less deserving of being treated with respect. Back then I was still dealing with a majority of my insecurities, and being the ‘fat friend’ didn’t help.

Another perk of a night out with your skinny friends is that you never clock exactly how big you are until you’re the only big bitch in the group photo. You suck in your tummy, lift your head so that your double chin is less prominent, turn to the side lift up your chest and push your ass out (because angles, heaux), put your bag in front of your belly or better yet pull one of your skinny friends slightly in front of you to cover your bulge (whilst making a joke to them about doing exactly that)…listen, it gets technical. You do all that and you still end up looking like a Nokia 3310 in a pack of iPhone 7s. LONG!

There’s always an underlying competition between friends, men and women alike, but with girls it’s more for the role of being the Beyoncé, or at the very least the Kelly of the group. No one wants to be the Michelle. As the fat friend, you are almost automatically the Michelle. I found that within some friendship circles, being the fat friend makes you more likeable because you’re aren’t seen as a threat,

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and being nonthreatening with some girls is what will keep a friendship going -can I get an amen? I notice with some girls that when other girls they felt could rival them came into the mix, they were much less accommodating.

By the time I was in my second year at university, my confidence grew a lot. I thought less about being the big girl and more about just enjoying myself and my life. I was more daring with what I wore, how extroverted I was, and just focused on loving who I was without comparing myself to others. The less I worried about what I looked like up against other women (whatever their size) and converted my anxiety into love for myself, the more the self-imposed stigma of being the fat friend fell away. My vibration changed.

I used to believe that the shit that comes with being the fat friend was all down to other people’s perception of me -to an extent, some of it is, but learning to accept that what other people think about you is none of your business, therefore it’s not your problem so there’s no need for you to take it on will set you free. Now I know that a huge part of it was down to my perception of myself. I put myself in a shitty box and the energy through my mistreatment of myself was what had me in those situations of feeling less desirable, less at home in my own skin, and being less deserving of what I wanted because of my weight in comparison to slimmer women. Once I broke out of that mould and got real cocky about my shit, attitudes towards me changed. I drew the attention of the men I wanted, I stopped caring about how it looked when I ate out with my friends (after all, it’s my coins being spent so unless you paid for it your opinions about what I consume is null and void), I learned to love my body so that when I saw it in pictures I wasn’t hung up on how much bigger I looked than everybody else, instead I focused on how much I slayed.

This change encouraged new, healthier friendships in my life with women of all shapes and sizes, but the difference between the ones I had in my teens to those I’ve made in my twenties are that all of these women are confident in who they are; they’re 100% them, shamelessly funny, ballsy and badly behaved, and there is no competition whatsoever. It’s a sisterhood of awesome clatchet bitches and being surrounded by that kind of energy only raises you up.  Am the heaux I am today because of those hooker-sluts (love you guys!).

Patriarchal norms and western beauty standards dictate a lot of the attitudes that we as women have for ourselves and one another,

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Click to tweet

but I promise you once you choose to unlearn the toxic things society drills into your head about how you’re supposed to look, free yourself of comparisons, learn how to embrace yourself and become your number one fan, all of that will fall away. It’s not easy, it is a process, but it’s worth it not to have to feel like the fat friend ever again.

Do you have any experiences being the fat friend or are there any points made in this post that you relate to? Let me know in the comments below.

Click the image below to read my previous #SvelteHeaux2017 post ‘The Day I Almost Died a.k.a My First Spin Class’

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Until next time, m’luvs

Love Scotty x