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Fat Girl on a Date

August 13, 2010

So there are a lot of things I’m confident about. I’m confident that I’m smart…that I’m funny and that I have a great pair of…er, eyes. For the most part I’m happy being me and I am think other folks are happy with me being me. I even think I’m pretty. I usually don’t feel like a fat girl.

And then I get asked on a date…by a nice man…who makes me laugh…who has never seen me in person.

Suddenly I’m thinking about what shirt I should wear, how my skin looks, how much make-up I should wear and, most of all, how I can possibly hide my fat stomach? Oooo…and my double-chin…

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t sit around obsessing about my weight or how I look. Heck I don’t even wear make-up most days. But, whether it’s the truth or not, I do feel like men (even nice men who aren’t particularly shallow) will reject me or accept me based on whether they like how I look. And I’m afraid they have to REALLY like how I look in order to accept me.

I also think that most men want a woman who is rail thin. In fact, this idea is reinforced in me constantly (maybe because I already think it’s true). I recently read an article about men’s values in relationships and about the only thing they are shallow about is how thin a woman is — and being heavy was pretty unforgivable according to the study.

So, anyway, I had a date planned for last night and as soon as the moment to meet was set I started freaking out about how I was going to look to this guy. He’s seen pictures of me. Even recent ones. (In fact, if he looked around much on my Facebook page he’s even seen embarrassing and unflattering ones.)

But I’m still afraid that how I look once we meet in person will be a large factor in determining whether he really cares to keep talking to me. And I’m great to talk to!

Our meeting was actually postponed, so I have a bit of a stay of execution. And while I was disappointed not to see him, I was (and am) a little relieved that he still hasn’t seen me.

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30 Comments leave one →
  1. August 13, 2010 1:26 pm

    I disagree. I think the media shows an “ideal woman”, who is usually rail thin, and most guys tend to like to look at these models. Women see that men like the supermodels, and we assume guys want us to be that way.

    Still, in real life it’s my experience that guys don’t really care about that. I actually read once that a study showed only 20% of men prefer women with flat stomachs. Among my friends, some of the girls that get the most attention are, in fact, the larger ones.

    I’m certainly not fat, but I’m probably slightly on the heavier side of normal. My husband LOVES my non-flat stomach, my chubby upper arms and my big butt. I think he actually liked it better when I started to gain weight…

    I know it sounds so cliche, but really it’s all about confidence.

    I wouldn’t worry about your upcoming date! This guy sounds like he’s into you as you are. 🙂 So have fun!

    Like

    • August 13, 2010 2:10 pm

      I know it’s about me and how I feel about myself. I just don’t know how to fix it…or accept it…or whatever.

      Like

  2. August 13, 2010 1:27 pm

    Girl, I’m feelin’ ya on this!! I am quite thin, but I’ve just started the online dating thing too and I feel exactly (yes, EXACTLY) the same as you before a date… will he like how I look? Are my pictures (of course we all post the ones we like best!) a true representation of how I look right *now*? Is this shirt too sexy/ Giving the wrong impression? Is this one not sexy enough/giving the wrong impression? Etc, etc, etc…. To the point that I often just want to cancel the damned date bc I get myself so scared thinking about it all…. I often wonder if the men ever have those same thoughts and fears?
    Anway, I had to comment bc as a very thin girl, I’ll tell you, I’ve known lots of men who *prefer* a more curvy and womanly figure! I have several dear guy friends who have said to me, “You’re too thin…that’s just not my type”. I can’t speak for the masses like the study you reference here does, but from personal experience, I really think the “thin thing” is sometimes way more in women’s minds than the men. I think it really takes all kinds and all sizes and shapes…:)
    Anyway..just had to comment with my experience…best of luck to you! Hope your date went well!!!!

    Like

    • August 13, 2010 2:11 pm

      Thanks for sharing! I hope you keep reading and commenting, your perspective is very welcome!

      Like

  3. Jerrod permalink
    August 13, 2010 1:32 pm

    I’m sorry but the fact of the matter is that looks matter to both sexes, everyone, you included. It may not matter as much to you but they still matter. And really, in my experience, I wouldn’t say MOST men want a rail thin woman. Most of the guys I know don’t. I am friends with a lot of different men in different groups (jocks, hippies, etc). I think a majority of men like a woman that looks healthy. Rail thin is not attractive to most of the men I know. Besides, men are not too good at describing women. I bet the definition of thin to men varies widely. I’d really like to see this article. Where can I find it? And how is the idea that men want rail thin women reinforced in you constantly. Are you getting turned down by a guy and the next time you see him he’s with a rail thin woman or he’s straight up told you he only likes rail thin women?

    I can tell you one thing though, but you can’t take it the wrong way. You look better in real life than in your photos. I’m not saying you have horrible pictures or anything like that but you seriously look better in person. I hope that helps.

    Like

    • August 13, 2010 2:13 pm

      Sounds like you have a confidence problem about your looks to J-rod. 😉

      I have had a couple of fellas dump me and wind up with smaller ladies, but I think it’s just that I’m insecure about this thing — and I’m not sure how to get un-insecure. I’m working on it though.

      Hey and thanks for letting me know that I look better in person than in picture — that does help!

      Like

  4. Jerrod permalink
    August 13, 2010 1:44 pm

    What’s your defitinion of thin or rail thin anyway? Celebrity examples?

    Like

    • August 13, 2010 2:11 pm

      I don’t have a definitive definition — this is all in my head and so thin is just thinner than me — no matter what.

      Like

  5. Brianne permalink
    August 13, 2010 1:45 pm

    My darling, you are not alone in this. But until you accept yourself, you will go through this whether you are single or not. I still do, quite drastically actually, and I’m dating the most accepting man that is a.) quite enamoured with my body and b.) even larger than me by at least 45+ pounds. It hasn’t changed the fact that I still cringe when my belly is hanging in a funny way over my pants, or when his hands stop on my muffin top as he ushers me through a door. No matter how much he adores me, I’ve got to adore myself. So must you!

    Like

    • August 13, 2010 2:14 pm

      Thanks Bri…I have to admit that I’m also insecure about what I’m going to look like compared to all you lovely New Yorkers when I take my trip. I don’t want to come off as the unsophisticated (fat) mid-westerner.

      Like

  6. Daniel permalink
    August 13, 2010 5:50 pm

    I look at it this way Crystal. Love has to be about what’s inside more than what’s outside. That said, looks of course are what usually ignite a spark. So, if you have a man whom you have captivated then you have a start! 🙂

    Like

  7. August 14, 2010 4:02 am

    I liked your honestly. =) I’m not rail thin either and I have a weird squarish body (mutant? ) which is unflattering. =P I used to be really self-conscious about that when I was in my mid teens. Now, I’m not. =D if the guy doesn’t like me because of that, well fine. Whatever. I’ll still go on and be myself and I think that’s the most important thing. I can’t bear to be in the company of someone who’s boring and wannabe-ish no matter how gorgeous they are.

    Like

  8. JAH1216 permalink
    August 14, 2010 9:06 am

    Perhaps I could give a male perspective on this. The truth is that guys are attracted to attractive people (rocket science, I know). But there’s more to it than that. Generally speaking, attractive people catch the attention of men. So an attractive person walking down the street will snag the eye of a guy. But here is where most women get things wrong. First, there is the assumption that if the “other girl” is attractive, that somehow I’m not. The second false assumption is that if an attractive person steals a guys glance, it must mean that he wants that person more.

    The truth is that the greater message is what’s important. A guy wants an attractive girl, but that doesn’t mean it’s excluded to the plastic Barbie figure. What is and is not attractive is a subjective matter, and while the thin ideal is certainly more often considered attractive, it isn’t to the exclusion of other body types. So more often than not, the “average” body type is still very attractive to most men.

    Where being overweight may come into play is the fact that guys want a girl who takes care of herself. Ladies, you don’t have to be a model, but the single greatest gift you can give your guy (outside of love and committment) is to do your best to maintain your physical appearance. You are treasures, ladies. Don’t hesitate to see yourself this way.

    Like

  9. August 14, 2010 8:15 pm

    Props to your honesty in this post! I think you should focus on the things you mention in your first paragraph…knowing you are a smart, funny and pretty girl with a lot to offer. I know it sounds cliche, but if you keep a positive attitude, it will shine through with so much more importance than any “imperfection” in your looks. Good luck with the date and I hope it all goes well!

    Like

  10. August 15, 2010 7:03 am

    This post made me think of my newly single brother who has just found the courage to try the dating scene again. He’s met a nice woman–different than the girls he usually goes for. He said she’s a “bigger girl,” then spent the rest of his time telling me about her great laugh and how easy she was to talk to and how much fun they had. So, see? There are men out there who understand that beauty has thousands of definitions. Guys who don’t are just meatheads.

    Like

  11. August 16, 2010 12:43 am

    Ultimately, if a guy is superficial enough to judge you on looks alone, that speaks to his character and he isn’t someone you want to stick around, anyway.

    Like

    • August 16, 2010 8:22 am

      Well this guy knows me a little bit, so it wouldn’t be looks alone. I know it’s in my head more than anything.

      Like

      • Kent permalink
        September 1, 2010 1:31 am

        if he already knows you a little and wants to go on a date with you I think you need to put two and two together and quit worrying. Because if you don’t it won’t be your looks that dissuade him it’ll be your low self image you have of your physical being. Take a deep breath and exhale. There you go everything will be just fine.

        Like

  12. August 16, 2010 8:26 am

    Crystal, you lovely thing. There are a few simple things that will help your confidence almost immediately. Number 1 – stop reading Cosmo! Stop reading anything like Cosmo. Those magazines were invented to make you feel like you’re too fat, your hair is not something enough, your skin is not something enough, your clothes are not something enough. They thinly hide it behind the ideas of “health” and “empowerment,” but that’s total crap.

    Why do they do this? Because if you believe even 10% of the ways they are telling you you’re not good enough, you will buy more of their magazines and you will buy more of their advertisers’ stuff: diet pills, low-fat/low carb/low whatever else is bad this week food, clothes you can’t afford, makeup that probably doesn’t suit you as well as what you already wear, self-help books, and on and on.

    It’s not just magazines, of course. There’s an entire world out there designed to make women feel bad about themselves. If we were all to stop believing it, the stock market would probably crash. (I know that not a lot of people are willing to do this, but giving up TV would probably help you a lot too.)

    You can’t live in a bubble though, of course, and those influences will still get to you, so fixing your attitude from the inside is a good idea as well.

    I actually think working out is an excellent idea. Yes, you could lose weight, which might make you feel better, but I think the main benefit is how it changes your relationship with your body. Say you take up, I don’t know, indoor rock-climbing. Suddenly, you are thinking of your body as something that can scale a wall, not something that doesn’t look perfect in skinny jeans. (And yeah, if that trend would please die soon, I would be a happy girl.)

    Attractive people are attractive, yes. And I’m sure perfect bodies trigger a lot of stares. But that only really gets you so far. I think a friendly smile can get you almost as much attention, and honestly, it’s probably the kind of attention you’d rather have anyway.

    If this guy has seen a billion photos of you on facebook, he knows what you look like. It’ll be grand. Focus instead on whether you like him.

    (Sorry for long rant.)

    Like

  13. August 16, 2010 8:54 am

    I feel the same way sometimes. I am plus size but I take care of myself, I dress appropriately, and I love to have a good time. I found the man of my dreams a year and a half ago and he does not think I need to hide anything, he loves me for me. Granted I still have my moments, I definitely hate when some one calls me a big girl instead of plus size…I know I am big no need to announce it. Men think they are attracted to thin women and then a plus size beauty comes a long and they see that it doesn’t really make a difference (they just have to get past the impress your friends stage, which some do at 20…some at 30…and some never unfortunately). Even though my boyfriend loves me the way I am I still struggle to hide the double chin, belly, and the jiggly upper arms.

    Like

  14. August 16, 2010 1:55 pm

    I personally don’t think it matters – beauty isn’t measured in inches or pounds. Being with a “thin as a rail model” actually puts more pressure on the guy than he’s likely willing to take. Why? Because he knows every other guy in the room is probably looking at her too. In reality, it is his self confidence that may begin to suffer over time. So, in theory, it’s not in a guy’s best interest to partner up with the “best looking” girl in the room.

    Unfortunately, I think too many people assume that “plus size” people don’t get enough exercise or care enough to care for themselves. This picture has been painted by too many media outlets (infomercials for exercise machines in particular) including extreme makeovers, magazines, and numerous ads on the internet. Stress causes people to gain weight, laziness … etc. Do I agree? Absolutely not.

    Be content with yourself and what others think won’t matter. I think everyone, regardless of gender / orientation, wants to make a good first impression – that’s just being human. The last thing a guy wants is a high maintenance relationship.

    My experience suggests that “plus size” people are more outgoing and generally more fun to be around. They know how to live life to the fullest!

    Like

    • August 16, 2010 2:11 pm

      Thanks for sharing Redge. Have you read the Gabriel Method? I agree with the majority of his ideas on weight in the modern era.

      Like

  15. August 17, 2010 4:20 pm

    I can definitely relate with you. I’ve joined social networks online and only met few of my online friends because of my harsh nature on myself. It’s something I really need to work on, but I’ve been getting better with accepting myself. Good Luck on your date! And hopefully we can both let go of those feelings. Great post.

    Like

  16. Ghetto_Philosopher permalink
    August 19, 2010 7:41 pm

    I have dated a big girl and a skinnier girl. They both were very beautiful, very beautiful. Yet they both felt they could have stood to lose weight. Despite the fact that the skinny one was a freak of nature; skinny with incredible curves, she still felt she could stand to lose weight. Then again, I do live in California the flesh capital of the world. Anyway, I digress. My point is, in my experience, you have to love yourself no matter your size. I know everyone has been saying that but I wanted to add my two cents. You seem like a very interesting person with a lot to offer.

    Like

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