Fat Girl,

Haikus With Dani: Existential Edition

May 16, 2016 1 Comment

I’ve been rather exis­ten­tial late­ly. I mean, I usu­al­ly am any­way. But back to the “it’s hard to explain in any­thing except shards of thought” kind of exis­ten­tial. So. The con­tents of these haikus will like­ly turn into blog posts at some point. But for now, I serve them to you as the frag­ments they are.

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The Stories We Tell: Purity Culture and Shame.

April 1, 2016 7 Comments

I had a very eye-open­ing con­ver­sa­tion with my mom recent­ly.

We were talk­ing about my mar­riage to my ex, and she asked me if her hunch was cor­rect that I’d have mar­ried him any­way if my par­ents hadn’t giv­en us per­mis­sion. (You see, in our iter­a­tion of puri­ty cul­ture, even as a 22-year-old adult, I need­ed my par­ents’ per­mis­sion to mar­ry.)

I thought a moment and answered hon­est­ly: yes, I would have still mar­ried him. Then I clar­i­fied, “I hon­est­ly thought I had to.”

You didn’t get that from us!” Mom respond­ed in aston­ished con­fu­sion. “You don’t have to mar­ry some­one just because you slept with them.

Let me state up front: that’s an entire­ly true state­ment. I agree with it 100%.

And yet it was my turn to be shocked.

Because that state­ment flew in the face the entire nar­ra­tive of my first 20+ years of life..

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Haikus With Dani: Breakup Edition

March 3, 2016 3 Comments

In so many ways, the dis­solv­ing of my mar­riage has been unspeak­ably hard. I lit­er­al­ly don’t have tru­ly appro­pri­ate words for this expe­ri­ence, only deep chasms with­in my being that alter­nate­ly flow with rage and sor­row, then ebb with hol­low mis­ery. So I decid­ed to put the frag­ment­ed shards of grief into haikus.

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The Stories We Tell: Purity Culture Edition

February 18, 2016 2 Comments

Puri­ty cul­ture pre­pared me for a world that doesn’t exist. The world that does exist is both so much bet­ter and so much worse than I was led to believe.

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Microaggressions and fat-shaming.

September 10, 2015 17 Comments

It is no one’s god­damn busi­ness what I eat, except for me and my doc­tors. I owe no one expla­na­tions for my food choic­es. I owe no one an expla­na­tion for my body. I’m not oblig­at­ed to share my finan­cial avail­abil­i­ty for Good Food, nor my health sur­round­ing abil­i­ty to lose weight or process nutri­ents in a way igno­rant peo­ple think I should. My body does not require an expla­na­tion or an apol­o­gy, and it shouldn’t elic­it the spout­ing of erro­neous infor­ma­tion or mean­ing­less advice from friends, fam­i­ly, or strangers alike — and it most cer­tain­ly shouldn’t inspire com­plete strangers to pres­sure me into eat­ing things I don’t want to eat and adjust­ing my restau­rant orders to some­thing they’re more com­fort­able with a Fat­ty McFat­per­son like me eat­ing.

If I ate noth­ing but fruits and veg­eta­bles, I would not be wor­thy of more respect.

If I ate noth­ing but fried foods and sweet, I would not be wor­thy of less respect.

If I incor­po­rat­ed reg­u­lar inten­sive work­outs into my dai­ly life, I would not be a more wor­thy human.

If I did noth­ing but sit on the couch and eat Chee­tos all day long, I would not be a less wor­thy human.

And I hate so much that, despite work­ing con­stant­ly on body pos­i­tiv­i­ty and self-care for the past 4 years, all it takes is one ter­ri­ble per­son to make me sec­ond-guess the valid­i­ty of my exis­tence and self-worth as a fat femme per­son.

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You matter.

September 7, 2015 1 Comment
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On treating depression.

August 3, 2015 8 Comments
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White Supremacy in America and me.

June 28, 2015 5 Comments

It’s easy for us, the white chil­dren of the Col­or­blind Gen­er­a­tion, to con­tin­ue to focus on indi­vid­ual prej­u­dice while deny­ing sys­temic oppres­sion. It’s how we were raised. It’s how we were taught. Sure­ly, we are inno­cent. Sure­ly, we don’t ben­e­fit from white suprema­cy. Sure­ly, we don’t per­pet­u­ate it.

And yet, white suprema­cy is alive and thriv­ing in Amer­i­ca today. It exists as a sys­tem, per­haps even more than as a skin col­or. It rewards not only those who work to sup­port the sys­tem, but also those who do noth­ing to impede it. Those who sit silent­ly in the face of oppres­sion. Those who step up and affirm the sys­tem that oppress­es them. Those who don’t even think to ques­tion the sto­ries we’re told about white­ness, black­ness, and our place in the world.

White suprema­cy cre­ates an envi­ron­ment where gen­er­a­tion after gen­er­a­tion are unin­formed about the vio­lence it takes to main­tain their safe­ty, then rewards them for nev­er ques­tion­ing what they’re told.

White suprema­cy cre­at­ed the envi­ron­ment that allowed me to reach the age of 21 with­out ever ques­tion­ing it. For decades, I did noth­ing to try to stop it.

I ben­e­fit from white suprema­cy.

And if you’re a white Amer­i­can — so do you.

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Of masculinity & abusive breeding grounds.

June 8, 2015 0 Comments

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A tale of male entitlement.

May 29, 2015 6 Comments

This com­plete stranger, in the span of 90 sec­onds, demon­strat­ed that he felt enti­tled to a) my atten­tion, b) my pos­ses­sions, c) my good­will, and d) my body. 

My clear ret­i­cence for social inter­ac­tion didn’t mat­ter. My body lan­guage regard­ing my pen­cil didn’t mat­ter (con­sid­er­ing he lit­er­al­ly pried it from my hand). My dis­in­ter­est in stroking his ego was the high­est affront, to which he respond­ed by touch­ing me with­out my con­sent (and pro­long­ing his touch when I phys­i­cal­ly pulled away).

Peo­ple. Don’t do this. It’s super not okay. Respect per­son­al bub­bles. Don’t force peo­ple to inter­act with you when they’re giv­ing every indi­ca­tion that they’d real­ly rather not. And don’t take their stuff while they’re using it — that’s kinder­garten lev­el stuff. AND DON’T TOUCH ANYONE WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD IN THIS WORLD.

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