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By Jody Valley
Ouch! Readers respond and come to the rescue
Dear Readers I really blew it! In an effort to delineate between “loving someone, and wanting to make love” to someone, I failed to show compassion to the writer, “Too Fat For Love.” Luckily, many readers came to her rescue and have shown that compassion that I seemed to be so lacking in my response. I thank them:
Response: I recently read your response to a letter entitled “Loving the Person and the Image.” You said that being in love with a person doesn’t necessarily equate with being physically attracted to them, and that “her loving you and making love to you are two different issues.” I think that your statement is completely untrue and that your advice was rather harsh. I have been with my wonderful girlfriend for nearly two years, and I am very physically attracted to her. I, too, carry around extra weight while my girlfriend is athletic and just finished running a half-marathon this past weekend! I have issues regarding my weight, yet my girlfriend continues to love and support me; she tells me on a constant basis how beautiful I am, inside and out. Your advice for “Too Fat For Love” came across as saying she was too overweight to have anyone love her, and that’s cruel. As someone whom individuals come to for advice, I think you gave out the wrong kind this time. Individuals of all shapes and sizes deserve someone to love them for their personality, their appearance and their very soul. If “Too Fat for Love” cannot get this kind of affection from her current girlfriend, I suggest she find someone who can appreciate her for everything she is, as opposed to everything she is not.
Beautiful Inside and Out
Response: I read your column often and generally think that you give sound advice. However, I was very upset upon reading your response to the letter in the April 22nd BTL signed “Too Fat For Love.” Your response was not only insensitive but I believe it helped to validate and perpetuate the fat phobia that exists in the LGBT community. “Too Fat” deserves to be loved for who she is and if her current girlfriend cannot meet her sexual, physical and emotional needs then I believe that they need to re-evaluate their relationship. Maybe at this time their relationship can only be that of friends or ex-girlfriends. It is unfortunate that their relationship may be over and that is a reality that “Too Fat” might have to face but I felt that your response could have been much more supportive and validating towards “Too Fat” who is struggling to be accepted & loved for who she is. The girlfriend’s reaction to “Too Fat’s” weight might only be a symptom of other problems in the relationship. If they really love each other and want to stay together I would suggest relationship counseling. One way or the other I want to validate that “Too Fat” does deserve to be loved for who she is and there is someone out there who will love her for her entire self, if her current girlfriend cannot.
Lesbian Against Fat Phobia
Response: I read your column about a woman who signed as: “Too Fat For Love” wrote to you about a problem she was having with her girlfriend because she had gained weight. I feel you totally skirted around the issue of her question which was “How can I convince her to love me for who I am inside, not judge me for my looks?” and instead basically told her it’s just too bad because “You are, now, morbidly obese – by your own description.” How did throwing that back in her face answer her question? I admit that you did give her something to think about by telling her that “her loving you and her making love to you are two different issues.” But it did not answer her question. Please allow me to answer it for her: Dear “Too Fat For Love”, It is unfortunate that your girlfriend is too shallow to love you for who you are inside rather than just what you look like on the outside. She obviously loved you enough to make love to you in the past. You have not changed on the inside which just goes to show that she never truly loved the whole you to begin with. My advice to you is to determine whether or not you would like to keep her as a friend but definitely move on to another girlfriend, one who will love you for who and what you are. Life is too short to waste it on shallow people. You deserve to be loved. I’m not sure if the lesbian community has an equivalent to the gay “bear” community where big and chubby men are considered “hot,” but it would be worth looking into. I find big hairy men to be hot even though my boyfriend (life partner) is skinny and smooth. I love him for who he is, not what he can or cannot become. You, too, can find that kind of love and you will when you start looking in the right places. Don’t let fat prejudice get you down. Good luck!
Lovin’ the Chubs