thirstySo. I’ve been spending a lot of time on Twitter lately.

Before I get into this, I will go ahead and say that this rant is specifically targeted at straight cis men. Let me also say that I am all for having standards regarding who you will or won’t date and who you you will and won’t fuck. Although I personally keep my standards for the latter relatively realistic, I’m not going to shade you solely for having some insurmountably high standards if you can swing it.

But.

I see way too many dudes spending valuable tweeting time lamenting the fact that no one will fuck them, and then laying out these laundry lists of the qualities they expect a potential sex partner to have for them to be acceptable. Seriously, dudes, if no one is offering, what you will or won’t accept is irrelevant. You can sit back all day and talk about “chicks gotta have _______ for me to hit it” but if chicks who don’t have ______ aren’t even looking at you, it’s really just kind of sad that you sit there describing how you’re gonna be turning down all these invisible women. Especially when you, I, and your mama know damn well that if a chick who didn’t meet whatever bullshit standard you came up with acted even slightly interested in coming near your sexual organs you’d drop trou without thinking twice.

It’s funny, but it’s also really annoying and somewhat offensive because so often it’s rooted in some body snarking monkey shit. Whenever I see some marginal dudes squawking about their standards I think about a conversation Snarky’s Machine and I have regularly about “commensurate levels of attractiveness”. Basically, you can’t eat at the Four Seasons on a McDonalds budget. So why you think you, who I have not yet seen on the cover of GQ, are going to be able to pull a chick that belongs on the cover of Maxim, I don’t know. What I do know is that you’re gonna be living a long life full of not ever having sex. Ever.

For your reference, my previously referenced standards for sex partners are basically threefold: 1) you need to have a face that is attractive to me, 2) you need to smell good and have good hygiene, and 3) you need to be like, at least an inch taller than me including my hair. I’m 5’6″, by the way. This is anyone. And I’m attracted to a lot of faces you wouldn’t think one would be attracted to. Often it’s really about chemistry, and since I don’t do one-night stands but I’m down with being fuck buddies, it’s also about personality and am I cool with you being in my house long enough after we bone to maybe use my bathroom and have a glass of water after you get dressed.

It’s not really that if you relaxed your standards, women would flock to you in droves, because they probably wouldn’t. But it’s a bad look, especially when your criteria are so heavily based in fucked up societal beauty standards. Women sure as hell aren’t going to fuck you once they hear some of that ignorance coming out of your mouth. Or coming off your keyboard. Whatever.

But you know what, do you. You want to eliminate 70% of the fuckable population, fine. I ain’t mad, do your thing, papi. Maybe one day you’ll find your black unicorn, and you can both laugh at my ass for having sex all these years and not being celibate and saving myself for that mythical Tyson Beckford lookalike who’s deep into fat chicks.

Uh yeah. I’d rather be fucking.

I did a post on Bitch called “Unicorns, Better Head and Other Myths” in which I briefly brought up the commonly-held belief that fat girls are better at blowjobs. Namely because they have such low self-esteem that they’re grateful for the opportunity to get anywhere near a dick, so they get really good at it. This myth is recognizably heterosexist and cissexist in that it refers solely to fat girls’ relationships with cis men’s penises. But since that’s the common usage, I’m going to talk specifically about the act of giving a cis guy a blowjob.

Blowjobs and I have a complicated relationship, and that has a lot to do with me being fat. See, I’m good at giving blowjobs. Really good. I make men stutter, I produce euphoria that lasts hours after I finish swallowing, I learn quickly and I love doing it. I’ll go down in an instant if I like someone, not because I’m trying to get guys to like me or really do much more for them–it’s because I like doing it, it gives me pleasure. For me it’s not really something I’m doing for their benefit until I have more of an emotional relationship with them. In fact, I tend to hold back on going down on guys for a few dates when I’m interested in a relationship. I haven’t been as vocal as I’d like to be about my love of giving blowjobs because I’m fat, and when fat chicks go down on a cis guy, they’re doing it because they’re desperate. Or emotionally damaged. Or seeking male attention. Whatever the reason, it’s never a positive one and it’s always related to fat being something you have to overcome when dating. So I’m reluctant to go ahead and fulfill that stereotype. It’s like how I want to make sure my hair doesn’t smell so people don’t think all black women’s hair is dirty. You know?

The “fat girls give better head” stereotype is of course fatphobic but is also inherently slut-shaming because it’s representing being proficient at a sex act as something negative. And in a lot of people’s minds, being good at sex means you’ve had more, which equals slut/whore for women. It’s tied in to the stereotype of fat girls as “easy” (aka slutty) because they have low self-esteem, and not because they simply love sex. When you’re a fat girl you’re not allowed to have a lot of sex unless you’re desperately searching for attention. The sex-loving, confident fat girl is in this case invisible. Our sexuality is always complicated by the difference between our view of our own sexuality and society’s view of what fat sexuality should look like. Meaning, it should be either kept completely behind closed doors or fit within the framework of self-loathing and body hate that all fat women are expected to experience on a daily basis. This is why cultivating a sex-positive culture is necessarily important to fat/body acceptance, and why we have to make fat visible in sex-positive movements and spaces.

That is the reason I decided to stop worrying about fulfilling stereotypes and start making myself visible as a sex-loving, confident fat chick on my own terms. I’m not just talking about loving giving head, but also about owning my sexuality. That’s also pretty much the reason I started this blog, because I wanted to represent a different way of viewing fat women’s sexuality. This space is important to me, and I hope by being open about myself, I can encourage other fat girls who maybe haven’t yet to start down the path of owning their sexuality. Also, I like talking about sex.

And that’s about it.

Dating and relationships and all the messy emotions that come with it/them are a pain in the ass. Falling in love, while it feels good when it’s good, really ends up sucking when things don’t work out. Over and over again you open yourself up to be known by another person and over and over again you get hurt. It’s frustrating. Sometimes I feel by writing this stuff, about healthy relationships and great self-esteem, I should be impervious to all the little ways your brain likes to fuck you up when you’re in a relationship, or when you’re actively dating. But I still do foolish shit, I start to lose myself in relationships, I freak out and miscommunicate.

It’s totally OK to not always be on your A-game as far as having your shit together goes. What matters is if you can notice yourself falling into the behavior you want to avoid and stop yourself before it gets to be a big problem. Sometimes the less-than-smart side of you will be really loud and you’ll go ahead and keep doing what negative thing you’re doing. But with practice you can step back and evaluate what behaviors you really want to promote over the long term. It’s really hard to change your behavior and tackle mental demons that might make it even harder for you to maintain healthy relationships, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re not perfect. Be kind to yourself, because trust me, the dating world is not kind.

Basically what I’m saying is: keep your game up, but forgive yourself if you end up in another crappy relationship you should have seen coming, or you go out with a total loser you smelled a mile away. We’re not perfect; self-love is a journey.

Being fat girls, we’re often told that we need to just “take what you can get” in the field of dating. We’re supposed to have low self-esteem and jump on anything that sniffs around us. You know the stereotype of the “easy”, low self-esteemy fat chick. Besides the fact that there’s really nothing wrong with being easy and you don’t have to be fat to do so, being fat doesn’t preclude you from having high self-esteem. And when you have high self-esteem you don’t settle. Compromising your standards because you think you’re too fat to be lovable or even sexually attractive is not the way to go. Even if you can’t yet see yourself at the point where you have high self-esteem, do yourself a favor and abstain from dating until you’re more comfortable with yourself. Getting into/staying in a shitty relationship will not help raise your self-esteem, it will only lower it. And even if you do somehow end up with a great person who you feel loves you for who you are, you don’t want to fall in the trap of having to be constantly reassured that you’re attractive by someone else. Learn to do it yourself first.

When you let yourself lower your standards based on how you feel about yourself–or worse, how other people tell you how to feel about yourself–most of the time you will always be bitter in whatever dating endeavors you undertake. Especially if you’re depressed over the lackluster choices in partners you allow yourself to consider. Really, if you go out on dates with people who you instinctively know are “you can do better” candidates all the time, anger and frustration are soon to follow. Think about it this way: if you weren’t fat but you still had all your game, all your awesome qualities, etc., would you consider this person a catch? Would you even give them the time of day? If imagining yourself thin is what it takes to make you realize someone is not up to your standards, do it–but work on your self-acceptance so eventually you don’t need to. It’s hard participating in the dating game when you’re still learning to love yourself, so forgive yourself for any missteps you might make during the process.

Dating is one thing, but you definitely want to avoid entering into relationships during this growth period if they’re based on you settling. They’re doomed to fail. Eventually you’ll garner enough self-esteem to decide you want something more, which is unfair to them because unless you vocalized your decision to settle at the beginning of the relationship, the other person is going to enter it based on the belief that you’re essentially OK with them so finding out you’re not will come as a surprise, and it’s unfair to you because you basically wasted your time and emotion on a relationship that wasn’t designed to last. Depression over ending the relationship is clearly not going to help with the self-esteem issue. So if you’re going to attempt to have a relationship with someone before you’re really confident in your own skin, be forewarned that things may not go as well as you’d like by the end.

My essential “don’t settle” advice to fat girls who feel unlovable or unattractive is that you’ve got to be enough for yourself before you can be anything for anyone else. Don’t let fat-negativity cloud your view of yourself. You’re fabulous! Date that way, fuck that way, love that way.

It’s a common belief that there’s someone out there just for you, and when you find him or her, you’ll find the person that makes you whole.

I held that belief my entire life, and I searched fruitlessly and desperately for years for someone who loved me as much as I loved them, who would fill that empty spot I felt so keenly in my gut that surely must need to be filled by my “soulmate.” And almost a decade ago, I thought I had found that person—my search was finally over and I could relax and enjoy the feeling of the emptiness being filled. I got married and we were happy, for a while. But as with so many relationships that we intend to last forever, it didn’t, and I was left to pick up the pieces and seriously re-evaluate my outlook on love and life. The mistake I had made was thinking that I needed someone else to “complete” me, when I really needed to be complete all on my own. I realized that if I was going to have a healthy relationship, I had to be comfortable with myself alone first.

[Read the rest at Clutch Magazine.]

Recently a new sex partner asked for my advice on how to deal with three women he was “seeing,” each of whom was interested in having a monogamous relationship with him. Being as how we had just had “no strings attached” sex, I asked him if he was really able to handle truly being monogamous. His reply was (as I expected) a sheepish “No.”

It came out that he was more interested in one of the women than he was in the other two, but that she also had commitment issues. So I suggested that he consider an open relationship, one in which he did all the “girlfriend” things with this woman, but which allowed for both of them to still have the option of sex with other people—provided that there was no emotional involvement.

This was an apparently novel idea for him, and he liked it. I explained that they would need to negotiate the ground rules of their relationship (for example, he was okay with her having sex with other men as long as she didn’t talk about it) and they would have to keep the lines of communication open. After he left, I wondered to myself: If we didn’t have the expectation that our “committed” partners would be able to fulfill all of our sexual needs, could we be free to simply enjoy the closeness and commitment of a relationship based on emotional instead of sexual fidelity?

[Read the rest on Clutch Magazine.]

Thick, curvy, voluptuous—nah. I’m a proud fat Black chick with no hangups about my size, and I have the nerve to expect a romantic interest to be comfortable with it. I learned a long time ago that I needed to love myself before anyone else was going to love me, so I’m perfectly happy being on my own if I can’t find a partner who accepts me as I am. But my past experience has borne out that it’s not impossible for a fat chick to get a date. Being sexy and fat isn’t as hard as some people would have you believe.

That said, society doesn’t exactly make it easy on fat women to develop healthy self-esteem. Even within the Black community, where fat is supposedly accepted so much more readily than in other cultures, fat women experience discrimination, disgust and ridicule. Fat might be more acceptable, but you have to be a certain kind of fat—padding in all the “right” places and none where it’s not desirable. Fat women with bodies that don’t fit the bill are either desexualized and Mammy-fied, or their sexuality is seen as a joke—take for example, Eddie Murphy’s Rasputia in “Norbit.” Black men dressing in fat woman drag and overpowering skinny men with their animalistic desire gets a lot of laughs because society has conditioned us to see fat female sexuality as something to be laughed at or disgusted by.

[Read the rest on Clutch Magazine.]