There’s another article about plus size clothing in the New York Times today. Interestingly, it touches on some of the points of my previous blog entry
Here is today’s article.
Which of course I had to comment upon. Many of the comments to any subject that touches on anything remotely related to weight will bring out the vitriol in the mostly male masses who feel compelled to respond in a very negative way. I wonder if any of these men have wives, mothers, friends or sisters who are physically imperfect in any way? If so, my heart goes out to them.
This is my comment:
As a formerly plus size woman who has recently lost over 100 pounds by slow, healthful eating and regular exercise, I have some insight into the experience of the American female shopper of every size from 24 to 10. I am a professional woman, and as such I have money and I need clothes, regardless of my size. Being relegated to a few stores and a few styles was torturous. So it makes me happy to see the increase of plus sizes being brought to the market. I try to only shop at stores that carry plus sizes despite the fact that I wear a size 10 because I support the availability of all sizes.
Now about those size 10′s. I have a more difficult time now finding clothing that fits me well than I did at size 24. I have a large bust, a small waist, medium hips, and athletic thighs. I challenge the notion that smaller women are more homogenous than bigger ones. Among my female friends, every single one has an issue buying clothes, whether it is a larger backside or thin arms or short legs. However, the great variety of clothing available at smaller sizes means that I can try on 20 pairs of pants and find one that fits. Or I can buy that shirt that’s too big in the waist but fits in the bust and have it tailored. Despite some frustration, shopping in the “regular” sizes is a treat for a woman such as myself who has confidence, loves fashion, and needs to look respectable for my career. Shopping in plus sizes was an exercise in choosing the lesser of evils. I rarely got to buy things I liked, instead having to choose the things I disliked the least.
Being fat in the US is not fun. Being obese is punishment enough. To those who think that offering more options to the larger woman will encourage obesity, I can only say that the reason to change your lifestyle and size should be self-love. And it is very difficult to love yourself when the world is telling you you are fat, worthless, and you don’t deserve the same things thinner women deserve. Making a person feel bad about herself does not encourage change.
From a purely economic point of view, there were thousands of dollars that could have been spent on clothing by myself alone were there appealing items for me to buy. I can only assume there are many other women such as myself who were/are living our lives fat. We deserve to dress ourselves well regardless of our size.