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  1. #1

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    A Whale or a Mermaid?

    I saw this posted on FB this morning, and I think it's just amazing.

    A while back, at the entrance of a gym, there was a picture of a very thin and beautiful woman. The caption was "This summer, do you want to be a mermaid or a whale?"

    The story goes, a woman (of clothing size unknown) answered the following way:

    "Dear people, whales are always surrounded by friends (dolphins, seals, curious humans), they are sexually active and raise their children with great tenderness.
    They entertain like crazy with dolphins and eat lots of prawns. They swim all day and travel to fantastic places like Patagonia, the Barents Sea or the coral reefs of Polynesia.
    They sing incredibly well and sometimes even are on cds. They are impressive and dearly loved animals, which everyone defend and admires.

    Mermaids do not exist.

    But if they existed, they would line up to see a psychologist because of a problem of split personality: woman or fish?
    They would have no sex life and could not bear children.
    Yes, they would be lovely, but lonely and sad.
    And, who wants a girl that smells like fish by his side?

    Without a doubt, I'd rather be a whale.

    At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends.

    We women, we gain weight because we accumulate so much wisdom and knowledge that there isn't enough space in our heads, and it spreads all over our bodies.
    We are not fat, we are greatly cultivated.
    Every time I see my curves in the mirror, I tell myself: "How amazing am I ?! "

    (The girl on the picture is French model Tara Lynn)
    By: Delphine Fieberg


    https://www.facebook.com/kwebekwe

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    It's a stupid sign.

    But it is also unfair to answer it by implying that thin women--for that is what the "whale or mermaid" metaphor intended by the mermaid image--have no friends or family and lack wisdom, knowledge and cultivation.

    If we would stop slamming women of any shape we might get somewhere. But as long as the answer to larger women getting slammed is to slam smaller ones, nothing is ever going to change.

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    And that's not what I got out of it at all, other than it shouldn't have been posted to begin with.

    I thought it was astute that the young woman pointed out the differences between a real living mammal and a fictional being.

    Whales also come in a variety of sizes from belugas to great white's.

    The young woman also pointed out that fictional characters like mermaids aren't very loveable. I could add more, but ymmv.

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    I wish people would stop focusing on size, big or small, and focus on health. A larger woman can have more muscle and a healthier heart than a smaller woman. And a smaller woman can usually get around and do a lot more than a thinner woman. It's an individual thing. And while I'm all for accepting all sizes, sometimes fat is just fat, and it shouldn't be overly glorified as "beautiful too", because it isn't good for the person's health. It's not a hating thing, it's a "get healthier and live longer" thing. Big is not always beautiful, and skinny isn't either. Be proud of your personality and character, not the size of your ass.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Satellitegirl View Post
    I wish people would stop focusing on size, big or small, and focus on health. A larger woman can have more muscle and a healthier heart than a smaller woman. And a smaller woman can usually get around and do a lot more than a thinner woman. It's an individual thing. And while I'm all for accepting all sizes, sometimes fat is just fat, and it shouldn't be overly glorified as "beautiful too", because it isn't good for the person's health. It's not a hating thing, it's a "get healthier and live longer" thing. Big is not always beautiful, and skinny isn't either. Be proud of your personality and character, not the size of your ass.
    You kind of destroy the first part of your paragraph with your second. What constitutes "fat" is highly subjective (and if you believe the media the standards for it are absolutely absurd. Hence the reason most womens magazines are doing vastly more harm than good.) It is NEVER all right to tell someone they're fat and therefore they are unhealthy unless you have all their bloodwork and non-weight-related medical tests in front you to prove it. My weight varies a lot. None of the few serious health problems I've had have ever had a thing to do with it. Fortunately I've had doctors and specialists who understand that and who never comment as even knowing a number can trigger my disordered eating behavior (the result of years of being told I was 'fat' and therefore socially unacceptable, unfit, unable to do anything, etc. I'll never be what's considered 'thin enough' for looks nowdays but I can sort of control the buliema now and accept it.)

    The first part of what you wrote is true--think about healthy. That is not, for many, many women, going to be what's considered 'slim'. But telling someone you're fat, therefore you're unhealthy without being a medical professional with all the other, non-weight-related indicators in front of you, is not helpful and is judgemental. It's just covering up "You're fat, therefore you're not as good as people who aren't." Until that stops and it's TRULY just about health, I'd love to do a video for "It Gets Better" with "It gets better...unless you're not considered an ideal body type and weight. In that case, no, it only stops when you're dead."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Satellitegirl View Post
    I wish people would stop focusing on size, big or small, and focus on health.
    This!

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    Quote Originally Posted by danceronice View Post
    I'd love to do a video for "It Gets Better" with "It gets better...unless you're not considered an ideal body type and weight. In that case, no, it only stops when you're dead."
    I was bullied relentlessly from 3rd to 6th grade for being thin. The only thing that made it stop was my parents removing me from the school. The teachers insisted that it was not fair for them to make the girls doing it stop because they were overweight and they didn't want to hurt their feeling. Mine didn't matter.

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    I am continually amazed by groups who are or perceive themselves at a disadvantage, whose answer is to bring down another group to make themselves feel better. It really doesn't work.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    I may be mistaken, but I didn't think anyone was trying to bring down thin people. I think it was a reaction against the insinuation that you're either some sort of an impossibly perfect fantasy creature or you're a "whale." At least that's how I read it.
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
    Old, lonely, pathos-hungry, and extremely gullible

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    Quote Originally Posted by danceronice View Post
    You kind of destroy the first part of your paragraph with your second. What constitutes "fat" is highly subjective (and if you believe the media the standards for it are absolutely absurd. Hence the reason most womens magazines are doing vastly more harm than good.) It is NEVER all right to tell someone they're fat and therefore they are unhealthy unless you have all their bloodwork and non-weight-related medical tests in front you to prove it. My weight varies a lot. None of the few serious health problems I've had have ever had a thing to do with it. Fortunately I've had doctors and specialists who understand that and who never comment as even knowing a number can trigger my disordered eating behavior (the result of years of being told I was 'fat' and therefore socially unacceptable, unfit, unable to do anything, etc. I'll never be what's considered 'thin enough' for looks nowdays but I can sort of control the buliema now and accept it.)

    The first part of what you wrote is true--think about healthy. That is not, for many, many women, going to be what's considered 'slim'. But telling someone you're fat, therefore you're unhealthy without being a medical professional with all the other, non-weight-related indicators in front of you, is not helpful and is judgemental. It's just covering up "You're fat, therefore you're not as good as people who aren't." Until that stops and it's TRULY just about health, I'd love to do a video for "It Gets Better" with "It gets better...unless you're not considered an ideal body type and weight. In that case, no, it only stops when you're dead."
    It's a fine line as what is concerned and what is rude with regard to weight, for sure. As for the blood work, etc...yes you don't know if someone's heart etc are healthy without that. But it can't be mentally healthy for someone to not fit on rides at amusement parks, have to have two airline seats, and that type of thing. I completely disagree with the people who consider someone less worthy because they're larger. Definitely. I also completely disagree with larger people who snark about skinny people who "need to eat a hamburger." Or that they're anorexic/bulimic.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I may be mistaken, but I didn't think anyone was trying to bring down thin people. I think it was a reaction against the insinuation that you're either some sort of an impossibly perfect fantasy creature or you're a "whale." At least that's how I read it.
    I was totally with her until the line "At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends."

    I'm thin and I can eat ice cream, have dinner with my bf, and have fun with my friends. I don't drink alcohol though, mostly because I hate the taste and it's expensive. It's not because of the calories, believe me.

    It's equally judgmental on her part to make assumptions about someone's lifestyle just because of the way they look.

    That said, I think the ad that inspired this letter was way more

    And for the record, I don't look at fashion magazines either even if I'm skinny. The thing is that it never ends. "Great, now you're thin! But you also have to buy these clothes and wear this makeup and follow these fashion trends to be attractive! If not, well, then you're still ugly!"

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I think it was a reaction against the insinuation that you're either some sort of an impossibly perfect fantasy creature or you're a "whale." At least that's how I read it.
    It was if she had ended with "mermaids don't exist" and left it at that. But then she went on and on and started to lose me but especially this part:

    Quote Originally Posted by pat c View Post
    At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends.
    Because I am thin but I eat ice cream with my kids, have dinner with my husband and eat & drink and have fun with my friends.

    And then we have:

    We women, we gain weight because we accumulate so much wisdom and knowledge that there isn't enough space in our heads, and it spreads all over our bodies.
    We are not fat, we are greatly cultivated.
    Every time I see my curves in the mirror, I tell myself: "How amazing am I ?! "
    So I guess I'm thin because I haven't got as much wisdom? And here I thought it was because I work out.
    Actual bumper sticker series: Jesus is my co-pilot. Satan is my financial advisor. Budha is my therapist. L. Ron Hubbard owes me $50.

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    And yeah, I think the ad was dumb. (forgot to say that.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by MacMadame View Post
    And then we have:

    We women, we gain weight because we accumulate so much wisdom and knowledge that there isn't enough space in our heads, and it spreads all over our bodies.
    We are not fat, we are greatly cultivated.
    So I guess I'm thin because I haven't got as much wisdom? And here I thought it was because I work out.
    I dare anyone to meet my mother and tell her that she isn't wise just because she barely weighs 100 lbs soaking wet.

    Usually people really ought to stop when they're still ahead...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anita18 View Post
    I was totally with her until the line "At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends."

    I'm thin and I can eat ice cream, have dinner with my bf, and have fun with my friends. I don't drink alcohol though, mostly because I hate the taste and it's expensive. It's not because of the calories, believe me.
    It's not only the alcohol, it's the soft drinks too and the person who wrote that about being able to eat ice cream, dinner etc, is totally missing the point because it's not about being able to do that or not, it's about how much ice cream you eat, what you eat for dinner with your husband and what you eat when you're out with your friends.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballettmaus View Post
    it's not about being able to do that or not, it's about how much , what
    it's also about constitutions, pathologies, etc...there's such many factors.
    I agree a good diet it's the perfect first step, but not to reach a determined weight, just to stay sane.

    Many people had questioned me if I'm anorexic or something like that, since I'm very thin, but it's just that I'm like that by constitution, I love doing sports, and I eat whatever I want whenever I want (with sometimes a reality check like...ops, vegetables! fruit!), without problems. And it's also annoying to have people asking you why are you thin and commenting that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I may be mistaken, but I didn't think anyone was trying to bring down thin people. I think it was a reaction against the insinuation that you're either some sort of an impossibly perfect fantasy creature or you're a "whale." At least that's how I read it.
    I agree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I may be mistaken, but I didn't think anyone was trying to bring down thin people. I think it was a reaction against the insinuation that you're either some sort of an impossibly perfect fantasy creature or you're a "whale." At least that's how I read it.
    And it would have been if it had ended, as another poster already pointed out, with "mermaids don't exist". But it didn't. I agree with whoever said "stop when you're ahead".

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