The Space We Take Up

Men are always allowed to take up space. “Manspreading” runs rampant everywhere, men making themselves even bigger to claim as much space as they possibly can. But when a woman does the same thing, even just passively, that makes her a target. That makes her an object of ridicule. That makes her something to be hated.

Being a fat woman in a patriarchal society

Fat people inherently take up more space. It is something we cannot help but do.

Since there is a general opinion that overweight people choose to be that way, we are seen as purposefully going against the status quo. I mean, being a fat woman in a society that only bases the worth of woman on how well she can fit into The Mold Of Woman™ is always an uphill battle. But, with the added pressure of feeling as though you aren’t allowed to take up the space you do, it’s maddening.

I’ve essentially become a target for just existing.

Fat women cannot squish ourselves as much as the patriarchy wants us to. We cannot become smaller than we are just to suit the physical needs of the men in our society. And by physical needs, I mean their need to take up space and also how American beauty standards are. We should allowed to be ourselves instead of always having to worry about what the misogynists in our spaces will think.

Because fat women are perceived as taking up more room, room we are not allowed to claim as our own, we are deemed lesser. We are deemed to be people who go against what a woman is “supposed” to be.

We shouldn’t have to change ourselves to become valued. Our worth does not equate to our size. Have value and respect for yourself and others despite their size. Our bodies are temples, some people just have larger temples than others.  

Maybe it’s good that my fellow fat sisters take up space we aren’t “allowed”, while of course we get stares and fake concerns for our health, we are showing that women can be large.

Women can exist in a space and make you notice, as much as the patriarchy doesn’t want women to be noticed. We need to reclaim spaces that the patriarchy has stolen from us, reclaim the bodies that the patriarchy has deemed less valuable than others.

Take up your space, take up your space proudly.