Why yes I have lost weight

Image by the brilliant Stuart F Taylor

I wouldn’t normally put audio up of posts that aren’t porny ones – I tend to only record audio porn when the blog is sexy. But I read this post to Patreons last week and a couple of them mentioned I should post the audio too, so click here to listen to ‘Why yes I have lost weight’ aloud if you’d prefer. 

Oh wow, you’ve lost SO MUCH weight!

Haha yeah stress does that to me.

 But really you’re so SKINNY these days.

I’d hope I’m more muscular than skinny, but yeah I definitely do take up less space than I used to. 

You look amazing!

Cheers. I’ve been working on the arse especially. 

How did you DO it?

You want to know? You really want to know?


Well firstly I held someone’s hand while they went through something so traumatic I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy, and that put me off my eat-drink-fuck game for a while.

Then I broke up with the love of my life and everything was thrown into frightening turmoil, so I wasn’t in the mood for snacks. And much of that turmoil was financial, so I couldn’t afford to buy any nice snacks anyway.

Then – oh yeah! – I sunk into a fairly hefty depressive period during which I couldn’t sleep without pills or cook anything decent. My ex was no longer around to fill the house with Haribo or order Deliveroo so I mostly ate toast and a super-cheap (but HIGHLY delicious) batch-cookable meal that I call ‘orange‘. 

Oh! And I started fucking a lovely guy who lived a handy exercise-length bike ride away. 

That sounds like a lot. And you’re so THIN now. Well done!

I didn’t do it to make my body smaller, that’s just a side-effect. Where there was purpose, it was all about my mind. For the last nine months there’s been a note on my whiteboard which reminds me to ‘prime from the physical’. It’s a simple bit of advice taken from a CGP Grey video about dealing with lockdown – in order to stay well, your physical and mental health both need to be in decent shape. If things start slipping, it’s usually easier to move your body a bit more than it is to ‘think’ your mental health better. When my mental health is bad, annoying though this is, the best thing for me is to get the fuck outside and do some exercise. I ride my bike with the grim determination of someone who needs that sweet sweet oxytocin to power her through the next day.

If it’s wet or windy or I’ve got a puncture, I walk instead – pounding pavements to try and kickstart my brain into not being sad any more. It works, mostly. For me at any rate. As with all these things, your mileage may vary. 

So ‘prime from the physical’ has been my mantra this year. When I’m feeling stressed and miserable, it’s far easier to go for a walk or a bike ride than to simply think myself happy. 

And so yeah. I know. I have lost weight. 

The moral ‘weight’ of weight loss

I saw family this weekend, and got a fair few of these comments. I don’t blame people for making them, because we live in a society which places a heavy moral weight on your physical mass, so many of these people will assume weight loss is the product of dedicated, focused work. I’ve grown up in a world where people offer ‘you’ve lost weight’ as a compliment, so when they say it I know they’re trying to be nice.

And because I grew up in this world too, it’s difficult to hold back my kneejerk response: ‘thanks.’ But I try. Because in order to change the world I grew up in, and the toxic way we’re encouraged to view our bodies, it’s important to hold that truly important line:

There is no moral weight – no ethically ‘good’ or ‘bad’ body shape – to which we should all aspire. There are only people, existing in their bodies, with complex relationships to (and feelings about) those bodies – relationships and feelings which are none of my fucking business.

My body and the women inside it

I like my body these days, and that’s fun for me. As someone who’s hated it for so many years, it’s really cool to look in the mirror and be genuinely delighted by the shape I see reflected. I’m not going to pretend I don’t like it, because fuck it – joy can be fleeting and we have to embrace it when it appears. So I hula-hoop in front of a mirror in my bra and pants, and delight in the ripple of my thigh muscles and the just-enough wobble/squish of my tummy and the way my armpit hair highlights the strength I’ve built up in my shoulders. I love my body, and I hope I’ll continue to love it as it continues to change – growing, shrinking, morphing, fading, blossoming  – over the many decades I’ve got left to live in it.

But the person inside that body still carries traces of the fourteen-year-old girl who got teased for being fat. And the twenty-year-old who fielded comments that I could do to lose a few pounds. The woman who cried on a nudist beach because she was ashamed of how she looked. Who was told by a boyfriend that ‘we’ could do with losing weight. And oh so so much fucking more.

When I was bigger, people commented on my body. When I got smaller, they still did. Wherever you go and whatever you do, there’ll be someone trying to reinforce the lie that the way you look is somehow a moral question. And one which is apparently their business. It is not.

Your relationship with your own body will be a deeply personal one: your attitude towards it will have been shaped by comments and questions over the years, by good days and bad days and photos and memories and clothes and lovers and all your experiences. There is no ‘perfect’ body shape, just a shape that works for you – hopefully many shapes – in which you can live happily and embrace whatever joy life may throw at you.

This sounds like such a fucking cliché – like the kind of thing I’m saying to make people who hate their bodies feel better – but I genuinely believe it with my whole heart: you aren’t ‘sexier’ if you’re smaller or more toned or closer to what society’s decided is the ‘ideal’ way to look. You’re sexier if the body you’re in works for the person inside it. If you are in a body which allows you to experience joy. And although I still carry a huge amount of societal baggage about my own body, I will do everything in my power to try and avoid handing that baggage on to others. Moreover, when it comes to people I fancy, I could not give two shits what their body actually looks like: the question is, does it serve them? And are they willing to use that body to fuck me like I’m in trouble?

My 14 stone body works for me

A few months ago I posted a picture of my arse on Twitter. I was pretty proud of the picture (it’s here – I don’t want to link to the tweet and you’ll see why), because I’m usually shit at taking photos and because, yeah, my arse looked fucking brilliant. It’s the arse of a woman who has cycled all over London, priming from the physical to power her way through a really traumatic year. I’m proud of it. However when I posted that picture, alongside all the lovely comments someone said this:

“That’s you!? You’re so sexy! I always pictured you at about 14 stone. So glad to be wrong!”

To which I didn’t reply, because what do you say to that?

I could point out to this person that in fact I do weigh about 14 stone – I’m a broad, tall woman, and right now I’m built of muscle. I don’t have scales to hand but I have never in my adult life tipped any scales at anything under 90 kilos (i.e. about 14 stone). I haven’t weighed less than 14 stone since I was literally a child. Telling women that there is an ideal weight for them means feeding into the idea that in order to be fuckable we must be small. Petite. Vulnerable. Childlike. And for that you can kiss my rock-solid 14-stone arse.

Secondly – the bit I know you were expecting me to get to – telling me you’re glad I’m not fat is not a compliment. It is a gross, cruel, ignorant insult. You’re insulting the person I have been for much of my life – the one I know I’ll be again. You’re taking the insecurity that’s plagued me for over thirty years – the fear I thought I had finally started to quench – and fanning the flames of it so it can continue to burn and burn. Not just for me but for everyone else who sees that tweet. For every kid who’s been called ‘fat’ at school, and everyone who’s been told that ‘we’ need to lose a bit of weight. For every hot fat person getting ready for a night out unsure if they’re going to turn heads. For every person who was on the cusp of experiencing joy in their body, who’s now been knocked back to worry and pain.

There is no moral weight to someone’s physical mass. And the relationship people have with the way their bodies look will always be complex and personal. I’m happy with how my body looks right now, but I have an uneasy relationship with that happiness because I know it needs grounding in something more sustainable than ‘a year’s worth of trauma and cycling’. As I know the sun will rise tomorrow, I know one day I’ll be fat again – when I’m settled and calm and rich enough to afford my own Haribo. When I’m happy and no longer need to spend each day ‘priming from the physical’.

There are two things I can do with my new body right now: I can use it to shit on the person I used to be – the one I know I’ll be again – or I can use it to try and challenge the idea that ‘weight’ has a moral value.



  • fuzzy says:

    I would be thrilled to be down to 14 stone, personally. I’ve been eating healthy for years, and i get a bit of exercise these days and while I’m down to under 16 stone I still have some health issues due to age and how I have abused my body earlier in life (like smoking for decades) and yes my health would be better down to 14 stone and a bit more exercise but the *real* reason is that when I was younger I was definite clothes horse and at 14 stone I’d be able to wear more of that kind of stuff and vanity is real.

    Who gives a shit what the number clocks in on on what you weigh (yes I do and we all do and I love your phrase “moral weight” i’m gonna use it), that picture you took you rocks and so do you.


  • Dusty says:

    I like having this conversation:

    Other – You look great, have you lost weight?
    Me – No
    Other – oh I think you have. You look really well.
    Me – I really haven’t. I weigh exactly the same as the last time I saw you.
    Other – Oh. **moment of awkward silence** Well. You look great anyway.

    Makes me chuckle to myself every time.

    I do this to challenge what counts as a compliment too and it’s also a little bit nice to not be the only one feeling awkward in that conversation.

    • Girl on the net says:

      “it’s also a little bit nice to not be the only one feeling awkward in that conversation.” Ohhhh yeah I totally get this. That whole conversation is super awkward and sometimes I am not prepared with any answer that is decent/helpful.

      What I struggle with sometimes is that the people with whom I have these conversations tend to be older women, who have struggled with the same issues all their lives. When someone like an older aunt or my Mum says ‘you’ve lost weight/you’re looking well’ (which to them is usually the exact same thing), it’s because they have spent a lifetime battling their weight like it’s a bear they need to wrestle into the ground. I don’t always want to make them feel uncomfortable, but I do always want to avoid shoring up their own hatred for their own bodies. Especially if it’s someone like my Mum, who is – and always has been – incredibly attractive, despite having been fed body-shaming bullshit since she was a tiny girl =)

      It’s really tough though – I think there are people in generations above who see body positivity as something that is trampling on what they’ve learned. They think ‘well, I’ve had to put up with this and I’ve done the ‘right’ thing (i.e. dieting etc) all my life, why do the newer generations get to just ditch that? Are they telling me I’m actually wrong?’ And it’s important to say ‘yeah, you are actually wrong, but it isn’t your fault it’s just that we’ve learned some new things.’

      And then, obviously, there are the people who just want to judge us and tell us we’re bad for having a fucking pasty every once in a while, and for them I might nick your awkward conversation! =)

  • fuzzy says:

    ha ha, i like this.

  • Beth in Arizona says:

    I thought you were blog was all about erotica? No disrespect by any means but, I think you’re proud of your new body and I think there’s nothing more you proud of then to get as physically fit as a person wants to. I will disagree with you wholeheartedly on a very overweight being sexy. There’s absolutely nothing sexy about being terribly overweight. I’m sorry, . For someone who has always been thin all her life, mainly genetic ,we also get shamed for being thin. So it’s easy for a fat person to tell tell a thin person “oh you are so skinny” . But it’s not okay for the thin person to say “you’re getting a little fat aren’t you” ? It’s a double standard here as far as I’m concerned. In my opinion, you wrote this blog because you’re proud of the way you look. There’s no reason to apologize for that.

    • Girl on the net says:

      Blimey, there’s a lot here so forgive me for long reply. But I’m gonna take this in order:

      “I thought you were blog was all about erotica?” It’s never been all about erotica – roughly half the posts I write are sexy, but of the rest there are lots of other types – advice, rants, posts about dating and relationships. You definitely know this because you’ve commented before on ones I’ve written that are emotional or political telling me to stick to the sexy stuff. You don’t have to read the posts that aren’t sexy if you don’t want to, but you’re far from the first (and you won’t be the last!) person to express disappointment with me that my blog isn’t exactly what you want all the time, so I’m going to have to emphasise here – with feeling – that my blog is my blog and I’ll write what I like. If you only want the sexy stuff, here’s the cat page for that: https://www.girlonthenet.com/category/filth/ But don’t be surprised if politics/emotion creeps in over there too, because that’s life.

      “No disrespect by any means but, I think you’re proud of your new body”

      I’m happy with it, as mentioned in the post. But that isn’t why I wrote this post. If I just wanted to say ‘I like my body’, I’d have written *this* post instead: https://www.girlonthenet.com/blog/body-confidence/ I am not ashamed to talk about my body, but I absolutely would be horrified to only ever write about my body positively because that isn’t honest or helpful: my relationship with my own body is complex, and comments like yours make it extremely tricky for me to ever enjoy my body. If you were right, I would not be able to enjoy my body now, because I would only be consumed with fear for the ways in which it might change.

      “I will disagree with you wholeheartedly on a very overweight being sexy”

      As with all my opinions, you are always welcome to disagree. You will have your own thoughts about body shape/size that are none of my business. However, one might reasonably say that where those opinions are going to be hurtful and harmful to people, they’re best kept to yourself, no? No one is forcing you to find a particular characteristic sexy, but why do you feel the need to *say so*? Why should anybody else care what you think, unless they are specifically trying to sleep with you? This is what I do not understand about fatshaming. It’s absolutely none of anyone else’s business what your body looks like and why. It’s *your* body, not mine. None of my business.

      “So it’s easy for a fat person to tell tell a thin person “oh you are so skinny” . But it’s not okay for the thin person to say “you’re getting a little fat aren’t you” ?”

      This post is specifically written about people who comment on my weight loss, so demonstrably I do not think it’s OK in either direction. What you’re doing here is arguing with something I have never said. I fundamentally do not believe it is OK for someone to say ‘oh you are so skinny’, because – as I say in the post – “There are only people, existing in their bodies, with complex relationships to (and feelings about) those bodies – relationships and feelings which are none of my fucking business.” Someone’s weight (no matter what it is), is none of my business. Why do you think it’s yours?

      “In my opinion, you wrote this blog because you’re proud of the way you look.”

      At the start of your message you say ‘no disrespect’, but what you’ve done here is
      a) ignored the actual words I wrote in favour of putting ones into my mouth
      b) ignored what I have told you I feel, and instead told me you think I feel differently
      c) ignored what I said about the harm done by people making comments about fat, and how they have harmed me, and doubled down on those comments even though you know they’ll cause harm

      You’re welcome to your opinion, but it’s one of extreme disrespect, and saying ‘no disrespect’ doesn’t change that.

  • Fajolan says:

    I wholeheartedly enjoy this text. It’s exactly why I stick with your blog.
    Because if I’d only want to focus on sex, I’d go elsewhere for wank material.

    But sex is part of life and society. So are bodies. And commenting bodies, especially women’s bodies (but also men’s) is so often not useful, breaching borders, intentionally or unintentionally hurtful.

    If there is one thing I have wholeheartedly embraced when happily fucking around the last 2 years it’s this: Every body you choose is sexy.
    None of the guys with whom I had tremendous amounts of fun had issues with my body shape. I deeply enjoyed all their body shapes. The more I embraced my body, the better it got.

    Weight remarks are often well-intended, especially from the generation 50-70 which grew up with weight remarks as badges of pride. But they hardly ever do well. It’s very hard not to feel these remarks.

    How about instead: I like your strong legs. Or: That shirt looks good on you.

    And yes: I read this for the rants and the filth. And about adressing body positivity and sex and kinks and politics and society.

    • Girl on the net says:

      “Every body you choose is sexy.” This is a lovely way to put it, thanks Fajolan! I was chatting to a friend about this yesterday evening and we were talking ‘types’ – both of us concluded that the specific look of someone’s body (while it might draw the eye) is far less relevant than the other stuff. I think the thing that most draws me to someone is their *manner*, then when I already fancy someone I’ll start noticing things about their body that are hot/cool. That isn’t to say people don’t have preferences (they do of course), but where those preferences are expressed in a way that excludes (i.e. “no guys under 6 ft” “no fat people” etc), I can’t help but wonder why they would *broadcast* that. There’s a post in my draft about preference vs prejudice when it comes to choosing a partner, I should have a crack at actually polishing that one up because I’d be interested to know what people think.

      “But sex is part of life and society. So are bodies.” Couldn’t agree more! Even where I’m writing sexy stuff, it’s impossible for politics to not creep in because politics shapes our way of life, our way of thinking, and pretty much everything we do. It’s impossible to be ‘apolitical’ in any arena, let alone one like sex which has been so stigmatised and controlled for so long!

  • Phillip says:

    We have our pounds and you have ‘stones’.

  • Fajolan says:

    And we our kilos and we appreciate all of them

  • Paul says:

    Offensive c*nts like the ones you speak of, are the reason that I quit Shitter and deleted my account. Never going back on there now and so much the better for it. You’re an absolutely wonderful person with a beautiful soul and it doesn’t matter what you (are anyone else) look like, as long as we are happy within ourselves. There is way too much emphasis on everyone’s looks in the age of Instagram, and people now feel even more insecure about their bodies than ever before, and that makes me sad.

    The week I turned 30, a girl I was with at the time went off with my friend. He was much thinner than me and had lost at least 3 stone around this time. I was devastated and instantly stopped eating. I was 17 stone. And the worst thing about the whole situation is that I thought the reason she went off with the other guy was because I was fat and he was thin. I cried and cried and cried every day over her for more than a year, and in the process I lost five stone, through not eating. However, I was still miserable and started to realize that I needed to be happy within myself and stop taking notice of what the media or people on the Internet thought was the norm.

    Eventually I started eating again and started to worry less about these shallow people’s opinions. I’ve had weight fluctuations since I was in first school. People used to call me ‘fatty’ or ‘ugly’ or just generally take the piss out of me for the way I looked and it made me into a nervous adult. Deep down though, fat or thin, I will still never really feel like I fit in, but it is more manageable now than it was as a child. I have very bad OCD, which makes things worse, because reading or seeing something offensive written about someone just goes round and round in my head and drives me crazy.

    I don’t know what the point is of my post, but I just wanted to let you know that I know how you feel and please don’t let these wankers upset you. Your charming personality comes through in all your wonderful posts and you have more charisma and intelligence than any of these haters have in any of their sorry lives. Let’s all stand tall together. Lots of love x

  • Moondog says:

    As someone who has fluctuated between 70-100kg+ over the 20ish years since I stopped competitive sport, I have been through this experience several times. Most of the times I’ve lost a significant amount of weight, it’s been triggered by a poor mental health episode (though sometimes I’ve been able to parlay that into a health kick). Having people ask ‘what’s your secret’ when you have been in a month’s long breakdown is kind of darkly amusing in some ways. I’ve taken to being as honest as possible about mental health stuff over the last few years which maybe made some people uncomfortable when all they were after was ‘I’m doing weight watchers’ or ‘I got a personal trainer’.

    Not going to lie about having moments of feeling great because I felt like I looked better physically, but it never made much difference to what was going on in my head.

  • Phillip says:

    It is a play on words. American English slag.

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