Huge: A show about fat camp

First off, a tip of my hat to my new readers who have found me through The Fat Girl’s Guide to Living (one of my favorite blogs) today. So happy you’re here!

So maybe you’ve heard about this, or maybe not. There’s a new series/special launching tonight on ABC Family called “Huge.” And get this: it’s about teenagers at FAT CAMP.

Seriously guys- if you know me and have read ANY of my fat camp follies posts (all linked at the end of this post), you know that fat camp made up a huge part of my life. Not just in time I spent there, but in how it shaped me in how I look at my health, my body, and even my social relationships. I will continue to write fat camp stories and talk about fat camp until the day I die.

Somehow though, when I saw the commercial for this show, I got really defensive. I could think of hundreds of stereotypes that the writers could put on these heavier actors. The potential of fat shaming, stories of outcasts who band together in kum-ba-ya moments that will inevitably disintegrate once they leave the comfort of the fat camp surroundings. The show is based on the book of the same name, by author Sasha Paley.

I don’t talk much, if at all, on here about the whole Health at Any Size (HAES) debate or the Fat Acceptance (FA) movement. I just go along my merry way of trying to get healthy and oversharing my journey. There are people in the FA community who think it’s wrong that I’m trying to lose weight- that I should accept myself as I am, etc. Are you overweight and happy with it? More power to ya! Overweight like me and feel like you need to make a journey to health? Rock on! We all as individuals are entitled to treat our bodies the way we want to. They are in our control, and how we choose to pursue healthy efforts is our own prerogative. In some ways, I think that’s what makes the whole healthy living and if so associated, weight loss journey, so difficult. We make hundreds of decisions a day that affect our health. In order to be successful, we have to make more correct decisions than incorrect ones in order to come out on top. It’s exhausting!

Anyway, now that I’m rambling, I’ll try to close it out:

I hope that “Huge” portrays some sort of underlying theme that even if you’re larger than “the norm” that you can be healthy and happy. And that the scale doesn’t dictate how healthy you are. That it’s not showing larger teenagers in a light where they must be segregated and shown as more emotionally vulnerable than the next hormonal teenager out there. I’m DVR’ing it (have to get up early to go to the gym), so I’ll probably watch it this weekend and let you know what I think. If nothing else, maybe it will conjure up some more funny fat camp stories for me to share.

Have you heard of this show? Are you going to watch it?

And if you need to catch up on my past fat camp follies posts here you go:

  • Yogag33k

    Watching it right now! Not too shabby so far! What do you think?

    • skinnyemmie

      I'm DVR'ing it to watch this weekend. Off to sleep so I can get my butt up to get to the gym in the morning! Hopefully the feedback is positive.

  • Lisa Eirene

    I hadn't heard about the show. I want to see it. I'm not sure what I'll think of it. I think I'd be defensive too…

  • UntypicallyJia

    I've heard about the show but haven't had a chance to watch it. I was worried about the image myself, but after seeing the commercials it seems like there's at least one character who is all for loving oneself in their own body, which makes me happy.

    I'm all for being happy with you you are, just healthy.

  • debbidoesdinnerhealthy

    I've heard of it and I plan to watch it. I usually watch all my TV on the internet so there is often a week delay so I might not catch it until next week. Let me know what you think though!!

  • Emily

    I watched it last night and I think so far, at least, they have done a good job of having a broad range of “fat” personalities – a range of the ones who are dying to be thin and those who could careless if they lose weight. It's only one episode though.

    Did you ever see that MTV special, “Fat Camp”?? LOVED THAT!

    • skinnyemmie

      LOL- I have seen that MTV True Life: I'm at Fat Camp so many times. It makes me very defensive of my fat camp because my fat camp was on the beach in LaJolla, CA, not in some woodsy forest in the north east with cabins! Yes, I have a superiority complex about my fat camp- LOL :p

  • KCLAnderson (Karen)

    Here's the thing (and it's taken me a veerrry long time to first, figure it out, and second, how to live it): we can, at the same time, BOTH love and accept ourselves right now as we are, AND work to become healthier and live lighter/weigh less. In fact, I think it's impossible to be healthy and to hate ones self, at least long term.

    It's funny, because just yesterday I wrote a post about the difference between “either-or” thinking and “both-and” thinking…

  • Nikki

    I actually have seen the poster and have not had to chance to watch it yet. Last week I was shopping for a new bathing suit and seeing the movie poster outside of Lane Bryant really did NOT help my spirits/confidence.

  • Maria Tm1978

    I just read ALL your fat camp stories and I LOVED them! I was sad that there weren't more! If it were a book I'd totally buy it/read it/recommend it for book club!

    • skinnyemmie

      Haha, thanks Maria! I have some more stories up my sleeve, but just need the
      time to sit down and get them all out!

  • Adrienne

    I'm not sure how to feel. I think it's great when overweight people are featured but it seems like Hollywood doesn't do it right. I haven't seen the show nor will I watch it but my first thought was, “The “big girl” will be the only role she'll get”.

    Why does it have to be called Huge? I've never heard a show called Skinny.

  • HollyG

    I remember watching this show and really disliking it. Go figure, it has not aired in 2 years. Since I’m your old camp buddy from CLJ, I think they could have come up with many better ideas to present to keep this show on the air. In fact, they needed to have a writer on staff (like you or myself) who could come up with better story lines.
    Camp for me changed my life as well. Honestly, it was more social for me but at the same time it also taught me self worth and confidence which I honestly did not have until the summer I was 16. I think back about camp now and can think of all the funny stories and laughs I had with friends. I’m so glad, thanks to Facebook I’m back in touch with a lot of friends from camp. Many times in high school my camp friends helped me through a lot of stuff while I was at home because they knew exactly what I was going through.
    You need to post more camp stories! I love love love them since I was there with you. ;-)