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Paunch meets raunch
Though bulging sides are called 'love handles', fat is a turn-off for some. But 'fat sex' is not as bad as actress Kirstie Alley makes it seem. Creativity and a few extra pillows are all one needs.
Kirstie Alley, apart from introducing various weight loss - and gain - programs to a starved audience, can also be credited with introducing a new phrase in our lexicon, fat sex. The American actress who lost 50 kilos and claims to be a size four, much to design guru Tim Gunn's disbelief, admitted she didn't exactly lose weight for health reasons. "I didn't like the way I looked, and I didn't want to have fat sex!" she said in interviews.
Fat sex? Is that just sex between two fat people ? Or does "fat sex" describe the actual experience? Sure there are people who prefer large men and women and eating in bed together is just as sensuous as a massage. Fetishism aside, is fat sex any different from average-weight sex?
Single obese persons have a normal interest in sex, but have less opportunity to find partners who consider them sexually attractive. Limited sexual opportunity, rather than lack of desire, is their real problem. And in the real world, sex is more likely to be impeded by anxiety than adiposity. "Fat has no connection with sexuality, " assert Varka Chulani, a Mumbaibased clinical psychologist. "It's an unfortunate stereotype. We have been conditioned to believe that fat is ugly. The same attitude to curves and weight is not present in the African-American community, " she says.
Fear of rejection, fear of not looking good, low self-esteem, fear of not meeting the partner's expectations, and fear of not being able to perform are among the most common emotional barriers that the obese feel shackled by. Those who are in relationships want to feel desirable but after seeing themselves in the mirror are plagued by doubts and an attack of self-pity.
Fat men have even less opportunity for sexual interaction. Despite changing social and sexual notions, men still are presumed to be the sexual initiators, so the fear of being turned down inhibits obese men from approaching women.
Sanjay Rajan had spent the last six years as a 125 kg heavy man. Asking a woman out was always fraught with risk and, eventually rejection. "It's difficult for a fat man to approach women. I never felt confident enough, " says Sanjay, who started putting on weight six years ago thanks mainly to a sedentary lifestyle. Last June, tired of feeling sorry for himself, Rajan decided to give himself a makeover. "I wanted to reinvent myself and as the first step decided to take a sabbatical to get fit and look good. "
Running, gymming and dieting helped the Chennai-based PR professional lose 36 kg in one year. "Today, I'm in a position to turn down approaches rather than being the "fat" guy trying to approach them, " he smiles.
Raj Malhotra isn't afraid to admit that he has been attracted to women who are curvy and have more to them than just bones. "I have been attracted to women who were on the heavier side, ' he answers. The 30-year-old must be in the minority who believes that sex with thin women isn't exactly the stuff of dreams. "Thin girls aren't that attractive to look at when naked. All those bones hurt! I prefer women with a little more meat on them, so as to say, " Malhotra jokes.
But, logistically, it turns out fat sex is a wee bit different. Many extremely overweight people have to be resourceful when it comes to finding comfortable positions in bed. Still, with a few small tweaks, overweight people can have the same fun in the sack as thin people. Fat sex is just like normal sex, with a few more pillows.
The thought of undressing and sex can play havoc with the minds of some fat people. Chulani recounts counselling a patient, a 40-year-old woman who could be classified as obese. She hated having sex with her husband, even though he still fancied her. "She hated her body and that was causing problems in the relationship, " Chulani says.
Ironically, people who were once fat or obese have often exclaimed how much better sex is when they lose weight. "That is tough. One needs to be fit to try exciting positions. And it's a no-brainer that physical fitness helps in having better sex, " states Rajan.
So do once-fat people date other fat people? No. Once thin, and fitter, they develop an air of superiority and their expectations of the kind of men and women they want to date gets higher.
Rajan is honest enough to admit that dating heavier or fat women is not on his agenda. "Frankly, there is no way I'd want to date a fat babe. I mean, that's the attitude I have developed despite the fact that I was fat for very many years, " he says.
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