Debbie Ford: A Tribute To The Fat Ass

For the last 20 years of my career, as I’ve been leading processes around the world, one of the top five reasons I’ve heard for why people don’t really love themselves and their bodies is “I have a fat ass.” I was born on the skinny side, so I’ve never really been able to relate to having a fat ass although I’ve always had other issues with my body, be it my belly, my sagging skin, my skinny legs or any number of other things that if I focused on could send me into a pool of bad feelings.

But since my hospital stay when I lost 11 pounds, I have come to dream about having a big, wide, round (okay, it doesn’t even have to be round) fat ass. For those of who you have tortured yourselves for millions of hours over the shape of your body, you may wonder “Why is she wishing for a fat ass?”

Well, I’ve lost so much weight that I’m a little bag of bones. I feel like I’m 13 again except without the muscles or padding in my rear to protect me from hard seats and the bed I’ve been resting in for so many hours to get well. I can’t get comfortable no matter how I sit. Yes, I’ve even gone to the extreme step of being one of those women who has to carry a cushion around with them — one of my biggest shadows. What kind of person has to carry around a cushion just to sit down? Me apparently, even though I never even liked carrying a purse, let alone a cushion.

I’ve tried everything. On doctor’s orders, I ate Kentucky Fried Chicken and big chocolate brownies to solve my bony ass trauma. But I woke up the next day with nothing on my rear end and a belly so distended that my son asked me if I was pregnant. My kind sister Arielle got me a booty. Do you know what that is? It’s padded underwear to make it look like I have a bigger rounder butt. But the padding is at the top, not where I sit, so there’s nothing on the place I need the most help! I’ve spent hours on Google searching for a great butt pillow, but the system is failing me. It’s become cosmically funny how my pants just hang down now since there’s nothing to fill them out.

So I decided to do a tribute to the big fat ass. To all those who have been hating, ignoring, hiding, shame-filled, miserable, or embarrassed, to all of you I ask that you appreciate that one day, the extra fat might be your lifesaver. It might be your soft cushion. It might be a friend, allowing you to sleep through the night or sit through a business meeting without wanting to scream because your bones are digging into the chair.

You never know when you’ll need what you’ve got. It’s true for me too. Even as I try taping big soft foam around me, I honor my little skinny ass because I know that too comes bearing gifts (although at the moment I just can’t find them). So whether it’s your thighs, your stomach, your rear end, your flabby arms, or some other part of your body, see if you can make the sacred promise, the solemn oath, and the blessed vow to thank it and honor it.

Transformational Action Step

Go to the mirror and say you’re sorry to any part of your body that you’ve been judging, criticizing, hating, ignoring or belittling. Really bless this part of your body. Thank it. Imagine how this part of you could serve you if you got hit by a car, were in an earthquake or endured some other trauma. See how the extra flab, for example, could protect you, save you, keep you warm or allow you to be a cushion for someone else to find comfort. Thank your body for all the gifts that it offers you. Promise to be aware not of its faults but of its greatness. Do this exercise every day for 10 days until you can write a thank you letter to the part of your body you’ve most judged.

With love and blessings,

Debbie Ford

Originally published in 2010.

PHOTO (cc): Flickr / bandita


  1. Hi Debbie,

    Loved your tribute. I live in the Northeast and one morning I came out my door with both hands full, one with a mug full of hot coffee and went right down on my butt,because of a thin coat of unexpected ice. I fell hard on my butt but thanks to my fat ass and a puffy coat my aging tailbone did not even get a bruise.

    I cannot tell you how many times while sitting around a table with women that the conversation ultimately veers towards what they hate about their bodies. I quietly listen while they go down the list. I know they are just complaining more out of habit than anything else, still believeng they have to criticize themselves over their looks. Sure, I wish gravity wasn't pulling so hard on my body, but it is. Sure, I wish, my hair color complimented me instead of aging me, sure I wish, I wish, but not to hard. I love that my body works for me, still, after all the abuse I have subjected it to over the years. I live in this body for better and worse, in sickness and in health to death do us part. It has been a rocky marriage in it's youth but love and appreciation has grown over the years between my body and my mind. When I am sick and have to take to bed for rest and replentishment, rubbing my feet together is a form of communication and comfort to my whole being, this simple movement communicates to me that my body is working, healing, helping to comfort me and I can rest.

    The marriage between body and mind is a marriage we have no choice in, it comes with our first breath. It is a marriage without the option of divorce.

    The mind can find endless reasons to criticize the body lasting one's lifetime, even now while totally appreciating, loving and finding comfort in my own body, my mind could go on and on, chattering away, listing each and every so-called beauty defect at it's disposal, but now I can chuckle at the list and the defects of that voice which disintegrates into the peacefullness of a secure union.

  2. Thank you so very much for helping us accept our bodies as we are and actually celebrate the inconsistencies and what might be deemed as a flaw in our selves and our physical appearance. Absolutely filled with gratitude at the incredibly inspiring words in the post.

  3. Thank you Debbie, we all need to appreciate our bodies because they have been loyal enough to stick around for so long and have also helped us to go through difficult situations with a fea complaints. Health is more important than beauty. I wish everybody remember this before judging your body so hard. XXX