How Do You Handle Pressures and Insecurities As A Plus-Sized Woman?
Cathy: So someone wrote in and said, “It would have been nice it would be nice to hear from Reid about any pressures he might feel about living up to expectations because on the surface he fits them all of what society deems attractive and his partners may have preconceived notions of how that applies to relationships/sex with them? No res….disrespect to Cathy but as a plus-size woman I feel the concept of plus-size women being insecure is kind of played out although I’m not invalidating her….her experiences even if I don’t relate to them.”
This this person crying next to me is Reid Mihalko from http://reidaboutsex.com/
Reid: This is Cathy Vartuli from https://theintimacydojo.com/. Hi Cathy!
Cathy: Hey Reid!
Reid: What a
Cathy: So what…..living up to expectation pressures you might feel
Reid: Everything’s fine…..fine absolutely fine. No pressures. Next question
Cathy: You’re not going to accept that?
Reid: Next question. Yeah. I mean there….I think there’s expectations for everybody.
Reid: And the….for me what’s useful is you’ve got basically got two choices, one is just remain ignorant so that you don’t notice them and that can be a state of bliss and then or like nerd out on these things and try to understand them as much as you can and then figure out how to how to take care of yourself in a way that’s congruent for you because that’s going to be different for everybody.
Cathy: Right but can you share a few examples of pressures you’ve felt because I think that does how people relate and normalize
Reid: Well, I mean like as I get older there’s like this weird like “what am I going to become unhip because I’ve now like aged out of being cool?” Luckily as a….as a man in American culture like getting older I get to be rugged, I get to have a beard and look old silver it’s not even great silver like there’s all of that kind of things that are more kind to being a man but as you nerd out on power dynamics and like social justice if that’s your thing, racism privilege then what….what has been interesting for me is there’s all these judgments and expectations and then there’s this big for me as a comic book nerd like with great power comes great responsibility which I in my head make it mean with great privilege comes great responsibility. So it’s like how do I actually without falling into some sort of perfection trap understanding that I have a martyr part of me and because I grew up in an alcoholic family like I’m supposed to be saving everybody like I tried to save my mom and dad that I put a lot of pressure and expectations on myself as well and so it’s like how do you learn how to navigate all of that stuff? So for me like being a slut there’s…..I get pressure from people I don’t sleep with because they’re like you know “you say you….you’re super slutty and you and you sleep with everybody so why aren’t you sleeping with me?”
Cathy: Well you’ve got…..you’ve upgraded that language a little bit too.
Reid: Yeah, I mean but….but people who think I sleep with everybody like this so this there’s just all these things. There’s me being a celebrity right because I have a YouTube channel and because I’ve been on a television show or two you know or the people watched a thousand videos and listen to a bunch of podcasts and feel connected to me when I don’t know this person yet and that you know I’m the sex geek and so like “oh my god, like Reid Mihalko can’t get a hard-on with me. I must be broken.” And I’m like “no. It’s just my penis. It won’t get hard sometimes.” Like…..like these are the things
Cathy: Well, one thing you’ve shared too is that people because you kind of you match what people see on TV in terms of like the person who has everything together that when you tell people you have insecurities, you are you are extroverted, you’re outgoing but when you tell people that you have insecurities a lot of times they just don’t believe you. They think that you’re just trying to be kind or something.
Reid: No, like it’s true like you ask Cathy like I’m…I’m not the most messed up person I know but in here I am and the things that I say to myself in my head are not kind things.
Reid: And part of the reason that I talk about those things when I teach is to let people know that you know you know I was the fat really awkward fifth grader that nobody wanted to play Connect Four Floor with and who nicknamed himself Captain Twinkie and told all of his friends to only address him as Captain Twinkie, who tried to get the teachers to only address him as Captain Twinkie
Cathy: Did they?
Reid: No. They were like “no Reid. I’m not going to call you captain Twinkie in front of the class.” And I’m like “but…..but” these are just the cry so young nerds for help. So like….like that that’s me that’s the truth and I just grew into this and you know and all that awkwardness and all of my mom and dad’s bullshit that they put themselves through like that’s what created me. I’m desperately trying not to do what my mom and dad did with each other you know they were stuck in a marriage that while they loved each other was horrible for them and did not make them happy and the only uptick towards the end was that they were both so exhausted, they gave up fighting and because they gave up fighting there was a little bit more happiness at the end. That is not what my life, I want my life to be about and so as I get clear about when am I trying to fight for something that will only leave me exhausted and because I give up fighting it will then be happier like that’s not how I’m I would advise people live their lives. That’s not how you create happiness in your life.
Reid: And so my entire like if you’re a psychotherapist and you’re watching this you’re like “oh my god, this guy is completely messed up.” I’m like “yes, I agree.” The difference is and probably the difference between me and…..and most of the rest of the planet is I can articulate how I messed up and warned people ahead of time and then say “do you still want to sleep with me?” When so and repeat.
Cathy: Yeah. I think we know…..I really appreciate you sharing so vulnerably. I think everybody feels pressures in different ways like we’re basically brainwashed to think that if people look like a certain way they’re going to act a certain way and that doesn’t allow any of us to be human and just be who we are and I think we’re constantly bombarded with that and it’s partly can you surround yourselves with people that are willing to see through that most of the time and are you willing to say no I get to be me anyway?
Reid: Yeah. Like this entire video. All I’ve been doing is looking at the video, thinking about how horrible I look because we just got out of the hot tub and I’m like oh my god like the people now must be thinking like oh my god he’s….he’s so vulnerable. He’s just sweating and I’m like no. I’m red in the face because I just got have a freaking hot tub and I’m like and I should have taken a cold shower and cooled down so that I don’t look like some baby mouse pink and like you know
Cathy: I can adjust some of that post video
Reid: That would be great. Just do that.
Cathy: Then they’re be like “why is he talking
Cathy: about baby pink?”
Reid: If you just if you just squint your eyes while you watch this, now that makes it worst. Okay.
Cathy: Yeah. So I think you know the person that went on to say that more and more plus-sized women feel empowered and desirable, I hope that’s true. I don’t think that’s true. I see we went and saw the….the body….the Hitman’s Bodyguard this weekend was full….it was beautiful movie. It was really fun and full of sizeism and I see that everywhere where people are still portrayed I think we’re all stuck in different…..different pressures and different expectations and I’m hopefully all get freedom.
Reid: That’s the thing that we all have in common.
Cathy: Yeah. So thanks for sending in the question.
Reid: Leave comments.