Tag Archives: Love

Dear CeCe: I’m Still a Virgin… HELP! #CurvyConvo

Soooo suddenly, my email inbox is full of letters from Plus Size Princesses who are also riding the “V Train”.  As you may have noticed, dating & relationships is usually what I stick to, but the amount of “Help, I’m still a virgin!” emails I’m getting tells me that we need to talk about this… so I’m going to step out of my comfort zone and answer two letters that I feel all of the virgins can relate to.

Everyone’s view of intimacy is different, and there’s no perfect answer that will fit everyone, so please feel free leave comments and offer guidance to these girls if you have it. I’ve gone into much more detail in the YouTube Video Below:

Letter 1:

Hey, CeCe!

I have a dilemma, a big one. Me and my boyfriend have been dating for four months now. Through advice from you and your blog posts, I was able to actually get over all of my body hangups, and I am able to be vulnerable with him when it comes to my body. My issue is that I am a 23 year oldvirgin,. I (one) never met anyone I felt comfortable getting intimate with before my boyfriend that felt like getting intimate with me back and (two) I have been battling with myself, and my religious beliefs on if I want to stay avirgin until marriage or not.

I have gone back and forth with this, and now that I found a guy I actually love, I’m thinking more and more that I would actually want to do the deed with him. A part of me is hesitant though. I mean, when I’m not a virgin any longer, what am I? I have been virgin Stephanie to all of my friends and family and it’s a part of my identity. I even used to wear it as a badge of honor. But a part of me wants to eventually (giving myself a year together before crossing that line) just share this with my boyfriend, who loves me like…I never thought I could or would be loved. But the other part feels like everyone will judge me, think less of me, and say that I was the girl that gave it up.

I know you may not be able to tell me what to do exactly, but I guess I am looking for advice on what you would do, or anything that could help. (Of course, no pressure from my boyfriend, he’s prepared to wait until marriage). I just know when it’s gone, it’s gone. And that part is terrifying. I don’t want to make a mistake or the wrong choice. 

Thank you for taking the time out to read this, if you ever get the chance. I love your blog and have been an avid reader for years.

Letter #2

Dear CeCe,

I’m a big fan of your blog and the positive and powerful messages you share with your readers. I’ve been one of those readers for over a year now. I’ve gotten so much strength out of your writing, and that’s why today I decided to write you an email out of the state of mind I’m in right now. 

I have had no luck in dating. I’ve had guys taken advantage of my good heart. That’s why when I met this new guy online I was so happy that we talked trough text messages for over a month. He is Muslim and couldn’t meet up, because he was fasting for Ramadan for the past month. He was clear he wanted to meet me after this month and we stayed in contact. Our conversations got longer and longer and even tough I tried to slow things down we both expressed our feelings for each other. There was only one thing I kept a secret from him. The thing is, i’m a 26 year old virgin. I didn’t want to tell him over the phone about this very personal and intimate part of myself. But at some point our conversations gotten too long and I felt I couldn’t keep it a secret. So I told him and he was shocked. Two days after this conversation he told me trough text he changed his mind. He said it was not his task to take my virginity and because i was already 26 i should continue to wait for marriage. The warm man he was earlier became ice cold. What’s the worth of staying a virgin if it feels like a burden?

I was hoping to get some advice or an opinion from you or your readers. Maybe they recognize the situation I’m in? 

Hi Ladies,

First of all, thanks so much for trusting me with such an intimate topic. I’ve made a video addressing both of your letters, but here are some things to think about as you watch:

1.) Why do we value/devalue ourselves based on our “body count”? I often feel like people make you feel awkward about sleeping with zero people and awkward if you’ve slept with lots of people. Is there something else we should be using to define ourselves as women?

2.) I can totally understand having your virginity as part of your identity. If you were raised in the church like me, purity culture is probably ingrained in you from the time you could say “he’s cute!”. Waiting for marriage is such a beautiful choice (a choice you’ll have to make again and again with each relationship, as you’re clearly learning ;-)) but I dont think you should feel like you’re falling off of your pedestal just because you decided to “do the do”

3.) I’m always careful not to put my self esteem in the hands of others. Parents, Pastors, Boyfriends, Girlfriends… none of them have the right to make us feel valued/de-valued based on what we do with our bodies.

4.) If you’re looking to lose your virginity, do your best to make it a shame and guilt free experience. Don’t rush things if you’re not ready. Dont feel bad if you’re more than ready… deep down you know what’s right for you

5.) As PSPs a lot of us struggle with physical intimacy because of our body image issues. That’s okay and perfectly normal. I still think its up to us to learn how to love ourselves in every way before we start introducing other folks into the equation. Perhaps we need to have some… um… solo intimacy times, put John Mayer “Your Body is a Wonderland” on repeat and go exploring!

Got a question for me? Contact me here!

Okay, now for this video where I dive deeper into virginity (and why I think the muslim guy bounced lol)

The Weight of Loss: I’ve Been Eating Through My Grief

At the beginning of June I was six pounds away from my Summer 2014 goal. In the middle of June one of my Aunts passed away unexpectedly and needless to say, those six pounds were the last thing on my mind.

I spent the first few days grieving alone. I live in New York City and the majority of my family is in California, so all I wanted to do was fly home and be with people who understood our loss. There were people I needed to embrace, there were people I needed to embrace me. As I waited for arrangements and booked flights I felt like I was under water, swimming through the sudden void we had in our family.

There are people who write about grief and loss much better than I can. My girl Ty wrote a blog post one year after her mother died here. #PSPfit Cheer Squad member, Brianne shared a beautiful letter from her Dad after he passed away here.

The Weight of Loss I've Been Eating Through My Grief

What I thought we could talk about today is how loss, grief and bereavement can affect our journey towards healthy living. For me emotional health is as much a part of my #PSPfit lifestyle as my eating or hitting the gym. If I sprained my ankle and couldn’t work out, I’d look at ways to stay on track in spite of my injury. So what should we do when our emotions are injured?

Unexpected loss could happen at any time. We could lose a job, a relationship or a loved one at the drop of a hat. As an emotional eater, my tendencies to want to fill voids with food can show up at times like this and its a slippery slope before I’m eating unsupportive foods I haven’t touched in years in an effort to find comfort.

When I was in California, we had an abundance of foods that would “keep” around my Grandmothers house. Trays of baked goods, macaroni and cheese, enchiladas, tamales were constantly dropped off from family friends and neighbors.

Bringing food to families that are grieving is something we all do. Food is brings us together, food makes us feel comfort and logistically, we want to make sure anyone who is in the midst of funeral arrangements doesn’t have to come home and worry about cooking.

In talking with our #PSPfit nutrition coach, Abra, I came to an understanding that finding comfort in family, friends and food during a time of grief isn’t anything to be ashamed of. The hard part for me was navigating the transition between grief eating and my healthy curves lifestyle. In theory, the minute I flew back to NYC after the funeral, I should have left the baked good, mac and cheese, etc. in California but that didn’t happen.

I’ve fallen off the wagon before and managed to undo months of hard work in a matter of weeks. The difference this time was that even though my emotional eating was in full effect and I was binging on foods that were unsupportive, my healthy choices never went away. When I felt sad said yes to foods I had no business eating… but I also said yes to my whole grains, leafy greens and workouts.

So, now I’m 15 pounds away from my summer 2014 goal instead of six. Not great, but trust me it could have been worse. For me this weight gain has brought back some things like my eczema flare ups and some PCOS symptoms that had gone away are back. I’m finally getting to a place emotionally where I can think about, care about and do something about the impact of these 15 pounds on my body.

I’ve mapped out a plan to finish 2014 strong when it comes to my health and if you’re interested in staying/getting back on track, I’d love for you to join me so we can keep each other accountable. On Wednesdays blog post, I’ll post the full details on a little #PSPfit Pre-game challenge I’m cooking up.

That’s it. My emotions and my eating are intertwined, but I know I have it in me to make these commitments to myself and get my life together a bit more before the end of the year.

How have you girls been doing on your healthy curves journeys? Any set backs? Big wins?

Dating: Who Should Affirm Our Beauty?

One of my recent guilty pleasures is this dating show where the participants meet, naked, on an island, and try to find love (does any of you watch Dating Naked on VH1?). Anyway, in one episode, a female contestant seemed to be hitching her self esteem to the compliments of the naked meathead with whom she was riding horses. “He told me I was beautiful, so that made me beautiful…” she said.

I wanted to throw a pillow at my television screen and yell, “NO! You’re beautiful, period!” The premise of the show is pretty ridiculous in and of itself, but what I found even more outrageous was this woman’s inability to feel beautiful without her guy’s assessment.

And yet, a lot of us are guilty of fishing for compliments or looking to partners for praise. I’m certainly not exempt from this. The fact is, it’s not easy to only look within ourselves to affirm our beauty. I often talk about how confidence is complicated. I know from experience that being confident is a journey, not a destination, and I’ll be the first to admit that it’s a tough road. While I try to be self-assured and poised, others’ opinions (men’s especially), have had an impact on how I feel about myself and my appearance.

My dad raised me to believe that I’m beautiful, inside and out — and I’m grateful for that. Unfortunately, I couldn’t stay in that protective bubble forever. Growing up, if someone I was crushing on didn’t feel similarly about me, I questioned my attractiveness. But, if a boy asked me to a dance, I could feel my self-esteem sky-rocket. In college, when I was single, I wondered if it had something to do with how I looked. But, when I started dating a guy who told me I was beautiful, well, then it was easy to believe I was.

Eventually, I began to realize: I was doing myself a disservice by allowing the men I did (or didn’t date) determine how I felt about myself. I mean, they call it self esteem for a reason, you know? Wanting to get off this exhausting roller coaster (feeling good about myself one month, lousy the next) I decided to return to what my father had taught me so many years ago: I’m beautiful — period. 

Dating Who Should Affirm Our Beauty

The thing is, I can appreciate the boost I feel when a man compliments my appearance, but it’s far more important that I feel good about myself regardless. I don’t want my positive self-image to be defined by the way a man sees me. I was able to put this idea to the test about a month ago when I decided to take out my hair extensions and rock my short, natural hair (you can watch that process if you’re interested). As I went from hair that fell down my back to a short cut that hits just below my ears, I knew I loved it.

But, although I felt gorgeous and had a spring in my step when I walked out of the salon, I worried that if my boyfriend didn’t like it, my bright mood would dampen. More than that: I knew that I wanted him to be attracted to me with my new ‘do. Still, I also told myself that what mattered most was how I felt about it. And, I meant it. The minute my man saw me, though, I could tell by the look on his face that he loved it. That took me from cloud nine to cloud 10.

And, it hit me: When our partners make us feel beautiful, it’s not a bad thing — as long as we also feel beautiful on our own. It’s kind of like that pair of jeans that makes your @$$ look amazing. Those jeans aren’t magic, but they might just have the power to make you feel hotter than you already know you are.

…Thoughts??? Do you think its our partners job to make us feel beautiful?

My Office Romance: He Got a New Job… | Dating | Relationships

OMG, I forgot to tell you guys that Robert gave his two weeks notice at our company, so we will no longer be co-workers… eek! We’ve been the “Jim and Pam” of our office since the beginning of our friendship-turned-courtship…

CeCe Robert Jim Pam Gif

I started as the receptionist at my company in August of 2008 and Robert started on the finance team in December of that same year. By the Fall of 2009, he was coming upstairs to my desk to visit me every day at 3pm, sharp. At first we were definitely just friends. I was dating lots of other people (remember Jeremy??) but the more we spoke at work, the more things felt… different…

cece robert jim pam one

I literally spent 2009-2011 blogging my way through the Friend Zone/Grey Area with Robert (those posts are tagged “Um… Are we Dating?“). Looking back, that long Friend Zone-ish period was a blessing. It takes so much for me to be vulnerable which is a relationship necessity and our friendship gave me a foundation of comfort to open up to Robert (especially about my insecurities as a plus size girlfriend). By the time Robert and I had this conversation he was one of my best friends…

cece robert jim pam bff

Once we were officially dating, Robert was ready to tell people but I was determined to keep our relationship under wraps, which was a total waste of time because everyone assumed we were together since 2008 when we met. People in our office politely pretended not to know. Until one holiday party in 2012 when I got “tipsy and frisky” with Robert in front of everyone.

Does red wine have that affect on anyone else???

cece robert jim and pam awkward

So, now we’ve been an open couple in the office for a while which means that Robert giving his two weeks notice sent a lot of curious coworkers my way with their questions. They wanted to know if I’m happy for him (duh!), if I think the change will be good for us (yup!) and if I will miss him…

At first my answer was a pretty dismissive; I would laugh and say “he knows where to find me, we’ll be fine!” but as our time as coworkers draws to a close I’m starting to realize how spoiled I’ve been. Robert walks me for coffee every morning when I get into work. If I start to feel sick during the day, he’ll run to the drug store to get me medicine. Last week I had a shoulder cramp and he was there to massage it… I’ve had emotional days where he’s met me in a conference room to keep me from crying…

This new job is an amazing opportunity for him and a great time for us to approach our relationship from a different angle. I’m not worried about “us”, but I think I’m underestimating how much I depend on him being there for me 40 hours a week. Everyone says office romances are a bad idea, but for the past few years I’ve been given a salary to be in the same building as the guy in my life and as far as I can see, that’s a pretty sweet deal.

So this week, when people ask “Are you going to miss him?” I’ll have to think twice before I answer…

cece robert jim and pam question

 

The-Office-Jim-Pam_ jp

The ONE Time I Decided to Settle… a Cautionary Tale | Plus Size Dating | Relationships

A few weeks ago I posted an email on my instagram from a guy I used to date.

I was trying to see if you are free. Nowadays you look HOT. Do you want to hang out tomorrow?

Plus Size Dating Low Self Esteem

Wait– did this guy really say “nowadays”??

I swear to you, if I could erase one guy from my dating history it would be Elliott.

I dated Elliott when I was in a very bad place regarding my body image and self esteem. For a few months I convinced myself that maybe as a fat girl I should just “take what I could get” dating-wise. Elliott is what happened to me when I subscribed to that thinking. He was rude, had an awkward kissing style personality and said hurtful things to me constantly.

Like the time he whispered “You know, if you lost weight you’d be REALLY hot” right before he tried to stab me in the mouth with his pointy tongue…

*blank stare*

I went on four painful dates with Elliott until the day I decided that if he was the best I could get, I’d rather be alone.

Unfortunately, my biggest dating mistake is like a cockroach that won’t die. Although I dated him years ago, Elliott reaches out to me every 4-6 months to see “what’s up”. I’ve done everything I could to block him from my life, including lying and telling him that I was engaged and moving out of the country, which seemed to have worked until… he discovered my blog (thanks, internet!).

Hearing from Elliott last month reminded me of what the universe handed me when I decided I would take anything.

#NoThankYou

Its Valentines week and whether we have a boyfriend, a girlfriend or we’re flying solo, this is a good time for us to start thinking about the love we have for ourselves and how that affects our relationships.

Do me a favor: take a moment and think about your worst dating situation… how did you feel about yourself when that relationship came to be?

When I’m in a good place, I attract good people… when I’m in a bad place? I get the “nowadays” dude who couldn’t even kiss me properly. Looking back, I can trace my dating steps and see that as I went back to loving myself and embracing my value as a person (at any size) the quality of guys that I dated began to improve again. It wasn’t immediate… there was a lot of “single CeCe” time in there too, but as I’ve said before the single time made me into the independent girl that Robert loves.

Have you ever dated someone who was just whack? Do you think it was connected to how you felt about yourself at the time?

p.s. my favorite valentines post is called “I Haven’t Changed” if you/you’re girlfriends are feeling frustrated this Vday, you might want to check that post out too

p.p.s. Don’t forget I’m hosting an event this Saturday, hope to see you there… you can register here

Dear CeCe: Should I Let my Boyfriend Sleep With Someone Else?

Hi CeCe!

I’m in a loving relationship with my man for about 4 years now. But now and then, we get a little bored so we’ve decided to do a controlled “experiment.” He and I can both sleep with one person off Tinder (the dating app!) with the caveat that we need to sign off on each other’s person. 

Tinder is interesting actually. Have you ever tried the app? What do you think? Is this a recipe for disaster? I already feel a little guilty when I attempt to contact men off Tinder.  

-Anonymous

Hi Anonymous,

Here are some things to ask yourself:

1.) Should I look for excitement inside of my relationship or outside of it?

2.) What if I don’t like this “experiment” and my boyfriend loves it?

3.) Why am I trying to save my relationship by doing things that make me feel guilty?

4.) Am I happy? Am I fulfilled? Is this the relationship for me?

5.) Do I want to be with someone who doesn’t mind me sleeping with someone else?

I’ve elaborated a bit more in this video response, I hope its helpful to you!

Side Note– for single girls looking for new dating apps to try: Yes, I have heard good things about Tinder and the other swipe-quickly app, TryHotorNot which is a new take on the old time-killing site that people were obsessed with a few years back. Robert would kill me if I signed up, so if you’re on either of these new sites let me know how it goes for you 😉

…thoughts? What advice do you have for our girl?

CeCe@thebiggirlblog.com

curvy convo cece olisa cheating

My Online Dating Mistakes… (Video)

When I first started online dating I made so many rookie mistakes. I chose the wrong site, put up the wrong pics and said the wrong things. If you’re trying to get boo’d up in 2014 and online dating is part of your plan, these are the things not to do! Feel free to share your online dating mis-steps below… each one, teach one!

The Tumbnail on this video looks wonky but the video works, press play!

Mistake #1 I paid for online dating sites – in the end I had the most fun meeting guys on free sites. I was able to cast a wide net and I didn’t see every connection as something I had paid for which made things feel a bit more organic.

Mistake #2 I only put up one perfectly cropped, high angle, boobs and face only picture – Once I learned to put multiple pictures on my profile, the guys I met in person were never surprised by my size. This made my in person dates much more relaxed. We are the size we are… the guys who skip us because they see our full body pics aren’t the guys who we need to be dating anyway… Don’t forget, guys do photo trickery too… remember the guy who had no teeth? Well, his photos hid that very well!

Mistake #3 I was so confused by the online dating “lingo” and I said things on my profile that made me seem… um… fast – When my profile made it seem like I only wanted to hook up, guys definitely treated me that way. Oops!

What online dating mistakes have you made?

Confidence Is… Complicated: Public Displays of Affection

Friday night, Robert and I were out having drinks with our co-workers after our company holiday party.

I pulled away from the crowd for a few minutes to check my phone. I guess I got lost on twitter or something, because after about 10 minutes I heard Robert calling me from across the bar.

I looked up and he waved me over to where he was sitting on a bar stool. I put my phone away and walked over to where he and a few others were listening to someone from our legal team telling a story about a deal he just closed.

“What’s up, honey?” I whispered.

“Nothing, you were just over there for a while…” he said, touching my hair.

Although we spent the night socializing separately, we had some sort of physical contact anytime we were within arms reach of each other. Me touching his arm or him kissing me as he walked by.

I’m big on PDA (hand holding and a quick kiss here and there works for me, nothing too crazy, I promise!). When we first started dating Robert was not very touchy-feely and it bothered me. Other guys I’d dated had reeled with the perfect PDA (remember Adrian?) so I had to have an awkward conversation with Robert where I told him that our lack of PDA sometimes made me feel disconnected and unwanted. He had never dated someone who saw physical touch as an important relation element outside of the bedroom, so for him this was new but he makes adjustments and that makes me feel better.

At first, I just thought that physical affection was my Love Language but the more I think about it. I’m pretty sure, its also a confidence thing for me too.

Dating as a Plus Size Princess, I always hear the stories about guys who are afraid to be with big girls in public. I think somewhere along the line, PDA became the way I gained confidence that a man wasn’t ashamed of our relationship. Meaning, if he’ll hug/kiss/hold my hand in public then he’s fine with people knowing he’s with me.

If I’m honest with myself 80% of my need for PDA is just how I am… but 20% of it is because I’m a big girl who needs reassurance.

I know for a fact that Robert is happy for people to know we’re together and we’re definitely not a secret at work. But the feeling I got when he initiated PDA in front of our coworkers, was a mix of love, happiness… and validation.

As I work on my own confidence levels, I try to take stock of what confidence boosters are coming from within and which ones are external. PDA is definitely an external confidence booster for me.

How does PDA make YOU feel?

Dating Big Men… Thoughts??? (Part One)

“You’re such a cute little thing,” James said, as he draped his arms around me in line at the movies.

A week later we were walking across 23rd street holding hands. When we stopped at a red light, he tugged me until I was nestled against his side, his hand wrapped tightly around my waist he leaned down and kissed me behind the ear. “You’re a sexy little thing, aren’t you?”

Dating James was the first time in life I’d ever been called “little”. I’m a 5’10 Plus Size Princess who weighs *mumbles* pounds and I’ve been this way since I was 12, so when James would constantly refer to me as little, I thought he being sarcastic or making a joke about me. But then I realized, I was dating a semi-professional football player who was 6’3 and 345 pounds. I’d dated tall/skinny guys before, but James was larger than me in every way and when he pulled me close I did feel somewhat small… tiny, even!

…and I loved every minute of it!

Unfortunately James didn’t have his life together, so he never seemed worth blogging about, until last night when I started thinking about the ongoing conversation that happens every time a Plus Size Princess says that she prefers a certain “type” of man.

I’ve mentioned here that I usually date guys with a basketball or baseball players build. I’ve written posts about dating a big man and feeling guilty because I wasn’t attracted to him. I often get comments/emails/tweets from people chastising me for not dating big men, so I thought I’d open up the conversation here… feel free to share your thoughts in the comments, I’ll share a few of mine:

1.) I’m always fascinated when PSP’s are forced to justify who they are attracted to. It just perpetuates the myth that +size women don’t “deserve” to be with certain types of people. (see: “Superficial Fat Chicks & Other Myths” for my detailed thoughts on this).

2.) The simple fact is, I date who approaches me– and big men rarely approach me. Most of the time, its big men who aren’t checking for a Plus Size Princess, but for some reason that seems to be okay with everyone. Just wondering: why aren’t male dating preferences scrutinized as women’s?

3.) Thinking back on my time dating James, I actually was a hypocrite. I was a hypocrite because I knew on our first date that I wasn’t interested in him, but I kept dating him for three weeks. I continued dating James because he was a big handsome man and he made me feel tiny. Dating a huge buff man made me feel like I had lost 75 pounds over night. I liked the way I felt standing next to him (and I’m not going to lie, I liked that he called me “little”). How could I write posts complaining about men who only date me for my size… and then date a man only for his size. I was being selfish and heading down the road to fetish-town which was not cool at all.

I’m going to stop there and revisit this topic in another post after hearing what you guys think.

Dating Big Men… Thoughts???

When a Guy Takes His Time…

“You can come in…” I said, resting my hand on my dresser while I took off my shoes.

Robert smiled nervously leaning against the doorway to my bedroom, mumbling something about my room being so clean he didn’t want to mess anything up. Then he casually wandered back into the living room and waited for me to come out.

We had been hanging out for months and he hadn’t made a single move. I thought he was shy so I created a cute and flirty kicking-off-my-heels-in-my-bedroom moment, complete with a fresh pink pedicure and yet he seemed… uninterested.

If you were visiting this site during the “Um… Are We Dating???” phase of my relationship with Robert, you might remember posts like “He Never Touches Me” and the comments where women expertly told me that if he wasn’t making physical advances, I was delusional for thinking I was anything more than a friend.

During this time I had two girl friends giving me advice (one was married one was single):

Married Friend: He’s taking you out all the time and he hasn’t tried anything yet??? He must REALLY like you!

Single Friend: He’s taking you out all the time and he hasn’t TRIED anything yet??? CeCe, I think you’re in the Friend Zone

When did sexual attraction/desire become synonymous with romantic interest?

Somewhere along the line a guy “making a move” became the only way I knew if he liked me. Then because it was the only way I knew if he liked me, it was the main thing I looked for. Even though I hated that guys were “only after one thing” I was measuring their interest by whether or not they tried to hook up with me.

Then came Robert with his quality time, respect and wanting to get to know me as a person swag. Who would have guessed that his willingness to take his time with our relationship would leave me confused with a bruised ego.

Guys can hook up with anyone… so if you come across a man who doesn’t want to rush things with you, take a minute and open yourself up to courtship (vintage, I know!) instead of asking if maybe he’s gay or has some kind of problem consider the fact that he may be treating you differently because he sees you differently.

Looking back, Robert taking his time with me was a huge compliment and exercise in self control on his part… I’m glad I realized it before writing him off for moving too slow.

Ever had a guy move “too slow”? How did you handle it?