Roscoe Ramone: "I felt pressured to distance myself from my femininity, but every time I did I got lost"
This body positive queer femme Instagrammer will set your feed on fire
As a full-figured femme, it's tough to find images of beauty in mainstream media that I can relate to. That's why I prefer to seek out my own online and flood my Instagram feed with gorgeous goddesses to remind me that there's more than one way to be smoking hot and queer. When I discovered Roscoe Ramone's Instagram account it felt like queer Christmas. Here was this witty, intelligent, switched-on femme talking about all the things I cared deeply about - feminism, body positivity, Lana del Ray mixtapes...
Her posts make me appreciate the beauty of strong, stunning queervacious women, and help me accept my own queer femme unruly bod that little bit more. So naturally I jumped at the chance to get her take on femmephobia, fatphobia and more. Here's what she had to say.
DIVA: Describe yourself in five words.
ROSCOE RAMONE: Resilient, glamorous, romantic, warm, and rubenesque.
Your Instagram account is awesome and addictive. What are your ambitions for it?
It fulfills my desire for community and to be witnessed, but I’m not too ambitious about it. I purposefully don’t make any money off of my instagram, because I haven’t felt ready for the karmic and social responsibilities that come along with that yet.
What sort of positive messages do you get, perhaps from those who find you inspiring?
I love hearing how my posts make people feel like it’s a little bit more bearable to be themselves. I think my favorite comment that I’ve received is “You make me feel less like of a piece of shit with every post”. That’s so real! I think we all just want to feel less like a piece of shit.
What was your coming out experience like?
Liberating, but painful. I had to choose between getting the love and approval I craved from my (Mormon) family or showing up in the world the way I wanted to/needed to. My parents put in a lot of effort into discouraging me from being myself. By the time I was kicked out, they had successfully convinced me that I was unlovable. Even though the distance from my family would mean finally healing from the physical, mental, and sexual abuse of my childhood, I was thoroughly terrified to be out on my own. I dropped out of high school and got a full-time job and focused on supporting myself through therapy. It was a wild ride. Today I’m so grateful for the privilege of being out and being me.
Imagine you’re speaking to a DIVA reader who struggles with self-esteem. What would you say to them?
You are probably more capable than you think you are. Striving to be “better”, constantly craving change, and chasing self-improvement is the cultural norm, but can secretly be self-destructive. Not to go all Jim Carey on you, but none of that is real.
Most of my self-esteem issues were based on lies about myself. Hanging on to that gross fiction kept me from self-acceptance. If you commit to being more realistic about your abilities and reject the lie of inadequacy, you can gain clarity and a deeper respect for yourself. You can spot the lies because they are never gentle or constructive.
Confidence is all about trusting yourself. Find new ways to earn back your own trust. Nurture the fragile relationship between you and you. (I’m a Gemini.)
What are your top three tips for body positivity and self love?
People often ask me for self-care tips, but I think that how you relate to yourself and your body is deeply personal. What works for me might not work for you, so my first tip is that you find out what really turns you on. Pursue self-care routines and activities that feel expansive, and not like a chore.
I see myself as a work of art. I love natural goddess-given beauty, but I also feel that one of my greatest joys in life is morphing and self-actualising into my personal ideal. That’s part of what being queer means to me. To do that in a way that isn’t self-destructive, you have to be in tune with yourself and all your (constructive) desires. When looking for ways to take back control over my body after sexual abuse, a hair colour change, fillers, and tattoos all helped advance my healing. My second tip is not to be afraid to be bold in your search for satisfaction.
My third tip is to find a way to communicate love and respect for yourself through all of your interactions. I’m very encouraging in my self-talk, because I know better than anyone what I’ve been through. I don’t let anyone speak to me in a disrespectful or patronising manner. Often that means walking away from men when they start sentences with “well, actually...”.
Who would you recommend people follow on social media (apart from you) if they want some body positive queer inspiration in their feed?
@hantisedeloubli, @femmeplastic, @luhshawnay, @yasminmoonmoon, @th3gayagenda, and @commedesbutthead never disappoint.
Your Instagram bio says “self-care as warfare”. Can you explain what you mean by that and how you practice that in your daily life?
By that I mean, we have to take care of ourselves and each other so we can live to fight another day. The future is for those who press on. Women especially sacrifice too much to thankless causes. If history has taught me anything it’s that it’s the victors of war who get to tell the story. We’re at war, and this warrior wants less painful compromises and more strengthening strategies.
i feel like this photo captures my essence. my favorite compliment to get is that i smell good. the fact that i own 10 sets of white king-size bed sheets and i have blue hair that stains them, somehow proves to me that i want what i CAN have, but i want it to be a lil difficult/hard-to-get/kinky/passionate.
What would you say to your teenage self?
I would say: “Look! Look at me! This is all possible! Hang on, baby! One day you’ll be happy more than you are sad. One day you’ll have better problems!” Because that’s all that you can really hope for. Better problems.
Who inspires you?
Black and brown women who are committed to healing their communities with their creativity and art. I want to support them with everything I have.
What challenges have you faced as a femme queer woman?
I used to feel pressured to distance myself from my femininity, but every time I did, I got lost. There are always lot of invalidating moments as a femme in the queer community. My friend Taylor/@commesdesbutthead said it best:
"In the queer community, masculinity and internalised misogyny often goes unexamined. And feminine people in the queer community get talked over, ignored, belittled, objectified, and assaulted even. We perform masculinity and femininity in the community and masculinity is impossible to disentangle from the toxic patriarchy, because that’s the model."
What are your experiences with fatphobia, both online and IRL? How do you deal with it?
I do encounter a lot of fatphobia online. I used to share it on my stories and want to show other people what I go through everyday as a fat person. That’s totally valid, but I recently decided to just become the living embodiment of the block button instead. I think people work hard to keep that negativity out of their lives and I don’t want to remind people of how much society still really hates fat people. There are so many flavours of fatphobia, but it’s all rooted in capitalist, patriarchal, ableist, and/or classist ideology. It’s easy to buy into those ideas, but they aren’t valid. Sometimes even your friends and loved ones need reminding so I do adopt a compassionate approach IRL.
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