Don’t Skinny Shame Me or Anyone Else
Hey y’all. So for anyone that knows me, you know that I am a little sensitive about my weight. For my whole life, I’ve had people comment about how thin I am, had doctors worry, and have pretty much fended off comments about eating disorders since before I even knew what an eating disorder was. And you know what, it’s starting to get old.
I have always been super thin, my dad is very thin, so is my mom, so I have no doubt that it runs in my family. I’ve always been an active kid, and you add that in with a fast metabolism, and bam, it means I didn’t gain much weight. Not that I didn’t eat. I was a picky eater as a kid, but man, I sure did (still do) love pasta. So while I may not have liked lettuce at the time, I definitely ate my weight in pasta. But despite all of that, I always was tiny. I’m just a tiny person, it’s who I am, but that doesn’t give people a right to comment.
Lately, there has been a big movement about weight, and how strong is the new skinny, and to love yourself, etc. And don’t get me wrong, that is fantastic. Except when you are putting my body type down. You absolutely should love yourself and your body, it’s definitely not an easy thing to do, and I don’t know any woman, no matter her size, who has not struggled with something that she doesn’t like about her body. So yes, love yourself, treat yourself right, treat your body right. But don’t put me and my size down in the process. Let me give you an example. While I am all for the movement of being strong, in the same movement, you’re saying there is something wrong with being thin. That it’s a bad thing to be skinny, that skinny isn’t a desirable body type, so you should be larger. There is nothing wrong with being skinny, and I can be both strong and skinny at the same time.
Just because you’re thin, doesn’t mean you have an eating disorder. That’s my absolute favorite misconception and something that I have heard people say I have since I was literally about 7 years old. You know what, at 7, I didn’t even know what anorexia was. What 7 years olds do? Yet, I can distinctly remembering people telling my parents that they needed to watch me and make sure I was eating. Spoiler alert: I ate, I snacked, and I would beg for ice cream for dinner (don’t worry, I never got that). I remember in high school, eating dinner with some classmates, one flat out asked me if I was anorexic because I was “so skinny.” Literally, while I was eating pasta (do you see a theme here, I am a pasta fiend). I heard it in college, the little comments, “eat a cheeseburger,” “maybe you should skip the gym today, it can’t hurt you,” etc. Even now, people feel the need to tell me to eat more junk food, or have a cookie. And what they don’t realize is how hurtful and harmful that is.
First of all, just because my metabolism is impressive right now, doesn’t mean that I can just eat cheeseburgers all the time. I still have to work to eat right, just like everyone else. Which means that while I do love my burgers and fries, it can’t become a staple in my life because down the road, that diet could lead me to health problems. And while I may not have to worry about my weight, I do still want to make sure I’m leading a healthy, fit lifestyle. Second of all, stop telling me that how I look isn’t “good” or “right.” My body is right for me. I’m doing my best to take care of it, and you telling me that I need to fatten up because I’m “skin and bones” or to go eat a cheeseburger, that doesn’t help me. It hurts. Because, just like in other cases, I’m not meeting your expectations of beauty. So, because I am not living up to your standards, I need to change myself. Well, guess what? That’s really messed up. You don’t know my insecurities, you don’t know how hard I’ve tried to gain weight, and you don’t know how exhausting it is to constantly tell people that I do not have an eating disorder, which by the way, is a serious issue that is not solved by “eating a burger.”
The main point I’m trying to make here, stop skinny shaming me. Stop commenting on other women’s bodies. You don’t like it when people comment about you, so give them the same courtesy you would like. You can think whatever it is you want to about me, but that doesn’t mean you need to share those thoughts with me or with others around you. The problem with little comments like that is you don’t know what damage you’re doing. We all have insecurities, but we all are also different. Different body types, different personalities. Be cognizant that just because your problems appear different, does not mean that someone is free of insecurities, or free of self-confidence issues. We are all perfect the way we were made, and need to support each other, as women, as human beings.