I’ve been tall, skinny and gangly all my life. My body shape is what it is and I’ve reconciled myself to that fact. The years of junior high and high school angst still reside in my psyche nonetheless. Being called “bird” and “chicken legs” by relentless jokesters in my youth has given rise to a bit of a complex that has carried over into my adult years. I am aware that kids can be cruel and what-not but words do hurt even if said in jest.
I’m in no way saying that I’m not confident now and I do know that some people shoot words out of their mouth holes without thinking, especially if a few cocktails are involved. The problem I actually do have with people who spew thoughtless words in today’s world of those up in arms about “real beauty” in the media, is that there in an increasing double-standard that has taken hold.
1. “Girl, you need a cheeseburger!”
Seriously? You are not the food police. How would a larger woman feel if someone told them, “Slow down on those cheeseburgers, girl!”? I doubt that would go over too well. See? Double-standard. Both statements make someone doubt how they feel about themselves and it affects their confidence in a big way. I can’t count how many times I’ve been told that I need some rice and beans or that I need some more fat on my bod.
2. “Do you ever eat?”
Um, yes, thin women do in fact, eat. In my case, I used to eat like a horse in my teen years but after gaining weight while taking medication, I couldn’t fit into any of my clothing. It was time for a diet and the one I chose was a short no-carb diet. Somehow, I stopped craving carbs and that is that. Like myself, a lot of people “graze” throughout the day instead of ingesting three large meals. Your body becomes used to what you feed it.
3. “You’re so tiny!”
Yes, I am and thank you for pointing out something I didn’t know. I’m quite aware that I have bones like a small wren. This statement goes back to number one on this list. How would someone feel if a person said to them, “You’re so big! Have you been eating lots of cheeseburgers?”? It’s again, a double-standard. We all have different body types and should appreciate each other’s differences instead of saying hateful words behind a veiled smile.
4. “Real women have curves.”
What defines a “real woman”? Many skinny women have curves, just not lots of them. Apparently the consensus on social media is that “real men love a woman with curves”. I’m not sure how that concept came about but many skinny ladies have men that love them. A real woman has no shape but she does have soul. Real women nurture their children, they volunteer in their community, they hold down jobs, and they have breasts and a vagina.
5. “I wish I could be as thin as you.”
No you don’t. You will receive the same judgment yet on a different “scale”. People may not say it to your face but they will judge you on your size. “Fat-shaming” has become a popular term recently and there is no place for it in society yet no one talks about “skinny-shaming”. Click on any photo of a thin model advertising something and boom, out come the “where’s her ass?” comments, and the same exact happens with photos of plus-sized models, such as, “Her hips are huge!” yet not nearly as much with a size two model.
The beauty of a woman’s inner spark matters more than what she looks like.