It’s been a while since I’ve written, and even longer since I’ve ranted.
This video has been circulating around the internet lately, and I was incredibly proud and in awe of this brave woman. She is an example of strength and dignity that we all can learn from.
Body shaming is disgusting, and one of the worst forms of bullying out there. Everyone has been a victim of it, I’m sure. Whether it’s for your shape, size, hair, skin, race, whatever, it exists.
I have been the victim of body shaming on more than one occasion. Even when I weighed less than I do now, I had people in my life who would consistently put me down for being “fat”. Who would point out my every flaw, or just give me “tips” to disguise the parts of my body that were socially unacceptable. It hurts, especially when it comes from those who are closest to you.
There’s one other type of body shaming that I’ve been a victim of that nobody talks about, or maybe it’s just that nobody cares.
Have you ever called anyone a skinny bitch? (I have.)
Skinny girls are torn apart all the time. It seems everyone thinks that because skinny=socially acceptable, “thin-bashing” is okay. Skinny people have it all, right?
Let’s play a brain game. Imagine you overhear the following:
Oh my god, how much weight have you gained? You look disgusting. Seriously. You need to stop eating. I mean it. You look like you’re all steriod-puffy from cancer treatment. Look in the mirror! Can’t you see that you look like one of those obese people you see on the news?
Horrifying, yes? Now imagine this:
Oh my god, how much weight have you lost? You look disgusting. Seriously. Just eat a fucking sandwich. I mean it. You look like a cancer patient after a million rounds of chemo. Look in the mirror! Can’t you see you look like a holocaust survivor?
I’ve heard all of these things from people trying to be “helpful”. I’ve heard it from friends, acquaintances, teachers, strangers . . . nobody seems to think twice when it comes to being underweight as opposed to overweight.
Yes, I was suffering from an eating disorder at the time. But people don’t realize that obesity can be just as much a symptom of an eating disorder as emaciation. Why is one acceptable to comment on, but not the other?
The girl who can eat anything and never gain a pound might be throwing up everything she eats.
The girl with the hot body who seems so disciplined going to the gym might just feel like a hamster trapped on a wheel. She can’t step off the treadmill to save her life.
The emaciated girl who is obviously anorexic may be fighting for her life, and doesn’t need you to remind her of how bad she looks.
I was out to dinner with a friend earlier this year. She was working so hard to fight anorexia on her own, and was out for maybe her 2nd meal in public at a restaurant. She had ordered her meal, and on her way back from the bathroom, some drunken jerk yelled, “Go back to the concentration camp!” This absolutely destroyed her, and she could only pick at the meal she had so bravely ordered.
You never know when an ill-timed, even well-intentioned comment can throw a complete wrench in someone’s day. Please just think before you speak. And to the asshole guy from the video who is worrying about the example she is setting for children, just remember that your children are watching you more carefully than they are anyone on tv. Would you really rather raise your children to be assholes than overweight? As far as I can see, the assholes are much more dangerous to society.