Let's End the Skinny-Shaming, Shall We?

I recently had dinner with two besties. As we caught up with each other’s lives, my one friend tells me the story of a woman at work who has been trying to lose weight without much success. They held an Easter Egg Hunt at work for everyone and, of course, inside the eggs was candy. My friend, in her efforts to stay healthy, didn’t indulge, while her co-worker did. And who got reprimanded? I wish I could say no one did, because a person should feel free to eat or not eat candy, but that’s not how the world works lately. No, my friend, who chose to not eat candy, had to hear grief about her choice.

I will fully admit that I am a mid-twenty-something  who has done the classic Regina George, “I really wanna lose three pounds.” I’m pretty sure most of us have done this even while knowing that it’s obnoxious of us. But we say that because 1) we feel obligated to feel bad about our bodies. If we feel good about our bodies, we’re snobs and bitches, and we’d rather feel fat than snobby or bitchy, and 2) if we say what we’re really thinking, no one is going to believe us anyway.

When a person starts working out, they tone up, lose weight, and may even look better. And you know what happens then? They’re punished for it. Remember when Lea Michelle dropped weight after the first season of Glee? Honestly, you’d think she had slaughtered a billion cows and then refused to eat any of them, because clearly, her only reason for losing the weight was because she thought she was fat. That was the whole world’s assumption. “She’s too skinny!” people shouted across Tumblr. “She looked fine, what is she doing to herself, what kind of message is she sending to the children WE SHOULD BURN HER AT THE STEAK.” Steak, stake, see what I did? Never mind.

When a picture of a thin girl comes on Tumblr, she’s either creepily turned into an ideal being, or thrown under the bus. There’s no middle, “Oh, she’s pretty,” because if you are to have a shred of self-worth and slight feminism, you must hate the skinny girls and rather die than look like that. That wasn’t hyperbole, by the way. I saw an image of a very attractive, skinny girl with the caption, “I would rather kill myself than be so [expletive] skinny. Whore.”

Well you know what, ladies and gentlemen? These women have stories. And sometimes they are not stories you are meant to know.

Maybe that “skinny whore” is a girl trying to redefine her beauty as she struggles with anorexia. Maybe that girl who’s suddenly toned up and dropped a few pounds is working out with new vigor because of a health issue that’s risen. Maybe they all just enjoy it.

We’re not supposed to judge plus-sized women because that is wrong, and I am in full agreement with that. So how did that judgment morph into the judgment of small girls? I’m genuinely curious: what’s the ideal weight? At what point is a person going to say, “You look really good,” and be totally fine if looking good means overweight or skinny? When is the skinny-shaming going to stop?

Back in February I joined a gym and I love the way I’m feeling, but I always end up feeling guilty afterwards, as if I am betraying the current mindset of women. Why should I feel guilty for working out? I’m a small girl whose mother has cancer and father has diabetes. You know the best way to avoid following their footsteps all the way to the hospital? Exercise. But when I do it or talk about it, I feel judged. I have a workout application on my phone that encourages me to have a friend who can be my “sponsor,” someone who I can share my successes with as I work on bettering my body. It pained me how long it took for me to think of someone I could trust, because the first friends who came to mind I was afraid would get annoyed or judge me, as if everyone thinks I’m doing it for some superficial, Hollywood, anti-feminist reason for which I should feel ashamed.

No. The world should feel ashamed. The world should feel ashamed for not considering for one second that I, along with every person at the gym, could have a good reason beyond the superficiality of appearance. I understand your drive: you want boys and girls of all sizes, all types, to feel normal and welcome and beautiful, and I can get behind that. The problem is that in trying to embrace everyone (namely, the overweight), we’ve openly hated the other extreme. Why punish those trying to do something good for our bodies? Or for doing something required by our doctor? Or doing something for enjoyment!

I know there are boys and girls out there with problems. I have friends who have struggled with eating disorders. I also feel inclined to mention that their disorders did not stem from trouble with, or fear of, weight. It manifests for all sorts of reasons, and anyone who would sit there and tell either of my friends, “OMG, but you’re like, so skinny!” deserves a few choice words, starting with, “You are the shallow one.” Stop making it about weight and start making it about health.

I want to feel good. I want to be able to run a mile again. I want to be able to lift a bag of groceries without my shoulder popping in pain. I want to be able to go on a walk with my boyfriend and not huff and puff after twenty minutes. The bonus will be I will tighten up, things will look and hang better, and I can wear that super-fabulous dress from Modcloth that DOESN’T FIT ME ANYMORE, THE NERVE. And I will be so fantastic and you won’t judge me for it because now you understand that I have a story. And so do others. And you probably do, too.

Can we let it go now, ladies? Can we just let each other make healthy decisions without the raised eyebrows and points and mock-concern? You’ll know when you need to be concerned, and maybe there will come a time when you do need to sit down with your over-zealous friend and discuss her health choices, although I truly hope not. But until then, trust that most of us are making healthy choices for the right reasons, and your support will help us get there quickly and happily.

Featured image “i’m bigger than my body gives me credit for” by Chris Setty

  • http://www.facebook.com/sillylittledreamer Cattie-Bree Skye Price

    Personally, even as an overweight girl, I am not one to say “Look at that skinny b*tch,” or what have you. I don’t judge girls who are thin – I am aiming to be thinner myself, so hey, go you (if you’re healthy and everything and not anorexic, in which case I still won’t judge you but hope that you’re getting some help for it). However (and this is a big however), I am also not going to feel sorry for a skinny, healthy girl getting a few comments about not eating candy. Okay, someone said something dumb, and that sucks, but then it’s over. She still has a great body. She can brush it off and rock what she’s got. An overweight girl DOESN’T have that luxury. Instead, she gets to go home and cry and wish she could rip off her skin and be invisible. I won’t defend the person who made the rude comment, but I won’t be losing sleep over the skinny girl’s self-image, either. She, more than likely, will be fine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/usernameisnotamiable Rachel Kaplus

    ^that, exactly. I have lost 70 pounds, still working on more. And “you’re too skinny” wouldn’t be an insult to me EVER. I’m sorry, I just don’t believe there’s this big anti-skinny stigma in society, and even if there is there is you can NEVER convince me it’s as hurtful and filled with disgust as the criticism towards overweight people. You talk about a picture of s thin girl on tumblr? Try Fat People Stories on there, a whole page of people talking about “land whales” and “planets” who dare to even TALK to other people.
    Yeah. Not the same.

  • http://www.facebook.com/heather.poco Heather Poco

    I disagree with both comments. Its not about protecting the skinny girls self-image, its not about “you’re too skinny” being an insult, its about the fact that you shouldn’t have to take flack from people for your personal choices. Being told you’re wrong, when you are trying to do something good especially, is bad. As the article said, you should be able to eat or not eat candy. And honestly, you should REALLY be able to not eat candy. There is nothing nutritionally valuable in candy, and it does more harm than good, period.

    In my opinion, Americans have an unhealthy love affair with being overweight, and there is not enough said against it. Not really, not in a serious way. I moved from America to France, and I can tell you there is real social pressure here to not snack between meals, to always eat fresh healthy food, and I think its a GREAT thing. If anything, we should be a little less accepting of people cracking open that egg full of candy (and two or three more). With two thirds of the population overweight, clearly the social pressure to be thin is either non-existent or inefficient. How can anyone defend social pressure that pushes people in the WRONG direction? Because, when you say something in public against someone trying to lose weight, you make a statement that the opposite is preferable.

    • http://www.stilljennifer.com Jennifer Still

      In saying that we should be “less accepting” of those who choose to eat more/’worse’ foods than others, you’re implying that you (and everyone else) has a right to what another person puts into his or her body. You’re implying that your lack of acceptance (aka fat shaming – whatever way you frame it, that’s exactly what you’re implying) is the impetus that an overweight person needs to change. If only more people DIDN’T accept fat people – they’d all just get skinny right away! Do you honestly think that’s the case? (I’m genuinely curious.) You’re also failing to take into account the principle of ‘health at every size’. You cannot possibly, just by looking, determine a person’s medical history, exercise habits, daily diet, etc. And ask yourself this – if you saw a thin person eating a pack of M&Ms and then a fat person doing exactly the same, who would you be less likely to “accept”?

      Being overweight can indeed be a health issue for a lot of people – I am someone who has trouble losing weight but definitely could (and need to), so I’m working on revamping my diet. I have a family history of diabetes, heart problems, high blood pressure etc that makes me want to lose weight for health reasons, not anyone’s aesthetic comfort. Changing the trend towards obesity is not ANYONE’S personal crusade – whether it’s blanketed under ‘concern’ or otherwise – and if people are happy with their bodies, whether they weigh 130 or 330, that’s up to them.

      On an entirely different note, I think the issue here with those disagreeing with the first few comments is that while you might have someone call you a “skinny bitch” for being thin, no one actively discriminates against thin people the way they do against fat ones. No one’s going to fail to hire you for a job because you’re thin, or not want to sit next to you on a plane, or publicly humiliate you in the same ways. While I absolutely agree that we should be accepting of all people, thin and larger, I think the argument being made here is that the one-off comments about “omg you’re not eating candy?” (which, honestly, I’ve never heard, but I’m not ignorant and would never quantify another’s experience) probably seem like far less of an issue for those who have experienced serious fat shaming. That being said, I think we – especially as women – should be supportive of one another regardless of shape, colour, etc. That might sound a bit kumbaya, but we’ve got enough divisive forces in the world and the last thing we should be doing is tearing one another down.

      To that end, and because I never miss a chance to link to a Lindy West article when I’m reminded of one, this was a really interesting read and absolutely spot on for the opposite end of the spectrum: http://jezebel.com/5908787/being-mean-to-fat-people-is-pointless-a-good-old+fashioned-plea-for-civility

      Glad you wrote this, Becca – should open up some interesting and important discussions, so long as we all remember to be respectful.

  • http://www.facebook.com/shogunofsarcasm Katelin Turner

    I think the first two posts both kind of missed the point. I go to the gym 5 days a week in preparation for military boot camp. I have also started eating healthier, because of this I have lost quite a bit of weight and am somewhat muscular. People always say to me “Oh you can have that cake, you are so skinny” what they don’t see is the hard work it took to get to where I am now. I really shouldn’t have that cake. I have been teased for having ‘skeleton fingers’ and have been told by a few people that I looked better when my face was rounder. That is a slap in the face even if I am skinny. Skinny girls can have low self-esteems too, we can be hurt when someone says something cruel. It is just as hurtful as the awful things people say about bigger girls. I get to live my life knowing I am not good enough because exercise had caused me to become small chested. If I pay to get that fixed, I would be called “fake” or plastic. Skinny girls can’t win. They are always picked on.

  • http://www.facebook.com/CeeMartinez Chris Martinez

    It’s not about skinny girl self-pity, it’s about everyone have the right to be accepted. The big problem is that it’s come to the point where we’re TOLD when it’s ok to feel good about ourselves. A slim woman who feels happy about her body is considered a stuck up bitch, and that shouldn’t have to be the case. Everyone should enjoy their bodies, and I mean big to small. I’m attracted to all sorts of body types from big to small and I don’t see a problem with someone’s choice whether they’re big or small. If a skinny decides she WANTS to be thin, then fine, let her and let her be happy, if a big girl decides she adores her extra-self and wants to rock gorgeous clothes and her curves thats fine as well. Let’s all hug and eat cake now…. (or not eat cake… you know it’s all about choices) 😀 xxxx

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=745695603 Lori Puhr

    There absolutely is a stigma, and I am glad that this article is suggesting that we all just stop judging each other. I was called a “skinny bitch,” among other names, all my years growing up by my sister. I have a really fast metabolism as do my parents. Her “funny, harmless” name-calling led to me still not feel comfortable in a swimsuit at my age of 24 now. So no, that feeling doesn’t just “go away, and it’s just over, I brush it off and rock what I’ve got.” It has taken a lot for me to feel somewhat normal at a pool and not want to run for a cover up because I feel like I look like a gross boy. I’m not anorexic, and have never had a thought about being so, I’ve kept a pretty active lifestyle. I’m really grateful that I have the body I do, but I have been shamed about it since I can remember. Not a day goes by that I don’t hear comments about what I’m eating, or whatever someone feels like saying. And I have never run out of people to make comments about how I must eat like a bird (which couldn’t be further from the truth, but I get ridiculed for that, too.) Cattie-Bree, I’m glad you said you don’t judge other girls, but you should have more compassion for people that you “think” can “handle” bullying so it’s okay. I hate that you comment on an article about girls being better to each other and you basically say it’s okay for other people to get bullied because they can brush it off. Bullying wouldn’t have any power over people if they could just brush it off. Every girl deserves to feel really great about herself, and feel happy to be alive and there is no one out there that should have to take crap from anyone. I’m glad you don’t do that, but to say we don’t cry about mean comments or wish we could change things about ourselves is just ignorant. I hope you are enlightened to the fact that girls, no matter what, give each other something to cry over. I certainly don’t assume that girls prettier than me, or whatever, just go home everyday and have a dream life, and never cry about anything. It’s certainly possible, but we all have something that is sensitive for us. Don’t assume people can brush things off. Again, it’s good that you’re not the type to put others down, just be aware that there might be a girl around you that gets name-called for this crap, and maybe you can see the situation differently. It’s not right if it’s about race, gender, sexuality, or status, how can it be right to hurt people just because of an issue like weight? It’s not right to hurt anyone, everyone has feelings. That was the whole point of this article, not for people to excuse it away because it seems perfectly acceptable to you or it’s not an insult to you. No one should be putting anyone through any of this. It definitely does happen, but it shouldn’t. As this article is suggesting, just make a change and see that the thinking you currently have is hurting other people, too. You’re not posting a comment on that Tumblr article that IS name-calling, you’re posting on an article that says stop judging and be good to each other. Did you realize that?

  • http://www.facebook.com/sillylittledreamer Cattie-Bree Skye Price

    Heather, no, the social pressure is there, and I’ve had ENOUGH of that crap. You’ve obviously never struggled with your weight. Well, I do, and yes, I am working on losing weight. Should I have to feel like garbage until I get there? Psychological abuse is no way to banish obesity. The opposite is true: if you love your body, you’ll want to take care of it, and then you’ll be losing weight for the RIGHT reasons, not because everyone glares at you if you have dessert once a week.

    • http://www.facebook.com/heather.poco Heather Poco

      I do struggle with my weight, and I work hard to maintain a healthy weight. I can’t eat like other people, I have to exercise more to be a normal. I know it, accept it and I do it. I think people who are overweight should. Not should if they want to, they just should. I think people in America get lost in this “every size and shape is just fine”. Its not. Obesity is real, costly and extremely unhealthy. I am not sorry for implying that society as a whole should discourage obesity, because I think its better that way.

      Social pressure does not equal psychological abuse, as someone else implied earlier. Nor does it equal discrimination, clearly discrimination is wrong. But, as a group, I think its right and good to acknowledge that being obese is unhealthy and something to be discouraged. Its amazing how someone casting a second glance at you when you open a candy bar at three in the afternoon can actually help you say NO to the candy bar (instead of sending you into a shame spiral, you can choose to let it guide you to making better choices, in my opinion). I live in France, I have had strangers here scold me for eating potato chips at 11:00 am before lunch, and I am grateful for that now (although its tough at first). But, what I am suggesting is that perhaps social pressure can affect positive change (as I think it does here). And the norm in the US of feeling like you can’t say anything with good intentions to an overweight person about their weight is stupid.

  • http://www.facebook.com/arroberts1 Amy Rebekah Roberts

    I think the world has a lot more to feel ashamed for than you perceiving yourself as being judged as too skinny. You’re in the extremely privileged position of being a slim, white woman within our society and I think moaning about people misunderstanding your desire for health as a vain pursuit of thinness is a bit petty. White slim women grace our screens, our magazines and are used to represent women far more often than any other size or race. Slimness is valued and I don’t think you can compare this minor example of “skinny-shaming” to the bullying and shaming experienced by plus sized women and men on a daily basis.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pao.line.71 Pao Line

    That’s only in America. I never knew skinny girls who were blamed for not eating or something, that sounds like science-fiction to me. I’m from France, living in Germany. All my female friends (and me too, actually) have or had to deal with eating disorders, and some of them had a really hard time eating normally again.
    At the moment, I have a friend who’s eating very few. She swears she’s not making herself starve, that she only eats when she’s really hungry, but sometimes I doubt it. There’s clearly a link between not eating and getting skinnier (i.e. looking better) for her, she always wants to be skinnier and skinnier, and that’s a vicious circle with no end. I know how it is.
    The social pressure against skinny girls is non-existent here, but you should see what fat girls have to bear. I just think we don’t speak from the same perspective, it doesn’t make any sense to me to fuss about a few stupid people being stupid. Please don’t tell me they make you feel bad about your body, I don’t believe you.

    • http://www.facebook.com/sofi.fizz Sofi Fizz

      I’m sorry, but just because it doesn’t happen in your country it doesn’t mean that it don’t happen at all, that’s just ignorant. I live in South America and I’ve always been “too skinny” and had to struggle with people actually bullying me over it (I’ve been called an anorexic as a “joke” for as long as I can remember). I’m not saying it didn’t happen to overweight girls too, but considering that the ideal of beauty in my country is rather curvy I felt quite bad because I didn’t develop the same way as my classmates in high school.

  • http://www.facebook.com/willow.farron Willow Wright

    I really enjoyed this article for the fact that it is against judgement. I don’t think that it is saying there is anything wrong with being large or being small. What I do think it is saying is that, no one should be made to feel bad based on size. I am a small person. I however am also a baker so I have to work out constantly to stay at a weight that makes me happy. However, I think that weight is also perspective based. I’m 110lbs so anything close to 120lbs (10lb) increase) is large for me but I’m sure that it wouldnt be large for someone larger. I have friends who are larger and I am apparently not allowed to complain about bein large even when they do? Hats large to me isn’t large to other people, just like what is small to me is t small for other people. We are all different but we shouldnt be made to feel bad.
    Also, I don’t think we should feel bad for “skinny girls” BUT we should also not feel bad for “large girls” either. I think equality needs to happen he. It comes to weight when t comes to feeling bad for people. Plus, no one likes to be Felt bad for.
    For every large girl that cries because of judgement, in sure there is a skinny girl out there who feels bad as well. No one likes to be judged.
    Small and proud

  • http://www.facebook.com/EmToTheBee Em Bee

    LOVE THIS ARTICLE and I completely agree with Willow Wright above. Additionally I’d love to see the phrase “made for a real woman” removed from our common lexicon. All women are real living breathing creatures with a personal history. We should respect that. I’m on the large end, I suppose, I fluctuate due to a very real thyroid condition that I have, in part, to teenage bulimia. A wise woman once told me to make health decision to maximize your health now to live your fullest when you’re 60. We should all encourage ourselves and our friends to exercise ‘for our insides and for our future health’.

    • http://www.facebook.com/sillylittledreamer Cattie-Bree Skye Price

      Yes! Exactly this! The “made for real women” thing is silly – we are all real women, whether we’re a size 0 or a 28 (or anything in between). How about instead of “stop skinny-shaming,” we stop body-shaming? Turning the XXLs against the XXSs doesn’t really accomplish anything except making women hate each other.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lisle.collins Lisle Collins

    Great Post :)
    Being a skinny girl from childhood, I’ve always envied full figured women and hated the comments I’ve received all my life. It’s comforting to know my mum & both my sisters were just like me and filled out later in their mid 20’s. I’ve learnt to ignore the constant comments, being called a skinny bitch & eating disorder speculations from guidance counselors through high school. Their were times when I over ate, and packed a full and healthy lunch to school just to combat speculation. It never really worked.
    Anyway I love food too much to skip meals & I cry like a baby if I puke.
    I’ve learnt to stop trying to please people who don’t know about me and don’t actually care.
    It’s easy to make comments about peoples appearances: weight, height and features. Unless you genuinely care I suggest you don’t! Because you don’t really know, and you’re probably making them feel uncomfortable and/0r irritated.
    What matters most is that you’re healthy, comfortable & happy.

  • http://www.facebook.com/robinhardwick Robin Hardwick

    I agree with you that everyone should stop judging and commenting on anyone’s body size or eating habits, period. And the comments you personally have received or unfair.

    But your article seems to imply that there is a skinny-shaming epidemic, which is misguided and presumptuous. The comments about your weight that you may be receiving is a bi-product of an overall obsession with weight, not specifically targeted at skinny women.

    Nevertheless, your particular experience and your feelings about receiving those comments are valid, and perhaps this would be better written if it just included your experience and not a “call to arms” to stop an epidemic- an epidemic it is not.

    • http://www.facebook.com/usernameisnotamiable Rachel Kaplus

      Thank you. You said what I wanted to, but didn’t express right.

    • http://www.facebook.com/sillylittledreamer Cattie-Bree Skye Price

      Yes yes yes yes yes, to everything you said.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cassandra.andruchow Cassandra Andruchow

    What a great article! I have been both extremely overweight and extremely skinny and I can vouch that “fatty” comments and “eat-a-sandwich” comments are equally hurtful. It’s that feeling that no matter what you do there’s still something wrong with your appearance. I remember when Jennifer Hudson lost all that weight through WeightWatchers I thought, wow she looks fabulous and in control of her life! Whereas a good friend of mine said to me “She better not lose anymore weight because she is way too skinny and she looks awful!!” People are judgmental. I think sometimes people assume that “skinny” comments are ok because they’re not as taboo as “fat” comments. I think any judgment on a another person’s appearance is wrong and hurtful.

    • Becca Sands

      I think you’re right, and I think it relates back to another article I wrote about accepting people’s choices regarding sex. If you wanna sleep around, cool! If you wanna be a virgin, cool! As long as you’re doing it for your own reasons and you’re in control of your situation, I think it’s great. That’s how I feel about this whole weight thing. Whatever you want is fine, just be happy!

  • http://www.facebook.com/sonora1 Sonora Chase-Snyder

    “The world” should be ashamed? I thought you were banning shame. And the world is fine, it’s America that’s the problem. Specifically American media. The only promte either the male fantasy of a woman or their nightmare of a woman. Let’s take our power back in words & action. This essay is a fine place to start. Let’s talk about it in daily life and give unsolicit feedback to companies who fail to diversify women types in marketing & entertainment!

    • Becca Sands

      A poor choice of words, yikes. Wish I’d realized that before I submitted this :) But I don’t think it’s just America. You can’t single out America and give it all the power of every poor thing that happens (not saying you do, just saying it seeeeeems to be a pattern out there). It absolutely happens in other countries–the tumblr users who call models skinny bitches aren’t only from America: I’ve seen it from England, Germany, France, Israel, Singapore, all over, from diverse women who I do admire and respect. This isn’t a contained issue. It may not be an overwhelming issue, but it certainly isn’t only American. You’re definitely right, though. Companies all over the world need to embrace all sizes and shapes and we need to make sure they not only do it, but don’t exploit the fact that they’re doing it (like the Dove campaign. It was so close to being a great idea, but then they shouted, “HEY LOOK AT US, WE LOVE ALL SHAPES!” like, that’s defeating the purpose).

  • http://www.facebook.com/becky.uibel Becky Sawyer Uibel

    Every comment someone has given me about being “too skinny” has hurt. Imagine, if you will, if the comments were reversed. If someone told me to get my bony self to a restaurant, no one blinks an eye. But if I dared to tell someone to get their fat self to a gym, I’m a horrible person. No one likes to be told they look bad. We as women need to support each other in just being as healthy as we can be. A real woman supports her sisters.

    • Becca Sands

      Completely agreed, Becky! High five! <3

  • http://www.facebook.com/bbirdcn Clarissa Nicole

    In this world you’re too fat or too skinny.

    My problem, I have a condition that makes it hard to lose weight. I’m not saying that as an excuse, I’m being truthful. I’m allergic to wheat/gluten and I don’t eat meat. I eat a good amount of fruits and veggies and I eat dairy ever so often (generally if I go out to eat, which I don’t do a lot). I work out 5 days a week for at least 30 minutes, doing some high end cardio. I can run a good while without feeling completely winded. But I’m around a 14/16 and have been trying to lose weight for at least 2 years. I say They assume I eat ALL the foods in the world because there’s no way someone who has cut out wheat and meat is this “big” right?

    I’ll be honest, lately I have come to a point where I’m re-evaluating what I eat because I don’t understand why I’m not smaller than I should be. I have to remember that dang medical condition and not to worry my life away about my weight.

    Now, what if we, overall, stop body shaming. Stop skinny shaming, stop fat shaming, etc. We don’t know people’s struggles with weight and what’s the point in doing it anyway? We’re not them. If they choose to eat candy or not that’s their prerogative.

    And now you have Bobby Brown stuck in your head. You’re welcome.

    • Becca Sands

      KUDOS on not only sharing your story, but making me laugh at the end! You’re on the right track–all the shaming needs to stop! Thanks for replying, Clarissa! <3

  • http://www.facebook.com/liz.haebe Liz Haebe

    I’ve been on both sides of this fence. I grew up overweight, and until the age of 24 was at 250 pounds. I’m now 32 and do not weigh that, and work out and watch what I eat. I now get told that I’m allowed to eat what I want because my body will just burn it off. I roll my eyes. But, honestly, it’s not like being told I was a ‘fat cow’ and I was ugly because I was fat. Those feelings never go away. I can’t say being called a ‘skinny bitch’ (which I’ve been called) doesn’t make me feel bad, but I also remember when I used to feel that way about my skinny friends. I think, in essence, we just need to let people be. We are all women, and we need to support each other. We have to stop jumping to conclusions about everyone, and just love each other for who we are on the inside, and not what we look like on the outside. It does hurt when someone jumps to conclusions about me now just as much as it did back then. We just need to remember we are women, and we need to stick together. No amount of name calling is going to make any of it any better.

    • http://www.facebook.com/alison.borden1 Alison Borden

      well said!

    • Becca Sands

      I completely agree, Liz. I wrote this because it seems that there are lots of articles about the other side of this spectrum, but bullying DOES happen to the thinner girls, and it is just as hurtful. No one has the right to harass anyone for any type of weight, but likewise, no one has the right to determine how hurtful words can be. Remember, we’re all different, we’ve had different journeys, and we all handle different things different ways. I’m glad you’re in the crowd of us who refuses to join in on the ridiculousness of weight shaming :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikolina.serdar.12 Nikolina Serdar

    It’s not only America. I live in Germany and had to defend myself so many times for going to the gym because people kept telling me that “I don’t need to lose weight”, whithout even thinking that working out could have other purposes. At first, some people just enjoy being active because- surprise!- working out can be fun. Second, additionally to just enjoying workout, I have multiple sclerosis and am not able to use my left leg properly if I skip the workout for several weeks. One day I caught myself talking about it, although I didn’t feel like doing so, just because I felt the need to defend myself for working out so often and I got really angry about the whole situation because, well, why should anyone be bashed for being ‘a sporty type’? I never insulted anyone who is overweight, so what gives others the right to insult me for enjoying the workout? This whole obsession with weight is tedious and really needs to stop!

    • Becca Sands

      Agree agree agree, Nikolina! When I first told some friends I was joining the gym, one said to me, “Don’t waste you’re money, you’re skinny.” No no nonononono, that’s not what it was about for me, and so many people don’t seem to understand that! I know how frustrating that can be, and I’m sorry you had to go through it like I did. I hope you keep being amazing and caring more about your health than your appearance, because that’s what matters <3 You're great!

  • http://www.facebook.com/AuntLisa Lisa Knox

    I’ m fat, & I’m ok with it. I had a friend who was so desperate to gain weight that she was planning a party when she reached 100 lbs. We’d eat lunch together & people woild always tell her to eat more or if she ate veggies or something, they’d all tell her she should eat a cookie or something. I was always amazed – no one would ever walk uo to me and tell me to eat less, or eat a carrot. I always felt so bad for herand was amazed that people would say such things right to her face. She actually broke into tears once. Whether we want to admit it or not, the article is correct, people assume that thin girls WANT to be thin & should be happy that they are. I think some of the posters don’t even realize tjat they areliving proff of that fact

    • http://www.facebook.com/srviniar Sara Viniar

      People forget there are two sides to every coin. I was/am in the same place as your friend! People don’t realize it hurts us so much to be bashed. Every healthy size is a beautiful size, end of story =)

    • Becca Sands

      You might just be my favorite person in the world, because you love yourself and you love your friend and I just think your whole comment was so great :’) I hope she sticks by you the way you stick by her! Thank you so much for replying! Keep being beautiful! <3

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