Random Musings - Slim/Skinny/Thin Shaming
A new segment that highlights topics or articles that I find interesting or relevant in my life. It will range from food, fashion, lifestyle, and who knows, maybe some politics or... cats. A place I can share my random thoughts, experiences, and hopes to hear your thoughts as well.
Click here to read the article that inspired this post:
Slim shaming/Skinny shaming/Thin Shaming are terms I actually dislike, but will use for the sake of this post. It is something I have experienced countlessly in the past few years. At the time, I did not know what I was going through ... did not know such a thing existed until I read this article, or so I did not know how to put it into words. I have felt those exact feelings the writer discusses, and could remember explaining these feelings to my friends, but not knowing or understanding completely why I felt that way (since being skinny is desirable for a lot of people). Although I am not as angry as the writer, I do have my own frustrations and insecurities when comments arise about my weight. I do believe (and hope) that I am far from looking unhealthy, but I do have a smaller upper frame, that people base lots of judgements on. Little do they know, I do have a larger set bottom (Quick fact: I wore size 8-10 pants at one point in college.. and am now a steady size 5-7).
Just a quick background... Living in California, I am able to maintain and gain weight (unhealthy weight) because of all the grease and food that are conveniently accessible. While living in China and South Korea, I spent a lot of time cooking my own meals and snacks, which of course were very healthy as I could control exactly what I ingested. For this exact reason, my body reverted back to its smaller, thinner state. Now the comments that were made in those countries were meant to be compliments, but the fact that these comments were made everyday made me feel that it was something so obnoxiously in their faces that they had to comment on it. I do not know about you, but I would love my personality to be the first thing someone notices rather than my size. Of course, cultural differences do play a big factor. Being from the states, I personally prefer more curvacious bodies, but the more I kept hearing these comments, the more self conscious and disgusted I was with my body. Yes, you can be self conscious about being (too) skinny - at least I was at the time. Unfortunately/Fortunately, this is exactly how my body and metabolism is because girllll (or boy) I love to eat! Side note, my metabolism is slowing down with age.. EEP!
Now for something I actually do consider slim shaming.
The absolute, #1, most frustrating thing I encounter over and over again? Having to explain why I want to workout, which is to get fit and healthy, and not to lose weight. People equate working out to losing weight, but losing weight is far from my mind. All I want to do is to be able to walk up some stairs and not hyperventilate, or be able to do a full pushup/pullup. I want to tone up, gain muscles, and increase stability to live a long and healthy life.
Almost without a fail, when the topic of health or exercising is being discussed in a group and I mention that I need to start working out, somebody looks at me with anger and confusion. They can't quite comprehend why someone of my frame (based on my upper body) would possibly need to workout. I would get comments ranging from "You will disappear if you workout!" or "UGH, you're so freaking skinny already, geez." Some respond in a way as if I am insulting them, which is quite frustrating on my part. And then my whole spiel on how I literally cannot walk down the street without panting, and how I need to get physically fit, not lose weight, blah blah has to happen so they will stop with their comments. Even after the spiel, who knows if they truly believe or understand my point.
With all that being said, I do understand why some may get frustrated. I have been in the presence of many woman who do make comments that they need to lose weight just to fish for compliments.
I actually wrote this post a few months ago, but was hesitant on posting it for all to read. I know weight is a sensitive topic, and by discussing slim shaming, I am not dispelling any other important body issues out there. I simply wanted to express my occasional frustrations and hope some will be less quick to judge, or even be less hostile towards when these conversations occur.
Old news, but thoughts on France banning skinny models?