The Skinny on Body Shaming

I’ve been small my whole life, I mean I used to look like a human stick figure, I just have a fast metabolism so I grew up hearing all the usual questions thin people hear like “Does your mother feed you?” or “What size do you even wear?”, it made me feel self conscious about my body and it only got worse through my teen years, I used to be called names like 2×4 (flat on both sides), clever, maybe but not when you’re on the receiving end. Then I remember reading magazines that would say how guys didn’t like skinny girls and how unflattering it looked to be thin, it was nice they were making bigger girls feel better about their bodies but I often felt worse about my own body after reading these articles. One time I was watching Tyra Banks’ talk show, yes she used to have a talk show and it was all about how girls needed to forget about being model thin and embrace their own body, she went on an hour long rant about how awful skinny was, again leaving me feeling bad about myself.


Fast forward years later to present day and body shaming is a hot topic, it’s in the news, on-line and in magazines. There was an article online a couple of months ago about body shaming and how skinny people experience it too and I thought “finally someone gets how insulting it is to put down on being small to make others feel better” and then it followed with but it’s worse for bigger people, this annoyed me; people saying anything negative about your body is hurtful no matter what size you are, insulting someone by telling them you think they’re “way too skinny” is just as hurtful as someone being made fun of for being on the bigger side. Yahoo had an article about Lauren Conrad and how she isn’t going to use certain words on her website anymore that she deems fat shaming, such as “thin”, “skinny” or “slim”, which kind of bugged me (I was always more of a Kristen fan myself). So now adjectives that I am called all the time have a negative connotation? So every time someone calls me “thin” I should take it as an insult and feel bad about myself? Again making bigger people feel better by deleting words from websites but deleting words that are used to describe others and calling them negative words and as a result making smaller people feel bad about their body image.

Body shaming is defined as inappropriate negative statements and attitudes toward another person’s weight or size. Body shaming is body shaming no matter who you do it to; it’s hurtful for anyone to hear negative comments about their body. Do not bash one group to lift up another and then act like that is body-positive, everybody no matter what their size have worries about their body. Without sounding too much like an after school special, we should all love the body we have and embrace it, everyone was made different for a reason besides it would be boring if we all looked alike because then how would we decide “who wore it better”?

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