Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Problem with Skinny

I'll tell you the problem with skinny right off the bat. Skinny does not necessarily mean healthy. The two are not interchangeable. A lot of us struggle with the pressure to have the "perfect" (a.k.a. skinny) body. I don't know any of my girlfriends who haven't complained about how they look. Nine times out of ten, one of us is almost always quoting Mean Girls when it comes to our looks. And nobody's complaint has ever been, "I have bad breath in the morning." Whatever, Cady. Who spells "Katie" like that anyways?

A lot of my classes this year emphasized the role the media plays in setting societal standards. Growing up, playing with my Barbies, I never thought I had to look like them. Who did I think I had to look like? Lizzie McGuire. Duh. And then when Hilary Duff went through her uber skinny stage (anybody else remember that?), suddenly I was like, "Oh, if Lizzie McGuire looks like that so should I." Granted at this point she was in her post-Lizzie days, but you get the point.

Well, that was the biggest joke I ever told myself. Cue puberty (ew) and the fact that (surprise!) I was blessed with ginormous boobs and an even bigger butt. It became clear when I was told in 7th grade that I'd never be a part of the "itty bitty titty committee" that I was never going to be that cute, tiny, dainty little person that every boy for whatever reason relentlessly wanted to be with. 

Middle school was rough thanks to the two jerks who so graciously bestowed upon me their backhanded compliments. Coincidentally, middle school was also when I had the most boyfriends. Anyway, high school was much worse.

My friends started dating, I kept doing my thing (snacking at home and watching Bridget Jones Diary religiously), and then sophomore year I gained fifteen pounds. UGH. It was so not in the "Look Like Lizzie McGuire" plan (which at this point was probably the "Look Like Hannah Montana" plan). The next two years of high school had their ups and downs, but looking back on it, high school was so not my peak. Clearly it wasn't, because at 15 I was still watching Hannah Montana. Thank God I didn't peak in high school, and thank God that I've actually lost weight since graduating high school. Take THAT Freshman 15!

I'm about to get serious on you all.

I am the tallest of my friends. I am the heaviest of my friends, mostly because on average I'm about 3-4" taller than all of them and have a hell of a lot more booty. But still, it doesn't take away the fact that I often feel like a giant around them. And when they call themselves "fat"-- their tiny, size 4 or 6 or 2 or 0 or whatever selves-- fat, it makes me feel like absolute crap.

This isn't a throw a pity party for Emily because she's tall and doesn't look like her friends post. This is an everybody stop using the term fat post. And I have three specific reasons for doing such:

1. Calling yourself fat isn't going to make you feel better about yourself. If anything, it's going to make you feel worse.

2. Your worth is not measured by how much you weigh. I'm starting to believe the scale is such a load of bulls**t that I'm contemplating getting rid of mine.

3. The term fat is not beneficial to anyone around you. Anyone. It's not going to make you feel better about yourself (see #1), it's not going to make your friends feel better about themselves (and if it does you should find better friends), and lastly, the term holds no weight whatsoever. No pun intended there. 

Mindy Kaling once said, "It takes a lot of effort to look like a normal-slash-chubby woman!" Hell yes it does! I know it does because I am a normal woman, one who works out and eats well and indulges sometimes (depending on the week...). Normal.

So be normal. And be healthy. Happiness will follow.

Have a great week!



Lauren said...

So glad you did a post on this topic! I so agree with you, skinny does not always equal healthy or beautiful and sometimes people forget that.


Coffee Beans High Heels said...

this is great! i also grew up watching lizzie mcguire and hanna montana. i remember i thought lizzie was so fabulous, i wanted to have her hair style and be like her. I even remember that when i found out her real name was Hilary Duff -i wasnt aware of actresses when i was 6-. This post made me smile, skinny doesnt equal beauty. every body has her own body type, and we should accept tht