I apologize that this entry is coming late. With work, more work, with a side of pool league it has been a fairly busy week. Also… to be quite honest, it was hard to come up with a topic this week. However, there is a topic that I have been meaning to discuss, and it is one that I have touched on in the past but it was more so an opinion piece on an article I read a while back rather than an exploration of that topic. This topic is body shaming.
Body shaming happens every day in various ways. Between the obvious news articles discussing the latest celeb who has gained or lost too much weight, advertising the newest products with the “pretty” people, those who post articles and blog entries, like this one, discussing personal stories regarding their own experiences with their own struggle with their bodies, it’s hard to escape.
The way I feel about body shaming reminds me of an article I wrote discussing casual sexism. I conducted an interview with a young woman who spoke at a TedXYouth event about her experiences with sexism she has witnessed through her school years. What she argues is that there are certain aspects of sexism that has become so casual, so mainstream that we don’t even think before we say some sexist remark. For example, if someone is perhaps scared to complete a task he or she is referred to as a “pussy,” comparing that person to one of two things, female genitalia or a scaredy cat. If you know anything about the both of these things you know that a scaredy cat would probably claw you before it would back down and if referring to a vagina, well, check out The Vagina Monologues Angry Vagina monologue.
It’s easy to keep following down a path that is familiar. Say words that you have always heard that words are out of your mouth before you get a chance to actually think about what you’re saying. I am very famous for my word vomiting in my inner circle. Now I try to catch my thoughts; if I’m poking fun at someone it’s usually with the truth sounding like sarcasm.
What does any of this have to do with body shaming? Well, I think that these things go hand in hand. All gender identities deal with body shaming in some capacity.
Working in retail I have heard all kinds of things over the years. My joke is that I’m actually potato shaped. Potatoes come in all shapes and sizes! The only time I’m really self-conscious about my body is when it comes to clothes. Looking through the clothes racks, trying on clothes, trying on clothes that once fit but doesn’t fit anymore. Or, when people ask me when I’m due…
I know people who have struggled with their bodies. I know people who want to lose weight but due to factors in their lives they struggle, both from physical or personal reasons. I know people who struggle or have struggled with eating disorders who are still in recovery learning to love themselves. There is some kind of metaphorical pedestal for perfection that NO ONE will ever stand on top of. The closest one will get is when they look in the mirror and know deep in their hearts that they are happy with themselves inside and out and does not let the negative get them down anymore.
This is why I am struggling to work on my language and thought process when it comes to the body. There are times daily that I have been organizing clothing where I come across a XXS in a pair of ladies pants and think to myself, “Good GOD! There is no way anyone is that small.” But there is. My thoughts come from a place of envy. I am angry about how hard it is for me to find fashionable clothing for myself that doesn’t cost me my life’s savings and here there is XXS! It’s a thought that pops into my head, but it’s a thought I immediately want to throw up for having.
There are girls out there who fit in these clothes. Some of them are dealing with illnesses that they cannot control. Others just have a high metabolism and no matter what they do they don’t gain weight. These girls (and guys for that matter) are told to “bulk up,” “put meat on your bones” or are accused of having an eating disorder. The sad thing is, it is hard to distinguish.
Eating disorders go both ways. Whether it’s anorexia, bulimia or even binge eating, it still falls under the category of a mental stimulus that feeds the idea to the person suffering from the illness that they are not who they want to be. If only they lose more weight or get into that higher weight class (usually for sports reasons) they will be more desirable. If they work out constantly and barely eat (or only drink protein shakes) they will get to that desired state. However this state of thinking can lead to illnesses and more serious health conditions.
So, is it still annoying that every jacket I try on enhances my potato shape? Yes. It’s it frustrating when I’m trying on a pair of pants and I can’t get them up over my ass? Yes. Does this give me the right to hate on others because of their size? No. This gives me the right to hate on brands who don’t make my size! Teehee.
As for those who have to deal with body shaming, take a second and think about what that person is saying. If a girl calls another girl a “twig” she is probably jealous of that person’s figure. If someone calls another person fat, it’s probably coming from a place of ignorance. That person may be bigger due to health problems, they could be stuck buying processed foods because healthy foods are so expensive, or they could just have shitty genetics and have a harder time than others to lose weight.
This entry doesn’t even cover the amount of body shaming that is outside of the cisgender sphere. That topic I feel would be a blog entry I am ill-equipped to delve into.
As for men with dad bods… well… who doesn’t like a good dad bod?
I guess to sum it all up, bodies come in all shapes and sizes. We’re all just a sac of potatoes! Haha. Some are long and somewhat more skinny, some are short and plump with all the dimples. They come in different colors. Some are sweeter than others. But while we’re all here we should be nice to one another, you never know when this world will eat you up.
Alrighty folks, time to bid you all adieu.
Cheers and Stay Smiling!
P.S. A long while ago a wonderful lady who has been writing about her recovery from ED liked and began to follow my lil blog. We disagree on some political and religious views, however, I love reading her entries. She also does some vlogs as well that I enjoy. I respect that she stands up for what she believes in and shares her personal story with such a large heart. Check her out at