So I have friends of all shapes and sizes, ranging from the tiny to the large. Usually we all get along as one big happy family, but every now and then a few people like to pipe up and whine about their life. Which is fine I guess, everyone’s entitled to rant, it’s healthy even I’d say, but it’s almost always the same thing with this one girl: thin-bashing. Or I guess, complaining about it.
She’ll complain about how it’s hurtful that people call her a stick, how she had to put up with teasing as a kid for being so thin, how posters meant to be funny and motivational make skinny people out to be monsters or some kind of inhuman. And while rationally I can agree with her, I mean discrimination on either side of the fence is still discrimination, part of me always wants to just tell her to shut up.
Sure, maybe some people made fun of you once for being rail-thin. You had to endure taunts and embarrassing nicknames thanks to your weight. But you’re not the only one. And hell, I’d wager a guess that you’re in the minority, that is, people being mocked for being too thin. For what’s probably the past few centuries the vogue has always been to be underweight, not over, and people such as myself and larger have been having to deal with the same for decades. Ridiculous, even dangerous fad diets, magazines telling us we can’t wear what’s in (a problem no skinny girl has ever had to deal with), and a constant insecurity that comes with growing up with zero confidence in your appearance. And then there’s the fact that “fat” has grown to equal “stupid,” or “silly,” making it difficult to find any sort of heavy character that isn’t just someone played for laughs, or the goofy sidekick.
Yes, some of these issues overlap with anyone who’s dealt with image issues, but the biggest problem I have with her whining is time. We’ve had to deal with weight-based discrimination for years, yet it’s almost always been against heavier people, not thinner. So of course now that heavy is finally becoming somewhat accepted and normalized (not that that’s okay beyond a certain extent either) we’re pushing back. People are finally taking pride in themselves for who they are, which you’d think she could relate to since she’s apparently just “naturally thin.” Well, some people are “naturally heavy;” there’s nothing they can do about it either.
But these same people are making banners and images basically celebrating themselves and their kind, and suddenly she’s offended? Well guess what, we’ve been offended for CENTURIES. Corsets, waistlines, fashion and fads, it’s always been against us, with the punishment of chastising and mockery for not fitting in. So don’t act so surprised now that the bullied are finally biting back. Oh I’m sure it’s oh so hurtful to not be called a “real woman,” but we all know that’s just slang for plus size these days anyway, and someone with some self-confidence wouldn’t be bothered by that sort of thing anyway. In a way it’s almost good that people are getting their feelings hurt; maybe now they’ll finally realize just how hurtful not only the obvious fat jokes and leering have been, but also the constant media bombardment about not being “right” and not fitting in.