I thought I would add a node from the point of view of a naturally skinny
person - that person being me.
I'm 5'9 and I weigh 115 pounds. When I forget to eat my weight
drops to 110 or lower.
the world, thin, jagged, like electricity
. Like a radio antenna
. My feet stick out like boats on the bottom of a ship mast
. My head bobs like a buoy
on an anchor chain. My ribs could be played like an uneven xylophone
. My neck is long. My breasts are close to nonexistent. My hipbones could cause mass destruction
when I jut them forward. I often joke about killing people
And I must say, honey, that growing up with a physique
like this is no easier than growing up overweight
There is, for example, the matter of bra size
. This world celebrates big boobs
. Breast implants
, anyone? I never entered a Victoria's Secret
as a teenager, not so much because I didn't like lingerie
, but because my breasts did not exist to them.
The nicest bras don't come in 32A. In fact, I wore a 'nearly A' for years. How's that for self-esteem
There is the notion of being 'womanly'. Many claim that the model
physique is 'ugly' and 'disgusting' when compared to what women are 'supposed to look like'. That would be, I assume, large hips, large breasts
, tapering legs, rosy cheeks
, and no bones
in sight. Well, I thought. So much for being a woman
. In fact, my boyish figure
contributed somewhat to a gender identity crisis
I went through in my late teens (in addition to not fitting any girly stereotype
s or relating to women at all). I couldn't deal with romance
, or anything else involving love
, because I just couldn't handle the idea of being 'the woman'.
There is the societal bias
towards losing weight
. I work at a bookstore
, and you can imagine the amount of men and women buying diet books that come my way. Occasionally I'll get one who asks for advice. Never having read a diet book, I say something like, "I'm sorry
, I can't really say."
is always one of disdain
. "Oh, I guess you don't have to worry about dieting, do you?"
"Actually," I say, honestly, "I have trouble keeping weight on."
"Oh, you POOR thing." Sardonic. No sympathy
, or even a touch of kindness.
Can you imagine the reaction if I said something similarly sarcastic to a person trying to lose weight? It would be considered incredibly rude. Taboo
, even. Why the double standard
When I started paying attention to fashion
, I was affirmed for the first time in my life. Here was a group of women who were not only accepted for their thinness, but celebrated for it. I discovered that I can wear clothes
well. I saw symbols of sexy
on figures similar to mine. I came across brand advertisement
s, men and women on display
, models without curves being the center of attention
Fashion gave me physical confidence. People who blame fashion model
s for eating disorder
s are looking for a scapegoat
, because the figure type is arbitrary - the real problem lies within.