This post has been a long time coming, and something that has bothered me for quite some time. Decades if we’re going to be honest. I wasn’t sure if I should even do this post as this is a beauty blog, but our bodies make us feel beautiful (or not at times) so it’s worth sharing. So here goes nothing.
If you know me, you know that I love minding my own business. I don’t care about how much money you make. I don’t care about who you love. And most importantly, I don’t care about what you eat or how you are shaped. As long as you are happy, healthy and whole, I could care less about the choices people make. What you eat doesn’t make me sh*t….literally.
Here are some of the things I have heard over the years. All from other women.
“You need to go eat some meat and potatoes”…..
“I’ve never seen a dog fight over a bone with no meat on it”…
“You look hungry”….
“Skinny bitches are evil”….
“(insert dress size) You’re not even a woman. That’s not a real number”
(That’s me not giving a damn about your opinion)
I can’t for the life of me figure out why people feel the need to constantly provide commentary about how people should go about eating or exercise when quite frankly it’s none of their damn business. More importantly I don’t understand the body shaming double standard. If a “skinny chick” says something about a “big girl” that’s negative and you’re body shaming. But if a “big girl” says something disparaging about a “skinny chick” then that is OK? NO, it’s not! And I’m going to tell you why.
Body image issues affect any and every woman. You’re either too big. Or you’re too small. You really can’t win for losing. If it’s inappropriate for me to tell a large woman maybe she shouldn’t eat so much and should go to the gym, then you can’t tell me that I need to eat more or what am I working out for, it’s a waste because I’m small.
I’m going to be transparent. I have struggled with body issues for a long time. I’ve gone from being “too small” to now maybe “not small enough”. At the end of the day all things are relative and there are mitigating factors. Being “small” doesn’t mean you’re healthy, just as much as being “big” doesn’t mean you’re unhealthy. At 5’3″ and 147lbs I have high cholesterol, endometriosis, a kidney issue, and some other health issues where proper diet and exercise will do me service. But I’m “small” so you’d never know…right?!? Alzheimer’s and dementia also run RAMPANT in my family. I know for a fact that there is a direct correlation between cardiovascular diseases and Alzheimer’s, on top of the fact that African American’s are disproportionately diagnosed. So basically if you’re black with high blood pressure, cholesterol and or diabetes you’re more likely to be affected. Thanks, but no thanks.
I also want to note that the African American community is extremely harsh in this regard. It’s almost as if your womanhood relies upon your curves, the thickness of your thighs and the meat on your bones. I’m not even going to make this about the men, I’m strictly going to focus on what black women say to other black women.
I’m urging women to stop telling other women what they need to do with their bodies. It’s not only detrimental, but it’s none of your damn business. And most importantly, stop saying cruel body negative things to young women. There is more that I can say about that, but I may save that for another post.
Better yet, let’s open some dialogue in the comments! Let me know how you feel. Have you been affected by body shaming? How has it affected you mentally and/or emotionally?