Body Shaming…Fuck You
Today, someone said to me that they had noticed I had put on weight and stated that it had really become quite noticeable lately. They questioned if I was going to the gym to do something about it.
These words have affected me more than I want them to. They bring tears to my eyes as they are something I never thought I would ever hear from someone again. Especially someone who isn’t even in a spectrum of being called a friend or family member. They are just someone I know. I have worked so hard to lose weight and to lose the stigma of body shaming. I thought I had left it behind me, you know, that others felt it was their right to comment on my body.
Yeah, I have put on weight, 12kgs and I am not ok with weight gain, it scares the shit out of me, but I am fucking healthy. As I kindly pointed out to them, that about 8 months ago I went through something pretty stressful which caused stress induced loss of appetite. I lost 12 kgs and 6 of them were in one week. I was lightheaded and weak. On a couple of occasions I fell down from lack nourishment, landing hard on my knees because I had no energy to keep my standing. I looked emaciated and I looked unwell. I had no insulation around my bones and it hurt if I bashed into something. You could feel every vertebrae in my spine and it was painful to lean my back on anything hard. I was skinny but I was unhealthy.
Why can’t I be congratulated that 8 months later, I look healthy and happy? I had gotten used to being a size 10/12 and now I am back to being a size 12/14. I will get used to my body again once my brain catches up, but you know when I look in the mirror either clothed or naked, I like my body. I like that it has meat on it again. I like that my tummy, my thighs and my arse have fullness again. I like that my bones have padding again.
Last year I weighed 72kg and I was told I was too skinny. Now, I weigh 72kg and I have been questioned if I am going to the gym to do something about it. What the actual fuck. When will people, women, stop commenting on our bodies? When will we stop thinking it is our right to comment on each others bodies? When will our bodies ever just be enough?
When I was around 13 years of age my mother made me lift my top up and turn around to show her friend, who was a complete stranger to me, my body. And when my back was turned the words burned into my brain that came from my mothers mouth were, “See, she’ll never be skinny, she has too big of a body frame.” I look at photos from my youth and I struggle to see the fat girl I was made to believe I was. She isn’t there, she never existed, or are there no photos?
At 16–18 I weighed 83kg, I was a healthy size 16. I was plump, but I wasn’t morbidly obese like it was made out that I was. My mother used to try to bribe me to lose weight. Things like, I’ll pay you $2 per kg. Or, if you lose 10kg I will buy you a whole new wardrobe of clothing.
Or my favourite, she just took to ridiculing me. Like, you look pregnant. You look fat. You are unhealthy. She used to say that she didn’t care about how much I weighed, that she was more worried about my health. Maybe she should have cared more about my mental health than the way that I looked. Because I when I look at photos, I looked like a normal teenager. Just a little plump.
For as long as I can remember, from kindergarten years and onwards I was harrassed and ridiculed for my body by my own parents. My father in particular revelled in public shaming me on my body. I again look at the photos of me as a small child and I don’t see it. I don’t get it. I looked like a normal little girl, albeit a girl with short hair that really looked like a little boy in girls clothing. Not an overweight child. Are those photos missing? I was put on a diet at an early age, I remember that but I ask again, are those photos missing? I every photo I can find I look normal. Sometimes a little plump, but normal.
So I guess today just brought up a whole lot of emotions. I am tired of my body being up for public comment. I went from a body that was too fat, to a body that was too thin and now I should join a gym to do something about the weight I have regained after losing it in an unhealthy manner. When will I ever just be good enough?