Yes, “Skinny Shaming” is Real
Usually, we when we talk about size positivity, we think of plus-sized women, and not average or thin women. But, actually it refers to people of any size and is about building body confidence and self-esteem and feeling confident in your skin. There seems to be a new trend and it’s quite vicious…women are being bullied for being what people perceive as “too thin” and being “skinny shamed”. It starts at a young age and carries on into adulthood.
Melanie Shebel writes a blog called Heal Dove where she has written multiple times about this issue and her personal struggles since about 5th grade. Melanie was much tinier than the other kids in her class and one kid told her she was the size of a kindergartner and should be dead. By 6th grade, she was beaten up on the playground by almost 40 kids and decided to attend private school for a few years. It didn’t seem to flair up again until a high school guidance counselor straight up told her she was anorexic and made her eat a container of yogurt in front of her. This made her quit high school with only three months until graduation.
As an adult, she is still body shamed, even though she eats a lot and is just naturally thin. Larger people hear comments about their weight, but shockingly thin people hear it all the time. People point out to her that “anorexic people deny having an eating disorder”, yet she’s not anorexic. She’s decided to stop making excuses for herself, despite the fact she has low self-esteem
Problems Skinny People Have Problems Too
Thin women are more insecure than larger women. People think it’s OK just to say whatever to them. Vanessa Traquair wrote an article for UK’s Mirror about her issues. She’s been called names like giraffe, skeletor, and stick person, and has been told to eat a cheeseburger or gain some weight.
Like plus-sized women, Vanessa has problems finding clothes in their size. If your clothes size is below a six, you could be wearing clothing geared at teenagers or even clothes from the kids section, like Vanessa does. Petite clothing is very limited. Tops don’t fit right because her bra size is a 34A. Thin women who want to be a normal weight and are naturally thin have a hard time gaining weight, no matter how much they eat and/or don’t work out. And, people are always concerned about their health.
What Happens When You Fight the Bullying
Emma Wolf wrote a book called Ministry of Thin. She received a lot of hate for writing it, even though she has never criticized large-sized people. Before she wrote the book, life was rough for her, but things got worse. She fought with anorexia most of her life, which was only acerbated by the bullying she received. Critics called Emma a “fat Nazi” and she was told men “love something to grab onto” and “curves are sexier than skeletons”
People in the limelight like Kendall Jenner have it the worst. People are already jealous of her fame. When she signed with Wilhelmenia Models at 17, she was on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar Arabia. Once she got that cover, it got worse. She has publicly said that “calling someone too skinny is the same as calling someone too fat” and she’s right
The real question is why is skinny shaming OK but fat shaming isn’t? Neither is OK. People come in all shapes and sizes and we should respect that and not be shaming anyone.
Here’s a review of The Ministry of Thin by Emma Woolf by The Guardian.