December 25, 2015

Stop Calling Me a Skinny Bitch!

Not all thin women are starving because they can't have carbs or are throwing up their food. Let's attack the beauty ideals, ladies. Not each other...

Look, I get it. I get that most women start thinking about and "watching" their weight as early in life as middle school. I get that every ad we see, every catalogue that gets mailed to our house, every magazine cover we try not to look at as we're waiting in line to pay for our Pop Tarts features some airbrushed, impossibly young, impossibly thin superstar of a woman whose manufactured perfection we eventually come to see as normal. And it isn't normal. We know that. But it still does something to you to see those images all the time. Jennifer Aniston is in her 40's and according to Marie Claire she doesn't have a line on her face or a hint of a shadow under her eyes, meanwhile at 27 I can put on all the concealer I want and I'll end up looking like Casper before I look that flawless. I get that celebrities who have babies diet like fanatics, spend literally 24 hrs a day for months on end living in double corsets lest they reemerge into society any less thin or proportionally acceptable than they were pre-baby, and they still get airbrushed. And we see this, and we think if they - they who can afford the extra beauty rest, the personal trainers, the all-organic five star meals, the botox, the vitamin injections, the occasional enhancements and augmentations to get just as close to perfect as they can - if they still get airbrushed?! Then what the hell does that say about the rest of us?!

This is the world we live in, kids, and if you haven't noticed it's just a wee bit fucked up. There's a talk I was watching that was pretty funny. A woman was talking about how advertising targets women and men differently in an attempt to sell products. Ads appeal to a man's masculinity, his desirability. Meanwhile they attack a woman's femininity, her desirability. They make her worry that something is wrong and that if she only buys this ______ (lip plumper, eyelash curler, electronic tummy wrap that burns fat while you wash the dishes, hydraulic knee implants that make you look taller, just a simple outpatient surgery and then a 2-12 month recovery...) she'll be perfect. Almost. Until the next product she needs to be beautiful comes along. 

What's funny is that despite what a lot of women believe from buying into this crap - this isn't coming from men. Men don't give a fuck if your lashes are curled or not. They can't tell the difference if your red lipstick is a summer red when you're wearing it in fall. They don't care if your nail polish doesn't match your toe nail polish. Hell, they don't care if the right hand doesn't match the left. Men aren't the ones insisting that women on magazine covers be airbrushed to the point of becoming cartoon characters (come on, people, even babies have pores!) Men actually prefer curvy bodies. They're, as our dear Meghan Trainor put it, all about that bass. All this bullshit about five foot nine, rail thin blondes with D cup implants and skin pulled halfway back around their skulls being the "ideal" beauty is just a way to get you to spend a whole lot of fucking money on high heels, diets, weight watchers, gym memberships, metabolism pills, liposuction, hair colorists, push up bras, breast implants, botox, facelifts, makeup...

Stop me anytime. 

So it stands to reason that if you've spent a lifetime watching what you eat, only to open your Victoria's Secret catalogue on Black Friday because the bras are buy one get one half off to be bombarded by a bunch of size zeroes which you haven't been since before puberty, that you're going to be a bit upset. A bit touchy. Especially when a "skinny bitch" walks by. 


But ladies? You gotta stop...

I'm 100 pounds if I'm lucky, but usually I'm just under. This has always been an embarrassing fact about me. Growing up the doctors always wanted to know if I was eating. I was. I was eating everything. Then they wanted to know if I had an eating...problem. "Eating everything?" they'd say, skeptically, just itching for me to confess to throwing it all up when I got a little sad. But alas, no confession cometh. I'm a healthy girl. Take a peek at my little sis, she's the same way. Some summers we'd sit around and eat just because we were bored, not thinking twice about it because it's not like we were going to, oh say, gain a pound. And yeah, it sounds all awesome until other women treat you like you're less of a woman for being so thin. Like you're a perpetual child for something genetic that you can't control. Or, you know, until someone accuses you of throwing up your food. (Skinny shaming - it even has a name!)

As much as it hurts to be made fun of for being overweight, it hurts to be made fun of for being underweight. Except, since "thin" is the ideal, it is so much more acceptable to talk shit about thin people. But it's mean, and it's distracting from the real problem.

First - stop being mean and comparing thin women to women who are sick. Not all of us are thin because we're hungry! Some of us are very well fed, thank you very much. My friends joke that the amount of butter I cook with would kill a normal person and will result in all my children being little butterballs (unless they get my genes, I guess?) - trust me, I eat. It isn't fun to read articles defending female dignity against the beauty ideal, being ready to fist bump the air, and then reading a line about thin women either having eating disorders or are working out to "excess" because we hate ourselves. No!

This is not the way! You don't boost yourself up by putting other people down. Especially when they are not the problem.

I'm not the beauty ideal either, you know. The beauty ideal says I'm five feet too short, my boobs aren't big enough, and even if I fixed all that I'd only ever be a second tier beauty because, alas, I am not a blonde haired, blue eyed white woman.

But the beauty ideal is wrong - and that's the point. It's not the women who meet it that we need to be pissed at, it's the ideal itself. It's the fact that most women are being told through not so subtle messaging on a daily basis that they're not enough, all so that billion dollar industries can sell cosmetics, and diet pills, and cut your chest open and stick plastic balloons in it.

You want to get mad?

Get mad when someone tries to convince you that having wrinkles is a crime. Get mad when you open a magazine and Brad Pitt looks like a human being, but his female counterpart looks like a digital painting someone put together on the new iPad Pro. Get mad when your fashion magazine is trying to make you feel bad about yourself so that you'll, at best, buy things that you don't need and, at worst, literally risk your life for a surgery you don't need.

Get mad. You should get mad.

But don't get mad at each other. And please...don't get mad at me.

Oh...and while I'm giving orders - stop calling me a skinny bitch!

Bitch will do just fine.



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