My first rant
Right. I promised myself that I would never use my blogging site as a platform to let off steam. I was not concerned with putting people in their place and I have no desire to get mad at the world. It’s not my thing.
I am screaming here on behalf of all the other victims, (ooh, she used that word!) men and women, like me, who are skinny and fed up of being rudely told so.
What do the pros say?
Experts say that it is medically proven that for those who find it hard to put on weight, this is actually more difficult than for those who are trying to lose it. And no, we don’t get any sympathy when that’s impatiently quoted and yes, I can understand why to a point. I have heard some horrendous stories about women being shouted at in the street, just because they are large and my heart goes out to them. And I am also aware that many fat ladies cringe at the thought of getting undressed in front of their husbands because they despise the sight of their bodies; nor do they have the confidence to venture out to the local shops to buy a paper.
So this is not a Skinny vs. Super-size war. It must be absolutely awful to be trapped inside a frame that you hate, feeling horrible in your clothes, self-conscious about your girth and being stared at wherever you go.
But… while many are sensitive to the plight of the weighty and chose their words very carefully, tip-toeing around the subject, if they dare to mention anything at all, it is not so for us unfortunate ones who look like our last hearty meal was in 1985.
It is dangerous to be really slim, as one gastric bug can have the pounds dropping off like sweat, leaving us very weak and extremely malnourished.
No-one likes to feel emaciated
In my lifetime, I have met dozens of super-thin ladies and gents and 100% of them do not like being that way. They have all suffered endless school teasing, especially on sports days, when it appears that two twigs from the nearby tree has jumped inside a pair of shorts and started running. In my experience, the only people who are ‘happy’ to be as gaunt as a beanpole are those unfortunate to be suffering from Anorexia Nervosa.
So what has triggered this rant? Who has pressed my buttons? Why have I turned into a crocodile? Well, it doesn’t really matter who. Some of the nicest people have made hurtful comments and while I’m left to pull out the poison dart, they have walked off, unaware of the venom trickling down my chest.
Words either build you up or tear you down, but that includes questions. It seems that people don’t realise that questions can be just as harmful as a statement. Want an example?
“How much do you weigh?”
Excuse me? Would you go up to an obese person and ask them that? Then why is it deemed acceptable to do the same thing to us? And then, often when I answer, (too polite in my old days – I should have just told folk to mind their own business) I receive, “Huh! I don’t believe you.” Eh? Hello? Is that nice?
If I could reverse the common sentences that I have had thrown at me, by turning them into words that match someone large, it would look something like this.
“Look at you. You are so fat.”
“My gosh, aren’t you fat!”
“You eat a lot don’t you?”
“Are you a big fan of food?”
“I take it you love chocolate?”
“You know, you should eat more salads and less cream cakes.”
“What you need is a big juicy apple.”
“You are very fleshy aren’t you?”
“You know, you could do with losing some weight – have a grape.”
“What size is that dress? A 24?”
“Gosh, an elephant could fit in that dress.”
“You know, you really need to eat less.”
“You need to lose weight, you’re too fat.”
“Are all your family so big?”
Do you get the picture? Now please tell me, which one of those sentences above is okay to say to someone? Which one of those sentences is socially acceptable? Which one is NOT rude? Then why is it fine to say the reverse to the skinnys?
If it’s simply jealousy, and sometimes it is, please get over it in another way. Your nasty words might seem fine to you. They might make you feel a whole lot better, but they certainly have the opposite effect on us.
So…going back to the present – today. Someone told me that I need to put weight on. This person, I hasten to add, is a lovely soul. They did not mean to offend me and if they knew what a werewolf I turn into when I hear such phrases, they would have lovingly kept their opinions to themselves. So I’m not mad at them. I’m not enraged with society (“Huh, coulda fooled me.”) I am just trying to once and for all ask you very politely indeed, to please keep your words to yourself. You can’t always help what you think, but you can help what you say. And yes, I do need to take heed of this myself as my own tongue needs taming.
I adore chocolate, clumps of butter on my vegetables and I love steak. I detest vomiting with a passion, so that’s Bulimia out of the way, and I hate my skirts spinning round my waist instead of staying where they should be. I can only devour what my stomach will allow and I’m not going on expensive protein diets because I would be so full and bloated that there would be no appetite for my main meal, which I think you’ll agree, defeats the object. Carbs do nothing, so stop harping on about pasta. It’s awful having no insulation in winter and the amount of layers I have to wear makes me feel like I have lead bones. And as for that bone – the clavicle. You know, those two things at the base of our necks that our larger ladies crave to see, you could hide a grapefruit in mine. That’s not pretty.
Proverbs 139: 13-16 says:
“For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
But I have learnt to agree with my Creator about my body. He tells me that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. It’s taken me a long while to accept that I do not need to change my diet or shove more calories down my throat. So while I am doing my utmost to agree with the One who put me together, please don’t make it harder for me by rendering his words null and void by your cruel comments.
Don’t slander the slender
In October 1998, a British lady by the name of Helena Fishlock-Lomax published an article in the Daily Mail explaining that she decided to set up the Size 8 Club after enduring years of insults from people calling her ‘coat hanger’ because of her small frame. As you can tell by the picture above, I kept the article. One paragraph says,
“Some of the most heartbreaking letters I receive come from the very young, who find it extremely painful being called, ‘skinny’, being accused of having eating disorders and having problems finding clothes that fit. By all means encourage young girls to find their natural weight, but don’t make the naturally slender feel unacceptable.”
I couldn’t put it better myself.
By the way,
For all you Darling Buds Of May fans… I simply LOVE Ma Larkin.