I understand that in today's society women with hourglass figures; big breasts, small waists, and a full ass, are often considered to be the most "beautiful". Their bodies are seen as the most desirable, and thanks to photoshop and filters, virtually anyone can "achieve" this look with some clever editing.
Obviously, this is an impossible standard and we should not be looking to it as such. No matter your size and shape, your number one priority should always be your health. Not if you can fit into the "right" size of jeans.
I also understand that words such as "thin", "small", or even "skinny" are frequently used as compliments towards women in our society, whereas words like "broad", "big", or "fat" are almost always intended to be insulting.
This is a painful double standard.
So far, in my adult life, I have come to find that my body is naturally slimmer (and this isn't me "bragging", it's just the way I'm built.) I was a happy, chubby little toddler and retained some of my chubbiness, specifically around my stomach, all throughout elementary school and even until the start of high school.
It wasn't until puberty kicked in a few inches of height and I started becoming more active that I started to lose some weight. I'd never had a big appetite, even at my chubbiest, and my diet stayed relatively the same so the weight stayed off. (I want to make it very clear that I never actively tried to lose weight- I was just trying to run a mile without passing out during gym class.)
In college, aside from an intense stomach bug that left me unable to eat for a week and too afraid to eat for the month following where I lost a fairly substantial amount of weight without meaning to, I've remained pretty much the same size.
I still have to shop in the juniors department for bras, most of my t-shirts are a size "small long" because otherwise they don't cover my torso, and I have to buy jeans labeled "bold curves" just so I can fit them up my thighs and around my butt. (This, of course, leaves an awkward gap around the waistband so I've had to invest in a few good belts to prevent them from sliding down around my hips.) So yes, technically, I am on the "smaller" side when it comes to clothing sizes.
That being said, stop calling me small.
I know it's always well-intentioned. When family members say to me, "Oh you look so skinny!" I know what they're trying to say is, "Oh you look healthy!" The problem here is that I do not associate being skinny with being healthy. As goofy as it sounds, whenever someone comments on how thin I am, I feel the need to oppose them. When someone tells me "you look skinny", what I hear is "you look emaciated and weak".
Going back to the month I was afraid to touch food whilst I recovered from my stomach bug, I was weighing less than 110 pounds, which for someone of my height, is starting to get pretty low. I noticed that my ribs were visible through my skin, every one of them so clear you could count them. My skinny jeans got looser and even my skater dresses that normally hugged my waist were too big for me.
That was simply not healthy.
I understand that, supposedly, telling someone "you look fat" is far more insulting than telling someone "you look skinny", and its true. There is a certain societal expectation, specifically targeted at women's bodies, that fat=bad, skinny=good. But why?
Clearly, the "heroin chic" look from the 90's was a dangerous trend that caused an outbreak of eating disorders in girls. Why do we glorify the shrinking of the female anatomy? Why are we so afraid of the word "fat"? Literally everyone has it!
Instead of commenting specifically on my, or on anyone else's, weight, you can say that you like their clothes or simply tell them that they look good at whatever size they're at. "Pretty" doesn't have a measurement; true beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
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