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10.10.2016

Let's Talk | Body Shaming - A Skinny Girls Perspective

Body shaming in one capacity or another has been around for as long as our abilities to perceive conceptions of beauty have. Unfortunately, the topic of weight is now at the forefront of this issue and it is often primarily "fat shaming" as it has come to be known that is first thought of when we think of weight shaming. However, "fat shaming" is not the only kind of shaming that's out there; skinny girls are shamed too. The shaming of the skinny girl is often done through underhanded, subtle comments - more often or not in the form of a compliment to someone of another weight. These can be direct - "you look ill, you need to put on more weight", "do you actually eat?", "why do you want to work out, you're already skinny?", "you need a burger". These comments as mentioned above can also be in the form of "compliments" to others: "don't worry, men don't want skin and bones, men want curves", "only dogs like bones", "real women are curvy". 

It is often thought that if you are skinny, you are privileged - therefore you have no need nor any right to moan or feel offended about the comments of others. And yes, perhaps (at least in the society that I live in), the commonly favoured, Westernised standard of beauty is the one featuring a slimmer, skinnier woman - but that doesn't mean that these women can't and won't be shamed too. More so than this, what we must remember is that at any any given time, these standards of beauty have and will change and that they are constructed ideas, not truth or fact. Being skinny does not automatically grant you happiness, body confidence or self acceptance.

We live in a society dominated by media insinuations that in the favour of the "body positivity" movement see it fit to justify the victimising of one body type in order to show support to another.  Song lyrics, memes, Instagram photos - this contradictory "support" is something I have seen all too much of. We must remember that these standards of beauty, these ideals are fed to us by these institutions - they are trying to adapt and frame our perceptions of taste and what beauty is and should be - a reality that can be damaging to us all.
The shaming of the skinny is not right - just like fat shaming is NOT right. Neither should be accepted, neither should be justified in any way. I simply don't believe in the degradation of one cause in order to aid another. I don't believe in bringing others down to bring others up - I believe in the support of all causes in order to rid our society of a wider issue - the issue of shaming of any kind.

As a skinny girl, I don't want to be told that my lack of "curves" are unappealing and mean that I'm not a "real" woman. I don't want to be told that I need to eat more or that I can't go to the gym or workout because I'm "skinny enough".  Just like the larger girl, just like ANY girl, I have the right to feel beautiful, to feel accepted and to feel confident. 

I'd like to see a movement in which one size isn't pitted against another, in which we simply celebrate the beautiful differences within ourselves. I want to live in a world in which we are judged by the integrity of our character and not what the scales have to say.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this topic, please do leave them in the comments so we can continue this discussion! As always, thanks for reading.

Levinia, xo

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