My Personal Experience With Body-Shaming And Its Effects.

  1. Possible trigger warning: Eating Disorders.
  2. Okay, to start out with, I'm currently 20 years old, approximately 5' 2" and around 140 pounds. According to various BMI charts, I'm considered overweight.
    (I'm not suggesting that BMI is an accurate measure of health or anything. Despite being considered "overweight," I'm relatively healthy, and the health issues I do have are not attributed to my weight.) Here's the most recent, (almost) full-body photo of me I have.
  3. Here is me from approximately 3 years ago, about 40 pounds lighter than I am now.
    Back then, I was considered underweight. I used to restrict, binge, and purge. I was on a medication that also reduced my appetite. I was never diagnosed with an eating disorder, so I am not going to say I had one. I had patterns of disordered eating, however, and it wasn't until about a year later after being taken off that medication when my eating habits returned to normal.
  4. From experiencing various forms of body-shaming from both ends of the spectrum, I have to say that body-shaming involving people who are overweight or obese (especially if you're a woman) has proven to be more harmful to me personally.
    That's not to say that other people are affected differently. This is from my personal experience.
  5. Derogatory statements/comments about my weight hadn't really hurt me up until recently.
  6. That's not to say that any form of body shaming is okay, because it's not.
  7. Just for myself, hearing "you need to eat more" hurts less than "you need to eat less."
    Also, I hear a lot more of "are you sure you should eat that?" And "maybe you should have *insert healthier option here*"
  8. There's a chance that that thought process comes from growing up around people would would body-shame, and how some of the disordered thoughts I have about my weight as it relates to others still are in the back of my mind.
  9. Also, I was never told I shouldn't wear something because I was "too thin." I have, however, had people tell me I shouldn't wear something because I'm "too big" for it.
    Crop tops, shorts, tanktops, etc.
  10. Again, I'm not condoning any form of body shaming, because it is not okay. Ever.
  11. I'm just sharing my own, personal experience with body shaming and its effects.
  12. However, having friends of various sizes, I don't receive nearly as much shaming as some of them do.
  13. And I am privileged in the sense that I'm not victim to more criticism because I'm closer to a "normal weight."
    "Normal weight" is in quotations because I recognize that BMI is not the best indicator of a healthy weight.
  14. In media, thin people are the norm, and are often portrayed in better, more serious roles.
  15. And they aren't told they can't eat something because of their weight.
  16. No one should ever be told they can't wear something because of their weight.
  17. People shouldn't assume someone has health issues because of their weight.
  18. People shouldn't be portrayed as unintelligent and unattractive because of their weight.
  19. Again, I'm not promoting any form of body shaming, because it is all problematic and harmful.
  20. I just wanted to share my own, personal experience with body-shaming, as someone who has received criticisms from both ends of the spectrum.