You did NOT just make a comment about my weight! [photo courtesy of google image search]
The scene takes place anywhere women are gathered and there happens to be food.
Woman 1 grabs a chicken wrap and begins eating it.
Woman 2: You’re eating a wrap? I thought you said you’re not working out today! Shame on you! You’re not going to be able to work that off!
Woman 1 [with her mouth full of chicken wrap]: Uhhhh … I was hungry? And … I’m going to the gym four times a week?
Woman 3: Oh, you’re going to the gym now? You want to be a Skinny Minnie?
Woman 1: Uhhhh … not exactly, I just want to be healthy and able to walk up a flight of stairs without being out of breath [congratulates herself on not “weighing in” on the undercurrent of body shame present in so many conversations women have with each other]
Woman 4: Yeah, I hear ya. Me too.
Woman 3: What are you talking about, Woman 4? You’re skinny!
[At which point Woman 1 leaves, enraged]
CAN WE STOP TALKING LIKE THIS TO EACH OTHER, PLEASE?
All of the body shaming and monitoring what each other eats and how much we exercise REALLY needs to stop.
It’s just not cool, and it’s not appropriate.
There are just SO many things wrong with the above scene, I don’t even know where to start. And the thing is, it seems like your everyday conversation between women when there’s food around and you may think it’s not that bad.
That’s the point. We talk this way to each other and we’re not realizing how stupid and invasive it is.
1. First of all, if someone is hungry, at some point they’re going to put food in their body. That’s generally how it works.
2. Secondly, it is absolutely 100% NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS when, how, if, and what someone eats. None whatsoever.
Here’s a question for you. When is it appropriate to make a comment about someone’s eating habits?
a) When they’re overweight and they’re indulging in a second cupcake
b) When they’re thin and indulging in a second cupcake
c) When they’re average-sized and indulging in a second cupcake
d) When they’re getting married soon and indulging in a cupcake*
e) If they exercised that day
f) If they didn’t exercise that day
The correct answer is NONE OF THE ABOVE!
3. Someone should never, ever have to explain why they’re eating something. Whether they’re eating because they’re hungry, or bored, or just because the food is there, guess whose business it is? Not yours.
4. People go to the gym for all kinds of reasons. To get fit, to be healthy, to participate in group exercise classes, to be social, to reduce stress, to train, to build up strength, etc. Yes, a lot of people go to the gym to lose weight and yes, that was the reason I gave the people at the gym when they asked why I signed up, but. A far more self-loving, and feasible goal should be health, rather than losing weight, which brings me to my last point.
5. Skinny does not automatically mean healthy! There are plenty of skinny woman out there who, I’m sure, would not be able to climb up a flight of stairs without being out of breath. Also, are only not-skinny people supposed to want to be healthy? Are thin people not allowed to say they want to get healthy? I don’t get it.
So please. Mind your own business. Stop body shaming, stop monitoring what your friends eat and whether or not they’ve worked out, and let them eat cake. Or chicken wraps. Or whatever.
* based on true event