A Message To The Haters: Stop Skinny Shaming

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Whether we accept it or not, ‘judging’ people is America’s favorite pastime (screw baseball). Even though we grew up being taught to respect one other regardless of body type, we still instantly judge or assess someone on everything from their stature to how their clothes fit. It’s instantaneous. It’s innate. And sometimes you can’t internally help it.

We’ve all heard of fat shaming and it’s a damn travesty that affects both genders in the worst way possible – but rarely do we look at the opposite side of the spectrum. Skinny shaming exists as well, and is rarely talked about because it’s not considered an “issue” in mixed company.

How often have you overheard (or said yourself) “that bitch needs to eat a sandwich” or assumed someone had psychological or eating disorders because he or she was thinner than a normal person? Simply look at any gossip rag cover and you’ll see a slew of celebrities being unjustly accused of anorexia or bulimia. Stars, they’re just like us!

While eating disorders are more rampant than acknowledged, the person in question could just have a ridiculous metabolism. Or be very active in a sport. Or just not like sweets. Or be rich and famous and in the public eye so they hired a personal trainer. The possibilities are endless. However, it’s far more fun and easier to assume that the chick in a crop top and denim shorts hasn’t ingested anything but blow and genitals (and maybe a cube of cheese) for the past few days. While in reality she just inhaled a (Subway) foot long and drank half a liter of coke in the past hour – but through genetics she just can’t put on weight.

It’s hard to intercept whispers about whether or not your friend has an eating disorder. Or overhear that someone thought you just threw up because you ate that hot dog and that must be “how she keeps the weight off.” No, it’s because we’ve been drinking for the past four hours in the sun without shade. That hot dog was delicious and you would have preferred to keep it down.

At the end of the day, body types come down to two things: genetics and a lifestyle tailored around diet and exercise. We can’t help our genetics but we can make healthy decisions based on our own perceptions of how we think we should look. You don’t know (and shouldn’t care) the reasons why someone looks how they do, you’ve got too much of your own shit to deal with.

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To quote Dr. Seuss, "Being crazy isn't enough." Writer living in NYC.

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