Amanda Lee
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Body Shaming at Any Size

I want to talk about all of the things that nobody wants to talk about. Today's topic? Body Shaming at any size. I grew up skinny, tiny. Comments that I heard were the likes of "skinny bitch" and "go eat a hamburger." The irony of it is that I'm a nice person and I do eat hamburgers. However, there was always this backward prejudice that said I didn't get the right to feel hurt by those comments because I was thin, and thin people were widely accepted in popular culture. 

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The truth is, I didn't live in popular culture, I lived in the real world. My physique was in the minority and I can promise you, nobody envied me. For one, I was looked at as weak. I was always given less "Amanda is tiny, she doesn't eat a lot." This actually caused me to stay tiny because it was automatically assumed I needed less. The most interesting part about it was that because of my small stature, people took the stance that my feelings didn't matter.

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I used to cry, I could never find pants that fit me, the tiniest sizes were too big. I remember one-day shopping with my mom when we found a pair that actually fit the way I wanted them to but they were $80. I don't even spend $80 on a pair of jeans on myself right now let alone 15 years ago. My mother bought them for me, she saw the way I lit up when I felt like a regular person. She asked, "will you wear them?" I said "yes!" and they were mine. That was a lot of money back then, my mom knew my struggle because it was her struggle too. 

My Abuelo, God rest his soul, used to call me "Trapa" which loosely translates into "rag." That doesn't translate to "model" or "petite" it's something that means light and used up, not glamorous at all. My Abuela, God rest her soul, always told me and my cousin, that a husband doesn't want a skinny wife. She also said he didn't want a fat one either, I loved her so much but her thought process on this was beyond old school it was cruel school. (yeah I just made that up)

 Years ago I was over a boyfriend's house for a family dinner, well after eating I excused myself to the restroom and his brother called to me "if you're going to purge yourself, use the bathroom on right, it flushes better." Why did he think that was okay? Why is it that if a female is thin, people assume she has an eating disorder?  If I actually did have an eating disorder he was completely insensitive to it.  Sometimes I see him around, oddly enough he never recognizes me but I always look at him and think "you're a terrible person, truly." It's funny how someone can affect your life, it stays with you forever and yet they don't even bat a lash.  

Physically? Being thin means that your always cold, at least I was anyway. I was always uncomfortable, my hands and feet feel like ice. Having less weight meant having less of everything else. I had the smallest bra size imaginable, itty bitty titty committee. I constantly read "men like girls with meat, bones are for dogs." This is not nice. If no one has told you yet, that's a mean thing to say. Women have this warped perception that you have to knock someone else down to empower yourself, this is untrue.

None the less, I tried everything I could to gain weight, protein shakes, more meat, more carbs. I even asked my doctor if there was something I could take to slow down my metabolism. I think my doctor was the only person who told me to stop trying to gain weight, it would happen naturally, some people are just smaller than others and that I was perfectly healthy. 

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You're the only one who lives your life. Just as you shouldn't expect people to know what you're going through, you shouldn't assume you understand or can even scratch the surface of the life people live. Stop body shaming people, at any size, on any level, stop. By judging others, you're contributing to the toxic thought that there is one idea of beauty. There isn't one way to be a female and there isn't one way to be a male. If we were meant to all look the same, our bodies wouldn't be capable of such change. Start loving yourself, it'll help you to love others.  

I love seeing beauty in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Differences in beauty empower me, we're all on this earth together. Stop looking at magazines that don't reflect you or your image. We all want to see people who look like us represent the idea of perfection, be that for yourself. Look inside of you, know that you're enough, more than enough and so is everyone else. 

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xx

Amanda Lee