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Skinny Shaming: How Harmless Jokes Can Ruin Someone’s Confidence

“You should eat something,” “You look like a pencil,” “You look like a stick,” “You must be sick,” “You look like a 10-year-old,” “Your body will never develop like normal women,”

These are just some of the comments that I grew up hearing.

I was born with an autoimmune issue that gave me gastrointestinal tuberculosis, and somehow, it became the highlight of my life,

Ever since I was a little kid, I remember people commenting on my appearance, but in their defense, they were only “joking.” The thing that these people never realized was that these comments made me aware of my appearance at an age when I was supposed to be carefree and happy.

These comments instilled in me an obsession, an obsession with eating. And without knowing it, I unintentionally worsened my health and developed severe anxiety and depression. No matter how much I tried, I was unable to gain weight. If anything, I was only losing weight, and the “jokes” I had to hear every day were NOT helpful during that testing time.

I do not remember playing as a child, but I remember crying about looking younger than my cousins and friends because they used to make fun of my thin hands.

As a teenager, things became even worse. The jokes now included a new subject, my “womanhood.” I remember my aunt saying, “your clothes will look better on you once you gain weight,” but wasn’t I unable to gain weight? In my weight-obsessed mind, this comment meant I will never look pretty. I couldn’t wear the clothes I enjoyed because the clothes that made me look skinnier were a big NO.

My weight also gave me my first heartbreak. The boy that I had liked for years, indirectly told me that he wasn’t attracted to me due to my “skinniness.” This comment was by far the most hurtful. I still don’t know what was more heartbreaking, the heartbreak or the helplessness.

At home, I had my sisters. Unfortunately, I used to compare myself to them. To me, both of my sisters looked perfect. Their innocent banters regarding my “skinniness” never made me laugh.

I am still not perfect. I still feel terrible whenever someone tells me that I have gotten skinnier. My weight still fluctuates between healthy and unhealthy. After living with this irrational fear of being rejected, looking unattractive, and feeling inferior for years, I have finally started accepting myself. Everyday

Every day I wake up and try to find the beauty in myself, sometimes I find my eyes enchanting, somedays I cannot get over my hair, and some days I feel like I have the most beautiful hands ever.

My thoughts have finally made me realize that I was so thankless. We have been blessed with so much purity, sincerity, love, kindness, and empathy, and I had spent such a long time trying to battle something that was a part of my being. Your disease and appearance can never define you, as long as you do not let them.

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Tags: #Bullying #SkinnyShaming #bodyPositivity


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