Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Real Women DON'T Have Curves

... and real women have them.

By being born with a vagina, continuing to breathe, and identifying as a woman, you are, in fact, a real woman.

I'll even go further.  Even if you weren't born with a vagina, and you identify as a woman, you are a real woman.

I happen to think that's pretty cut-and-dried.

As much as I hate saying it, I've apparently been proven wrong.

I'm feeling especially rant-y this morning because I woke up to all sorts of reactions from last night's airing of the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.  While there were some that talked about how wonderful the entertainment aspect was or how gorgeous the lingerie was, most of the chatter revolved around what the women looked like. 



I mean, they're models. They're gorgeous.  Let's just go ahead and get that out of the way.  If you watched that show last night, you saw some of the most beautiful women in the entire world, and not just because they fill out skivvies well.  Those women have some insanely beautiful faces: pouty lips, cheekbones up to the high heavens, ginormous almond-y eyes.  (#swanepoelgirlcrush)

Most of the comments I've seen, however, are some variation of the following:


Eat a sandwich. 

Disgusting.

Clearly sick.



And this is the part where I bang my head against my desk for an hour.  Because WHY.

I gotta ask, if we're so quick to blame our genes for making us fat, why wouldn't genes be responsible for these women being skinny?  They aren't clearly sick or disgusting, they just look different than some of us. 

If you're a woman who thinks it's okay to tell a skinny woman that she needs to eat a sandwich, I hope you don't mind when that skinny woman tells you that you're a fat ass.  Because that's exactly the sort of shaming you're giving her.

Nothing irks me more than to see this seemingly well-intended movement about real women having curves.  While it may have started as a catchphrase to dissuade innocent women from the horrors of an eating disorder (sidenote: whoever though EDs were about food was seriously wrong, but that's another topic for another day), it's now used make the "normal women" feels superior for not wearing size 2 jeans.

Again: why?  Why does it matter?



Women are not alike.  Women aren't supposed to look alike.  I've never understood why women think that it's okay to tell someone how they should look. It seems to be a huge deal if you fat shame, but when the tables are turned and you're telling a woman that, in essence, she isn't a "real woman" because she weighs 100 lbs and has no hips, that's just to be expected because we're all about promoting self-esteem for little girls, y'all, and they shouldn't compare themselves to those women because it's unattainable.

BULL.SHIT.

If anyone is really worried about the self-esteem of tomorrow's youth, perhaps we should be teaching them instead that comparison is the thief of joy.  Maybe we should tell them that whether they're built to look like Miranda Kerr or Adele, that they are beautiful and have value as a woman. Instead of teaching our daughters and nieces that real women have curves and that "those women" are sickly and abnormal, let's teach them that it's never okay to question someone's identity as a woman because they weigh ten pounds less than the average woman.

And let's not even get me started on the "normalcy" of being "average."  That's a whole 'nother can of worms.

#rambleblog





((EDIT: if you aren't a usual reader of mine and you decide to comment, would you mind telling me how you found me? I've never had this much traffic on a post and it makes me curious. Thank you!))



Image Map

500 comments:

1 – 200 of 500   Newer›   Newest»
Brittney said...

I hate the "real women" thing too. We watched last night. I watched with my husband (and some friends online were calling me CRAZY for "allowing" him to watch it...that's another rant!), but I saw strong, fun, beautiful women and talented designers....and T Swift totally surprised me looking so confident and empowered. I think it's because she was surrounded by other powerful confident women. I totally agree with you on this.

Robin said...

YES YES YES. Just a million times yes. I wrote a similar post today and could not agree more with everything you said. I'm 5'3 and 94 lbs. I am literally allergic to everything and have been seeing doctors for years trying to figure out why I can't put weight on. So when someone tells me to eat a sandwich? All I can do is smile sweetly and tell them to get on a damn treadmill. Nothing makes me angrier! I'm all about promoting being healthy, but putting women down for being thin is no different than putting them down for being heavy. Just mind your own business!! I LOVE the VS Fashion Show every year, and think it's great to watch incredibly beautiful, in shape women strut around on a sparkly runway. People need to back off! (end rant).

xx BHB said...

I love love LOVE this, Ty.

Miranda Kerr wrote a self-help book called TREASURE YOURSELF, works with important organizations that deal with children and the environment, and promotes an organic lifestyle.

Adele is an exceptionally talented singer, songwriter, and musician.

THOSE are the qualities I want to hold up in front of my step daughter and say, "These are REAL WOMEN. Real women who have talents and share their gifts to make the world a happier, better place. Their body has NOTHING to do with this."

Kudos, kudos, kudos.

Jordan @ All The Small Things said...

This is so perfect. I confess, I've been guilty of "thin-shaming" at times, but in all honesty, it's probably more because I get insecure about my own probably-bigger-than-healthy-curves, and fall into the trap of thinking that looking down on someone who is skinnier than I am will make me feel better. Spoiler alert: it never works.

Props to you for saying this. It's a message that every person, man or woman, needs to hear.

Crumbs and Curls said...

I love this! I don't understand why people bash these women, in addition to being genetically blessed they work their butts off to look the way they do & it's because it's their job to look like that. I agree with the fact that bashing skinny women is equally as bad as bashing heavy women, & that bashing anyone is not teaching young girls anything. Why should people who are naturally thin feel bad about it?

Kristin
crumbsandcurls.blogspot.com

Jordan said...

I'll admit, your title made my blood pressure rise. But after reading this all I can do is give you a round of applause! Thank you.

LB @ Table For One said...

I LOVE THIS! Sharing on my FB!! I've seen a lot of those comments of "eat a hamburger" on my newsfeed as well. They are models! They work their asses off to look that way and I BET that they ate a hamburger when it was over too!

Lisa Schulist said...

This is SO FANTASTIC.

Kelly B. said...

Amen to this so hard. I'm naturally thin. I seriously eat like trash and sometimes wish it manifested physically because I lack motivation to work out and just BE healthy (dad's recent heart attack has helped that aspect but that's neither here nor there.) People grab my wrists and tell me I need to eat- right, because a sandwich will give my bony wrists some fat. what?

Midly off topic but I'd love to read a rant blog about this: any recap post I read today, or tweet I saw, that expressed thoughts like, "as all the women in America rush to the grocery store for pounds of lettuce and celery" made me seriously cringe. The generalization that the VS show makes all women feel inferior is so sad. It doesn't make me feel anything about myself or about them. IT sort of makes me wish I had some more self discipline to work my ass off to look like that, but that's their JOB. If my 40 hour a week job was to look beautiful, I'd devote myself harder to it, too. So why are we so hard on ourselves!? rant over. wah.

walking dot photography said...

The most ironic part is that a lot of the girls I know who are a size zero and stick thin with no curves eat CONSTANTLY and are always complaining that they have no curves. :p The grass is always greener on the other side, but I agree - I think people need to realize shaming goes both ways.
xox
giedre
www.walkingdotphotography.com

Cara said...

Very well said. Also, people don't take into consideration what kind of work these models have to do to KEEP looking like this. They aren't just born with abs and toned arms. They don't GET to eat Christmas cookies and burgers. They workout a LOT. It is their job and livelihood to look like this and the haters can hate all they want but they don't put in half the work these women do.

BetterYou Health & Fitness said...

LOVE IT

Rachel Oliver said...

Totally agree

but conversely, being thin and beautiful is universally accepted as ideal. being big and curvy isn't. i feel like there is a lot more social pressure and media attention given to someone who needs to lose weight versus someone who is thin. and i think there's a lot of "not fair!" backlash which manifests into "eat a sandwich"

Tori Thompson said...

Love every word of this! We should be lifting each other up, NOT tearing each other down by trying to make everyone fit society's mold. Speaking of society's expectations...what about being beautiful on the inside? There's so much focus on being attractive on the outside that many forget that it's more important to have a beautiful soul.

Ashley G said...

amen!

Jessa said...

Beautifully written. I've had to work on not saying negative things about those women pretty hard, but I'm learning. Everything you've said is completely true. We need to stop worrying about the differences in our bodies and start worrying only about ourselves and our health, if anything.

Torie said...

Boom. That's how you do that. Thank you for saying all this. I love the VS fashion show and honestly - some of the people around me make me feel really ashamed of that. Like I'm taking five giant steps back for feminism and positive body image just by WATCHING it. which is ridiculous. Yes, they are models. But guess what, they are women too? And you think it doesn't drive them crazy or get to them when things like that are said about them? Like just because they are models they no longer have feelings, that being "hot" negates any negative crap people say about you? Ugh. I could ramble forever, but I just wanted to say thank you for posting this and I'm glad I found your blog through Whit's ! :)

Brianna said...

Girl, I love this! I totally agree. I always hate reading people comments on the VS fashion show. They're either insulting the models or girls say things like "I'm never eating again." its so sad and so wrong.

The Pink Growl said...

Such an awesome point about the "telling a skinny girl to eat sandwich"!! SO TRUE! We should all just uplift each other because we are all different body types.

Allie @ Everyday Adventures said...

PREACH sister!

Alisha @ The Alisha Nicole said...

Whoop! you couldnt be more right..Im so over women bashing other women period..its extremely sad..and why even sit there and watch the show with the intentions on talking crap? Makes no sense

Miss Chelsea said...

Preach it sista! I love this.

Whitney Ellen said...

We've touched on this to each other a bazillion times, so you know that I stand in the same place you do on this subject. I love you so many for putting this out there and I love your ramble blogs almost as much. This is exactly why you're my sparkle pony foreber.

Steph G said...

Your ramble blogs should be retitled as truth bombs. You are one of my favorites.

Karrine Beasley said...

Spot on! Perfectly said!!!
Quit comparing what we all look like and start teaching people how to be healthy!
I dont care if you're a size 2 or a size 100, as long as you are happy and HEALTHY!
:)

Raeven said...

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU…

Oh my word. This blog post. I am so glad you wrote it. Like you said, I think it all start out as well-intentioned, but it has turned. Why not let women be? Why not encourage the worth of what's in her mind rather than what body she has? Why is that so hard?

Kerry @ Till Then Smile Often said...

Love this post! It is so true. It goes both ways we should accept women for whatever shape and size they are. Not all women are the same, just like not all men are the same. Why does one have to be right and the other wrong? Thanks for sharing your opinion.

Kiki said...

I totally agree with you its not about size! Im not skinny and i wish Tv did a better job of portraying all different sizes! but its not our place to say who needs to eat a sandwhich or who needs to go on a diet! its all about how you feel and its nobody business what you look like! uhhhh i hate when ppl do stuff like that

Kim @ Slice of Life said...

I agree - I actually think in terms of models VS models are much closer to the "average" woman than other fashion shows I've seen but I think it would be cool if VS put models on that showcased a wider range of body types - just something to consider... Recently read an article about "plus size" model I think her name is robin lawly who talked about dropping the term "plus size" from plus size model and I think it's a great idea...

My point is (I think I'm making one?) once the media starts showing women of all shapes and sizes (I think it's getting there, actually) women will stop feeling the need to put down other women bc they don't look alike... Hope so anyway!

Robert Goins said...

Why can't we all just go have a sandwich? Sandwiches are delicious.

Christina said...

AMEN! I couldn't agree more and I'm not even skinny. Those women are beautiful and work hard for their bodies and their jobs. I would be appalled if someone told me what to eat or not eat, so why would I say anything like that to anyone else? Thankfully, I didn't see any negative posts about the show in my feed.

Alexa said...

BOOM. *Drops mic*

Thank you, thank you, thank you times infinity. I've struggled with being underweight for my entire life and it really is a struggle, even though most people refuse to recognize it. And for some reason, they also feel it's 100% OK to make snide comments about my weight -- from the "eat a sandwich" comments and grabbing at my thin wrists (excuse me?!) to the "you do NOT need to be working out!" judgments -- and it never fails to make me ragey. EveryBODY is different and we all have our struggles but we are all also beautiful! The VS Fashion Show celebrates some freaking gorgeous women who have worked their asses off for their careers. No matter what their bodies look like, that's something to be admired.

hanrae3 said...

I'm a family therapist who works with children, adolescents, and adults that have eating disorders,both male and female. I do agree that the term "real woman" is not an appropriate phrase, because it continues the negative pattern of allowing size to determine if a woman meets a certain "standard". I also agree that most of society believes that eating disorders are solely about food, but the author is right in saying that they are about MUCH MORE. However, we also can't ignore that American Society is obsessed with defining both men and women by their size and appearance, and that this is a problem. It sends the message to many that you don't "have it all" if you are not a certain size, even if you have many other admirable qualities, traits, and/or successes to define you. I know that society doesn't cause eating disorders, but for a lot of men, woman, children, and adolescents, who are already struggling with feelings of inadequacy, shame, low self esteem, mental illness, and/or have a trauma history, this message about size being related to self-worth can be negatively internalized as truth. Yes eating disorders are about much more than food and the quest to be "model thin", but as long as society continues to place positive emphasis and praise on being a smaller size, then this type of judgement and ridicule will unfortunately continue. For some people with eating disorders, this positive correlation with being thin gives them a distorted sense of "good control", in their pursuit to cope with difficult emotions and/or situations in their lives. Also, as woman lose weight, people tend to compliment them or praise them for their efforts, which again is fueled by society's positive emphasis on weight loss and size. I agree that no woman should be judged based on size, but unfortunately a smaller body size/type has become idolized by many, and women who are above this size, are often ridiculed. Society and the media, including Victoria's Secret, do place an emphasis on what is an "attractive" and "accepted" size every day, and though some are able to challenge this negative message,there are also a majority of others who see this message as truth. So in conclusion, I agree with most of what this author is saying about there being a double standard, but events like the Victoria's Secret Fashion show do add fuel to the fire by only using models who meet "a standard" to represent their brand. This consequently has caused a divide among females, as evidenced by this "real woman" campaign, and unfortunately this campaign is fighting back by continuing to use size/weight as a way to define a woman, which ironically seems to be the message they are trying to debunk in the first place.

Katie Krenz said...

You are a God send for posting this. As a very petite girl, I've been preaching all of this for years.

Gladly following you! xx

Whitney Alison said...

I'm so behind on my blog reading so I just now read this one! My girl crush on you grows with every #rambleblog. You hit it out of the park with this one. I HATE that my entire life, I've been told that I should eat (I do), that men like girls with curved (they like me too tho), or the kicker that I'm teaching my CHILD an unrealistic body image by starving myself. WHAT?!?! Have you seen her? She's very slender too. And so what. I came to grips with a lot of it when I had Boomer. I may have the smallest breasts in the world, but damnit they fed my kid. I may not have Beyonce hips, but damnit they still delivered a beautiful baby. I'm a woman no matter what I look like. Love you. Love this post.

Tara Eveland said...

Im gonna be the devils advocate here and say I disagree. 1 I disagree that if you werent born with a vagina and call yourself a woman then you are, that is just dumb. 2. im going to disagree with the fact that these women were not 'born with skinny genes' some maybe, BUT its a truth in the modeling industry and its been showcased, talked about, and worn out about the extremes these models are expected to be skinny just in order to DO that job. that doesn't make it okay, but its what they do in order to have their jobs. It is disturbing the way our society/fashion part of it anyways has these models thinking they are fat or not skinny enough when their ribs and every other bone is poking out. and I believe that the ppl saying these things are most likely just frustrated that they would like to see, like myself, a VS fashion show that is for 'real women' like so we could see what the styles look like on a say,average size 11 woman with a B cup, instead of a size 0, 6' 3' and high heeled girl that has starved herself to get on that runway. yes they have beautiful faces but so do many other woman that VS and others would never even consider putting up there becuase they are not stick thin. To see a woman speak like this is just kind of degrading to all women actually and I just came across your blog and wont be returning. just thought Id leave my opinion here, these women are gorgeous and have great jobs obviously, but do you really think they are happy? I know from stories ive read about the ones that have left VS and other fashion industries due to their cruel behavior towards them and always the 'fat' issue. these women go through hell to walk that runway and im sure it doesnt help their families and home life either. something to think about

Stephen Vandermey Leah Bakker said...

I am a skinny Girl, who has been told ever since elementary school that i look Anorexic, or that i should go on the mcdonalds diet….honestly, i hate that because everyone can see that i eat more then enough (and i mean MORE) and i still hear to this day that i need to eat something. OK, so i'm tall, and underweight, but can't actually gain weight no matter how much i've tried! It really is so demeaning to be told your too skinny. it's because people have told me that my whole life that i have a hard time liking the way i look now. thank you for reminding people that average vary's from person to person!

Anna Dron said...

Yes! I actually commented on this "phenomenon" as well when I first saw the "For girls dying to be a size zero: sweetie, remember real men go for curves, only dogs go for bones."

It infuriated me - I'm naturally thin and have a very fast metabolism. To say that how I naturally am is something to be given to a dog is just mean.

You can read my little rant about it here.. You're definitely not alone in this one.

http://prettynerd.com/2011/11/skinny-isnt-a-curse#comment-30

Amna said...

I think a major point that we overlook in this debate is what you "choose" to do with your body. I agree there are women who are naturally thin like myself, but there are those women who are not naturally thin. No matter how much they exercise and work out under pressure to look thin, they will still look curvy and a lot of models including VS fall under that too. So they are then pressurized to look thinner and skinnier to the point where they start starving. This is when you start to disrespect women. If you are naturally skinny without starving and eat healthy then kudos to you, but we all know that is not the case with all these models. A lot of models are pressurized to look this thin. They are told they are "fat" when they have healthy toned bodies. I think this is torture for these poor women when they are told to shed of pounds at their perfectly slim healthy weight. That is wrong! The word here is striving to be "healthy" and "happy" whatever your "healthy" or happy" maybe. Not striving to push extreme limits where you are not yourself anymore. Please dig deeper into this and you will find out that most of these VS models were not this thin. They had to starve to look like this. I am a thin woman and I feel women should be left alone to "choose" what THEY like for their bodies.

Amna said...

Another important fact. VS is a lingerie company, should they not be catering to every women? Do you see 6 feet 2 women paroling around looking this way at the mall. They have no regard for the rest of women who might be 5 feel 2...5 feet 7..5 feet...5 feet 6. Women who might weight 120 or 130 150 kg...A complete misrepresentation!!!!! IF you are 5 feet 9 and weight 140 and very tone and look perfect, you deserve to walk that ramp too just as a 5 feet 2 girl who weights 100 lbs or a 5.5 who weights 150..whatever the combination. "Eat a sandwich" can hurt your sentiment then what about those other millions of women who are called names and not even given a chance to model no matter how beautiful they are.

debra17611 said...

I love what she's trying to say, but I do have to say that this article is problematic for 2 reasons:

1) The author seems to promote the idea that there is a hierarchy of appearances and that "beauty" is an objective thing.

"If you watched that show last night, you saw some of the most beautiful women in the entire world, and not just because they fill out skivvies well. Those women have some insanely beautiful faces: pouty lips, cheekbones up to the high heavens, ginormous almond-y eyes."

What about people with thin lips and low cheek bones and small eyes? Can they not be "beautiful women", too? If she's trying to support the notion that all women are different and that those differences should be accepted, then she shouldn't be asserting who the "most" beautiful women in the world are and she shouldn't be listing what characteristics count as "beautiful". In fact, there shouldn't even be a "most". That entails that there exists a hierarchy. "Beautiful" should be defined by things that are within our control, such as kindness, health, fitness, self-respect, empathy, etc. Not things that are out of our control, such as whether you have high cheek bones or not. Same goes for big boobs. VS and other brands should really stop promoting the idea that you need a push-up bra and/or big breasts in order to feel sexy. Everyone deserves to feel sexy, both men and women and everyone in between. If you were born with small breasts, you shouldn't need a push-up bra to feel sexy. I don't care what you were born with - you are entitled to feel sexy. People need to stop placing an emphasis on natural body shapes when it comes to evaluating beauty.

debra17611 said...

2) The author seems to neglect the idea that many people critique models not because of their natural figure, but because of the unhealthy and extreme measures the models take in order to maintain that figure (I, too, hate it when people say that either curvy or skinny women are not "real women". People can't help the way they are naturally shaped, whether it's extra skinny or extra curvy). Many of them (not all, however) eat unhealthily small amounts, work out excessively, and use artificial methods of losing weight - and I think that is what people take issue with. In the modeling industry, a large amount of female models no longer menstruate due to their lack of nutrient intake (a great documentary to watch is "Killing Us Softly 4"). I mean, not only do these women dedicate all of their time to looking "good" by being hypersensitive to what they eat and how much they exercise (after all, it's their "job"), but they also overdo it, which is problematic for their health.

I think a lot of the critique aimed at these women should be directed towards the industry of modeling in general - They perpetuate unachievable images of "beauty" that even these models themselves struggle to achieve. Cindy Crawford once said, "I wish I looked like Cindy Crawford". When the industry relentlessly reinforces unhealthy weight-loss methods and uses programs such as Photoshop or After Effects on videos and images of these women, it renders our image of "beauty" entirely artificial, shallow, and unachievable. Even more, it takes a superficial ideal and sells it as the ideal "norm", which is unhealthy and problematic for all women - not just the models.

All in all, like I already mentioned, I don't think that beauty should ever be measured by factors that are out of our control. And this applies to all people in general, whether you're a woman or not. If you identify with beauty, you are beautiful - just as how if you identify yourself as a woman, you are a woman. A woman can be beautiful without "pouty lips" and a woman can be a woman without a vagina. What you were born with doesn't matter. Judging someone based on what they were born with is like penalizing someone for a crime they didn't commit.

Dan Amrich said...

They're upset because shaming normal or fat people is unnecessary.

You're upset because shaming skinny people is unnecessary.

Well, at least we all finally agree.

GrifterUno said...

I like my women skinny or curvaceous...just as long as they're still objects. (sorry, just couldn't resist the urge to troll!) ;P

Megan said...

This is such a great post! I found your blog from someone else sharing this article and I couldn't agree more. I have always been underweight my whole life but I definitely eat! I always hated it because people have ALWAYS made comments about how small I am and it's embarrassing and makes me incredibly uncomfortable. I especially hate that I feel like I have to constantly apologize for my size because of some of the remarks I get, especially if the person is bigger than me. I feel ashamed that I'm so small and like I need to be bigger in order for someone to like me more.

But then on the other hand, because of this it also was super detrimental to my thinking after I had my son. Because people constantly told me how small I was, once I was pregnant people would then tell me how big I was and it even got to the point that some told me I gained too much weight! Seriously. That happened. (I was told I was "off the chart" at the WIC office.) It was DEVASTATING! And then after I had my son and hearing about girls fitting into their pre-pregnancy jeans 1 week after their baby was born and me, who had always been told I was too skinny, not able to yet made me think that something was wrong with me. It really was this difficult thing for me because I felt like I was getting so many mixed signals.

My point being, your post is wonderful and so important for others to see that there is no right body type and we all need to be more respectful and kind to one another. What matters is that we are healthy and happy, not a dress size. And we shouldn't have to shame and embarrass each other because of how the other looks.

Thank you!!

Melanie Baker said...

I would have agreed with your post until your real point came through and you entirely contradicted your argument. When you say that its a catchphrase to make "real women" feel superior by not wearing a size 2, you are basically saying that everyone who is a size 2 is actually superior. I don't see how curves at all have to do with a size. So maybe if you had actually done some research you would realize that you can have curves and be a size zero and you may not have curves and be a size 12. Had this article been positive and more about self acceptance and we shouldn't shame anyone at all, I would have been more on board. Maybe learn to practice what you preach!

Melanie Baker said...

Oops! I should have used your even worse term "normal women".

Juanita Carpenter said...

While I agree with everything you say...I have been known to say a person needs to be fed...not TO that person, but between my husband and myself...he says he is afraid he would "break" someone that thin :) I like to think we both have good healthy attitudes...I am not thin, and never have been, but I am not unhealthy either. Just my 2 cents...and I hope my grandaughters and nieces all know they are great in MY eyes as long as they are happy :)

KHGrAxel said...

"By being born with a vagina and continuing to breathe, you are, in fact, a real woman."

*By identifying as a woman and continuing to breathe, you are, in fact, a real woman.

But really, good article. Simply had to point that out.

The Suzzzz said...

I work in a boutique that carries lingerie, intimate products, jewelry, and vintage clothes. My mission is to help women of all sizes find things to help them feel beautiful and sexy. The biggest challenge I have is letting these women know that it isn't about size. I'm a size 10, some of them are a 0, but more often than not they are 10s, 12, or 14s. When trying on lingerie the problem is that they see the victoria secret models in their minds and what they see in the mirror doesn't match up and that can be heartbreaking for them.

If women of all sizes and shapes are beautiful and special, then I would love to see women who weren't tall, thin, and have huge boobs on the VS catwalk, or any catwalk for that matter. "Plus size" models are few and far between and the industry standard for plus size is usually a size 8...which seems to be the most common because in our shop we sell out of 8s, 10s, and 12s (or medium and larges) first and the 0,2,4,6,14,sm,1x all sit on the shelf for a very VERY long time.

I absolutely agree with you that comparison is the thief of joy. But media events like the VS fashion show don't glorify all women, they glorify models. If they truly believed all women were beautiful they would put an Adele, or Ashley Graham, or Chloe Marshall in the VS show...they would put in beautiful women of all sizes, shapes, ages regardless of the gender they were born into.

Katrionagh said...

Just found your article and like your line of thinking. Body-shaming is an insidious way to get women to focus on competing with other women instead of, say, competing with men. Or not feeling like they need to compete with others at all.

One small point. It is *not* the same thing to shame larger women as it is to shame thin/'fit' women. Thin/'fit' women are closer to society's beauty ideal and have been for many decades, so they enjoy more of that privilege [assigned by men] than larger women do. Thinner women fit (or come closer to) that arbitrary standard of beauty and many things in their life become easier for it - just look at all the research around attractiveness and workplace success/discrimination.

It is comparable to saying that, if we were saying "there are too many white women in the show" and then someone had to say "hey, that's race-shaming! Don't shame those women because they're white!" Privilege makes things so that it is not a level playing field - that goes for race, gender, sexual orientation, heritage, etc., AND body.

Ashley Wile said...

Of course we shouldn't be body-shaming anyone...

""If you're a woman who thinks it's okay to tell a skinny woman that she needs to eat a sandwich, I hope you don't mind when that skinny woman tells you that you're a fat ass. Because that's exactly the sort of shaming you're giving her.""

I agree it is not okay to tell any woman, or anyone, to eat a sandwich. However, the statement that underpins the entire post ignores the privilege conventionally beautiful women hold. Does that excuse shaming statements made against them? No. But the two are not equal, and implicitly approving of fat shaming because some internet commenters are thin-shaming makes no sense.

Chris said...

It's just so fat girls can feel better about the choices they've made as well. Sure they are both real women but skinny girls are generally more desirable and are envied by larger women.

So they have to put others down to make them selves feel better. Why don't they put down that second burger or the footlong Philly cheesesteak instead.

Unknown said...

What women are doing is proving the German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer right when he said "Women believe that which is on the surface to be the real thing"

Patrick Pan said...

I like how you are attempting to remind us that a real woman should come in all sizes and how is a lack of acceptance around the whole issue.

However, your article is extremely hypocritical. You speak of "acceptance" and "real woman" yet you support and defend Victoria secret who obviously has a very one dimensional definition of beauty. If the idea of "real woman" should be universal, then why don't Victoria secret show case some woman of other sizes? Or is it because they are not fit for their description of a real beautiful woman?

Taylor Barber said...

I want to thank you for posting this! As a naturally thin girl I have always been picked on. I have been called every name in the book (stick, slim, boyish, and even anorexic). I can easily say that these words sting just as much as being called fat or overweight. I think that women should start working to improve their personal self esteem rather than putting down other women. As women we should support each other and work to become stronger individuals. Thank you again for posting this, there really needs to be more people in the world like you!

lisa Holdridge said...

Victoria secret models are amazing but there are some models in th industry that are unhealthily skinny they are th ones who shouldn't be on stage. Besides catwalks are great it's the airbrushed, altered images that put the industry to shame.

Jamie Litt said...

Come on... let's be HONEST here... Most of the women walking on the runway today DO in fact starve themselves or exist purely on salads and water. Do you KNOW what the average successful model eats? There are models who try to stay thin by eating COTTON balls... COTTON balls to fill their stomachs!

Yes, there exist some exceptions and some naturally super thin people. I agree that we should not judge people on the size of their bodies, and that all women are worthy and real... and if you are naturally super thin, then I have no right to bash you for it. Women are beautiful in ALL shapes and sizes.

However, the truth is that the average model is NOT setting a good example for America's youth, because the average model IS anorexic, or close to it.

For decades we have been applauding and looking up to these women as being the "ideal." This "ideal" is typically unattainable, unless you are starving yourself or photoshopped, or both. And this need for so-called physical perfection has left many women and girls feeling completely inadequate for the slightest of physical imperfections.

We needed the "real women" movement to help women who did not win the genetic lottery to feel good about ourselves and beautiful just as we are, even if we are not as thin as models. It is that movement that helps prevent girls today from developing eating disorders in hopes to look like a sickly-looking model.

Let's face it... NO one is going to deny that VS models are less than stunning... even if they are calling them too thin. With the money these women are making and the admiration they are still getting from most of America, there is NO need to feel bad for them.

I personally am happy that people are finally coming to a place where women feel confident in their curves and a good portion of the comments on unnaturally stick thin models are calling them out for perpetuating this body type that is unhealthy for most women. I hope this indicates that we are not allowing the models on the runway and in the magazines to have the negative effects on our self-esteem that they have had throughout history.

Debra Mc said...

Although your sentiment is good (we all have value regardless of size) your example is poor. I used to frequently take the Milan/London/Milan flights & have seen catwalk models in person. I was always small (5'3" 100 lbs) but next to those women I looked fat. They were lovely people but were (& are) unhealthily thin & should not be held up as an example of a thin healthy person. Remember that the camera puts on 10 lbs, then look at your photos. Also check out some of the before & after Photoshopped photos to see how society is presented with an even more exaggerated mirror. The people shaming anyone of any size are simply cowards hiding behind what they see as internet anonymity. They pop up on every site. Runway models are not that thin due to genetics but due to extreme dieting without which they would be a more "normal" (dare I say healthy) thin that would likely be viewed as fat for VS.

LadyJane said...

What I object to is that models are forced to conform to a certain image. Yes, some are naturally slim but the modelling industry sets size standards that these women have to work hard to stay within.

We are all real women, short, tall, fat or thin; and we come in all colours... we just need the fashion industry to show a true reflection of the various women of the word.

Michele Self said...

I agree with ur post that no one should bash anyone based on your size - thin or not. Their is an issue hear though. Society and especially the modeling and designer industry sensationalize sex and being thin. The Average young woman or girls will strive at any cost to b that way even though their bodies can't do so. That means eating disorders to our youth. If this was the case why do they NOT have full figured clothing line nor have full figured woman walking that stage? They have some sizes that go up to at least an extra lg and larger bras as well....why not model them? Again goes back to the case in point that society wld rather look at skinner woman because they think they be sexy. But ask yourself what percentage of woman who are models have eating disorders and what percentage of woman are actually really thin in this society. Cudos for getting this discussion started just everyone take a step back and realize thin here is a bigger picture here as well. A youth should not have to strive to b thin like a model our youth should strive to be healthy which can mean u may still have some curves and that is okay

SJ said...

I found this post after a friend shared it on Facebook and I mostly do agree with you. Thin body types should never be shamed because lots and lots of women do naturally look this way, models or not, and it's awful to hear if you're thin, and very bad form to put a body type or woman down in favour of another. I only said 'mostly' agree because when it comes to models, I was under the strong impression that models, especially for such a big company, have strict dietary and/or sizes that they have to be, making it not a natural look, but something obtained through a diet. Regardless of that though, like I said, some women do look like this naturally, so putting that size down can make a lot of us feel disgusting.

Mackenzie Wright said...

I found this posted on facebook and got quite curious. I do agree with what you're saying,but at the same time I don't. Being skinny is socially acceptable,but if you get any bigger than a size 12 you're fat. I get that we should appreciate all body sizes, but for me I'd like to see a plumper model walking down the runway. I want to see someone like me wearing the latest trends.

Amber Serwe said...

I found this link on facebook and completely agree. I have a lot of "skinny" friends that are fed up with people telling them to eat a sandwich. A lot of these people cannot gain weight, just like some people can't lose weight. Go you for speaking your mind.

Fun Blog said...

Utterly fantastic!! Well spoken..well written

coloradoloveaffair said...

What a great post! Such a good point. Women come in all shapes and sizes! I found this post because a friend shared it on Facebook.

Michelle

Nobby Delacey said...

I have to say I agree with this article. I also need to point out that some guys like big (fat) women but most don't. women however seem to emphasize with other women that are overweight. Society as it does in so many ways is pointing us toward acceptance of being too heavy..... Women on TV are saying big is beautiful etc etc.. To me (as a 6ft 160 pound 50 year old fitness fanatic) all I see when I see women quite obviously overweight is trying to lose weight when they are eating crap and too much of it and trying to tell us they should be accepted as the norm.. The Victoria's secret models are stunning in every way not "skinny" they are slim.. Like the human race used to be like before eating sugar saturated fast food became the laziest way to eat.
I found your blog through a Facebook posting.. By the way if anyone is interested if you are looking to maintain a healthy shape without too much work ...grow it or kill it diet.... If its not something that nature provided don't eat it.... End of rant

Nobby Delacey said...

I have to say I agree with this article. I also need to point out that some guys like big (fat) women but most don't. women however seem to emphasize with other women that are overweight. Society as it does in so many ways is pointing us toward acceptance of being too heavy..... Women on TV are saying big is beautiful etc etc.. To me (as a 6ft 160 pound 50 year old fitness fanatic) all I see when I see women quite obviously overweight is trying to lose weight when they are eating crap and too much of it and trying to tell us they should be accepted as the norm.. The Victoria's secret models are stunning in every way not "skinny" they are slim.. Like the human race used to be like before eating sugar saturated fast food became the laziest way to eat.
I found your blog through a Facebook posting.. By the way if anyone is interested if you are looking to maintain a healthy shape without too much work ...grow it or kill it diet.... If its not something that nature provided don't eat it.... End of rant

Tim Roland said...

"Real" Women Dont Have Curves? So women that have curves aren't real?

Still the most attractive... sorry

Angela Meyer said...

Well said! I have been on both sides of this one. I used to be a size 2 and then gained a little (ok, a lot) of weight when I stopped smoking.

BTW - I found the link to your article on facebook.

Meredith Scroggin said...

Hey girl, thanks so much for this article!! I completely agree and find everything you said completely true. I'm with ya so much on this that I had written a long blog post about it the day of because I'm sick of people assuming that everyone that's thin or a model has an ED... definitely not true. (Here's my post.)

Anyway, I saw someone share this on Facebook!

Thanks,
Meredith

Jenna Holland said...

Found this on Facebook :). This article is really great by the way. I'm 5'6 and usually about 115 pounds women seem to always be drawing attention to my weight. My brother is the same way, thin and naturally athletic in build but I've never heard anyone tell him that he should eat more or tell him how lucky he should feel. Ive always though women of different sizes are beautiful and I wish that I could put on a little weight... Sometimes I feel like the average girl would be more accepting of me of I could complain about my chubby thighs or belly. I can't complain about how skinny I am cuz then they well simply say "well I'd rather be skinny like you than like me :/." Anyway I try to ignore it most of the time and my bf of two years loves me the way I am so it Doesnt matter what people say!! :)

Jenna Holland said...

Found this on Facebook :). This article is really great by the way. I'm 5'6 and usually about 115 pounds women seem to always be drawing attention to my weight. My brother is the same way, thin and naturally athletic in build but I've never heard anyone tell him that he should eat more or tell him how lucky he should feel. Ive always though women of different sizes are beautiful and I wish that I could put on a little weight... Sometimes I feel like the average girl would be more accepting of me of I could complain about my chubby thighs or belly. I can't complain about how skinny I am cuz then they well simply say "well I'd rather be skinny like you than like me :/." Anyway I try to ignore it most of the time and my bf of two years loves me the way I am so it Doesnt matter what people say!! :)

hagensmommie37 said...

I am a 37 year old woman who has dealt with weight issues my whole life. I have never been able to put on weight even with 3 pregnancies. I can lose weight faster rather than gain. Every time I lose a little it seems like EVERYBODY that I know feels the need to tell me, like I don't already know this, and it really hurts my feelings because like I said it is something that I have always had a battle with. Of course I would like to be at around 125 pounds and not have people tell me that I look anorexic but it's just as hard for me to gain weight than it is for some to lose it. Please keep in mind that I have not ever told a heavier set person that they have put on weight or needed to lose a few pounds. It hurts us thinner people just as much as it hurts you when it comes to weight issues. Every woman's body type is different, therefore we are all Women curves or no curves!

Sam Badger said...

Well written! (I found you because someone linked to you on Facebook!)

raela marie villanueva said...

well written! found you from a friend's link shared on FB. needed to read that!! "comparison is the thief of joy" - well said

katthomas said...

I totally agree with you! I have 2 daughters, 1 who is curvy and 1 who is built just like these models. Its very sad that my very thin daughter will cry when people call her skinny or boney or tell her she needs to eat. It does the same damage as if they were calling her fat. Its not her fault, she is built exactly like her father, she has a very high metabolism and she is just plain skinny! I try to teach them both that they are both beautiful in different ways but it is so hard when society doesn't reflect the same. I would have never guessed that skinny girls got made fun of or teased until I had one.

ktoth04 said...

Your traffic is from reddit.

Dinah said...

I found your blog through a friend on Facebook. And while I think you make some good points, I think it's also important to remember that Thin Privilege is a thing. This post breaks it down beautifully, and addresses a lot of the points and concerns voiced in your blog and in the comments. Regarding the phrase "Real Women Have Curves" specifically, These types of reclamations of fat pride wouldn’t need to exist if fat-shaming wasn’t a thing. These types of phrases and attitudes were born of a need to say 'I’m beautiful, too!' They’re responses to social norms." http://everydayfeminism.com/2013/10/lets-talk-about-thin-privilege/

Katelyn Crowley said...

"Comparison is the thief of joy" beautiful words and should definitely be preached more than a cut and dry description of what a woman should look like. Granted I am on the other spectrum. I've yo-yo'd from a size 2 to a size 14 for years and body image is something I still struggle with at 25 years old- 26 in a month! Our definitions of body types and our society's image of beauty is molded in our heads at a young age, and unfortunately it's hard to shake even as you become an adult. You may be able to differentiate between healthy and unhealthy thinking- but when it comes down to it- we all go back to that cookie cutter perception and compare ourselves. Rather than having one image of what woman should look like there needs to be messages of variety and celebrations of different body types and understanding that both are with flaws and more importantly with characteristics that make them uniquely beautiful. So being a first time reader, I applaud your point of view. I side with your belief that woman do indeed have curves- but some however are just born with that thin factor that many people envy and unfortunately bash for the reason that it seems unattainable for them- and that they do not have the same thin frame that those we place on a pedestal. It goes back to the media and our societies obsession with the limelight. In order to celebrate the differences in the bodies of woman everywhere- it would be nice if the media would place varieties of body types on that so called pedestal. We are to blame for our own perceptions, but the media could help the battle if they gave us the opportunity to compare beauty on females other than ourselves. I hope that made sense.

Unknown said...

Two weeks ago I was called a "child murderer" by a mother's feminist group because I edited images of women (I work in photography). They believe "real women" should be full figured. Well, these people I edited were athletes: the train hard, they have muscle, they eat clean. These people are what children should be aspiring to. Instead, the people trashing me were more comfortable with their kids eating processed junk food and not exercising. The second image you posted, I do not see a "thin" women on the right, she works out if you look at her muscles, she works hard to get like that. I think I need to blog my story too.

Ms. Candice said...

As a real woman, who has birthed 2 babies, and is naturally slight, and a real woman size 0 with boobs and lady bits and no cosmetic surgeries or anorexia, thank you for this. People tell me to eat a sandwich all the time.

66,000 mph said...

Thank you for this post. I especially appreciated you including "I'll even go further. Even if you weren't born with a vagina, and you identify as a woman, you are a real woman." Your post is all about feeling comfortable and proud in one's own skin, including transgender persons. Sorry to see you received some criticism for that in your comments. Thanks for having the courage to include that.

jessica said...

amazing. i know you have gotten tons and tons of the same similar comments, but i will tell you that this skinny girl HAS been hurt in the past from people saying, that i obviously have an eating disorder just because i'm skinny..and i "eat like a bird." i hear it all the time. and i absolutely hate when women who are bigger than i am put me down saying i have no clue what it's like to be made fun of because of my weight..but when in fact that's not the case at all. there was a certain boutique that i used to follow on instagram, and i even bought from this company quite often, but then their company started to grow..and the constant thing they talked about is how they have "normal" models. whatever the hell that means..and it was constant all the time. even their followers started saying it that it just got to the point where it hurt my feelings. what? just cause i weigh 100 pounds, have no boobs/booty, and i'm pretty skinny..this means i'm not normal? uh thanks..yea i hadn't bought anything from them in awhile..and i doubt i will. hey if i'm not normal enough to wear their clothes then i don't even want to. and hey believe me i do wish i had a "little more meat on my bones" for these colder months, but God made me this way..normal or not.

great post, Tyler!!

Lawli said...

Excellent article. I have a disease called celiac disorder and genetics that makes me boney skinny. Weekly (if not daily) I hear "oh I wish I had what you have..." No you don't! It sucks being allergic to everything and having to closely watch my diet. Genetics play a big role in my shape, but certain diseases can cause people to lose weight. It's not fun to feel like you're wasting away.

K&R said...

so a friend of mine posted a link to your blog on fb and let me just say thank you.

being a rather petite girl this has always bothered me. ya i'm 5'3 ya i weight 90 pounds and wear a 00, but i'm a small person, i always have been and always will be. i eat a whole pizza whenever i want, i do what i want. i also have spent countless hours exercising. this is just how my body is and it makes me so upset when people tell me to "eat a sandwich" because they don't get it. yes some thin people may have eating disorders, but that doesn't mean anything. i'm also for the real woman, i've still got curves, but i'm petite. what bothers me also is when "fat" girls are shown as real girls and its honestly not healthy to be overweight. i think what we should aim for is "healthy" girls, not real girls, not skinny girls, but healthy, because in the end that is what matters. so there end of rant, but i totally agree, how come i can't say someone's fat if they can tell me i'm too skinny?

K&R said...

so a friend of mine posted a link to your blog on fb and let me just say thank you.

being a rather petite girl this has always bothered me. ya i'm 5'3 ya i weight 90 pounds and wear a 00, but i'm a small person, i always have been and always will be. i eat a whole pizza whenever i want, i do what i want. i also have spent countless hours exercising. this is just how my body is and it makes me so upset when people tell me to "eat a sandwich" because they don't get it. yes some thin people may have eating disorders, but that doesn't mean anything. i'm also for the real woman, i've still got curves, but i'm petite. what bothers me also is when "fat" girls are shown as real girls and its honestly not healthy to be overweight. i think what we should aim for is "healthy" girls, not real girls, not skinny girls, but healthy, because in the end that is what matters. so there end of rant, but i totally agree, how come i can't say someone's fat if they can tell me i'm too skinny?

Marybi Cortes said...

I agree 100%, you make a valid point, and I wish people would think more like you instead of the other way around, but it's simple, blame the fact that there are endless runway shows centered around skinny women wearing clothes only tailored for a women who is a size 2. Send a girl who is only 2 sizes above that to a modeling agency and they'll send her away and tell her to zip her mouth for a couple months and come back then. Unfortunately although I do not believe it's right for any women to judge another, it will continue to happen, because the very ones who raise most of these girls are told what they believe is actual beauty, which in this case is completely incorrect. We cannot be blind to the subject here, the smaller you are the more praise you receive. You don't see a runway shows with girls of all sizes, because those items of clothes are not one size fits all, but instead one size fits one, and done. That's the end of that. When they make an entire show with performers and have beautiful women of all shapes and sizes rocking beautiful pieces of lingerie together, then this topic will be put to rest.

Nikki Galo said...

Well I dont think this is what a real woman looks like because they go on liquid diets for days and have personal trainer. Once every woman around the world gets these things. That's when they will be "real women". None of us middle class women have personal trainers, chefs, and liquid diets. Victoria's Secret should advertise their clothing in average women because those women are the ones buying it. This generating is starving themselves an feeling bad about their bodies because of these models. Have you get considered that? They get boob jobs, lip plumper, hair extensions, etc. that's just my opinion. You dot have to agree. But I am putting it out there.

Nikki Galo said...

Oh an. If your skinny that's fine but VS models have help, and most women don't. The end

Nikki Galo said...

Oh an. If your skinny that's fine but VS models have help, and most women don't. The end

Brooke Smith said...

I am a new reader and one of my friends posted this on Facebook. I could not agree more. I am 17 and am signed with a modeling agency in London. All throughout middle school i was lanky and skinny and girls were constantly telling me to fill out and that i needed to eat a hamburger. The sad thing was that after a while I actually wanted to gain weight. I also was a really involved competitive figure skater, so after a while i started gaining more muscle and looking more "normal" but have recently quit and am thinning out again. Lately my friends and certain family members have been telling me I am "too skinny" and it doesn't look right and even acussign me of having an eating problem. It is not only insulting that they are accusing me of this but actually so offensive and hurtful. It makes me feel like something is wrong with me just like any girl who is over weight and gets called fat. Whats worse is that people don't understand that telling someone they are too thin is just as hurtful as telling someone they are to fat, in both cases you are saying there is something wrong with the person ... not okay. I support this one hundred percent! When people say we support a healthy body image or all body shapes, they often times overlook the other side of the spectrum

T said...

I agree with you but I think the big thing for girls is that boys want them to look like that. It's not women who we seek attention from, it's men. It will always be men. And when a man is ranting an raving about how hot their bods are it is just natural for a woman with a lower self of steem to aspire to have that body. I am by no means big or fat but still with my size 2/4 jeans I still feel like bodies like that get more attention and those are the bodies I need to strive for. It's sad and heartbreaking but at the end of the day we dress for women but aspire to have bodies men want.

kiahh mariee said...

I found you through a facebook link.. and I have to say that this is possibly the best blog I have read in a while cause you speak from all sides.. you are not condemning one side more then the other or having a fat vs. skinny debate you are just stating that all women who feel confident and sexy and empowered and LOVE their skin are REAL WOMEN and for that I thank you

Katrina Kiefer said...

found you on Facebook and I for one am a big girl but I have never felt that skinny or thin or anything of the sort is any better or worse than I aM. I have struggled to lose weight since 2006 I used to be the Thin girl the in shape girl. but for some reason I just can't lose the weight I would hate to have been ridiculed for my size then just as I hate it nowit's awful how we criticize a woman because of her size or her shape or her face and its cold jealousy. we all know what our flAws are and we don't need them pointed out to us. those women on Victoria's Secret were all In shape. I enjoyed the show and never thought that any on them were disgusting or needed to eat a sandwhich. Thanks for your blog. I think a reality check is needed and you did a good job voicing it.

Heather Gray said...

Love it! Found this on a friend's Facebook page.

ashley_n said...

I found this post through an acquaintance and it makes me so happy that you've posted this. I'm 5'7", weigh 115, wear and A cup and size 0 pants. I used to get made fun of because of my size. "You're too skinny." "You need to eat more." "There's no way you're at a healthy weight." I'm not sorry that I'm so thin. I can't help it, and I know it. I love the way I am, even if I am a bit awkward at times. I really hope that other girls see this and learn to be proud of the way that they're built. We're all unique and beautiful.

Rachel Botts said...

Love it. Well said. Saw this post from a share on Facebook!

Katrina Kiefer said...

found you on Facebook and I for one am a big girl but I have never felt that skinny or thin or anything of the sort is any better or worse than I aM. I have struggled to lose weight since 2006 I used to be the Thin girl the in shape girl. but for some reason I just can't lose the weight I would hate to have been ridiculed for my size then just as I hate it nowit's awful how we criticize a woman because of her size or her shape or her face and its cold jealousy. we all know what our flAws are and we don't need them pointed out to us. those women on Victoria's Secret were all In shape. I enjoyed the show and never thought that any on them were disgusting or needed to eat a sandwhich. Thanks for your blog. I think a reality check is needed and you did a good job voicing it.

brittany.molina said...

found you on a fb post. great post.

E Tully said...

I think it's wonderful that there are so many thin and proud woman out there. I wholeheartedly feel that we should accept ourselves the way we are, especially if we are making an effort to be healthy.

However, I think you are burying your head in the sand if you don't admit that many models (and actresses and celebs) are forced to keep below a certain weight and are shamed for gaining or going up to sizes which most of us would consider normal. The modeling world is full of anorexia and drug use. These are not all women who "just can't put on weight."

I am reminded of the story of a model who claimed that she could "eat anything she wanted" only to find out that "anything" meant sharing a cheeseburger with three other models.

Rude and comments are just that. But that does not meat that all those models are at their modeling weight naturally.

Jesse Rhodes said...

My wife was a 90-pound beanpole for her adolescence and most of her 20s, and she's still pretty thin now. And she's the most beautiful woman I've ever met. The whole "real women have curves!" thing always made my blood boil a bit, right along with "real men prefer big women."

I found this through my buddy Christian Migliorese, who is an aspiring pop songwriter.

Cecilia Ernst said...

To play devil's advocate, I remember watching an interview with Adrianna Lima after the VS fashion show a couple years ago where she talked about her 'diet' leading up to the fashion show. She pretty much had a liquid fast diet for the 2 weeks prior and then tried to shed as much water weight and fat leading up to the day of the event as she possible could (like a body builder would before a competition). So if that is in fact the case that the models do fast for days to weeks before the show to be 'in shape', then they do in fact need to eat a sandwich :P.

However, the VS models do not look emaciated, they don't really have ribs and bones showing or otherwise look like they are unhealthy. But with the type of preparation they make for the show, they are not exactly natural either. I do find it different than some of the high fashion models walking the Paris runways, for instance, do actually look sickly, have bones of their vertebrae sticking out and 'too skinny' (even medical professionals would agree). And many of them are required to maintain a lifestyle that is unhealthy just so they can get runway work.

John Woodard III said...

I love that you said this! and I completely agree! I am a performer and I am constantly amazed at the gorgeous women i work alongside who are size 2 and 3 and such inevitably insecure about their size!!! And the blame cannot be squarely put on men. Women are the biggest bashers of women. As a man I can say with much authority that there are millions of us who honestly don't see the size faults women see in themselves. The key words to your blog that resounded to me was BE HEALTHY!!! Thats all i ever want to see n a fellow human being..Thnak you so much for writing this...btw saw this on FB - cheers Big John3

Karell Moses said...

A friend of mine shared this on Facebook, and I'm glad she did. Granted this post may not apply to me as a man, as a father, son, and boyfriend I feel that this is perfect. There is no need for "thin shaming" or "fat shaming" at all. The fact that there are even terms for these acts is appalling. Women should feel comfortable in the skin they're in. We as humans were all made differently, and are all beautiful in our own right. I hope that my girls, and any woman in the world can appreciate their figure for what it truly is.

Lindsay Moore said...

These women actually work quite hard to attain the body type that they have. Evidently they would have been born with the height and the facial shapes that were not altered by cosmetic surgery, but the muscle tone, healthy skin, and healthy hair all come from a regimented diet and consistent workout schedule!

Erika Campbell said...

If you asked 99% of these real women if they would rather have a VS model's body, they would most likely say no way! If you asked them behind closed doors, 99% of them would say absolutely. These women are models and gorgeous and shouldn't be shamed out of jealousy. I stumbled upon this column and will now go on to read more! Great post!

Michaela Bennison said...

I so agree! I hate that you can't seem to win whatever shape you are. I think it's a lot to do with people not learning how to deal with there own self esteem issues and so they project on other people instead of learning to be ok with themselves. It's so easy to do without thinking.

And FYI a friend posted this blog on FB and it came up on my news feed. Just so you know :)

Angela DiCiccio said...

I found this post on a friend's wall on facebook...I just want to say thank you. I've felt so trapped and misunderstood, your message resonates with me strongly.

Blond John said...

Here's the big picture: you made fantastic points and you're getting lots of good and deserved attention, but some of the riffraff is getting through... some commenters make me stabby. Great article though! I found it because a friend texted me, who saw it shared on facebook by a friend that found it on reddit who saw a tweet about it from a friend of a friend of yours.

Lou Box said...

Whilst I agree whole-heartedly that no one in a caring society should either thin- or fat-shame and I agree with your article for the most part; I would also caution that the only aspirational models that we see, generally, in our shops and magazines are very tall and very slim women.
There needs to be variety. And VS is not blameless in perpetuating this 'one size is attractive' rhetoric.

Yes to 'skinnies' yes to 'curvies' yes to a total acceptance of all woman-kind but can we please have that reflected on our runways and in our magazines too?

Tosin Awofeso said...

Amazing...shared by my best friend on facebook.

It's the title it's perfect.

EndItNow said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE this!! Women are women… theres nothing more too it and people need to stop comparing! Love your saying "comparison is the thief of joy" because it is so incredibly true.
The only thing I think you might have overlooked (or saved for another day, just as a lot of other topics that arose as you were writing) is the idea that these women are plastered everywhere in the media as the only "pretty" women in this world, and young girls get the idea that if they don't look like them, they're not pretty. This is where the whole "eat a sandwich" concept comes from. That saying is an awful way of putting it, but it essentially references the horribly high number of young girls who are starving themselves to look like this (not realizing that these girls are naturally skinny as you said) - which is where the "real women have curves" slogan comes from.
At the end of the day… the internet amplifies/ruins all of these movements with "good intentions" and we need to teach our children to stop comparing and start loving themselves the way they are! Just my two cents!

Amanda Eifert said...

Look I don't think it's the fact that skinny woman such as VS women aren't real women. It's more the fact that women who are skinny like that are used as an ideal for all women when really the average sized women are between size 12-14. So, instead of having just skinny models VS and magazines who use models need to realize women of all sizes need to be represented. And no one should be telling us that size 2 or size 14 is the ideal. We need to share the idea that " healthy" is the ideal so if you are healthy and a size 4 great. If you are healthy at a size 12 great. But if you are throwing up and only eating vegetables to maintain a size 2 that is not healthy. If you have rolls and rolls of fat around your middle from being sedentary and over eating that also isn't healthy and shouldn't be glorified as an ideal.

Brett Hughes said...

I appreciate your post but I feel you miss the point entirely. The slogan didn't come about as a way to shame skinny girls or to hate on models, as some people have turned it into. Those slogans come from encouraging young girls who don't look like Giselle or Heidi Klum that they are naturally beautiful without trying to meet somebody else's standard of beauty. That is what the fashion industry, media and culture does. So while you have a point standing up against anyone saying nasty things about any lady, your rant really only reinforces the unattainable goal of looking like somebody else's dream girl.

Evan Fisch said...

Right on. America is transforming from rewarding hard work and standing out among the rest to condemning sought after attributes such as health, beauty, or intelligence. It is classic liberal hypocrisy to encourage diversity and uniqueness, then criticize others who are better than them in whatever that may be. You are on to something here.

Briana Waite said...

Great piece to read, thank you!
(Link on Facebook)

Katie said...

I never NEVER comment on these things, however I could not agree more. I am 5'1" and 97 lbs, and I get extreme judgement for being tiny. I had a guidance counselor ask me if I had an eating disorder and was very blunt. I was so offended! That is equivalent to asking someone larger if they have a binge eating problem, it's rude! My mom is also very tiny. One time when she was in the dressing room if she could have a size 0 because the size 1 didn't fit. A mother next to her said extremely loudly "I would give my daughter a sandwhich if she was ever a size 0." Really people!? Appreciate women the way they are whether that be curvy, skinny, or somewhere inbetween!!

Sheila Sczepanik said...

This was a very insensitive article, I'm sorry. And it made me really upset. While I semi agree with you, I agree with people who are telling you that you are completely missing the point. We know women aren't supposed to look alike, that's obvious. The media has made people believe that being skinny is the only way to be, and while I enjoy the VSFS, it is really hard for some people to watch because that's how they think they should look. I think you're being very insensitive to those who don't understand that even though they are beautiful and healthy, they don't think they are because a strong majority of people, expect and want girls to look like those models.

This: "I hope you don't mind when that skinny woman tells you that you're a fat ass. Because that's exactly the sort of shaming you're giving her." Seriously..? Have a bit of respect. These women in this fashion show work for they have, which is why they deserved to be treated like a real woman. But no one should ever say such a thing like you said. I understand where you're going, but you chose a terrible way to word it. People blame genes for being fat AND skinny, believe it or not.

You're talking to people like me, who have always been naturally insecure and I have recently become more comfortable with myself. When these are the ONLY kind of women you see anywhere, it makes it hard to be comfortable if you don't look like that.I If everyones a woman, don't call someone a fatass. (That enraged me, calling someone a fatass is different then telling someone to eat a burger, watch your choice of words). I don't know anyone that says they look abnormal, and if someone does, they are just doing it out of jealousy, and they make it obvious.

I'm going to stop here, you could have written this with a better attitude. I agree with your positive message, but this article came across awfully negative.

Questioning Fate said...

I've been tiny all my life that in high school I was lucky if I was able to hit 100 lbs. Also being a dancer didn't help much because I would burn off anything I ate (still do) but managed to make more muscle to help me weigh more. But you canstill see my ribs, in scschool I always got the "go eat a sandwich" by guys and woman a like. I even had a girl in my gym class call me a hermaphrodite because I had a six pack and "girls could only get a four pack". And being young and hearing that hurts no matter if it was because of jealousy or hatred or bad knowledge. And it doesn't help that media is telling women that you have to be skinny to be something. That is why I like Victoria secret because they are trying to help fight against that. But models are models and they have a tough job.

Also found this via link from Facebook.

Lydia Woosley said...

Yes! It's like you took the words out of my head! I love it! I'm glad this post is getting so much attention - everyone needs to hear this!

I don't follow your blog. I read it when friend shared it on Facebook.

Amy Tragnitz said...

I agree with you and most here. But I do have to say that unfortunately many models, actresses and singers do eat very little to look good. Many save their calories so they can drink. Some even rely on drugs to help them stay thin. We don't know who is naturally thin and who puts their body thru Hell to look like that. What we need to express to young girls now is that women have come a long way. We have proven we are beautiful mind, body, soul and heart. Just as a woman will find a fit man attractive she will also find a man with a belly just as good looking. We as people like what we like and we need to be happy with ourselves. Teach our kids to be happy with ourselves and we will emit confidence; which I believe is the sexiest thing of all.

Jenn Hoffman said...

YES YES YES! Real women cook (or don't), real women have children (or don't), real women are real people with individual personalities and preferences. Love this post. You RULE.

Amy E said...

yes! thank you for this article. we need to embrace our difference rather than shaming those who look different than us! love your blog.

from a fellow arkansan,
the orchid avenue

Mark Jones said...

I found this from a friend on facebook. I don't know who you are, but I thought you should know. You...are awesome. Nuff said

Meghan Dorsey said...

I agree 100% however there is one thing that I would like to add. The idea that these Victoria Secret models may be thin because of lucky genetics may be true in some cases, but the majority of these models eat clean and work out hard in the gym. They spend a lot of time sweating in the gym and prepping meals in the kitchen. Also they have a fabulous hair and make up team. Good lighting helps too.

Dany Dragonz said...

Great post. A friend of mine posted it on Facebook...so that's how I got wind of it...and wrote a response to it in my (brand new) blog. I agree almost entirely with what you said...except I addressed the importance of looking at the media when discussing these issues. So while it's vital we accept women of all shapes and sizes, I don't think it's wrong to judge the use of certain bodies in advertising and the media. There's definitely a distinction to be made, but the fact is that women who have pretty much any ounce of fat are ridiculed and marginalized. Again though, great post and wonderful points. Here's a link to my post: http://justtobeblunt.blogspot.com

Drew Brown said...

A friend on facebook shared a direct link to the blog. Great article! I'll definitely come back again for more reads. You've got a great mind!

christina langley said...

I ran across this post on FB. I was born premature so I have always been petite. After I graduated college and landed my first full-time job, my anxiety rose and my body went crazy and I lost a bunch of weight without trying. Everyone felt like it was their job to comment on how skinny i was (like it was some huge revelation to me when they would tell me) and i heard "put some meat on your bones," and "let me buy you a sandwich" all the time. my sister thought i had an eating disorder which made me extremely self-conscious. Yes, i was eating enough and yes, i was healthy, but i was so concerned about what others thought that i could not feel confident in my body. I even joined a gym to try to gain muscle weight. That was how self-conscious i became. Now that my job is less stressful and i have gained some weight back, people still tell me to eat a sandwich to put some "meat on my bones." If i was a girl who really had an eating disorder, those comments would be so much more hurtful than helpful. We need to stop judging and start loving, but most of all, we need to look to not each other for validation, but to Jesus Christ. I am confident now because i am accepted by God, just as I am.

Sweetclo apple said...

A friend of mine post this on FB and I was curious so i came and read... i think you're right about this real women stuff we are not alike and each of us is different and beautifull in her difference :) I really like your post and what you say i think everyone should think like that sadly it is not the case and thats just sad...

mahleelove said...

I have to say that, based on this article, you are an extremely superficial woman. You attack "curvy girls" and in a very nasty way. Really, your message was lost within all of your name-calling and nastiness. You're true colors show for sure. I especially enjoyed how, after tearing apart "fat asses", you incorporated the whole "you're beautiful whether you're adele-size or miranda kerr-size". I'm going to say that the burden of being "curvy" outweighs that of being the size of a VS model. Shame on you for bashing other women. Your argument is null and void, as you are NO different than the said "skinny bashers".

El Bonds said...

I'm glad that I am not the only one who thinks this. As a tall very thin male, I have been told to eat more food by people of all shapes and sizes. Some have even gone so far as to ask if I am eating food at all. The punch line of this, is that people who do not understand that my whole family is tall and thin, and that I am a Cross Country runner have hounded me year after year about whether or not if I am getting enough food to eat. I eat more than enough food.

The sad thing is that if I were to ever turn the tables on them, like you have said, all hell would break loose and I would be accused of insulting another person for their shape, size, eating habits, athleticism, and numerous other things. There are times where I have no faith in humanity, but then I come across readings like this. Where I say thank you!!!

I found your post on my Facebook news feed.

Ariel said...

I found this blog post via Facebook. A friend shared this article.

At first I was appalled with the title, then I clicked on it and started to read, and realized that you have a good point!

We are all women, no matter what, or how we look. As long as we got dat pussy, or we made a pussy on our body, we are a woman.

Thank you. This has made me feel slightly joyed, and happy to know there ARE intelligent, bright human beings online, ha ha!

lisa harman said...

My daughter posted this on Facebook. Wow, can I relate!! I'm 5'11" & weighed 135lbs most of my life. Born tall & skinny. I grew up being called string bean, toothpick & Olive Oyle! As a woman in my 20's & 30's, I was called a "coke whore" "aneroxic" "bulemic" & told by women I looked sick, but men told me I looked like a model! Years later, I broke my neck & got very sick. I gained 65lbs in 3 years!! Now, I'm called a "fat pig" told to go on a diet, and people watch what I put on my plate & if I have 2nds! Where does this insanity end?! Skinny OR fat, there's no way to "win" if you allow others to determine how you look or feel! I'm losing weight now, because I'm not a heavy person normally. Not looking forward to being called a "coke whore" again, but that didn't hurt as bad as being injured & being called a "fat pig!" I'm going to be ok with ME!! Look the way that makes ME feel good about MYSELF! God Bless the Women, big & small ~ Bless us ALL!

Stephanie Phillips said...

I found this post through Hussy Magazine on facebook, which is an awesome magazine btw!!

Amy said...

Great post! I am naturally slender and I always get comments about how "skinny" I am. I can deal with that but what really would irk me is if my daughter, who has severe food allergies and only has a few safe foods, would be told to just "eat a sandwich"... and then go the ER right? We don't know other people's stories so let's just live out the law of love and treat each other with kindness! I am not a regular reader. I found you through a FB post. :)

kc said...

Hey Tyler! I found your blog via Facebook from a friend who shared your post. I could absolutely not agree with you more on this. I am 5' 1" and have struggled with my weight since I was 15 (going back and forth gaining 30 lbs and losing it for no reason that we can figure out). I have been to so many doctors and tried to find out why my body does what it does without my changing a thing... but in the end, I AM STILL A WOMAN. Curves or no curves, we all still have feelings and not every girl aspires to be "skinny" or look "unhealthy," but even if they do, that is their choice and their business. I don't blame you for the rant and I love some of the comments I'm reading! Our society has gone weight crazy, and it's a damn shame. Our morals and values and character are so much more important than every pound we "should" gain or lose! Keep smiling pretty ladies, and give all of the back lashing a big middle finger!

sarah neyland said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jovanna Rhea said...

Found your blog via a post from a friend who lives in arkansas:) I couldn't help but share on my Facebook with the women in my life because I could have practically stood up and shouted "sweet baby jesus THANK YOU! someone finally said what I've been trying to share these past few years". Great job, thank you for reminding women we don't have to be each others, or our own, worst enemy

http://jovannarhea.blogspot.com

ray said...

Although I agree that women come in all different shapes and sizes, I disagree that one woman should never tell another woman how she should look. There are some cases where a woman is actually noticeably suffering from an eating disorder and then it would be a crime for someone to bite their tongue. I believe you got so much traffic on this post because you took a lit of very strong standpoints in the form of definites where there is room for interpretation. This invites argument or strong resonation, depending on the audience.

To be clear, I'm mot suggesting the victorias secret angels are struggling with eating disorders. Im not fully informed on their history. I do know they diet and exercise. I do agree genes play a role. Some may take dieting too far bordering on disorder according to some interview revelations. Do a bit of research and I'd love to hear a follow up argument on whether some may actually struggle with eating disorders.

bluesparrowphotography said...

To the Tara Eveland that said "it's just dumb to say people not born with vaginas can call themselves real women" shame on you. Honestly, SHAME ON YOU. You have every right to PERSONALLY feel that, had you been born a man wanting a vagina, you wouldn't be allowed to call YOURSELF a "real woman" if you had a sex change (or just had the want to do so). It's people like you with your judgy BS ways that create these "standards" and spewing the substandard excuse of "freedom of speech" to sling around your hate. Even if you want to attempt the religion train, try quoting me a verse where a man can't be a woman....better yet, maybe go read the MANY verses on loving thy neighbor and not casting any stones.
SMH
But back to the important part, this blog, it's so perfectly written. Even if those models weren't born with skinny genes, they've all worked their perfectly molded little tushies to get there. Those bodies ARE healthy. FACE IT!! If we all ate correct portions of a strict healthy food diet AND worked out as often as we're suppose to, we'd all have close-to-model bodies. Maybe not THESE models, but hell, I'd kill just to look like some of the plus size models too (granted, that would require a mirical workout to make my boobs bigger).
So please, for anyone wanting to disrespect these absolutely gorgeous girls, take a look at yourself first. Think about your hurtful words and think, MAYBE your own daughter will grow up to be this stunning, and MAYBE she'll stumble across your words. It's up to you if those words are of love or hate.

And to answer the blog question, I found this through a share on Facebook :)

meravigliami&mezzanotte said...

First time reader, very very skinny too. I never in my life even thought about making a comment on someone else's size, size is actually something I don't even notice that much in other women. I was totaly driven mad and about to do a killer comment on a girl stomach once, when a girl, after steeling my then love intrest and me accepting the fact with no hard feeling, felt the need to tell me to eat some pasta too, knowing I have celiac disease (= I can not eat pasta) and that this could be partly accounted for me being skinny. But, simply not having the different size bashing in me, I ended up deciding to simply send her to fu_k herself big time instead of using her weight to do so. Couldn't agree more with all this post says!!!

Sami Miller said...

First time reader, found you on facebook through a link my friend posted. I agree, why can't we all just be who we are without being shamed for it.

Sera E said...

Im new to your blog...I found you on FB thru a friends link and Im so happy I clicked on it and continued reading...Thank You for writing this...very well said :) I couldn't agree with you more..THANK YOU!!!!

Rachel Slaughter said...

THANK YOU! How can we say that it is not ok for men to critique us and put us in a box of what we are supposed to be when we turn around and judge and criticize each other?! Saw this post shared on my Facebook feed, FYI.

Jen Gaab said...

AMEN SISTER!!
Can I point out that these women Do have curves, not rolls, but curves.

Jealously and discrimination is what is ugly!!

Thanks for writing this.

Jen G.


First time reader, saw it on Facebook.

Alex Hellams said...

This is awesome. More power to you. I have had countless people question my exercise habits and tell me to slow down because I am a size 2 and I should be "done losing weight." I AM TRAINING FOR THE BOSTON MARATHON PEOPLE!! Just be your healthy and love who you are, thats what matters!
Thank you for this!
Found it on facebook!
Any Merry Christmas (or Happy Holidays)!

Lila said...

This is difficult to express so I apologize if I butcher it.

Firstly- I wholeheartedly agree with you that it is completely unfair to tell anyone what the physical standard of being a real woman is or is not. My roommate is extremely thin and has suffered for years from anorexic comments that are untrue.

That being said, I'm not sure that the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is the greatest example for your argument. We are being woefully ignorant if we think that those models' bodies are not the result of arduous work and precise, NOT anorexic, but PRECISE eating plans. There IS a standard for those models to attain by the time of the show, that they must maintain, and it is not attainable for the average person who can't afford the personal trainers and nutritionists. As a feminist I advocate for women to have the CHOICE to be whatever and look however they want so I'm not saying they are wrong for wanting to look that way.

But. We live in a world where one single image is prized and honored above all others and women who don't fit the standard DO have the right to be angry. That frustration should not be belittled in favor of pretending that we're all equal and are treated equally. It's like someone preaching to remember to be respectful to straight couples while gay couples don't have rights. We don't need a reminder, straight people already have the power.

But finally, I come back to a place of agreement with you. To fight inequality with such hurtful and ineffective statements as "eat a sandwich" does nothing for the cause and further divides women amongst themselves. I myself find little solace in those "comeback campaigns" of very large women wearing lingerie because I still don't see myself. I am neither as skinny as the pictures of Vogue or as large as the campaign models and biologically we want to see ourselves or something we can actually attain in advertising- otherwise we are alienated.

Let us strive for diversity of images, for both short, fat, skinny, tall, and everything in between women to be honored equally and promoted equally. So that when a little girl looks at a poster or watches something, they can say, "I might grow up to be like that", not "I have to stop eating to be like that", or "I have to eat more to be like that."

Matt said...

Fantastic post, and it needs to keep being said. It is not okay to shame a woman for her appearance. Period.

Mikey Mc said...

Could you fix the first line please? Because I was born with a vagina, continued breathing and very strictly do not identify as a woman. It's great to see you're taking steps to include trans women- after all, they encounter body shaming more than anyone- but don't forget that the trans community is broader than that and includes some people who were female assigned at birth.

michelle bartonico said...

I'm not a usual reader. I stumbled upon your article from a friend posting it on Facebook. It definitely hit home. Thanks for writing it!

Jared Foote said...

This is bs. Yes, it is okay for women to be naturally skinny. Yes, it is okay for women to be naturally thicker. But these people are showcasing ONLY skinny women and the majority of them have starved themselves to be that way. That is NOT natural and it is NOT healthy. Stop supporting these things because you might be skinny and feel better that others like you are being showcased on television. Doing so makes thicker women who feel the same as you or probably worse. Lets face it, skinny women are not ridiculed as much as thicker women. Does America have a massive anorexia problem ? No, we have an obesity problem. That still doesn't make it okay to starve women and then put them half naked on stage and call them "some of the most beautiful women on the planet".

Jared Foote said...

This is bs. Yes, it is okay for women to be naturally skinny. Yes, it is okay for women to be naturally thicker. But these people are showcasing ONLY skinny women and the majority of them have starved themselves to be that way. That is NOT natural and it is NOT healthy. Stop supporting these things because you might be skinny and feel better that others like you are being showcased on television. Doing so makes thicker women who feel the same as you or probably worse. Lets face it, skinny women are not ridiculed as much as thicker women. Does America have a massive anorexia problem ? No, we have an obesity problem. That still doesn't make it okay to starve women and then put them half naked on stage and call them "some of the most beautiful women on the planet".

sarah shoop said...

I found this on Facebook and I just want to say that I am appalled. First off, the girl that posted it was on my college track team and was kicked off because she needed to be hospitalized for an eating disorder. But that besides that, you have done exactly what this article complains about. You are calling people fat asses and such. Because of this, your argument is now irrelevant to me.
Another thing that really struck me about this article is the tone. As a recovered anorexic myself (I was 5foot and ranged between 75 and 80 pounds) this sounds exactly like something that I would have said back then. I didn't understand why people always told me to gain weight because I wasn't what they thought was healthy. Well, I really wasn't. And if you look at some of the behind the scenes stuff about VS models(like REALLY behind the scenes) you'll see that even though they say they eat a lot, they don't really. Two bites of a burger is not eating a burger. And they're not healthy either. Now, I understand that some people really are just naturally skinny, and that's fine. I would never shame them. That's not their fault, and this is the argument that you tried to disguise your true argument under. So shame on you for suggesting that it's ok for girls to starve themselves to look like this.

Madison Periatt said...

This is one of the greatest pieces of writing I've read in a long time! Everything you said is 100% true. Being a tall, slender girl, I always hated when people would tell me I need to eat more. I'm not hungry, my jeans fit wonderfully, and if I wanted to eat more, I would thank you very much. Life is hard enough already, we shouldn't have the added issues of not feeling like a real woman because we wear a size 4.
(My friend posted your article on Facebook)

jerron jordan said...

Thank You for saying what millions of men think! All women are beautiful regardless of what they look like. Ladies are the nurtures of life. What's more beautiful than that?

jerron jordan said...

Thank You for saying what millions of men think! All women are beautiful regardless of what they look like. Ladies are the nurtures of life. What's more beautiful than that?

jerron jordan said...

Thank You for saying what millions of men think! All women are beautiful regardless of what they look like. Ladies are the nurtures of life. What's more beautiful than that?

Madison Periatt said...

I already commented, but I wanted to add something after reading some of the other comments!

It is true that the media pushes a certain body type as the "ideal body" but it is also true that times are changing. Years ago, yes you saw lots of super tall, super skinny gorgeous models everywhere, which they are great! But now I feel like there's more diversity in what the media shows. Yes, they are still gorgeous women but it isn't unusual to walk through the store and see Kim Kardashian or Beyoncé, both who have the most amazing curves and killer bodies. Sure they have the money to eat right and have a trainer but they also have the MOTIVATION to work out and the DESIRE to eat healthy which I think is something our society is lacking. You don't have to join a gym to work out and you don't have to shop at Whole Foods to eat healthy. There is always a solution, we have just decided to give excuses instead of actually putting in some effort.
(And like someone said above; curves are way different than rolls)

Erika said...

Thank you for this post. I appreciate you pointing out that the real problem is that "comparison is the thief of joy." I could stand to internalize that myself.

(friend posted your article on FB.)

aimshaman said...

never read you before, rarely read blog posts, a friend shared the article on facebook and the hot models and tagline caused me to click and read.

i agree with your sentiment by the way.

Joanne Pratt said...

This is definitely one of the best posts i have read in a very long time!
one of my friends shared this on facebook and it's so nice to see something written that doesnt have an "us and them" mindset towards sizes of women and what constitutes to a 'real woman'.
I am one of these who are often told i am anorexic, get told to eat on a regular occasion. even had a work mate who i had to share a hotel room with one weekend for staff training tell everybody at work that i had an eating disorder (was a bit silly considering that we worked in a 24 hour care home so it was quite clear that people saw me eat copious amounts) anyway, gone off on a tangent slightly there! excellent post! Thank you :)

Brooke Leone said...

OMG thank you for this! It was exactly what I needed to read today! I'm naturally a size 0, I'm not model-thin, but my waist is tiny and I'm not particularly curvy. My boyfriend is pretty bad about thin-shaming. When I decide that I want to eat healthy (read: HEALTHY, not less, just better foods) he always tries to sabotage me because he says I'm obsessed with being too skinny and it's unattractive. However, when I do out on more weight, I feel uncomfortable with myself, I feel out of shape and unhealthy. He wonders why I'm not in as good of a mood or not as happy when this happens. It is OK to be naturally thin. Be HEALTHY whatever size and shape you are. That's what's important. (Btw, I'm not a usual reader, but one of my friends shared your post on Facebook)

Jason Rogers said...

Furthermore, how about men being made to feel superficial or otherwise shamed for LIKING thin women? Larger girls, it's not personal. I like what I like. You can't help what you're attracted to. But, for some reason, if a guy states that he doesn't like thicker girls then that's apparently wrong and he should be ashamed of himself...

Beverly Christensen-Hartle said...

Good morning!
I came across your post that someone commented on FB. I love that you acknowledged the REAL problem that is affecting our young women and teens..COMPARING ourselves to others.

I am 44 years old and am former Mrs. Idaho America 2012, so I am very aware of the public perception on womens' ideal figure. Since I've been involved in pageants over the last several years, it is amazing to me how critical others can be when a woman decides to participate in a program such as a pageant. If a women feels confident in her own skin and wishes to motivate herself and others, then there is absolutely no reason why she shouldn't step out of her comfort zone and do something she loves to do. My best friends are beauty queens throughout the United States and all of them come in various shapes and sizes. When someone is critical of others, it's usually when they are unhappy with their own situation and hoping for change.
Thank you for posting this. It's so true!!

Beverly Hartle
Mrs. Idaho America 2012

BowsnBros said...

I saw this on my newsfeed on Facebook. I loved reading this, and I'm looking forward to reading more of your stuff!

Alexandra Patricia Carvalho said...

I've been one of those girls on the runway, and now and on the other side, the heavy side, and I tell you, prejudice is no fun at any end of this spectrum, people tell you to eat a sandwich and immediately assume you are stupid if you are tall, skinny and beautiful, and they think you are an aberration and hide their kids from you from fear you'll eat them if you are heavy .... We are all women, and all humans!

Tyler Lucille, I'm your newest fan

Jen Conrad said...

Wow, every single one of these women that agreed with this article are also very thin... who'd have guessed that! How about you ask a heavy woman how she feels about the statements? While I agree with the overall point being said here, to not judge and ridicule each other but accept and support each other no matter what we look like, the main problem still stands. "Real women" do not look like models. These models are women, but most likely, the way their body and/or face looks is not in any way natural. Hence the "real" part. The amount of exercise, plastic surgery, make-up and airbrushing that is done to accomplish this look, is NOT "real." I think that's pretty obvious. And unless you are a V secret model with millions of dollars at your disposal and tons of people dedicated to working extremely hard to make you look this way, this look IS unattainable. I would never teach my children otherwise.

RiK said...

Well said.. As a photographer I have a fair few friends who are models, and yes, most of them a slim and beautiful and I've heard some horrible comments aimed at them over the years, mostly by those women who *could* look great if they weren't lazy and lacking in self-discipline. There's an old saying that says "if someone is trying to put you down, it's only because they think you're above them". It's jealousy, plain and simple.

(Found you via a link to your blog posted by a model friend on Facebook)

Kim Frederick said...

This is beautiful! Thank you for sharing! Not a reader before and I found this post via a friend sharing it on facebook!

Sewobsessed said...

I saw this blog posted on Facebook. I would like to thank you for sticking up for these women. I am not a small woman myself but am a designer who employs thinner women for my fashion shows. Most of these women work very hard to stay in this sort of shape. Why would we degrade them for being fit. I give them credit for having more self control than I and making themselves a priority.

Eleni said...

I found your blog which was shared through a post on facebook. And yes, I agree that ALL women with a vagina are "women" regardless of if they have curves or not. All women are beautiful, regardless of their size. We need to be pushing that instead of "real women have curves!"

Squirt said...

I get so tired of women asking me how I stay so thin, then getting pissed at me when I answer honestly, that I have slender genes. "Oh, you'll put on weight when you get older," they say. (I'm a very young looking 38.) they absolutely cannot Wait for me to get fat! Sometimes I lie and say that I workout, but I'm not much of a liar so it doesn't happen often. Thanks for this, I saw it in my twitter feed. :-)

George LaValle said...

Found this via a link on Facebook.

I'd say that your heart's in the right place - I agree with you that "comparison is the thief of joy" - but I think that you're operating from a false premise here. Cameron Russell tells us that she won a "genetic lottery" to become a supermodel, and it's basically true. No amount of hard work and sacrifice will make a person beautiful if they don't have the bone structure.

However. They are not, ARE NOT genetically skinny. Adriana Lima, the Victoria's Secret "angel," has already publicly stated that she begins a weight loss regimen of a liquid diet and double workouts a month and a half before a show. Let us be clear on this, she is not even remotely an exception to the rule among models. Eating disorders are, across the board, the rule for models, not the exception. The "struggle" that killed sister supermodels Eliana and Luisel Ramos was the job they did for a living.

This is an industry that picks up pretty young women at around ten or twelve and sculpts them physically and psychologically into the shapes it considers necessary for its purposes. The twenty-three inch waist is standard, whether your metabolism naturally produces one from a healthy and nutritionally complete diet or not.

Lauren Hodges said...

I found your blog through facebook actually. Someone had posted it and it just spread :)
I agree completely, power to you.

Jill said...

I saw this shared on Facebook. Thank you! I have been talked about and guilted and hated on because of being thin. It is even worse, apparently, that I have 3 kids and still manage to be thin. A lot is genetics, but I also have been very active most of my life.

Care said...

I want to thank you for writing this. I am naturally underweight and was terrorized for it in high school. People constantly accused me of being anorexic, would say I must weig 100 lbs soaking wet, called me Ethiopian, and so on. My self esteem just kept getting lower and lower. I would binge eat I. Attempt to gain weight but nothing ever worked. I was 5'4 and 80 lbs, which may sound unhealthy, but it was my natural healthy body weight. As I got older I finally started standing up for myself and when people would make comments like the soaking wet one, I would challenge them and ask if it was okay for me to say they must weight 300lbs totally dry. Some people would see my side but others would not. I still have people make comments about my weight (now 5'7 and 125lbs) probably on a weekly basis. Like someone else said, the grass is always greener on the other side. Women need to stop criticizing eachother and make an effort to be happy with themselves!

Care said...

Also, found a link to your blog on Facebook.

Katherine Penhaligan said...

One of my friends posted this on their facebook page and it's honestly the single best thing I've read all year. Thank you so much for finally clearing up all the bull shit surrounding this issue and for doing such a damn good job at it.

Mdbaker said...

I agree with mostly with Tara Evelabd. Though, I'm not sure it's such a great job considering what those women go through. I completely agree genes are not what make the majority of these women. Plastic surgery, make up (lots of it), starving themselves, and even surgery to lengthen their legs. I think you can find a better soapbox to stand on.

George LaValle said...

Here is how the woman you used as the cover photo gets her genes:

She sees a nutritionist, who has measured her body's muscle mass, fat ratio and levels of water retention. He prescribes protein shakes, vitamins and supplements to keep Lima's energy levels up during this training period. Lima drinks a gallon of water a day. For nine days before the show, she will drink only protein shakes - "no solids". The concoctions include powdered egg. Two days before the show, she will abstain from the daily gallon of water, and "just drink normally". Then, 12 hours before the show, she will stop drinking entirely.

"No liquids at all so you dry out, sometimes you can lose up to eight pounds just from that," she says.

"It's like they're training for a marathon," says Sophia Neophitou, the British fashion editor who is chief stylist for this year's show.

"Adriana works really hard at it. It's the same as if you were a long-distance runner. They are athletes in this environment - it's harder to be a Victoria's Secret model because no one can just chuck an outfit on you, and hide your lumps and bumps."

http://fashion.telegraph.co.uk/news-features/TMG8872623/Victorias-Secret-show-What-does-it-take-to-be-a-Victorias-Secret-Angel.html

"I just have an athlete's mind and I appreciate doing this thing," she told E! Online. "It's not that I do crazy diets throughout the year. I just do it for this particular thing. After this show, I become normal again!"

Lima is particularly anxious to get the message out to impressionable young women that her diet is part of her job, but not a part of a normal healthy lifestyle.

"Those teenagers out there, don't go starving yourself or only drinking liquids," she said. "Don't do that please."

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20544798,00.html

Little Mademoiselle said...

I LOVVEEE this post.
first of all I am going to say that ''larger'' women have all of a sudden started this outcry about it not being fair, that only skinny women are represented. People forget that up until the 1980s, and the runways became popular, that being thin was not considered beautiful AT ALL. The Betty Paige, Marilyn Monroe ideal was what everyone wanted to be. If you look at pictures throughout history like paintings and such, being plump like a cherub was ALWAYS more liked than long and slender. So being a larger woman ALWAYS had the edge over being lean. I think things are actually more equal now, because women who are not in the category of ''classic beauty '' can have a niche now. Models in high fashion are usually girls who are ''strange, other-wordly'' type of girls. Very unique. Look at Lily Cole, Gemma Ward, Cintia Dicker.These girls are not ''classic beauty'', but now there is a subset of fashion that can show girls that it can be cool if you are different. If it wasn't for the fashion industry, I personally think our beauty ideals would be even tighter and more restricted than they already are. I find it odd that people think that trying to slide the scale away from thinner models is going to automatically make the modeling industry ''all- inclusive''. And most men gravitate towards the porn model types-more curvy and buxom.And Kim Kardashian and Beyonce. So I feel that collectively, as a whole, ''team average to large'' still has advantages over ''team 0-2''.

Point number two is, all these people saying it is not really genetics need to go visit China, Vietnam, Thailand, Japan, Brazil, Singapore, Russia, Ukraine,Serbia, Poland, Moldova, Slovenia,Norway, etc. and see how ''not normal'' the slender body type is. The supermodel body type is waaay more common. The only countries that are whining aboutthose body types as being ''not real'' or ''genetically impossible'' are the USA, the UK, and Australia. Maybe if we started walking more,stopped using our cars do go a mile or two down the street, stop buying ''Big GRAB'' chips, and super ROUTE 44 sized colas, and stopped eating meat with tons of hormones in it(makes the chicken 3 times fatter in half the amount of time) , maybe more of us would not feel that being slender is such a stretch of imagination. The women in the above mentioned countries eat until they feel full, they prepare meals and home and eat with the family. There is no secret here. But while the USA, UK, and the like want to continue to make excuses for poor behavior and eating habits, the joke is really on us for not wanting to take responsibility for our lives, and for us not being able to tell reality(magazines and catwalks) from real life.

Little Mademoiselle said...

Oh and P.S- Stop hassling men for having preferences. Some men like smaller women, some like bigger women. Men get called shallow so quickly if they say they like a skinny woman, but if a man says in front of everyone ''oh I like big women'', watch all the smug smiles around the room. I have always been on the thin side, and I have had men tell me in front of their average size or larger girlfriends ''oohh no offense, but I like big women, they just do something for me'', and everyone around gets their ego stroked at my expense. I have seen this happen to other smaller women too. Ladies stop this war on one another just because YOU feel lacking in some way. I feel like the whole ''real women have curves'' none sense is just a way for some women to secretly attack other women. They know that being ''larger'' is a way to create a bubble of victimhood from which they can attack, but a skinnier person can't really say anything back because then it is ''fat shaming'' As a skinnier person, I could care less what size someone else is, and nor do I think I am better than some other girl. Do I think it is right to be mean to larger sized women? No. Do I think larger women are attractive? Yes I do. But I am telling you, next time someone wants to fluff up some chick's ego(that wears a bigger size than me) at my expense, I am not going to let it slide.

Jenn said...

My husband forwarded your link to me. Thank you SO much. As someone who weighs about 100 lbs, I can't tell you how insulting it is for someone to call me "sick." My entire family is thin. We're not sick. We're made this way. I don't comment on peoples' weight, so it astounds me that they feel comfortable insulting mine. It's twisted. By the same token, people have made insulting comments about my friends' varying weights, women of every shape & size. If I'm too thin, but they are too big, and others are just too average, it simply proves nothing is good enough & some people have to tear down others no matter what. And why women would participate in tearing other women down is beyond me and is the bigger, real concern. It benefits no one.

Anne of Ice said...

I've never thought about this issue in this way and it makes SO MUCH SENSE. Even if they are sick (which, if you pay close attention to their bodies, they are actually very muscular), it is not okay to bash them for it. I liked the analogy you used about a skinny person calling an "average" looking woman a fat ass. This reminds me a lot of the slut-shaming that is also going on right now. I found this post on facebook. Good job!

ALX MERINO said...

So first of all I'm a guy and I read this out of curiosity. My girlfriend is naturally thin. No matter how much she she still doesn't gain weight. Anyways, one day she read a post how girls with thigh gaps (She has one) only get them because they "Starve" themselves to get. The article completely ignored the fact that thigh gaps can be a result of big hips (which she has). After reading that article and reading some of the comments people had posted, she felt upset. I personally found the article to be the greatest example of ignorance because it so pointless and was nothing more than an attack on thin women with thigh gaps.

I can honestly say that I'm glad I read your article. I'm glad this article wasn't an attack on women for the way they look. It was a great read and I'll be sure to send the link to this article to my girlfriend so she can she that there are woman who understand that not all woman look the same.

ambar del moral said...

This couldn't be more true!
However, it is also important to consider that many times what we see on the media is highly manipulated, ergo, not real. So, it is important for kids to know from a young age that people come in all shapes and sizes, but they also need to be aware of the dangers of Photoshop manipulation.

Jessie Cone said...

This is great! I feel so self conscious now a days cuz it's all about having an ass these days. I don't feel pretty because I don't have an hour glass figure. .. I'm more like a 2 x 4 with big boobs lol. Thank you for standing up for the skinny girls who eat LOTS of sandwiches. .. But can't gain any weight!

My friend re posted this on Facebook and I saw it.

Chrissy Marie said...

I agree with everything except for what makes you a "real" woman in the opening sentences. You're only a real woman if you have ovaries, a cervix, Fallopian tubes, etc. point blank. I don't care what anyone has to say based on that. You can throw little educated statistics and facts at me all day and I'm just going to give zero fucks accompanied with a blank face. I love equality and people taking a stand for their identity but as far as any non-woman being, claiming the female sex, if you do not bleed every month nor were born with the ovary organs, you are not a woman point blank. Cosmetically you may appear as a woman (face, boobs, vagina...), estrogen shots, wardrobe, etc. but unless you have those, there's nothing valid you can say that will change the fact that you're not a woman.

*Trisha* said...

A friend posted this blog-post on fb, I clicked it and ended up here.(:

Monica Park said...

Agree with you perspective. Sara Sampiano's twitter.

Donna Dull said...

This. A million times this. I'm a big girl and I have resigned myself to this. Between a bad case of hypothyroidism and a strong German bone structure, this is just how I am built. That doesn't make the way others are built wrong. As an author I decided to explore the topic and discovered it's really hard for me to relate to someone on the opposite end of the spectrum. But once I started to get comfortable there, I realized things were just as messed up if not more so. It's wrong that society as a whole has labeled one body type desirable and the other disgusting, when all should be made to feel beautiful. Stop seeing people's size and you just might discover an amazing person. Sizism (if it's not a word, it should) is as bad as any other form of generalization.

Oh, and I found a link to the blog on Facebook.

Kenneth Rodriquez said...

Found out about this blog entry from a link shared on Facebook by the current World Bantamweight Champion of (the all-women's mixed martial arts organization) Invicta Fighting Championships, Lauren Murphy. Haven't heard THAT today I'll bet, have you?Look her up. You & Mrs. Murphy are both great ambassadors for women everywhere. :)

Amanda Cutburth said...

Thank you so much for posting this!! I couldn't agree more. Found you from a Facebook post.

Unknown said...

Lots of great opinions! I respect yoru veiw of lots of different types of women.... But if your going to use a sexy curvy women like Christina Hendrix.... Why wouldn't you put a photo of her all dolled up!? The VS model has done a couple weeks of getting ready for the show plus 2-3 hours in hair an makeup! The pick of Christina looks like she got cought by pop on a Tuesday morning trying to get some coffee?
If your going to do real comparisons... Let's do em right? Maybe a fab xtine pic? Or a no makup no glam team pic of vs?
I love your passion non the less :)

TimothyBohrer said...

Probably the only guy in the world that wasn't watching the show last night. (Talk about a can of worms, just bring up that conversation at a party.) Either way, I don't get the point in someones looks. Because, what really matters is someone that you desire to be with. Well, they should have some interests and long term goals. If they don't, then you and they should sit down and talk about it. What do they want out of life. What are you looking for in a relationship? In 20 years, do you think you are going to want what you want now? Is this person going to help you build a family, and support them? Or are you just in "Another Relationship"?

With that being said. After reading this article and seeing some of the pictures of the women showing off some designer clothes. I see nothing wrong with that, and I am sure they were all indeed beautiful. I would love to sit down and have a chat with several of them I am sure. The biggest thing there would be to me who they really are, and what got them to where they are today? I mean think about the stories they would have.

Either way, the view of women in this world is utterly disgusting. Its to much money loss for someone out there. I mean imagine if women were taught to take care of who they are instead of taking care of what they look like... Think of how insane the world would be come. How much would it change?

Chad Tindale said...

Hello, (found you because it was posted on FB, and it's a discussion worth having).

I wanted to thank you for this. I'm obviously not a woman, but This is something I've been trying to talk to people about for years. It's harsh and cruel to accuse anyone who succeeds as being abnormal. My personal preferred bodytype is Athletic. But when I post images of my celebrity crush (Aimee Mullins) People said that my tastes where unrealistic and that she was a "waife". However, Aimee Mullins is an athlete. And works very hard at building the body she wants. One that is capable. And I think it looks gorgeous. But why is it wrong to congratulate those who strive for good looks and get them? If I spent 3 hours a day in the gym working on my body, I should expect a good body. When I spend 3 hours a day on a couch, I should expect the opposite. But rather than accusing those who work at their form of having a bad one, we should celebrate accomplishment. Or... appreciate couch form, if you prefer... but not demonize anyone for trying at something and succeeding.

This is also a problem in men's weightlifting. I do not succeed at building the body I want. My exercise time is limited... So I have muscles, and a bit of a belly. However, when I show people pictures of the body I want, they often tell me it's unrealistic or worse, unhealthy. But it isn't. I'm simply not working hard enough to get to my goals, and the men who DO get them, are working hard to get them... It's hard work, and I wouldn't pay for an album of untrained musicians... just like I wouldn't pay for a model with an untrained body. I wouldn't pay an untrained plumber. I wouldn't want to watch untrained athletes. Effort is something that should be praised... though lack of effort shouldn't be looked down on either. We're all short of our goals. But we all have different goals, too.

Lauren Cowing said...

While I think that you have a perfectly valid point here in a majority of the article, I do have an issue with this type of statement:

"If you're a woman who thinks it's okay to tell a skinny woman that she needs to eat a sandwich, I hope you don't mind when that skinny woman tells you that you're a fat ass. Because that's exactly the sort of shaming you're giving her."

No, of course it's not at all okay to shame - but what is the point of reciprocal shaming? Does that make ANY person in this scenario feel better, or good even? And isn't that the fundamental issue? Either way it's bullying and it's not something that should be advocated.

I think with statements such as the quoted one above, it refutes the rest of the article and the biggest point about what types of character we should be instilling in young girls (and women for that matter).

Women need to remove the words from their vocabulary that put down other women. We should be making changes in ourselves as opposed to insisting upon placing personal input and agendas about other people's images on each other.

Michael said...

I agree with this article 80%.

My 2 qualms with the article:
- It makes no mention of eating healthy or perpetuating healthy eating habits. At the end of the day, regardless of genetic makeup, you are responsible for what you put in your body. Whether you eat quinoa or a corn dog is not genetic. It is a conscious choice.
- I always find it interesting how people consider this only a women's issue. It exists for both sexes. I do agree that it is much more publicized to be for women because it is so much more prevalent and noticeable given the constant blatant sexualization of women. However, at some point it does need to be recognized for men too. Women and men are equally critical of each other and anyone who says that is untrue is deluding themselves. At the end of the day, you see someone's appearance way before their personality.

Ismael Prata said...

Just to let you know that I'm a new reader, and I just found this cause one of those Victoria's Secret Models shared this on her personal facebook page.
#greattextbtw

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 500   Newer› Newest»