I see this a lot: Real women have curves.
Now, imagine this:
After everyone starts gaining weight or getting boob, butt, and hip implants because “real women have curves”, the skinny people will start empowering themselves this time by saying, “skinny women are pretty” and the cycle goes on.
The real women have curves statement might be helping curvy women (although, I don’t believe so) but it’s certainly not helping skinny women. It’s also not helping those who are in denial with life-long obesity and health issues they are facing.
I know it was coined with the intention of helping non-skinny women develop a healthy body image and I think it was supposed to mean “curvy is beautiful too.” But taken at face value, it’s not promoting a healthy source of self-esteem.
Are we saying that I am a real woman because someone else isn’t? What if everyone becomes curvy, from where will we get our self-esteem? from another person who we think is inferior to us?
We can’t empower women by putting down others. There’s enough beauty and real woman-ness to go around for everyone.
Skinny women are real women too and they get just as much flak as curvy women. I should know, because I’ve been both skinny and chubby.
When I was skinny, people told me I should eat. People asked me if I’m starving myself. People said to me ‘mas maganda ang may laman’ (It’s better to have some fat under your skin). Some people assumed that I have an eating disorder. Until now, I don’t know why I lost that much weight, I almost had myself checked by an endocrinologist because even when I ate like a pig, my weight continued to plummet.
After dropping that much weight, my hormones went haywire and I gained so much weight–35lbs to be exact. That’s a lot for a 5’0″ tall person. People had new things to say to me like ‘what happened to you?!?!’ and ‘ang taba mo!’
I knew better than to mind it, because at any size–I see myself the same way and I felt the same amount of real woman-ness.