What I Want You to Know is a series of reader submissions. It is an attempt to allow people to tell their personal stories, in the hopes of bringing greater compassion to the unique issues each of us face. If you would like to submit a story to this series, click here. This guest post is by Megyn..
I want people to know that being thin is ok. We aren't all anorexic. Or bulimic. Or ill. The majority of us ʺtoo skinnyʺ people are, well, just thin. And that's ok too.
I never used to be thin. I was a gymnast as a child, and once I quit as a teenager, I ballooned up 20 lbs in a month. That put me at about 125-130 all throughout high school. I wasn't a fan of that weight on my 5'4ʺ frame. Like most in this society, I felt that I would look better thinner. But I also loved to eat, so as much as I worked out, my body didn't change. Then at the end of high school, I developed a progressively worsening dairy allergy. Between that and the stress of college, pounds started slipping off. I started eating more, but couldn't seem to get over 110 pounds. But that was ok, I was still considered ʺhealthy enough.ʺ
Then I had my first son. Unlike most, as soon as I stopped nursing, even more weight came off. Nothing I did worked to put on weight. I got pregnant again. And again, even more weight slipped off after our second son was born. So much so, I've been hovering between 92-96 pounds for over a year. I've been to dozens of doctors and probably had liters of blood drawn. The results? Nothing is physically wrong. Although I never tried to lose weight, it's just how my body is now. Yes, I know I look bony. Yes, I know you all think it's ʺgross.ʺ Yes, I'm sad that I have no boobs now. Yes, I eat...and eat horribly (do 20 cookies and 2 large fries count as carbs & veggies?) But this is me now. For whatever reason, it's just how it is.
I want you to know it hurts every time I am harassed to eat more because I look anorexic. I want you to know the glares in the restaurant when I sit with no food sting to the core. You may not understand my food allergy does not allow me to eat at most restaurants, but the assumptions and judgments passed kill. I want you to know that I try to embrace and accept who I am, but the negative feedback doesn't help. There is so much out there about loving your curves and accepting your body if you're not thin. But what about us thin women? Is it ok to belittle and begrudge us? To make snide remarks and disgusted looks? Speaking badly of someone's weight seems more socially acceptable of thin women than of heavier women. It's hard to love my body when everyone else tells me I too should hate it and be disgusted. That I am wrong and not ok.
I want you to know thin women are prejudiced against just as much as heavier women. I want you to know that no matter what someone's weight is, it's NEVER okay to make someone feel bad about it. I want you to know that there are thin and heavy women with food problems just as there are thin and heavy women with no food problems. I want you to know that we're all ok just the way we are.