“ I had a “friend” tell me I looked like a stuffed sausage in a pair of size 28 jean shorts. That summer I ate only cucumbers, watermelon and slim fast bars. I was 5’2 and 122lbs, and 15 years old. 17 years later I still haven’t forgotten, I can still hear the words, I remember exactly what I was wearing. I never wore shorts again.
“ Walked into hydration therapy I hear “um sweetie you shouldn’t be wearing those jeans.” I looked at her and said it’s none of your damn business what jeans I’m wearing. She proceeded with “the colour is too light & a bigger bottom woman like you shouldn’t wear those jeans”. The nurse walked over and told her they don’t stand for body shaming in their practice and asked her to leave
“ I have a 7 year old, he is classed as obese. He has anxiety, he thinks that he is fat, he tells me every day, he loves sweets and chocolate like any other kid but will sometimes choose an apple over chocolate because someone at his school told him to make HEALTHIER choices. He thinks people laugh at him because of his weight. I’m not just talking about his friends, I’m talking about strangers, he thinks people that he doesn’t even know look at him, think he is fat and laugh. This stemmed from SCHOOL, because rather than educate children on real balance, they shame them. This started when he was 5 years old!
“ The day after I gave birth my Mum looked at my swollen and deflated stomach and said: "Have you even given birth? That will go down, right?" My tiny, perfect baby boy was curled up with us and she seemed, in that moment, more concerned that I might stay "fat" or not "get my body back" overnight.
“ Around the age of 13, our PE teacher lined up the whole class of about 30 students, then called me forward and told my classmates to laugh at me because of my weight. And they did. Like so many "well-meaning" others who knew or did not know me, throughout my childhood. Until I was in my early 20s, I felt sorry for people having to see me when I walked past them. It took me another 20 years to overcome the intense feeling of shame over my body and the loneliness that came with it. I am grateful to the online plus-size community for showing me that I am not alone and for giving me the strength to finally not feel worthless as a human being.
“ Two years ago I lost 65lbs (from 300) but I didn't feel that much better, and certainly not better enough to compensate for the stress I was going through to either lose more or stay at that weight. I've done the expected and regained that weight. My wife keeps making comments about wanting me to lose weight again, but I'm not putting myself through that any more.
“ I was once told that I was neither white enough nor black enough. I felt like I never fit in when I was around my family members. Neither side of the family seemed to accept me fully. They would tell me my hair was 'awkward' and my skin tone was 'weird'. It's deeply affected my relationships and I'm always very aware of it when meeting new people.
“ I am a dance student and my dance coach always pointed out how my thighs looked. He would say things like ‘Stretch your knees or otherwise your thighs will get even bigger as they already are now’ and one time he spoke to me in private and he told me that I desperately needed to decrease the size of my thighs. He also bodyshamed my fellow dancers from time to time. But it’s not just my dance coach who commented on my thighs. I remember standing next to my sister one time and my mom saying something like ‘Oh, your thighs look so much thicker than your sister’s’. And what I’ve written here is only the tip of the iceberg. I would have a lot more stories to tell but there are simply too many💔 PS: And to whoever is reading this: I hope you have a nice day :)
“ My boyfriend told me his grandma would LOVE my legs, stated that she likes thicker legs and thighs, with bigger booty (and I'm shorter girl) And when I first met her he asked her if she liked my legs (awful, ikr) and she said "yeah they're fine" and when his brother's girlfriend came, she added "I love tall girls and legs that are nicely shaped"
“ People would always comment on how skinny I was as a kid - some as a compliment, some less so. It's really affected the way I see myself. Now, in recovery from anorexia, one thing that makes it so hard for me to accept weight restoration is that 'skinny' feels like such a huge part of my identity.
“ I have been told by a very close family member I’ll never find a significant other at the size I’m at. This person has also made comments about specific parts of my body, including my thighs and stomach. I’ve also been told I’d be “so pretty” if I just lost some weight. It hurts, has affected my ability to date, and I experience body dysmorphia. I have spent years being unhappy with and hating on my body. I am trying to heal now, it’s hard, but I know it will be worth it.
“ Many things my mother did and said led to me habing disordered eating and body dysmorphia, but one thing i particularly hated was when I was a teenager she would grab my flesh and waggle it going ‘whats this?! Whats THIS?!?’ In disgust. She’d refuse me seconds of dinner as i was “quite fat enough already”. These days she tells me off for being too thin.
“ When I was around 4 to 10 years, my Mom was always telling me I had to eat more because I was too skinny, and she thought I never ate as much as she thought I should. Once I hit 15 years old, I started to eat more, and she used to ask me to stop eating because I was looking overweight. Later in my early twenties, I had eating disorders. Now I am 55 and feel more confident, but at times, I still have the weight obsession and remember those times.
“ When I was 19 I worked at the customer service desk in a retail shop. I had a customer who told me he loved my hair and that I resembled Cher. He was really nice and then he goes "do you know what would look really good on you? If you lost around 10 pounds." I wanted to crawl in a hole and die. It was so shocking. And he was saying it in the same upbeat tone of the compliments he had just given me. Like he was telling me I had a great sweater or something. I was speechless. I'm pretty sure I just said "ok". I wish I had the voice I have now to tell him how horrible of a thing that was to say to a young girl.
“ Here is a teenaged trauma that still haunts me at 47. I grew up in a small town and we would often travel on a bus for sports. One weekend we were coming home from a tournament of some sorts and one of the boys decided to start a chant “Here we go [my name]. Here we go. BOOM BOOM!” And then someone else joined him. And someone else. And then eventually the entire bus - which had teachers on it who did nothing to stop this - screamed this horrific fat shaming chant over and over. I sat there and tried not to cry. But inside I think a part of my soul died that day. Humans are just awful sometimes. And I wish people realized that even 30 years later these moments still hold onto little pieces of our self worth.
“ My first time was at 19, easily 4 or more sizes smaller than i am now, working at Macy’s. I was checking on an older man and his wife and he asked me “what’s the gender?” I was confused and asked “what?” slowly realizing what was happening and he asked again and I just shook my head and his wife hit him on the arm. I cried in a dressing room for about 45 min after that.
“ I received tons of comments about my weight throughout my life but the one that stays with me most is when I lost 100+ lbs, my coworker tried to compliment me by saying, “you look so good now. You could hardly walk before, you basically just waddled”. As if it a different person now... As if it’s okay to ever talk about/to a person like that...
“ The summer I was 16, I worked at a city day camp, many days riding my bike to work. My parents were away at a cottage for weeks. I discovered a vending machine on the campus where the camp operated and bought candy bars daily. When I next saw my mom, she said “I thought you were riding your bike everyday but you are fatter than ever”. Over 50 years later, I remember the sting of her words.
“ I have psoriasis. It started when I was about 17 and got really bad whilst I was at uni. It burned and bled and I had to spend hours in the bath trying to soak it off. I felt so self conscious. About a year into uni I got a belly button piercing, because I really wanted it and felt good about myself. Inevitably the skin around it went bad. One of my friend's flatmates stared and stared at my belly one day, he wouldn't stop and eventually told me how gross it was and looked absolutely disgusted. Like I had any choice?! I've also had people recoil in horror and refuse to shake hands. My partner once got ringworm because his house was so filthy and damp, and said it was because he'd caught my skin disease. He knows perfectly well it's not catching but it still hurt like hell.
“ My weight has fluctuated between about 8.5 stone and a little over 13. When I was at my thinnest - probably underweight given that I'm 5'8" and big boned - I had plenty of days when I felt so fat I didn't want to leave the house. All because I got a slight crease in my belly when I sat down. Photos of me at the time look almost skeletal but I still felt fat. That's pretty screwed up.
“ The first person to tell me I was too fat was my dad. I was 12. I wasn't exactly huge, but he repeatedly said how I "needed to lose the puppy fat". At one point as I was developing he said "you're busting out of that dress". At the dinner table, to a self conscious teenager. I have never stopped worrying about my weight since and have had periods of disordered eating - the only reason I never got as far as full blown bulimia was because no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't make myself sick. Knowing my dad thought I was fat and ugly made the comments from kids at school sting even more. I was called "saggy tits" by kids three years below me for a while... A legacy partly of feeling too ashamed of my body to know how to ask my mum to get me a better bra.
“ I let my hair go grey a while ago. I’m 44 and completely grey now. I love it. I think it’s really pretty. I do know that it makes me look older and I actually get some push back from my Mom who is 72 and still dyes her hair, she said it makes me look really old. But so? I’ve earned every year and being whatever I want to be is ok.
“ Last weekend I was visiting my parents. My mom looked at my feet and said, "Wow! Why are your feet so wide?" I immediately felt self conscious. What kind of question is that? The answer is...because they are? It almost seemed like she actually thought I had chosen to have very wide feet. I know she didn't mean it to be hurtful. She just doesn't think before she makes comments sometimes.