I used to be a skinny person

I used to be really, really thin. And I thought thinness wasn’t a big deal, because I was so thin. People were always telling me I was so thin. Like a compliment. And I brushed it off and even pretended to be a little offended, because “thin” shouldn’t mean “pretty.” Now I’m less thin. And I’m betting I’ll keep getting less and less thin. That’s the way these things seem to work. And suddenly I start to wonder what happens when “thin” means “pretty” and you’re no longer thin. What do people say, then? You know what’s scary? They say, “You look so thin in that.”

When I tried on wedding dresses, the saleswoman kept saying, “That is SO slimming!” And “Look how tiny your waist looks in that!” (What is with me and saleswomen, by the way? The last one thought breast implants were an obvious option for me.)

And I said, “OH MY GOD, THANK YOU!!! I FEEL LIKE A PRINCESS NOW!”

No. I probably said, “Uh huh.”

But I thought, “Wait…what did my waist look like before? Apparently not so tiny, eh?”  OK, so I really don’t ever think “eh?” at the ends of my sentences, but whatever. And I thought, “Do I need to be slimmed down?”

My inclination when I gained weight was to feel pretty good about it. I’d been too thin after not remembering to eat through much of grad school, and I had just met my fiancé, and I was happy. We were eating together constantly, out of joy. He clearly thought I was gorgeous, my breasts were not quite as non-existent as before, life was good.

(image source here)

I was obviously oblivious. I hadn’t learned a really, really important lesson. Which is the following:

It is NEVER ok to gain weight.

Wait, wait— one exception: recovering from cancer. Well, really, recovering from a disease in general. Or possibly having recently (within the last two weeks or so) given birth. So there are actually a few excuses. But I couldn’t use any of them.

And so it dawned on me little by little that I needed to lose weight. Especially since I’m getting married soon. My cousin, a rabbi who has performed many weddings, had me over for dinner. He said, “Hey, are you actually eating?” I looked surprised. He said, “I’ve never seen a bride eating so close to the wedding!”

I’m afraid that people won’t have anything else to compliment. What if I’m not thin anymore, and the only compliments I get are, “You look sorta thin in that” and “Hey, remember when you were thin? You looked good back then!”

I was more confident about my appearance a while ago. But then, I was thinner. Now I feel like I have to work harder. As though extreme thinness is the key. It’s the baseline for other beauty. And it feels easier to go on a diet then keep fighting. Which is saying something, because I love carbs. I mean, I love carbs more than people who say they love carbs love carbs. I love them like a child. That you eat. Anyway, I love them.

And you know what’s ridiculous? I don’t even really believe that whole thing about skinniness. I see heavy women all the time and think that they’re gorgeous. And I see women who aren’t skinny all the time and think that they’re gorgeous. But when it comes to myself, I have this impulse to make all the stereotypical corrections. I don’t know why.

But getting heavier is inevitable, unless I want to diet strictly for the rest of my life. So wouldn’t the right thing to do be to figure out a way to feel good about it?

Maybe people are just going to have to learn some different compliments. I can try to help them out.

“You’re so….”

“…funny and compelling and beautifully proportioned?”

“Um.”

“Thank you!”

“Wow. And to think you used to be a thin person….”

But seriously. Losing skinniness should not be a loss of identity. For some people, it’s just a sign of growing up successfully.

( It still has a lot of growing to do! Image source here)

*  *  *  *  *

Anyone else scared of losing the skinny?

Un-roast: Today I love my  morning hair. It’s always amazingly different. And my singing voice. I know that’s not a body part, but I’m not into rules.

Un-roasts from Friday:

Wei-Wei: I like my chest today. I was doing a russian slow courtroom-type dance, and I had to support my back and hold up my chest in a proud fashion. I liked how strong and steady my upper body looked.

Caronae: I have gotten really good at talking myself down from anxiety episodes. I have an anxiety/panic disorder and I have become wonderful at managing it and soothing myself.

Ally: my sister pointed out to me the other day that I’m lucky cause my boobs are close together, as in, the edge of one almost touches the other. I like it!

Emily: my back. I think my back is one of my prettiest features. I wish I could show it off more but my stupid boobs refuse to allow anything without a bra.

Justine: Today I like my hair. I usually like it, but today I am especially proud that I’ve been wearing it as it comes out of my own head without much intervention, it feels natural and beautiful, even if it’s not perfect.

Thanks, everyone! As always, please share your un-roast of the day with me! And, you know, sign up for the email notifications if you haven’t already. And tell all your friends about my blog. And post it on facebook. And retweet my stuff. And tell the cashier at the Shop Rite that I’m the coolest person in the world.

P.S. Check out my revision of a previous blog post that was just published in the style section of Huffington Post!! It’s called The Art of Overdressing. And the syndication of THIS post on Jezebel.

37 Comments »

Kate on June 28th 2010 in beauty, body, food, wedding, weight

37 Responses to “I used to be a skinny person”

  1. Cindy responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    I am not even sure where being skinny became a quality that matters more than say “character” or radiating beauty, kindness, compassion.

    unless you are “skinny” it seems to me we are invisible. like nothing else we are matters.

    I hate that feeling. I hate that MOST of my waking day is wrapped up in the ever maddening pursuit of SKINNY.

    I should rebel. but then I would be less skinny and that would mean I am more invisible and that would be bad.+

    and I do think we need more compliments. Apparantly the “wedding industry” is fixated on making us feel skinny in order to sell stuff.

    whatever.

    I love carbs too.
    a lot.

  2. Lauren responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 12:23 pm #

    I stumbled across your blog a few months ago and this posts really speaks to me. I AM afraid of losing the skinny. Unlike you, I was a rather large child and teenager. I spent time in college and post college losing that weight. I got married last year and for the first time in my life I felt happy with my body. Since then, I haven’t be able to get there again. I had been doing mostly the same diet and fitness routine, but recently I have injured my leg and I am not able to do ANYTHING active. Just like you, I am consistently pursuing to be at peace with my body and enjoy all that is out there. It is nice to hear that others struggle with this too. Thanks for your brave sharing.

  3. Jane Kokernak responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 1:03 pm #

    Here’s the compliment I hate to get:

    “You look great! Have you lost weight?”

    Translation: “You look good, and I’m so surprised, because normally you don’t catch my eye. You’re improved somehow, in a way that I can’t quite put my finger on, and that can only mean one thing: weight loss.”

    It seems, as you point out, that all compliments come with an implicit evaluation or value judgment.

    Perhaps we should all try to occasionally say enthusiastically to another person: You look fabulous. (And leave it at that.)

    p.s. I’ve been enjoying reading your blog, since stumbling across it on the WordPress dash.

  4. Sarah responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 1:24 pm #

    I know exactly what you mean! It should always be ok to gain weight and be happy with it since we’re more than our bodies. But, like you, people comment on how small I am. I take this to mean that I’m short and petite, and I like this. But what if I gained weight so am no longer petite? It’s surprising and saddening how much we place our identities in the words people utter out of their mouths without a second thought. They didn’t give it much thought so why should we? When I coloured my hair from my lifelong and natural blonde to a dark brown I experienced an identity crisis. Unbelievable. I think I need to get me some impermeable skin so that thoughtless words – whether complimentary or not – from others just wash off me rather than soak through my surface.

    xxx

  5. Katie @ Health for the Whole Self responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 2:05 pm #

    I’ve been reading your blog for a little while now, but this is the first time I’ve commented – I just couldn’t resist! I lost a decent amount of weight over the past 2 years, and for a span of a few months I was actually underweight for my height and body type. I knew I needed to gain back some of the weight, and I genuinely wanted to because I wanted to be healthy…and yet. And yet I didn’t want to gain the weight because even though I needed to – even though I knew I would look much better with more weight – I knew deep down that I would be judged by some people because, as you’ve said, it’s never (or at least rarely) ok to gain weight. Even when you need to.

    I still struggle with my body image when I know I’m going to see people whom I haven’t seen in a few months. I hate thinking that they’re thinking, “oh, look, she’s gained weight,” even though it’s true and it’s a positive thing!

  6. Virginia responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 2:11 pm #

    Agggh. Yes. Fear of losing the skinny — I hear this All The Time.

    Somehow, I skipped this stage myself, because I lost the skinny without realizing it (to be honest, I think having a rather overly healthy ego was a protective measure there… but it also meant I just woke up one day midway through college and was like, hey, I went up two dress sizes, when did that happen?). So now I focus far too much on When I’ll Get The Skinny Back.

    And I think you nailed it when you say that being thin is the baseline for all other beauty standards — I think most of us worry that if we fail at this Number One Beauty Thing, we won’t possibly have enough of the rest of the goods to measure up. Dances with Fat has a great post up today about making a list of everything you like about your body, and I was un-roasting away (love my eyes, love my hair, love my boobs, love my feet…) while simultaneously thinking “it would all look better with a flatter stomach.” What?!

    Anyway. I think I’m going to put the last two lines of your post today on a t-shirt. (“Losing skinniness should not be a loss of identity. For some people, it’s just a sign of growing up successfully.”) Or a needlepoint pillow. Because, yes.

    Un-roast: I really do love my eyes, just for starters. They are at least three different shades of blue and that’s pretty awesome. (No matter what size my waist is.)

  7. B.T. responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 3:07 pm #

    Love this post, as all the others. I don’t know how you are funny every single time.

  8. Kate responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 3:21 pm #

    @Katie
    Thank you for commenting for the first time! Happy to have you in the conversation! I wish we had positive language for needed weight gain, and even weight gain that isn’t necessarily completely necessary but is perfectly healthy.

    @Virginia
    It’s awesome that you didn’t think to care as you were gaining weight, and hooray for tough egos. But it seems like even the really stalwart egos weaken a little on this issue eventually. That’s how I feel. Like I can go a little while without caring, but it catches up to me.

    I’ll check out the Dances with Fat post, thanks! And let me know if you make that tee shirt. I may have to buy one from you :)

  9. Joanne responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 3:37 pm #

    “I love them like a child. That you eat.”

    :)

    I feel the same away about sweets and carbs. It’s torture to watch your (skinny) coworkers devour children- erm, carbs – while you pick at salad with protein bits.

  10. Joanne responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 3:41 pm #

    …but “skinny” is perceived differently by so many people. It’s more tortuous to try to fit into other perceptions of “skinny”.. or “pretty” or “beautiful” than it is to be comfortable in our own skin.
    Something I’m struggling with.

  11. Kate responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 3:49 pm #

    @Joanne
    Love you! Thanks for appreciate my weirdness.

    And you’re right. It’s a losing battle, trying constantly to fit a perception that is never entirely clear to begin with.

  12. Justine responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    I lost the skinny somewhere around adolescence, so as Virginia also points out, my thing is getting the skinny back, which I really try not to focus too much on, because it’s just a losing battle.

    I always try to tell people things are flattering instead of saying they “make you look skinny” because firstly for some people that may not be a compliment, and secondly, I don’t want to go enforcing someone’s possible eating disorder by focusing on thinness, which is something I see happen a lot.

    When I got my wedding dress there was a lot of talk about how small it made my waist look, and the alterations lady made quite a point to tell me that I have a very tiny waist for my size, again with the backhanded compliments!

  13. rachel responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 6:05 pm #

    I used to be very skinny. At 4’10, my high school weight never climbed above 92 lbs. You could see my collar bone distinctly. I had a lot of trouble finding pants that stayed up. Then, my freshmen year of college I gained about 10 pounds, which was the result of A. Going on the pill. B. College. C. Being happy enough to eat – I was never anorexic, but I never took pleasure in eating either. (*C is my bet.) When I gained this weight everyone in my family told me how good I looked, now that I wasn’t so skinny. I hadn’t minded the gain, but I was a little offended to hear how unattractive I was before. There’s really no good way to compliment someone’s weight.

    That said, I’m happy to not be so skinny. I feel like I’m at a healthy natural weight, and I’ve gotten that way by cooking real food and drinking good wine. Sometimes I look at my arms and stomach and regret my boycott of exercise, but not enough to change my life style – I know I really should exercise for other reasons too.

    Unroast: Today I love my butt. I’ve got Jewish curves, and I don’t mind showing that off.

  14. Kate responded on 28 Jun 2010 at 6:07 pm #

    @Rachel
    As soon as I started reading your comment I thought, “Jewish family.” Ha. Rock those Jewish curves!

  15. Beth responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 12:46 am #

    I’ve been struggling with this exact issue lately. I was a slightly larger teenager, who was constantly trying to diet, but constantly failing at controlling my eating. Then when I was 21, I stopped, and lost enough weight to make me feel good about myself. For a while. Until I started getting paranoid about putting it back on for no reason, because it had come off for no reason.

    A few years ago, I went through an intense bout of anxiety and depression. I stopped eating. Lost about 15 kilos, dropped three dress sizes. Obviously, living in that kind of orb wasn’t sustainable, and I sought help. As the illness subsided, my ability to eat returned. And here I am now, with all of the weight back, plus a little more. There have been moments where I’ve seriously considered returning to that hyper-manic, miserable place would be better because I’d immediately shift some kilos. I think about what people must be thinking when they see me – it’s a terrible, vicious cycle. I’ve overcome so much the last few years, but self-acceptance is the final, highest, hurdle.

  16. Annabel Candy, Get In the Hot Spot responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 8:05 am #

    The tyranny of the body, it’s all too much. As a kid I was thin. Really thin. My mum said it was embarassing. I wrote to a teen agony aunt mag and they sent me a diet to help me gain weight (steaks, milkshakes etc!) Then I had kids (decades later) and got bigger and my mum noticed that too. In fact she always said I’d be fat like her one day!

    I really try to help my kids love their bodies but they pick up comments from other kids and repeat them. I want to keep my daughter away from women’s mags.

    My friend (aged 40+, 2 kids) got married recently and said she never dieted or bothered doing all those stupid workouts brides to be are supposed to do (no wonder they turn into bridezillas!) Her dress was white with a corset top and big skirt. Her hair was serious glam piled high on top in pleats. She looked like a doll in a box. She was happy. Everyone was. We love her and her newfound love, not her body.

    Are you really getting married? It’s so excited, I’d love to see the pics:) I know you’ll look gorgeous no matter what you wear. I got married in black lol:)

  17. Wei-Wei responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 11:16 am #

    I’m scared of losing the skinny. Oh, and there’s also another time that gaining weight is good: recovering from an eating disorder. I’m somewhat surprised you forgot about that one. I’m naturally rather large and big-boned, and I don’t even want to think about what anorexia did to me. I’m teetering on normal weight and underweight, and I don’t like it. I still want to be skinny. :(

    Today, I just like my body and how it works. I had an extra hour of dance class, making it 3 hours, and I’m surprised I made it through. Maybe it had to do with all the cake I had beforehand. (French chocolate, strawberry cream, and oreo cheesecake. Just in case you were wondering.)

    Wei-Wei

  18. Kate responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 11:38 am #

    @Annabel
    I want to hear more about your wedding! There must be a story about dressing in black…

  19. Kate responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 11:42 am #

    @Wei-Wei
    I definitely didn’t forget about eating disorders, but I also don’t think they enter common consciousness very much in terms of “reasons to gain weight.” Eating disorders still feel much more secretive. And also, they’re a WHOLE other topic. Actually, something I often feel unqualified to address, since it’s so sensitive and painful. I should get over that.

  20. Cathy responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    Kate, just read your blog on HuffPo, it’s great. I’m 42, 5′ 7″ and 190lbs. Big blonde Nordic milkmaid type figure. My husband describes me to people who haven’t met me as, “think St. Pauli girl who speaks Chinese”. I used to be skinny, thought I was too fat the whole time, and then suddenly I realized I simply wasn’t skinny anymore and never would be again. And I really am happy with that. Years ago before I met my husband a guy friend reassured me, “someday you are going to have a partner who absolutely craves your body”. that sounded just unbelievably too good to be true at the time, but it is true now. My husband loves so much about me beyond my weight–he has always had a thing for voluptuous women, and he compliments me on my pretty feet, my intellect, my abilities in the bedroom, my character (trustworthiness is a big plus in his book after 2 divorces)…. there is so much more to being female and attractive than being thin. Too bad people feel the need to reduce women to two-dimensionality all the time. As you say, eat the damn cake. Have a good time at the party, live your life!

  21. Bekah responded on 29 Jun 2010 at 6:58 pm #

    I am a regular reader (thanks to maggie, i read her blog maggie walks) and just to let you know, i get your e-mail updates and they come to my phone, and they are best motivational/inspirational reads during random spurts of my day! I especially love this post. I love your writing.

  22. On body image « What Are Years? responded on 30 Jun 2010 at 11:07 am #

    [...] reason I recall this fact now is because I read this blog post called “I used to be a skinny person” by Kate Fridkis. In it, she talks about how looking great has become synonymous with looking skinny [...]

  23. Shyra responded on 30 Jun 2010 at 1:29 pm #

    You can’t be scared of losing what u never had. I was never skinny and will never be skinny. Even my “skinny” sister is muscle and curves. I just want to get to that point where I am the right balance of muscle and curves. I consider myself a wordsmith and by definition someone who likes to define everything. Is skinny a 24″ waist or less than 20% body fat or a size 00? Everyone’s definition is different so how can u say ur losing something when u just maybe moving into someone else’s definition? Perhaps life is a scale and depending on the day u move up or down.

  24. Evy responded on 30 Jun 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    “When I tried on wedding dresses, the saleswoman kept saying, “That is SO slimming!” And “Look how tiny your waist looks in that!””

    The same thing happened to me. I’m 5’10 and have an Hispanic body, humongous hips, small waist and smallish boobs. I had three consultants during the experience and they all kept telling me that the dresses were not made for my body and that I would need to order a dress that was two sizes bigger just because my hips wouldn’t fit in the “normal sizes”. I heard at least 5 times that my “weird body” wasn’t made for wedding dresses and that made my experience so much more stressful than it needed to be. In addition, the majority of the dresses that are amazingly pretty stop coming at at bridal size 10 (which is between a 6-8 straight size) and after that most of the dresses look hideously out of the 80′s.

    I’ve never heard so many times that I needed to hide my hips when they’re one of the parts of my body that I love the most.

    Retaking your losing the skinny thing, I also made the mistake of gaining 10 pounds before wedding dress shopping and that gave my mother and all consultants all the “permission” they needed to keep blasting my body.

    All I can think now is how much I wished I could’ve read your blog before going to wedding dress shopping hell.

  25. Anchun, Day 319: Sejeongian Beauty « Joelle Pearson's responded on 01 Jul 2010 at 2:36 am #

    [...] I came to identify with.  Perhaps this has permanently damaged my self-perception. I came across this article on Eat The Damned Cake , which spoke to me as a once- skinny person, who has spent the year terrified of, as the author [...]

  26. alexandria responded on 03 Jul 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    I have lost my personal skinny, and it is a struggle every day to learn to love myself for how I look now, which is truly different than how I’ve ever looked. In my teen years I was uncomfortable in my skin; my own mother made comments about my weight, so that didn’t help either. When I was 19, I made the commitment and shed the excess weight I hated so much. I lost 10 pounds through exercise and changing my eating habits. It was just enough to make me feel great, and I looked great – I had noticeably slimed down, but I still had curves (which was important to me). Then I met my now husband, and we did what all new, happy couples do – ate a lot of ice cream together. Both of us have gained weight; I know I, personally, have gained about 20 pounds, give or take. And so I’m now the heaviest I have ever been, which is shocking and disheartening. I didn’t just go back to square one, but ate that and the brownies that were hiding under it.
    Also, since the time of the great weight loss, I’ve been through too many car accidents and just the fact of my body getting older, and I can really mess up my back doing the “wrong” kind of work outs. So that depresses me, which in turn makes me eat the ice cream that started this whole disaster.
    Yesterday, I finally went through my clothes and any pants or skirts that still said size 3 (juniors sizing) on them, I pulled them out. Any shirts that are a juniors size small are gone too. I cannot keep living in the past if I am to ever come to love myself enough again to be strong enough again to make a difference. What worked for me then is not going to work for me now. My body has changed in 5 years, and the first thing I need to do is accept that. Looking wistfully at my skinny jeans is not going to change anything.
    I also went on a bit of a shopping spree and bought myself new pants that actually fit, and don’t give me the worst case of muffin top. I cannot live with the mindset of “these will fit again, some day.” I am doing my best to not let the little number on the pants get me down. I am constantly reminding myself that every designer has different sizing standards, that nothing is consistent. I also vowed to stop shopping for pants in the juniors department. Their bodies are not my body. I have hips and an ass, and I’m quite proud of that.
    I love my body best when it’s naked, laying in bed and my husband is looking at me in the same way he has always looked at me. I wish I could see myself through his eyes.

    @Annabel – My wedding dress was dark purple. :)
    And speaking of that, I never set foot in a bridal store – I ordered my dress online, where I sent them my measurements and they made a dress to fit me, as I am. No one told me my measurements were weird, no one ever told me to loose ten pounds. It was the least stressful part of my wedding planning.

    (Fun fact: I keep typing “points” instead of “pounds.” Ten points for alexandria!)

  27. slickpig responded on 07 Jul 2010 at 5:06 pm #

    excellent post. I know exactly what you mean. I used to play basketball at college. I worked out up to 4 hours a day, running, lifting weights, for three years. After I quit I, naturally, expanded, and I was happy, until my ex-boyfriend, my family, everyone kept commenting on my weight gain.
    Thin Sucks. When I was working out, I never felt like I was thin enough. I never thought I was beautiful. Now I look back and I’m like, wtf?! I was beautiful, I am beautiful.

  28. Link Love | The Demoiselles responded on 26 Jul 2010 at 9:03 am #

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  29. Chelsea responded on 31 Jul 2010 at 12:08 am #

    Your wedding dress comment made me think of a comment the salesperson told me, recently while trying on dresses. She kept commenting on how slimming this this and this would look on me, and how this slimmed my waist, accentuated things etc, BUT…I’m 5’3, athletic and about 100lbs. Why would I WANT to look any slimmer?! Really, I think women with curves are GORGEOUS and frankly, I look forward to the day that I pick up a few more pounds and fill out more!

  30. Chris responded on 07 May 2011 at 11:55 pm #

    Hey girl,

    I am turning 30 soon. Man I used to be skinny, and everyone kept saying it to me, it was in a bad way unfortunately though. Cause, as I am sure you know, for a guy it isn’t always a good thing. I kept at sport, and even though I was sronger then most of the guys I stayed skinny. I kept at gyming hard, hoping I would get somewhere. But I never got the size my friends did. I ended up taking steroids and got to where I waned to be with a LOT of hard word. But I then stopped gyming and kept pushing in the food as hard as I could,and now I sit here, just under 100kgs, 1.79,and very unhappy with the way I look.

    Sad thing is, I know I have a fast metobolism, because if I eat ‘okay’ for a week and work out I see big results. But, for somereason I struggle to persuade myself to just take the good root. Insted it is frequent beer and kebabs, chinese, whatever I can shove in.

    Long story, I know, sorry, what I wanted to say in the beginning was, most people pick a bit with age. But babes, a girl with curves is HOT! Not a woman that doesn’t look after herself, but a woman hat does with some curves. Eat, right, work out, and have fun girl!

    I mean, who are the girls the guys like? Beyonce, J-Lo, Kim Kardashian… You get the point. Be proud girl, look after yourself and I hope you get to love yourself, the beautiful way you are. Oh, and btw, as for the breasts, don’t stress, I am i a really close group of friends, and only three of the eight are into big ones, the rest of us just want a girl with a firm body .)

  31. Karen Johnston responded on 21 Jul 2011 at 1:48 pm #

    I read your blog with great interest. I am one who has “lost the skinny”. I weighed 103 lbs. from the time I was 14 until I was 39. I may have varied up or down by a pound, but never more. Then at 39 after I met the man of my dreams, I quit smoking (from the time I was 14 also) I went though invitro fertilization, and had twins. But, after they were born, I didn’t keep much of the weight. I was down from 160 to 112 in about 3 months after they were born. By now, I’m 40. Well, a year later, my thyroid apparently went haywire, causing depression problems as well. So, at that point I’ve really started packing it on. And I really don’t know how to eat after a lifetime of eating what I want, when I want and how much I want. Then came a total hysterectomy. Now, long story long, I’m 170 lbs. And I feel like I’ve lost my identity. No one looks at me the same, if they look at me at all. So what do you do? Obviously the lesson learned from this is that you are not your body. But what a slap in the face. I always knew I was more. I was smart and funny. Was I really so naive to think that my skinny body didn’t matter to other people? Okay, yes, I knew that people (by that I mean men, mostly) looked. I had a great figure. Even though I was skinny I still was a 34 D cup, so not bad in the hooter department. But, now that I’m slightly enormous and yet somehow invisible (how ironic) I have to ask myself, did anyone actually like me for me? I’m guessing they didn’t even care to find out. I’m not looking for sympathy. I had a great ride in the attention department. But it makes you realize how shallow people (including myself) are.

    So I guess, I can relate to how you’re feeling.

  32. CiCi responded on 17 Apr 2012 at 11:24 pm #

    I don’t know. Now that I’ve gained weight now I feel truly ugly. Growing up, I was thin and not really that beautiful. Thinness never meant anything to me because I felt ugly anyway. My best friend was never as thin as I was and she had a beautiful face. HAS a beautiful face. She will always be beautiful no matter what her weight is. Now I just feel like there’s nothing left of me. I don’t even have a great figure to feel great about. I have an ugly face and an ugly body. It doesn’t feel that great. I don’t even mind if people like me for me. I’m grateful for that because it’s all I have now.

    I just wish I could look in the mirror in the morning and see something that’s pretty —for me— instead of wishing I looked like someone else. Instead of wishing I was shorter, thinner, and had a nicer face.

    I really hope that people can look in the mirror and see someone they like. I know I hope for that a lot.

  33. Fiona responded on 08 Apr 2013 at 2:57 am #

    When I bought my wedding dress, I was recovering from anorexia. I asked them not to take it in too much so I would have some room to gain some weight, and they always asked “WHAT! WHY!? AREN’T YOU SUPPOSED TO BE LSOING WEIGHT LIKE ALL BRIDES DO?”

    My BMI was 16.5 and they expected me to be losing weight for my wedding….

    Grr!

  34. Laura McNatt responded on 12 Jun 2013 at 12:11 am #

    Karen Johnson, your comments made me smile! In the past I was slim. Every day some one would ask me if I were an actress or a model. As I got older, still slim, the question became if I had been an actress or model….I got married for the first time at 48…my dress had to be taken in at the waist, okay that was normal for me- then I had a bunch of surgeries and hormones and yes, finally had a baby at 52 years old and now I am happy but really fat. It feels strange to be invisible in a way I never experienced before. Good thing I actually developed my brain along the way despite my male teachers making passes at me and never getting past my appearance. Now I can amuse myself. Fortunately, I also learned to make money (although even my mother urged me to marry for money) so now I can provide for my child and myself and don’t need to be dependent on my husband. – because if a guy married me for my (former) looks he’d be divorcing me now! Now I want to be healthy so I can raise my child – but I do miss my former body, oh well!

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