I am five foot three, (three and a half if i’m lucky) and my average weight is 135lbs. My BMI is 23.9 and that lies within the ‘normal weight’ category.
I never considered myself skinny, I would be lying if i say so. But at the same time I don’t think I am seriously fat. Of course I have my days where I feel really low about myself and the reflection in the mirror is not something I want to see. I know my body can always be improved, and that is on my mind from time to time.
But I have never felt hate towards my body until the past month I had to spend in Hong Kong. I have never felt ashamed to look into the mirror until then. I feel disgusted when I accidentally steal a peak at my reflection when I’m in public. Why has this happened? Why did I suddenly feel this change in my mind about myself. From the moment I landed in Hong Kong, people who are my family, friends of family, mere acquaintance of my family have been telling me about something I personally have the most insecurity issue over. My weight. Maybe it is the way their society works, that they are raised to be straight forward with what they have in mind, be it negative or positive. Another factor may be that the fact that 90% percent of the female population is skinny twigs.
Am I jealous of them? Yes and no. I am jealous that they have the natural ability to be ideal weight and body shape of the society they are living in. But no because I don’t think I would be happen being as skinny as them. I think there is a difference between the words slim and skinny, I would like to be slim. The skinny I saw in Hong Kong was one of those where if you were to see it here where I live, one would tell the person to go eat a burger.
There was something that I have also noticed while I was in Hong Kong. The message that being skinny is the only way that one would be loved, the only way someone can be happy, the only way that one can be accepted into society. This message was transmitted through the countless media advertisements that were accessable to everyone. I am in the subway, and every three giant poster advertisement on the wall are weight loss programs. I saw a riduculous commercial on the tv on the bus about this ‘fat’ lady that got blew off by a guy, but after she went to some dance studio for weight loss, she came out and the guy was all over her.
That was not the commercial I had in mind, but it would do. You get the point.
People used to tell me that the North American media influence on body shape was bad, but now I would like to challenge that ‘opinion’. If you open a magazine such as Seventeen or CosmoGirl, etc. You will find that there are sections where they show clothing that would flatter many different body sizes. They try to teach girls to enhance their bodies and love themselves as they are. But in Hong Kong when I was there, there was none of that. If you are not skinny like the girl on the poster, you are not beautiful. I felt ashamed of myself, and my body. I hated myself for not being able to be like everyone else and live up to what they believe is ‘ideal’
There were two types of girls you would see on the streets. There would be the typical skinny girls that look like each other and would hold themselves highly with confidence. Then the rest that are not so fortunate and are not what the magazines tell them to be, where clothes that hide their body, and somehow they just don’t have the same confidence as the other girls. Is this what the media wants? I was told one day that the way companies get people to buy a product is to make them feel ugly about themselves. Hey, that worked. It makes me upset to think that, I was only in Hong Kong for a month and I believe that it had put me into a slight depression, how are the other girls deal with it? Obvious they do not get praised to be ‘not’ what the media tells them to be.
I was upset numerous times, and I cried from time to time from the being upset. My immediate family was able to bash on me and make fun of me, that I was used to. But then there were the family that I have not seen in ages and they start giving me the nickname ‘fatty’ (granpa’s brother) It got to a point that while I was waiting for my father to pay after a meal that the cashier lady pointed at my bloated belly and said, ” Oh, she’s got a little chub there.” I just ate…? It became a daily bullying, but to tell you the truth, people may not have even thought of it as a form of bullying.
Maybe I’m just trying to differentiate between the eastern and western culture and idea of beauty. Or I may be just ranting on something that has been on my mind that I personally got hurt from. But either way, it is good to be able to let it out and express it with every little detail that I can put into words.