It seems that these days, there are so many stories, pictures, quotes and everything else that points out someone’s body size. Now with more than several billion people in this world, a sensible person surely realizes that everyone’s body will NOT look the same.
Pair that with all the many reasons to account for different body sizes, such as personal choices, medical, exercise and a number of other things and it would only make sense that there would be all sorts of body sizes out there.
If only life were that simple. Recently, I’ve noticed that there are more stories out where yet again, body-shaming is a result. It involves women who don’t have the body of a model taking pictures of themselves in swimsuits, along with celebrities coming out and responding to those who have body-shamed them as well. I see something almost a few times every week.
In the latest story, a woman commented to ask, “How come there aren’t pictures of men in these stories? It’s always a woman.”
Ladies, the answer is simple: Because you are so nasty to each other about it.
This is not to say that men don’t speak ill of women and their body sizes. Of course many do. But most of the abuse women receive when it comes to their body sizes or hell, pretty much anything mostly comes from other women. Even when comparing the nature of the verbal abuse, the worst comments from men, many times, is a walk in the park with the Care Bears compared to the things women say to each other.
I’ve always known this, but it has really stood out to me in the past year. The Today Show co-anchor Savannah Guthrie had her first baby last year at age 42. Of course, that’s not the latest age for a woman to have a baby, but Today did talk about it quite often, which to me, was just fine. I saw nothing wrong with it. I thought it was great. Seeing this lovely woman who was just glowing every day and thrilled to be having her first child; what is wrong with that? With all the horrible news out there, so what a woman wants to talk about giving birth? Is that really the worst thing?
I feel the same about pretty much ANY women during a pregnancy. It really just is a beautiful sight and overall, a beautiful thing. You are GIVING LIFE. With all the things that we talk about over and over again, GIVING LIFE is certainly deserving of that.
However, she received a lot of harsh and nasty comments from viewers, not only because of them talking about the pregnancy, but also because of the choice of clothes she wore. Personally, I saw what she wore to be extremely tasteful and very appropriate. It wasn’t like she was wearing club outfits. Of course some were a little tight around her stomach, but along with her not being the “first woman to ever have a baby,” she was also “not the first woman to ever” wear “normal” clothes during a pregnancy and also to have it a bit tight around her stomach. I’m not even talking unattractively tight, but just a little tight, and many may say, “Well, you’re a man…of course you wouldn’t have a problem with it,” but it has nothing to do with being a man. I’ve seen very distasteful clothing on women before and Savannah never even touched that. But I guess people expected her to wear muumuus every day.
This is far from the only incident, but the point is that while men did berate her also, most of the comments came from women. Fellow women who know that feeling of having their first child. Fellow women who know what it’s like to be berated for simply existing. Fellow women who know how unattractive they feel during pregnancy. Fellow women who have experienced carrying a life inside of them for those nine months. I would have expected men to make the nasty comments. Seriously. Back then, I skimmed through a few of the idiotic comments and thought to myself, “Stupid men and making idiots of themselves again” only to be surprised to find out that it was mostly women making those comments.
It’s like that with just about everything. Ladies, you are really nasty to each other and I don’t get why. But I do know that THIS is the MAIN REASON the news focuses on women rather than men when it comes to body-shaming.
Now when I say “body-shaming,” I’m not talking about those who put down women who are overweight. That’s right…those of you who believe in that “Real women wear curves” foolishness, guess what? That’s call body-shaming also. You’re shaming another woman for being skinny. You don’t like when it happens to you, so what makes it acceptable to do to someone else? One instance is not more “right” than another. Just like you’re not necessarily overweight because of eating everything in sight, certain women are not skinny because of starving themselves. I understand that the media and society tends to focus more on the model type of body, but body-shaming is body-shaming. It’s wrong either way. The media knows this, so women will always be the focus.
How often do you see men putting each other down over their weight? Hardly ever. Even some of the most overweight men seem to embrace it (which is still not the best idea, but that’s another story) and they certainly don’t get nearly the amount of comments and harsh criticism that women do.
Sure, society is a bit to blame for this. Many seem to think that women should be held to a higher standard than men. They’re supposed to dress better, look better, and behave in better manner. So of course, God forbid a woman doesn’t epitomize that “perfect” look. She’ll have to hear about it. On the other side of the coin, what do you think when you see that overweight, beer-drinking man? That seems to be more acceptable for some reason, or even “normal.”
Some women believe that men are responsible also. I can see that. Some men do focus on a woman’s body size and that plays a part in how women think of themselves. Of course, every woman can come out and declare that they “don’t care what any man thinks,” but that simply isn’t true. It’s not the worst thing in the world to care what men think, because men are the same about women. Nothing wrong with it. It’s certainly not a sin to have concern about what the opposite sex thinks of you from time to time.
However, my honest opinion is that men play a much smaller part than other women do. I recently made a post of this nature on a Today Show (I’m obviously a fan, in case you haven’t noticed) post, and when a woman responded to me to say that “men put down heavy women just as much as women do to each other,” another woman by the name of JoAnn Reed responded to say this:
“Men do put down heavy women, yes. But they are not as up front and in your face about it as women are. Most men that comment on a woman being fat, do so under the anonymity of the internet, but wouldn’t actually walk up to that woman in person and say what they’ll type. Women however, they’ll type it, they’ll say it behind the woman’s back, and some of them are actually bold enough to say it to her face. You can say that women are this way because of misogyny, but you cannot blame men 100% for how we treat each other, or the fact that most women are taught to be wary of other women BY other women, from childhood. Men aren’t the one’s teaching young girls to watch out for catty man stealing bitches, that’s something other women teach us. Men aren’t the ones teaching young girls that other women are competition and we need to be better and rise above them, that’s other women teaching us that. And I’ve never had a man, to my face, call me fat, or call me a slut, or a whore, or a bitch, because of how I looked and what I was wearing, but women throw that crap out there like it’s perfectly acceptable. I’ve been made to feel in the past, more inferior to other women, by other women, than by any man.”
Now I absolutely love that response and I couldn’t have put it any better. This entire blog post could almost be that alone.
I didn’t even consider the aspect of how women are brought up by other women, but now that I think about it, I can recall MANY instances where women have talked to younger girls and have given them life advice on how to handle other girls/women. These ain’t your “how to conduct tea parties” conversations, either. It’s just like JoAnn Reed said. Many are brought up almost practically from birth to be this way.
There is this notion and unwritten rule that we are supposed to “stick with” our own kind in whatever way. Men should stick together, blacks should stick together, etc., and of course, there’s a belief that women should stick together and uplift each other also. Even though the notion exists, the fact is that there is nothing concrete that says this should be the case. There’s no hard and fast rule that as a woman, you HAVE to support every other woman you come in contact with.
However, what I see often is WAY past that. The competition exists, I get that. But some of the nastiness is just beyond words. A man could almost do or say the same thing to a woman as another woman would, and that man wouldn’t catch nearly the hell that another woman would. Even when it doesn’t involve other striking first (as is the case many times on the internet), women will still verbally tear another woman to pieces when nothing is even said to them or they haven’t even been attacked.
Whatever the reason is, this is specifically why the media and society makes such a big deal out of a woman’s pic whose body isn’t perfect or as many others think. Of course everyone loves the drama, but how women treat each other is always at the forefront, and will always be shown.
Naturally, my opinion is that with men already being a problem at times to a lot of women, I would think that it would encourage women as minorities to simply want to support each other a little better. But that’s the optimist in me.
This isn’t a case of men being “better” than women when it comes to this. Lord knows we as men have our issues. But even when we compete with each other, it’s not often to the extent that many women take it to toward each other.
So, in the event that you wonder why the media focuses so much on women when it comes to body size or pretty much anything else, just ask yourself if it’s something women would be nasty toward each other about. If the answer is yes, then you have your answer to the other question also.