This One’s for My Skinny Sisters.

Via on May 23, 2014

scrawny sistas

I am a size zero.

I am as active and inactive as anyone else.

There are stretches where I don’t use my body and other days where I find myself on my mat twice a day.

My metabolism is on steroids: I burn through sugar faster than a tub of Ben and Jerry’s in the hands of a woman watching chick flick re-runs after a break up.

I have never shoved my finger down my throat, or been on a diet.

I have tried to gain weight through certain parts of my life—feeling self conscious of my weight and envious of women with beautiful full hips. I tried protein shakes, lifting weights—but saw little changes in my body weight. I became more muscular and fit, but my thin ass stuck around.

Some days I steam kale and eat like my body is a temple and other days I eat popcorn for dinner. I eat whatever I want, when I want and feel good about it.

I’m just little.

I used a picture of my back for the feature image of my last article “A Take No Shit List For Your Well Being.”

A woman commented on the article saying,

“Wouldn’t it be even better if the picture were of a person more realistic? This size zero blow dried super tan model just turns me right off the content.”

I was the size zero in that photograph.

The day I took the image holding my hands powerfully above me amongst mountain peaks I had hiked 24 kms into a valley in Jasper National Park to camp in the bush. I hadn’t showered, I was sweating, I was greasy from bug dope and covered in dirt. Nothing was blow dried or airbrushed. The article was about standing in our power—and in that image I was gloriously basking in my own.

I am also not a model. I am a real breathing woman that walks amongst this earth beside all of you.

Size zeros are real women too. Models, for that matter, are real women to.

I understand that our world might be sick of media shoving glorified, thin, air brushed models down our throats, but is the solution to throw all skinny women under a bus because they don’t have hips to hold on to?

We are the reason skinny woman splatter front pages of magazines. So instead of spiting fire at a woman because she gets paid to be photographed or has a Thumbelina waist, why not revolt against the seeds we planted that grew into an existence of a world obsessed with exploiting woman and body image.

In her article “The Beauty Myth,” Naomi Wolf reported that, “thirty-three thousand women told American researchers they would rather lose ten to fifteen pounds than achieve any other goal.”

Through repeated images of excessively thin women in media, advertisement, and modeling, thinness has become associated with not only beauty, but happiness and success.

From my skinny ass to you: that’s horrendous bollocks.

If we want to radically shift our world we need to begin stepping over body image—trivial measurements of our worth and beauty, and relentlessly love ourselves.

“Authentic self-love is crazy sexy, whatever your body looks like.” ~ Bryan Reeves

We live in a world where we are quick to judge a women by what the label on her pants say.

A woman’s “realness” and divinity has diddly squat to do with her waist size.

I want skinny to stop being idolized by the world and I also want women to stop throwing it under the bus.

I want us to all love our juicy souls and fleshy bodies and ride the bus together free of compare, resent and judgements.

The solution isn’t to pass a thin woman on the street and tell her to “eat something.”

I have been self conscious of my body for most of my life. I tip toe and refrain from saying it out loud, because people get offended that someone who’s “skinny” could struggle with body image.

Yes, “size zeroes” have issues with self acceptance and body image too. You won’t automatically be at home in your body when you shrink your waist—that’s not how it works.

We all have to love the crap out of ourselves every damn day.

I get flack about my weight all the time. This summer I had a man walk beside me after a delicious, stretchy yoga class as I basked in the sun drinking coffee and remark,

“Jesus, gain some weight.”

I have people make jokes at the expense of my size on a weekly basis. When I suggest eating a big ol’ greasy burger with poutine at the restaurant I serve at, people scoff and say, “sure, like you eat the likes of those.” They laugh, naïve that what they are doing is in fact misplaced and even abusive.

When I was younger, the girls on my volleyball team laughed at my skinny, knobby knees and flat chest. My nickname was “twiggy.”

I hated my body.

I will never forget the older boys at school who sneered and laughed and bullied me growing up because I was skinny—the ones who inspired my self esteem to build some nasty beliefs about myself that I am still undoing.

I will never forget the women who came up to me in a shopping mall when I was 14 and put their hands around my ankles, measuring the size of my legs and shrieking disgustedly at my size.

I wonder if they would have done the same if I was a 300 pound woman?

There seems to be an awful lot of light on bullying of people who swing to one side of the scale—but what about the other?

A friend of mine told me the other day her nine year old sibling is constantly bullied at school and wears baggy-sleeved shirts in shame of his body. His teacher even brought up that he was “too skinny” in front of his whole class. Allowing and encouraging a class full of fragile, thirsty minds to hear his idiocy and carry on treating others abusively.

After a self growth course this year, a woman approached me and thanked me for sharing my struggle for self acceptance and love about my size zero skinny ass; previously she had had no idea that thin women got bullied too. She had been on the other end of the getting-made-fun-of weight spectrum and was shocked to hear me speak of my own path of accepting and loving my own body.

This just in: we all have to walk a journey to self love and acceptance.

We all have insecurities and parts of our bodies we might feel ashamed of or wish were just a little big bigger or smaller.

We all must face discrimination, assumptions, judgements and deal with other people’s opinions of our shells.

We are dealt genetic cards at birth and show up in all shapes and sizes. Some of us have petite bums, some of us have asses to hold on to, some of us are dealt pancakes, some of us get tits that inspire other women to take fat of their ass and sew it to their chests. We are all so damn perfect and worthy of walking this planet free from harassment.

So unless we figure out a way to turn back time and negotiate our genetics with the universe, I get double A boobs and this skinny ass.

And all of it is just a shell—like wrapping paper tossed aside on Christmas morning to uncover the juicy and sweetest parts of our souls.

I still get in fights with my self esteem from time to time, but I am ferociously learning to take myself as I am and to love myself up—in all my phenomenal skinny glory.

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.” ~ Sophia Loren

The first step in disintegrating body image discrimination is connecting with our own raw hearts before we speak. The solution is being able to see women in all shapes and sizes and refrain from making unjustified assumptions on their diets.

The solution is not to wonder how much she eats and if when she gets up to pee halfway through her meal if she is going to shove her finger down her throat in the company of a toilet.

Skinny is not superior. It’s just another measurement floating around in the genetic universe.

Our souls, our beauty, and our brilliance is not measured by something as trivial as our waist size or our exteriors.

“Size does not make a difference—we cannot take our bodies with us into eternity.”-Thomas Voelker

The solution is to just really love each other, exactly as we are.

I am writing today to say all bodies are beautiful, but I am speaking specifically to speak to my scrawny sisters—those of you who get flack all the damn time—and are too afraid to speak out against outrageous, malicious comments, opinions and jokes because you are “lucky” to be little.

You are extraordinary in all your skinny glory; you are magnificent in all your Thumbelina smallness. I love all hundred and five pounds of each of your size zero asses—don’t spend a moment in shame when faced with other’s disposable opinions of your exterior.

And to those of you who poke fun at my slim sisters, my brosistas, or myself—with preconceived misconceptions that your imposed opinions are somehow justified—hear me roar.

I will not stand for your harassment. I will not cower down from your inappropriate stares at my lanky legs and knobby knees, I will not bend over and take your foolish, atrocious assumptions on what my body “should” look like. I will not shove my head in the sand and be assaulted by your blatant ignorance.

My skinny, healthy ass is marvelous as it is.

And so is yours.

So let’s all get on the damn bus together and build a world that isn’t measured by the width of our hips.

Let’s build one that is measured by the walloping, insourmountable beauty within our hearts and the undeniable succulence of our souls.

More love—less of everything else.

authors own (skinny ass)

“Though she be but little, she is fierce.” ~ William Shakespeare

 

Relephant Reads! 

> Why I’d Rather be a Skinny B**** 

Can We Retire the Phrase “Real Women,” Please?

Skinny Love: Skin & Bones.

 

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Editor: Renée Picard

Images: courtesy of Janne Robinson

About Janne Robinson

Janne Robinson is currently residing on the Sunshine Coast, BC learning to cut kindling with her teeth and make friends with the black bears in the woods. You can find her coordinating fundraisers for Veterinarians Without Borders, stretching her soul in yoga, skinny dipping with glee in the moonlight and getting dirty in her garden. She loves Billie Holiday, the smell of freshly cut cedar and whiskys that sway their hips when they walk and know what they are doing. You can connect with her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Please also visit and connect with her Facebook writer's page.

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200 Responses to “This One’s for My Skinny Sisters.”

  1. Kim says:

    Fabulous article – I have experienced almost everything you have written about. I don't know how many times i've been called anorexic or told I look 16 (i'm approaching 30).

    I've finally been able to put on some weight, I have tried on/off since I was about 14 to gain weight and nothing worked.. What finally worked? My metabolism slowing down as i've started to get a bit older. I'm now 5'6" and 115lbs, the most i've ever weighed. Thank you for writing this article

  2. Rhiannon says:

    i agree with you! But at the end of the day woman are judged left right and center! You said at one point "I wonder if someone would have done that to a 300 pound woman." Well no. But they would say things like
    "loose weight" and
    "ugly fat ass!" Big woman get judged just like skinny woman and skinny woman get judged just like big woman! None of us get it worse than the other! I think media is to blame not woman! When your skinny you blame big curvy woman for being sexy, but when your big you blame skinny woman for being unhealthy! I think there is a size that we all should be and that is healthy! I think none of us woman are to blame! Its media! By the way i'm on the plus size! And I do tend to think that its good for bigger sizes to be introduced to the media! Not because bigger is better! But because models are skinny! Full stop! Models and media tell the society to be skinny! Thats why big woman get annoyed! Because media are always saying be skinny be skinny!! Thats not right! Thats why big woman get annoyed! I think woman should be less judgemental and more understanding towards each other! Girl instantly judge other girls on there appearance! I think we need to see the good in each other really and stop going on about the appearance of each other! xxx Feel sorry for you though! I got bullied to, I have had many hardships in life and im only 15! Yes very young but thats ho cruel people are! Walk tall and proud girls!! Whatever size you are! xx

  3. christine says:

    Just read this, and am so glad someone has put it in writing. I still feel like I have to make excuses or apologize to people for being tall and thin, including parents an in-laws who tell me I need to put on weight and tell strangers what size I take when others comment. Good night, I'm 36 with three kids…why do people think it's fine to comment, and why does it still bother me?!?!? Spot on that the slightest inking of someone being "overweight" and everyone needs to be supersensitive, but flip the coin and comments can freely fly. Kudos to this post.

  4. menelia says:

    I can so relate to this article. I am the same size, and the number of comments people make about my body each week is, well, high. Especially in the work-place. I feel the same way, sort of incredulous and sad that people feel okay making comments to my face. Like the guy who biked past me in the park and yelled: EAT FOOD, into my face as he passed. I'm constantly being told what I should be eating, being nicknamed based on my size or catching men at work talking (negatively) about my size behind my back. I had a client at work tell me I was "hardly 2 shadows". I'm not THAT small. I have boobs, I have thighs. I'm so sick of my body size being brought into conversations or arena where it is not at all relevant. I am capable of feeling just as unsexy as the next woman – clearly my lack of ass, thickness is not to the liking of many, and the (proclaimed) jealousy of others. The bottom line for me is that everyone needs to step back and consider the appropriateness of commenting on a woman's body like we live in an obligation to look like… well, we can never hit that mark, right? Were always going to be "too" something. So fuck off, commenters. Why do you body shame another person?

  5. Leslie says:

    LOVE this!! Thank you thank you for sharing… ALL the freaking time I get "asked" why I work out, why I eat healthy- to just eat the freaking ice cream- and you know what- sometimes I do- but I ENJOY working out and being active, I LIKE healthy food. so yay- and I will never forget being weighed in 4th grade before I could go down a water slide on a class trip, and not weighing enough and having to walk down the stairs while all my classmates went down the slide. Humiliating for sure……
    Just now · Like

  6. Jen says:

    Skinny women and fat women and all the women in between are upset about body image issues. When are we going to stop pinning the issue on our weight and admit that we're upset about objectification?

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