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cruisin
10-18-2010, 03:39 PM
I don't understand why it's so much less offensive to comment on someone's skinny body than someone's larger one. Both cases are rude and uncalled for. I guess more people have experienced some form of harassment or frustration from being overweight than under, but that doesn't discount either experience.

I would say that it is no less offensive to comment on someone's skinny body. It is offensive, uncalled for, and a form of harassment. However, we live in a society where skinny is glorified and overweight is looked on with contempt. All sorts of ugly things are assumed about a woman who is overweight, not the least of which are that she is not clean and that she is not smart. How many times has a thin person seen the person they are about to sit next to on a plane roll their eyes in disgust? That is the norm for overweight people. So, while I agree with you, I do think that the overweight are persecuted at a level the very thin are not.


Ableist language is definitely a problem. I try (and fail) to curb it in myself, but I find we're unfortunately so immune to how offensive it can be, so I forget. I've seen attempts to discuss it with others, and it's often met with the whole "geez, PC police" mindset, which doesn't solve anything.

This really is a problem. One that would be very difficult to curb. How many of us can honestly say that we haven't called someone crazy or nuts? On the other side, how PC can we become without constantly being afraid of offending someone. We would all, truly, become neurotic ;).

Andora
10-18-2010, 04:09 PM
I would say that it is no less offensive to comment on someone's skinny body. It is offensive, uncalled for, and a form of harassment. However, we live in a society where skinny is glorified and overweight is looked on with contempt. All sorts of ugly things are assumed about a woman who is overweight, not the least of which are that she is not clean and that she is not smart. How many times has a thin person seen the person they are about to sit next to on a plane roll their eyes in disgust? That is the norm for overweight people. So, while I agree with you, I do think that the overweight are persecuted at a level the very thin are not.


Look, I'm not skinny, so I'm not immune to what you're saying. I've got a raging fat-complex that tilts my world-view a plenty. I just don't feel the need to victimize fat people moreso. This isn't a "but x has it worse" competition.

I think it's a different kind of harassment skinny people-- both naturally so and otherwise-- face. My friends and family would never, to my face, call me fat. In fact, they'd trip over themselves to say "you're beautiful! You're not fat!" That's lovely, I'm not being ungrateful. But with my overly skinny friends, there's not that same taboo about weight comments. Anyone feels they can say something about your body, whether they think it's complimentary or not. And that's the other problem-- being thin is supposed to be this great thing, so when someone makes a comment even with a bitter tone, the skinny person is expected not to take offense. I mean, what is that? And if they react negatively, they're further condescended or insulted for it.

Years ago I worked with a girl whose ribs were prominent, and scoffed when she was complaining about having a fat day. I felt like such a jerk when she reminded me anyone can have those insecure times, and it's just a real whether you're a size 2 or 20. I don't think it's right to conflate or rank things like this.



This really is a problem. One that would be very difficult to curb. How many of us can honestly say that we haven't called someone crazy or nuts? On the other side, how PC can we become without constantly being afraid of offending someone. We would all, truly, become neurotic ;).

Or we'd become less offensive and lazy in what we say.

Badams
10-18-2010, 05:25 PM
picking on somebody for their appearance is wrong whether the person is fat, skinny, tall, short etc... i think it's strange to argue over which side has it worst. it sucks for the person being picked on no matter which category they fall under. it's not anybody's place to tell someone that they shouldn't feel slighted because they get picked on for being in group a because group b gets it too. and i think disordered eating can cause a person to be obese as well as too thin.

PDilemma
10-18-2010, 05:33 PM
picking on somebody for their appearance is wrong whether the person is fat, skinny, tall, short etc... i think it's strange to argue over which side has it worst. it sucks for the person being picked on no matter which category they fall under. it's not anybody's place to tell someone that they shouldn't feel slighted because they get picked on for being in group a because group b gets it too. and i think disordered eating can cause a person to be obese as well as too thin.

Exactly. And in this day and age when we are seeing suicides coming after intense bullying for all kinds of issues--homosexuality, rumors about sexual behavior, being new or foreign or otherwise different--it is absurd to once again get into an argument in which people are claiming that only the overweight kids and adults have any clue what it is like to be bullied and harassed.

As I said, I was intensely bullied as a child for being underweight. And it started when I was the new kid in a very small town because being the new kid from somewhere else is some sort of a bullying trigger, too (Phoebe Prince for example). And I was harassed as an adult for being underweight as well. I believe, however, that it doesn't matter in the least what a person is being bullied or harassed about, it is always wrong and always a damaging experience for the victim. To assume that somehow the motivation of the abusers makes a difference for the victim is absurd. It doesn't matter why kids give you a derisive nickname, it is still a derisive nickname and it still hurts.

If we could all get past our own individual responses and our very human "my pain is worse than your pain" games, we might be able to make things different.

Dragonlady
10-18-2010, 05:54 PM
That's not necessarily a good thing. For the babies or the mothers.

Excuse me. Lots of women have babies in their late 30's and 40's, myself included. And I was also a "late in life" child. There is a higher risk of Down's Syndrome, but otherwise, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a child when you're older and there are many benefits.

I was much more relaxed about parently in my 40's than I was in my 20's. My income level was higher so money wasn't as big an issue. My older two children lived to adulthood so I was pretty secure in the knowledge that this one would too. I also had more patience because I wasn't scrambling to establish my career, care for two small children and deal with divorcing their father.

As long as you have good prenatal care, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a child when you're over 40.

PDilemma
10-18-2010, 06:11 PM
Excuse me. Lots of women have babies in their late 30's and 40's, myself included. And I was also a "late in life" child. There is a higher risk of Down's Syndrome, but otherwise, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a child when you're older and there are many benefits.

I was much more relaxed about parently in my 40's than I was in my 20's. My income level was higher so money wasn't as big an issue. My older two children lived to adulthood so I was pretty secure in the knowledge that this one would too. I also had more patience because I wasn't scrambling to establish my career, care for two small children and deal with divorcing their father.

As long as you have good prenatal care, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a child when you're over 40.

The media has done a fine job convincing women that it is either impossible or extremely dangerous for a woman over 35 or so to have a baby. And I've noticed lately that the magic age they are touting is getting younger and younger. And it is making a lot of women paranoid. A former co-worker of mine has settled for an unemployed man who is, by her own admission, a mess--among other things, he has two kids who are five months apart in age and one was born to a 15 year old which nearly resulted in his being prosecuted for statuatory rape. So why is she settling for him when she knows good and well that he is a disaster waiting to happen? In her own words: "I'm 25 and probably only have about 2 good years left to have my own baby--don't you listen to what they're saying about having babies when you're even close to 30?"

Lorac
10-18-2010, 06:35 PM
The media has done a fine job convincing women that it is either impossible or extremely dangerous for a woman over 35 or so to have a baby. And I've noticed lately that the magic age they are touting is getting younger and younger. And it is making a lot of women paranoid. A former co-worker of mine has settled for an unemployed man who is, by her own admission, a mess--among other things, he has two kids who are five months apart in age and one was born to a 15 year old which nearly resulted in his being prosecuted for statuatory rape. So why is she settling for him when she knows good and well that he is a disaster waiting to happen? In her own words: "I'm 25 and probably only have about 2 good years left to have my own baby--don't you listen to what they're saying about having babies when you're even close to 30?"

I'm a little surprised with this as I was under the impression the media was more positive abut women over 35 having trouble free pregnancies and that the magic age was actually going up not down. Do you have links that I could read in regards to this issue? Thanks.

PDilemma
10-18-2010, 06:50 PM
I'm a little surprised with this as I was under the impression the media was more positive abut women over 35 having trouble free pregnancies and that the magic age was actually going up not down. Do you have links that I could read in regards to this issue? Thanks.

Google pregnancy + age. Not only will you get 100s of articles about the risks of pregnancy over age 35, you'll find a number that tell you fertility peaks between 20-25 and that pregnancy after 30 is difficult to achieve. Several months ago when my friend made this horrid decision, there was a controversial blog post or something of that nature with the suggestion that women have babies at traditional college age and postpone education and career until after that due to studies saying 20-25 is peak fertility age for women.

Funny, since I graduated from high school over 20 years ago and half my female classmates are just now having babies.

cruisin
10-18-2010, 06:56 PM
Exactly. And in this day and age when we are seeing suicides coming after intense bullying for all kinds of issues--homosexuality, rumors about sexual behavior, being new or foreign or otherwise different--it is absurd to once again get into an argument in which people are claiming that only the overweight kids and adults have any clue what it is like to be bullied and harassed.

As I said, I was intensely bullied as a child for being underweight. And it started when I was the new kid in a very small town because being the new kid from somewhere else is some sort of a bullying trigger, too (Phoebe Prince for example). And I was harassed as an adult for being underweight as well. I believe, however, that it doesn't matter in the least what a person is being bullied or harassed about, it is always wrong and always a damaging experience for the victim. To assume that somehow the motivation of the abusers makes a difference for the victim is absurd. It doesn't matter why kids give you a derisive nickname, it is still a derisive nickname and it still hurts.

If we could all get past our own individual responses and our very human "my pain is worse than your pain" games, we might be able to make things different.

Well said. I know that I have contributed in pointing out that overweight gets more hate than thin. I sincerely hope that no one thinks that I believe that the tin person being harassed is any less hurt. I was, more, trying to explain why I think others don't consider commenting on a thin person an insult. Not condoning it at all. Many people consider extremely thin to be perfection, they don't stop to think that someone may have been picked on for thinness.

PDilemma
10-18-2010, 07:01 PM
Well said. I know that I have contributed in pointing out that overweight gets more hate than thin. I sincerely hope that no one thinks that I believe that the tin person being harassed is any less hurt. I was, more, trying to explain why I think others don't consider commenting on a thin person an insult. Not condoning it at all. Many people consider extremely thin to be perfection, they don't stop to think that someone may have been picked on for thinness.

And maybe for those who never experienced being bullied for being underweight as a child, a comment now and then in adulthood would not be hurtful. But when someone says "do you eat?" or something similar to me now--the person may not think it is insulting, but it just takes me back to being called "tapeworm" as a sixth grader. And that's why we always need to think about what we say to people and consider that any kind of negative or snide comments about someone's appearance can be hurtful even if we think that we are giving some sort of backhanded compliment or being funny.

Dragonlady
10-18-2010, 07:25 PM
I'm a little surprised with this as I was under the impression the media was more positive abut women over 35 having trouble free pregnancies and that the magic age was actually going up not down. Do you have links that I could read in regards to this issue? Thanks.

This is hardly new. When I was in hospital at the age of 25, giving birth to my son, one of the nurses referred to me as the "geriatric pregnancy" because of my "advanced age". I can't imagine what she would have thought about me giving birth again at the age of 39.

I know a number of women who had babies at similar ages, including National Ballet prima ballerina Cynthia Lucas whose daughter was born when she was in her mid-40's, and Sandie Rinaldo, the CTV anchorwoman, whose youngest daughter was also born just prior to her 40th birthday. Gee, half the women who lived on our street when Tink was little, had their first babies well after the age of 30.

cruisin
10-18-2010, 07:36 PM
And maybe for those who never experienced being bullied for being underweight as a child, a comment now and then in adulthood would not be hurtful. But when someone says "do you eat?" or something similar to me now--the person may not think it is insulting, but it just takes me back to being called "tapeworm" as a sixth grader. And that's why we always need to think about what we say to people and consider that any kind of negative or snide comments about someone's appearance can be hurtful even if we think that we are giving some sort of backhanded compliment or being funny.

Absolutely! For me, being told I'm too thin is high praise (unfortunately :(). I would never consider it insulting, but I can see it from the other side. If I were picked on, as a child, for being thin, being told I'm too thin would not feel the same. I also worry about telling someone who has lost weight, that they look great. I don't want them to think I didn't notice and/or don't care. But, I worry that it might make them feel like they weren't fabulous when they were heavier. It's really hard to know what someone's background is and sometimes even a heartfelt compliment can come out wrong.

PDilemma
10-18-2010, 07:43 PM
Absolutely! For me, being told I'm too thin is high praise (unfortunately :(). I would never consider it insulting, but I can see it from the other side. If I were picked on, as a child, for being thin, being told I'm too thin would not feel the same. I also worry about telling someone who has lost weight, that they look great. I don't want them to think I didn't notice and/or don't care. But, I worry that it might make them feel like they weren't fabulous when they were heavier. It's really hard to know what someone's background is and sometimes even a heartfelt compliment can come out wrong.

I worry about complimenting weight loss, too, unless I know the person has been working to lose weight. But sometimes, it is unintentional or it is just a bit and they may feel like "oh, did I look like crap before?" Generally, I just feel like it is not necessary to discuss people's weight with them whether they are overweight, underweight or in-between. I do not love my friends and family for the numbers on their scales, after all.

Veronika
10-18-2010, 07:57 PM
I'm 32, and I've been freaking out about my fertility since I was 29. We are planning to have kids at some point, but the time never seems right.

Wyliefan
10-18-2010, 08:08 PM
Statistically it is harder to get pregnant the older you get. That's just a fact, and I don't blame anyone for pointing it out. At my age, though, I'm doing my best to ignore the statistics and just focus on the success stories!