The Weight Issue

With a tone of genuine concern, as if I was being consumed by some disease, Abdallah told me he noticed I was getting thinner. Perhaps this is true. I was recovering from an episode of IBS, and controlling my food intake. Maybe its my sets of narrow, flared pants I’ve been wearing lately on Julie’s suggestion1.

Louise tells people I don’t eat a lot, which is true only when we’re out 2, and is also the only time she’s seen me eat. It makes me even more ill at ease when I’m already feeling unattractive, as if it was my fault and I wasn’t doing enough about it. Others will comment about the size of my waist, or make a passing remark about how they wish they had my metabolism.

I try to take it all in stride, but it’s not easy when the subject is constantly brought up.

According to my doctor, I’m average weight — the average being a range, with me being near the bottom. I know this, but it doesn’t make it easier. Bronwen once told me that I have a weight issue, and after thinking about it for a while, I realized that it was true. Even though it’s something I can joke about, it’s still a source of self-consciousness, leading back to memories of my parents telling me that no one will love me if I’m this size forever.

Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever get over it.

  1. Her theory is that baggy pants do nothing to hide thin limbs and make skinny people look even skinnier. []
  2. Usually because I don’t like to be too full when I’m out. []

11 comments

  1. I don’t know what it is about people that makes them decide a need to share their opinions on someone else’s weight. The “ideal” is a narrow dental floss to balance on.

    Parents told me I wasn’t to sit how I was because it made me look fatter. Kettle pot and water and duck.

    Sometimes it pays best to (mentally) tell someone that they have a problem but it needn’t be made mine.

  2. Baggy clothing does make skinny people look even skinnier, it exaggerates the skinniness, or “emptiness”. Slightly loose clothing best suits skinny people, it creates an illusion of fullness. I’m the expert on skinniness :). By the same token, short people should never wear ultra-high heels.

    As you’re looking for a cell phone, your aunt Vivien just bought a SonyEricsson cell phone (low end model). It sends a lot of extraneous background noise to the receiving end, a sales lady (who also has a SonyEricsson) later told us it’s a flaw of this brand. Bad choice.

  3. My mum said I was the “darkie” in the family.

    She made me carry a parasol (aka umbrella with lace sewed to the edges to make it look fancy) when I walked home from school (southern ca) so I wouldn’t get darker. If I stayed that dark, no one would want to ever marry me when I grew up.

    There were other reasons why I was not marriage material:

    too many videogames
    couldn’t cook
    didn’t do laundry well enough
    read fiction too much
    was going to be a writer (not desirable)

    bleh

    Oh, and I’m underweight. I’ve learned to be okay with it. Everyone in MI is grossly overweight. I’m lucky. And healthy.

  4. My weight’s always been a topic of conversation. I’ve only been gaining weight the last few years and even as I gain, then I also get the “oh don’t gain too much or you’ll get chunky.” so what’s the ideal weight? No one knows, it’s whatever makes you feel good. If you happen to be on the thin side, who cares? I know skinny people who wear baggy clothes, I used to do it all the time and it didn’t really bother me if it made me look extra skinny. I’d rather be skinny than fat.

    I wasn’t marriage material either because I was lazy, didn’t do any housework, I slouched, couldn’t walk straight, had weird toes, nose was too short, etc etc. I don’t know why moms say such horrible things to their kids and then deny it later as though it never happened.

  5. just here to point out that doug was heavy when he got sara lol maybe you shuld be more like him feeling loud and tactless yet jeff my boy?

  6. @Pearl — I think most people believe that they’re being nice when they feign envy of my weight. You’re right about the mental practice, and it’s how I’m currently dealing with it.

    @Uncle Joe — I’ve realized that baggy clothing isn’t just to hide my limbs, it’s also my style. In addition to this, slightly loose clothing is still very small and makes me look small, so there lies my dilemma. Your short people with heels illustration is perfect.

    Thanks for the heads-up on the cell phone. I’m surprised that the sales representative told you it’s a flaw with the system. Very poor customer service.

    @maeko — I think one of the reasons why we relate so well is because of our experiences with our parents. It’s okay for a girl to be underweight though; for guys it’s less “acceptable”.

    @Sophia —

    it’s whatever makes you feel good

    As simple as it is, I never really realized how true this is until you mentioned it (within reason, of course, any extreme is bad). I’ve also heard from a lot of people that it’s better to be skinny than fat, which I suppose is the lesser of two evils.

    It’s funny that your mom denied saying all those horrible things to you. Mine didn’t deny it, but justified it by saying that’s how she was raised.

    @Rob — Hahahahha…maybe if I want a…no, too mean. Next time I see you, I’ll tell you what I was about to say.

  7. telling me that no one will love me if I’m this size forever.

    There is so much material for a satire of how to be a Chinese parent. I grew up hearing this too not only from my parents, but from my grandparents. That girls wanted big strong men. Brains over brawn I say. :)

  8. Oops. I forgot to close that tag. :P

  9. I never got it too harshly from my grandparents. They would mention it in passing, but I never felt like they never loved me because of it. My parents, on the other hand, made it seem like an ultimatum, and the only way I could earn their love was from grades and attractiveness.

    I’d agree with the brains over brawn thing, but it’s not working for me. :D

    And don’t worry, I closed your tag.

  10. I’m familiar with earning love via grades, but attractiveness too? That’s tough, I mean it’s something that can’t even really be controlled.

    Really? I should connect you with friends who go for the lanky types. :D hehe

  11. Yeah, there are certain aspects of attractiveness that you can’t control (i.e. you’re born with or without), but there are things you can control as well (i.e. physical size, mannerisms, overall masculinity). All other things being equal, my parents would hold an attractive son as more “valuable” than a less attractive one. No one said that love was fair, I suppose.

    And I always thought that girls who like lanky guys are a myth, up there with bigfoot, the abominable snowman, and girls who don’t mind dating guys who are shorter than them. :)

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