Too Thin, Not Thin Enough

Author: Sairy Franks

Today I was reminded of a topic that is of incredible importance in my mind and in my heart. It has to do with the ways “skinny” folks are treated and judged and the shame that many carry. I would love to see us accept all people of every size — regardless of the reason they are that size. It’s true that our society values thinness, but this does not mean that scrawny people love their bodies or that we should feel free to comment on their size.

We assume we know why folks may be skinny: “They need to eat something. They have an eating disorder. They must exercise all the time. They are unhealthy. All they care about is the way they look. They think they’re so perfect.” The list goes on. Often these reasons are not true. When they are, wouldn’t those be reasons for more love and acceptance rather than criticism?

I was once told by a man that I wasn’t standing in my power as a woman because I was too thin. At the time I was down to 100 lbs despite my greatest efforts to gain weight and stay alive as my body shut down from chronic Lyme. I was that thin because my body was dying. I was in the midst of the greatest struggle of my life. Others are that thin and are healthy. We don’t know what we don’t know about people.

I believe we can learn to love our bodies together, regardless of the number that comes up on the scale. We are fighting the same battle from seemingly different directions, but collectively we have the power to say, “Fuck that. We aren’t falling for this anymore. We are playing a game that can’t be won when we are actually on the same team.”

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