I am upset, furious, angry, bewildered, confused, irritated, annoyed, pressured, exposed.
I am tired of the comments about my weight. It is very nice to get compliments--You look great! You must be so proud! You must feel awesome! You are beautiful!
It is not at all nice to hear--You're getting so skinny! You're wasting away! You're melting right before our eyes! How did you do it? How much have you lost? You've lost a lot but I have so much MORE to lose than you!
I realize now that I am so uncomfortable with these compliments because they are not compliments at all. When someone says I'm wasting away, what can I say? Thank you??
When someone says, You're getting so skinny, I am just confused. Skinny is not a compliment. Skinny, to me, is scary. I am not interested in skinny. And when I hear, you're wasting away, I am scared. Am I wasting away? Am I melting?
Am I pretty? Must not be the boys don't ask me out. Am I pretty? Is my body a good body? Is it thin enough? How can I make it thinner? How can I get my thighs to shrink so they don't rub together? Why are my legs so heavy and round? Why am I not taller? Why don't the popular boys ask me out? Am I pretty? Am I "good looking?" Am I thin enough?
What do you see when you look at me? Do you think I'm pretty? Do you like me? I bet you like me because I'm pretty. I wish I were beautiful so you would like me more. So you would love me. I wish I were beautiful, not just pretty. Wait. Am I pretty? My legs are so heavy. I have no ankles. My knees are offensive. I am fat, really. Have you seen how much I can eat? Have you? I eat as much as a man. Just because I can. I cannot stop eating. Am I thin enough? I am fat, really. Very fat. Please don't look at me. I am hideous.
When you constantly evaluate your looks--your body, your face, your bones--comments and compliments are charged.
I feel now as though I am being measured and weighed whenever I see anyone who does not see me on a regular basis. When someone comments on my weight loss, I feel confused and shaky. Do they mean that I look good compared to how I used to look or that I look good compared to everyone or that I just look good? Am I skinny compared to me or to everyone? Are they lying to me? Are they wanting me to feel bad? Are they angry because I've lost weight and they haven't? Are they jealous? Do they feel like they should compliment me to encourage me? That poor girl. She was so FAT before. Bless her heart. I should tell her she's skinny so she'll feel better about herself. She's still really fat, but look how far she's come.
I loved myself, and my face and my body, when I was morbidly obese. Did I want to lose weight? Of course. Do I feel better now? Of course. Am I glad I LOOK better to other people? Of course.
But I wasn't ugly or hideous or smelly or awful when I was fat. I was a funny, creative, warm, bubbly, inviting person. I am still the same person. I am just smaller.
I am not skinny. I am not blowing away. I am not abusing my body to lose weight. I am not smoking meth (thanks, doctor head shrinker). I am not on a fad diet. I am not doing anything special to lose weight. I am just eating less.
I am sure that I have made hurtful, confusing comments to friends who have lost weight. I have said, have you lost weight? I have probably said, how much weight have you lost? I am sure I've made all sorts of comments I shouldn't have made. But now I know better and hope I will do better.
All I can think of to say at this point--to those skinny drying up and blowing away comments--is "Don't Be Silly!" There's really nothing else I can say. Except, "DON'T CALL ME SKINNY!"