I'm going to come right out and say it. My name is Swati Hegde. I'm 5'2". I weigh 43 kgs.
And before you say anything, let me make one thing clear: no, I am not anorexic.
Neither is Sarah Hyland, who is likely the same height and weight as I am. Recently, Hyland was slammed on social media with people posting disgusting and shaming comments about her weight. "She looks like a skeleton." "Sarrah you look like you need a coupple of doubble whoppers your looking kinda skinny girl." "I'm just saying in order for Sarah to be considered hot/sexy she needs to have decent sized boobs, and that goes for all women."
Some even claimed she had anorexia, which is - breaking news! - a mental illness, not a synonym for 'skinny' or 'thin'. (Look it up.)
Society, when did it get okay for you to shame skinny women for their weight? We've all agreed that fat-shaming is a terrible, terrible thing. You would never tell an overweight person to 'put that sandwich down' without expecting a slew of hate comments to come your way. And yet, you find it so easy to tap those few buttons on your keypad and accuse someone skinny of promoting a bad lifestyle to unsuspecting young girls without knowing all the facts.
Yes, Sarah Hyland is thin. Yes, she has lost a considerable amount of weight. Yes, she may not be at her healthiest right now.
But how is any of that your goddamn business?
This doesn't just apply to celebrities. This applies to real women, too, many of whom have stepped up to talk about their experiences. I'm one of those women.
I'm the woman who can't order a salad without people telling her she needs to gain weight. I'm the woman who can't order a pizza without people asking her how she's going to finish it. I'm the woman who's afraid to admit that sometimes she has a small appetite because she's scared people will call her anorexic. I'm the woman who's sick of people commenting on her eating habits.
Some people think skinny-shaming is okay because otherwise young girls will aspire to binge and purge and skip meals to become as slim as models. But what about the young girls who already are skinny? What happens to their self-esteem, to their confidence?
I've grown up being called a stick, a piece of cardboard, a girl with no boobs. And I cannot tell you how much that has affected me, how I still struggle to smile when I look at myself in the mirror. Maybe I should stop caring what other people say. Maybe I should turn a deaf ear. Maybe it IS my fault.
Or maybe it isn't.
All I'm saying is, keep your comments about my weight, her weight, his weight, their weight to yourself. I don't care if it's a man, a woman, a girl, a boy - whether fat or skinny or somewhere in between - I don't care. I know nothing will ever be good enough for you, society, so maybe it's best if you keep your mouth shut and take a look at yourself first. Because all you will see in the mirror is an ugly, judgmental self.
*drops mic* I'm out. Thanks for reading.