Freelance Journalist, Editor, Copywriter and Author – Dubai

My Body, My Business

I honestly don’t understand women’s fascination with other women’s bodies.

Most ladies seem to be borderline obsessed with keeping track of other women’s weight. I have lost count of the amount of times I’ve heard someone ask something along the lines of “Have you noticed how much weight she’s lost/put on?” No, actually, I haven’t, because more often than not the person in question has lost/put on such a negligible amount that I wonder how the hell anyone has noticed. Oh and plus, who the fuck cares?

The only time I will ever really pay attention to someone’s weight is if their body shape has changed dramatically – I’m talking four dress sizes, people, not four fucking pounds. And even then, I don’t feel any inclination to declare how great that person looks – or in the case of weight gain make them feel shit by asking them what happened. To me a person’s value isn’t calculated by what is said on the scales. I couldn’t give a shit about what you weigh. If someone happens to tell me they’ve lost weight, I’ll congratulate them on their achievement, as I know it’s not easy to drop those kilogrammes. But beyond that, I’m really not interested. Your body, your business, so who the fuck cares about my opinion on it?

Which is why I have a major issue about people making comments on my weight. Yes, I gain and lose weight at times. But I never gain (or lose) enough to warrant me going out and buying a new wardrobe, which tells me that the weight loss/gain isn’t that dramatic. At all. Yet only recently I’ve had two people who I don’t even consider as friends feel the need to tell me that they think I’ve gained weight. To which my response is, really?

What a profound observation you have made.

I didn’t realise that my weight is up for public commentary. Do we really have nothing else to talk about or be concerned with – like, you know, global warming? World hunger? The war in Syria? Or have all these things been resolved and no one has informed me?

One delightful lady recently had the cheek to tell me that if I didn’t get myself to the gym that my boyfriend may lose interest in me. My other half happens to be gym obsessed – he loves going to the gym as much as I love sipping on a cocktail whilst watching something completely crap on the television. And yet, for all his obsession with keeping himself in shape, he couldn’t give a rat’s ass about the fact I’d rather eat a burger than a salad or that my idea of exercise is walking to Caribou once a week. In fact, he loves me for it. And he loves my curves (thank you, God).

So no, Ms Stranger, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but my partner isn’t going to lose interest in me because I may have gained six pounds and I hate the treadmill. Like most guys I know, he doesn’t notice the fact that I’ve put on a bit of weight. Unlike you, who clearly have nothing better to do with your time than speculate on whether I’m hot enough for my boyfriend or not.

And this isn’t the first time I’ve been subjected to some sort of running commentary on my weight, or have endured two women discussing some other poor unsuspecting woman’s dress size. What’s with this obsession that women have? I know that shit magazines like Cosmopolitan run endless features on how to beat the flab and get that elusive bikini body like our lives depend on it, but is this what is fuelling this size-o-mania of ours? Because honestly, let’s get realistic here: what difference does it make to you if your friend/colleague/whoever is thinner or fatter than you? Why do we have such a strong urge to put women down if they weigh more than a twiglet?

I remember reading somewhere once that women rarely ever become CEOs because society has led us to believe that we need to spend two hours on our appearance everyday in order to look good enough to dare to walk outside, and therefore we have fuck all time left to actually, you know, run a business. While I think this may be slightly far fetched, I do feel that society’s obsession with making women feel inadequate is what holds us back from achieving our potential. And sadly this obsession begins and ends with us women and us women alone.

Imagine if we stopped buying shit magazines like the aforementioned Cosmo, simply ate healthily, exercised whenever we fucking felt like it and actually felt good about ourselves. Imagine if we all stopped believing that as we age we become less desirable to the opposite sex and embraced those lines on our foreheads. Imagine if we all stopped gossiping about other women’s asses/bingo wings/saggy tits etc and just, you know, enjoyed this one life we have without adding unnecessary stress to it.

Also imagine how many companies would go out of business if we all did this – dieticians, cosmetic surgeons, make-up companies. The list is endless. Their job is to make you feel inadequate, because imagine if you felt like you were good enough to be loved/get that great job? They’d all be out of work.

Think about it, ladies. You rarely ever hear men complaining that their ass looks too big, or that they need to get a hot body in time for the summer. They’re too busy enjoying that burger while you’re sat calculating in your head how many calories you have left for the rest of the day, or regretting the fact you ordered a salad. And more importantly, they don’t give a shit if their friend has put on weight.

By obsessing about your weight and commenting on the size of other women, you’re feeding into this vicious cycle. So what if someone has gained or lost weight? So what if your colleague is eating a doughnut for breakfast? So the hell what if you don’t have a ‘bikini bod’ in time for summer?

As someone who gave up weighing scales and crash diets years ago, I know for a fact I’m 100 per cent happier now. I therefore implore you all to follow suit. And if you cannot, at the very least mind your own business when it comes to my body. Thanks for your concern but my bingo wings and I are doing just fine.

  • LOVE this! I can’t explain the obsession, either. I couldn’t care less what someone else looks like…

    • Andrea Anastasiou

      Exactly! I get really angry when I hear women talking like that about each other. Thanks for reading 🙂

  • A guy

    Spot on! I think many people are making the erroneous “dating by league” assumption, that people date only on the same “level” of attraction implying that fit people don’t date people out of shape. It’s just bollocks and often not true. People date who _they_ find attractive, not by league as defined by media.

    We’re a bit like you, I couldn’t care less about her 15 pound extra. Personally I’m a fitness freak who like to spend time in the gym and am “obsessed” with body sculpting. According to cultural notions we’re not supposed to be compatible…

    • Andrea Anastasiou

      Yeah, because gym bunnies should only be with other gym bunnies, right? It’s so ridiculous that people feel the need to conform to all this bullshit. I’m so glad I’ve met someone who, like you, couldn’t give a shit. He has his interests and I have mine, and I feel we’re a better couple for it. Thanks for reading 🙂

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