A New Look At The Word That Causes Pain In Every Woman

You try on five outfits before you go on your long overdue date. Each one is thrown on the ground in desperation.

A plain black dress is finally chosen; you aren’t sure if it is because you have given up, or because you actually think you look nice.

At first glance, society seems to live and breathe oxymoronic concepts of body image.

We support the monster of consumerism that flaunts impossibly thin models who tell us how to dress and obtain happiness, while the nation is overwhelmingly, let’s just say, not impossibly thin.

Connotations around the “F” word have become increasingly negative. And yes, I’m talking about the word Fat.

The simple three letter word that used to allude to a prestigious status and exemplary survival rate now is used as a scarlet letter to belittle someone.

At some point in our lives, we have experienced or witnessed the cringe as an inconsiderate person stamps this seal of malicious contempt.

Brynne Gant, writing for Scary Mommy, had the shock of hearing her 6-year-old daughter was called fat as an insult from a boy in her class, which raised body image questions at her young age.

Gant expressed her bewilderment at how in such an advanced society we are still so petty.

Scary Mommy reported:

More educational, inspiring, enlightening resources than we’ve ever had before, more history available to us, more psychology, more knowledge, more sharing of sympathies and feelings, more voices, all of these things are more accessible to the people in our society than ever before, and yet…we’re still doing this? Really?”

I think many of us share the same sentiments in regards to being shocked that people still resort to fat shaming, despite all the tolerance preached in the media.

Huffington Post reported:

Our thin-obsessed society firmly believes that fat people are at fault for their size and it is politically correct to stigmatize and ridicule them,” says the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance’s website. “Fat discrimination is one of the last publicly accepted discriminatory practices.””

This “Fat discrimination” is perfectly reflective of the critical nature society holds on body image.

Long ago, this wasn’t so.

Cultures around the world historically praised full-bodied women. During the hunter-gatherer era, to be too thin was a price that could cost your life.

The Huffington Post reported on how you have a primitive edge by keeping an extra layer of fat fueled energy on your bones:

This ability to store surplus fat from the least possible amount of food intake may have made the difference between life and death, not only for the individual but also — more importantly — for the species,” Garabed Eknoyan, M.D., of the Baylor College of Medicine, wrote in a 2006 history of obesity. “Those who could store fat easily had an evolutionary advantage in the harsh environment of early hunters and gatherers.”

 One of the oldest limestone carvings from the Paleolithic time period is affectionately known as the “Venus of Willendorf.”

This work of art is a woman with large thighs, a plump belly, and thick arms. When historians look at this carving they often report “a sense of wonder”, according to the Washington Post, but also a realness that we don’t get today in modern depictions of women.

The Washington Post reported on a female historian’s perspective of the timeless piece:

She has a quite unformalized vitality,” the archaeologist and historian Nancy Sandars wrote in her book, Prehistoric Art in Europe of the Venus of Willendorf. “She does not impress us as an abstraction, an idea, or ideal of the female and the fecund; rather one feels in spite of facelessness and gross exaggeration, that this is actual woman.”

The real woman, the one designed to have children, feed their young, and maintain energy to keep a home, is not rail thin.

Keeping a healthy lifestyle and average weight should be something that we don’t need to think too much about.

Eating what nature provides, not what a lab produces, and running around with our children should produce exactly the kind of women we were meant to look like, and who you are is amazing.

Please let us know in the comments section if you have been affected by society’s twisted body image issues, or if you see a resolution for our crisis.

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