I’ve been giving a lot of thought over a considerable time to the obsession with thinness and control of women’s bodies by the medical, pharmaceutical and diet industries which has assumed massive proportions in Western society in recent decades.
I happen to believe it’s no coincidence that women are being suckered into
When you go back to the ‘fifties and early ‘sixties, there was little attention paid to confining women into thin straitjackets. Just to remind you, here are photos of Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell, both considered the epitome of luscious womanhood in those days – and they definitely weren’t thin or wore size O clothes! In fact, Monroe was a size 14, now considered a “plus-size” which I consider an absolute obscenity.
The fact is that since the ’70s, Western society has been brainwashed into the concept that women should be thin because it disempowers women. just as we were reaching for the skies, for equality, for the right to be respected, for an end to sexual harassment, for an end to domestic violence, for POWER, we were suddenly faced with a barrage of propaganda about the so-called “joys” of thinness, the tyranny of the ghastly BMI Index and the need to squash ourselves into a skinny straitjacket where we became disconnected with the real needs of our bodies. (I want to make it clear that I’m not being critical of women who are naturally thin, but critical of an industry that is trying to make us unnaturally thin. Every woman’s right size needs to be respected.)
I remember, for example, having dinner with four women who looked really great, healthy and were definitely not fat – who spent the whole meal obsessing about their weight, diets, fitting into clothes and being incredibly rude to me about my weight. I didn’t have the courage or self-confidence then to stand up for myself and I cried all the way home at the humiliations I suffered that night.
And those humiliations are still being inflicted on young girls, young women, middle-aged women who don’t fit the utterly unrealistic thin image promoted in the media and by the diet, Big Pharma, insurance and medical industries. I saw recently that surgeons promoting stomach-stapling and the like now have their disgusting sights set on teenage girls to persuade them they need to mutilate their bodies and, in the process of course, bump up the profits of this obscene industry.
Naomi Wolf was quite right when she said this:
The fact is that dieting is dangerous. The more you diet, the more your weight yo-yo’s back because you are trying to stuff your body into a shape which doesn’t suit it. It is far more dangerous to diet and put weight back on than it is to be a weight which might suit your body but which the whole diet/thinness/obesity/fashionista fascists consider fat. It is far healtheir to sort out what is the right weight for you and then get fit without focusing on losing weight. It is far more dangerous to be artificially thin and unfit than it is to be unfashionably weighty and fit. The latter have far fewer health problems than those who’ve abused their bodies, starved them and been suckered by the brainwashing contaminating our society today.
I remember asking a sales assistant in a big store in Australia what sizes sold the most – and they were 12-18. This is the size of most women. This isn’t outsize. It’s normal. It’s what most women are if they dropped unrealistic ideas about their size and just accepted the right size for their bodies. I personally believe that sizes 0-8 are an obscenity.
Yes, I know it’s hard to turn our backs on the whole diet/thinness/obesity messages which are fired at us from all directions. But life’s too damned short to waste it obsessing with diets, thinness, buying diet foods which are often unhealthy because they add sugar and salt to disguise how lousy diet foods taste with out artificial flavourings, and getting fanatical about fitness where the joy of life is seriously missing.
So next time you have a meal with a load of women and the conversation veers to weight, diets, whether to have a salad or eat luscious food they’d much rather have and which nurtures their spirit far more than rabbit food, and the like, step in and can these wasteful conversations straight away.
Remind women of their lusciousness, their juiciness, their creativity, their right to a life unbound – like the freedom Chinese women experienced when foot-binding stopped. We women are too damned brilliant, feisty, gutsy, wonderful, earthy, spiritual, wild and gorgeous to waste our lives trying to fit into a thin/diet straitjacket. Let’s rip the straitjacket to bits, burn it and dance around it with glee and happiness and joy as that godawful straitjacket is reduced to ashes and dust.
And remember the words from Clarissa Estola Pinkes book, Women Who Run With The Wolves: