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NEWS

Skinny Shaming Is A Thing Too!

What would happen if we shamed Huddah?

BY Joan Thatiah

Sep 18, 2021, 04:25 PM

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As recently reported by Kenyan news site KELEBrity, socialite Huddah Monroe was this week forced to publicly apologize to content creator Yummy Mummy for statements made a few years ago calling plus-sized women lazy.

Huddah apologized calling the whole incident a growth opportunity. Yummy Mummy accepted the apology and a gift pack from Huddah’s make-up line and the internet clapped for them because we all know that fat-shaming is wrong and will not be tolerated.
KELEbrity reported on the story

But, What Happens When The Script Is Shifted? 

When the skinny woman is on the receiving end of such thoughtless comments? What happens then? If Yummy Mummy had shamed Huddah for her slight frame, would we be having this conversation? Probably not. We would all have had a good laugh and went on with our daily business trying to secure the bag.

How Skinny Shaming Looks

We assume that our slender sister has her life smoother. After all, she has never been called greedy or a pig, she can wear what she wants, all the pretty shoes and bras come in her size and no one reminds her every waking moment that she is not ideal. Her life is good, right? 

“It’s not. I have been called skin and bones, skinny and lollipop head and I hate it. I wish people were as sensitive when talking to slender women as they are about fat shaming,” my friend Wanja tells me.

Wanja doesn’t remember a time when she was fat. What she does remember, are constant references to her weight most from plus-sized women. Some of it is covered in humour. Here, have a donut, you know men love a woman with some meat they can hold onto, a woman will tell her in a room full of people. Wanja will flinch, she will be hurt but she will not dare say it lest she is accused of being ungrateful for her skinny privilege.

We are riding on a wave of the ‘we are all beautiful’ movement, something that has been misinterpreted by some to mean accepting plus-size women and bashing thinner women. Skinny shaming will have the same deep-running effects like low self-esteem and dangerous eating behaviors. 

There have been reports of a thriving market of illegal butt and hip enlargement creams and injections in Nairobi. We have women consuming chicken feed for the same purpose. Imagine how much damage that could do!

Real Kenyan Women

The truth is that real Kenyan women are thin. And fat. We have been measured against different body ideals for so long that every woman you see on the street is already struggling with her inner battles. Pick a woman whose body you think is perfect and she will tell you that her right eyebrow doesn’t arch quite like her left one. Or that she wishes her breasts were a cup size smaller.
 
A lot of women are already angry and frustrated at the narrowing standards of what fits into the beautiful category. Don’t be insensitive.

A much better plan would be to ditch the shame and instead celebrate the many fabulous ways in which we are different. Right?

Read: Only You Can Define Your Beauty