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Friday, February 24, 2006
Feeling bad for being a UK size 8

Feeling bad for being a UK size 8
"I can't help it," I said to BGF this afternoon as we sat for tea, "it's PY. She's driving me insane."

"Why should you feel bad for wearing a size 8? Any thinner and I won't be able to see your tits," BGF said.

PY has an annoying habit these days. She takes a seriously good look at me, observing every bump and every pore and comments on it. It is alright on a nice and sunny day, where I feel I could live forever. But on certain days when I have pent-up frustrations (work related) I feel like strangling her.

But of course, I do not lunge at her and grip her neck with my two bare hands, shaking her violently while sat on her. Instead of murdering her, I would either:
  • keeping quiet and flying elsewhere in my mind - going thru the list of things that I need to complete, what I bought, what I did not buy from Ikea and now am regretting, missing Alex and alternating it with flashes of the toilet incident with AB

  • bursting into self defence with "PY, stop nagging. No wonder your colleagues call you Aunty," then feeling totally remorseful for uttering those words.

It happened again yesterday when we were shopping in Esprit during lunch break.

"What size do you wear?" she asked.

"UK size 8," came my reply, as I browsed through a rack of trousers on 50% offer.

"Are you sure?" she asked, sounding absolutely surprised, "I am wearing a size 6 only, you know?"

She has been complaining that she was fat and needing to go to the gym. And *ahem* she was a size 6. So what does that imply? That I am fat cow? A bursting balloon? A female Sumatran rhino at the end of her gestation period? What?!

I feel wronged. This is because a UK size 8 is considered 'small' by most standard. Why should I feel bad for wearing a size 8? I am not fat, not thin and I like myself this way. And why does she make me feel like a failure, even when I know that I am not? Why does she keep talking about my imperfections while I comfort and assure her of what she think is her imperfections? All these negative chi was compounded by another blow no more than 30 minutes after the first incident in Esprit. During lunch in Starbucks, PY said "I told Anna that you used to have such beautiful skin. Two years ago you didn't have the line near your nose."

"It's called aging, PY, if you have forgotten," I said, temper brewing like coffee in Starbucks' perculator, "All of us have it when we are our age, remember?"

Negative Body Image
I won't feel offended if I am truly huge and/or eating like a starved refuge. I stand 164cm tall and weigh 47kg before meal and 50kg after stuffing myself with an eight course wedding banquet. Most meals consist of three soup spoons of rice, with lots of vegetable and a small piece of meat (prefering fish). How can I weigh any less than I am, without loosing my tits and bottom?!

When I was younger, my mother had a plastic surgery trustfund for me, so I could correct my slitty eyes (and a rhinoplasty with the extra change). I was dog ugly as a child and because I was ugly, I was commented and compared to prettier cousins/friends/etc. What trauma for a young 5 year old girl to endure! My grandmother used to call me "flat nose" or "slitty eyes" and I had to grow up with those remarks. Hormones kicked in during my post-teenage years (that means my early 20s), which somehow changed my facial features - a button nose, naturally pink stained lips, prominent cheekbones and a larger pair of eyes. Till today, my features are changing and I am crossing my fingers that each change is for the better (or I would have to learn to love myself).

So you can say that I grew up being very aware of my features, especially the lack of it (and the change that came with puberty). From someone who felt miserable as a child, who could not wait for the day she turns 17 so she could go for plastic surgery, I have grown up to accept myself for the way I am. Nowadays I am comfortable just the way I am, including my tan skin. I do not appreciate people who asks me to use whitening lotion, as if I am a leper in need of medication.

Perhaps I am sensitive. Perhaps I am sensitive because I have gone through this shit as a child and I do not want to feel bad, now that I am an adult. What is so wrong with tan skin? Or broad forehead? Or slitty eyes? Or a typical Chinese nose? Or a nasal line when you are in your late 20s? It is our genes, for goodness sake! You ought to learn how to live comfortably in your own skin. On behalf of all ugly ducklings out there, please make our lives easier by holding your tongues from passing comments that causes us, the ugly ducklings to develop negative body image.

Why not be like the English, let's talk about the weather. Or the latest happenings in town. Or suggest one should probably take a good look at the caricatures to determine whether they are indeed offensive before staging protests throughout the world. Or protest against Ah Bengs are peddling Tammy's video. She deserves at least some royalty to fund her education in NYP.

Let's stick to "Have you eaten?"
Of course PY is not the only one who passes comments during conversations without thinking. Comments like hers happen as quickly as passing the sauces during a chinese wedding dinner. Perhaps many think that this is a good way of communicating with friends. Perhaps many feel that this is just talk; a way of showing concern for the person's physical being - that you are observing the person. At worst, you just made a remark for the heck of it.

However let me the first to tell you that making passing remarks such as, "wah you been eating a lot lately, is it?" or "Eh you are so tan after Phuket" is not considered nice ways of exchanging news with your friends/relatives/workmates/neighbours/aunty selling fishball noodles.

Let's stick to the traditional "Have you eaten?".

And just when you feel good about yourself...
PY related this incident that happened some weekends ago in her household.

PY's mom: PY, what you going to do? Your daughter got such slitty eyes.

PY's dad: Like Mercedes, one eye big, one eye small.

Bunch of relatives discussed PY's 3 year old daughter's looks. Some said that she's doomed to having slitty eyes and flat nose forever and ever. Others comforted PY that at least the girl is really fair because, "fair automatically means beautiful". They eyed the girl inch by inch and observed her every feature. Thank goodness, her daughter was oblivious to the remarks, playing with her cousins.

Small Talk
Whatever happened to encouraging any young girl to work hard, study smart, do well in her exams, be an honourable citizen and a good community leader? Is a girl's worth and future based solely on her physical looks only?


PY's hubby: What to do, dear? Our daughter so ugly, what are we going to do? You think we should start saving money for her plastic surgery?

Everyone then proceeded to talk about the plastic surgery fund for young girl blah blah blah. The pros and the cons etc.

The conclusion?

PY: Aiyah, no worries lah. Otto was much uglier than baby girl when she was a child. Now Otto look okay what....


I don't see how that conversation was supposed to make me feel good about myself *grumble grumble grumble*

Small Talk
I wonder how many of us girls grew up, being told that we are not good enough, not beautiful enough, not fair enough, eyes not huge enough, skin not smooth enough... and how many of us carry burdens from childhood, that we needn't carry at all.

How many of us become uncomfortable in our own skin? How many of us insist on switching off the lights before we allow our partners to touch us? How many of us look in the mirror and feel depressed that we do not look like the models in the magazines? How many of us obsess over our weight, over our cellulite?

You know what? Everyone is entitled to feel good about themselves. Just as long as you are healthy and you are able to function well in your private and professional life, let no one make you feel bad about yourself.

Links to posts with similar thread
Numenor05 She's So Bloody Gorgeous
Melancholy Thongs Plastic



how wide/slim is UK size 8 again?

1:05 pm  

*hahahaha* How politically correct you are...

Here in Msia, its equivalent being either "small" or "xtra small" whichever is available.

I guess you will have to walk into a boutique to find out =)

1:37 pm  

Last I checked (its been a while), its a small. But sizes never matter. Its the proportions that count ;)

164cm and 47kg? In my books, that's underweight. Love a tan, broad forehead is a sign of intelligence, people tell me that I look like I'm sleeping half the time, so I'm partial towards slitty eyes :P

Just came from watching Pink Panther and have this image of you going gung ho on the curtains during a conversation about the weather.

2:00 am  

Oh don't get me started on the female form. Hanging around guys for most of my life made me appreciate the female form... perhaps I should write about tits one day :D

Is Pink Panther worth watching? Well at least I am sure I won't be watching through the tiny gaps between my fingers!

I make it a point to lecture people who comment on my tan, so as to traumatise them enough to remember NOT to ask me to get some whitening bleach or something.

I like the way I am and it took me a long time to feel this way. I will damn anyone who makes me feel otherwise these days.

Case in point: Ex-bf got bombed last night for patronising comments. I think I've had it being everyone's doormat.

4:19 am  

i am a uk size 12/14 ... beat that bwahhahahaha yes, clothes shopping in malaysia is a pain in the ass

12:50 am  

It is only a pain when you bring friends along...... sure chialat one!

I much prefer shopping alone and get the best bargains that way. What about you? You prefer shopping with gfs or on your own?

12:51 am  

Don't feel bad. :) There's me, UK size 10 and growing, and if you feel bad, I guess I should be feeling much worse. Honestly, can you imagine what it takes to be a size 6? Forget it, I love my food too much, and food has never failed. And with the tan skin, I say bugger fair skin. Least I don't burn after 5 minutes under the sun. Or peel. Tan skin's beautiful, girl!

6:20 am  

That's my whole point. I am already a size 8, which is considered a small and every third conversation is about whether I've put on weight, pores opened, wrinkles etc.

I think most girls are fine with their body image until they meet another girl. And start comparing and start talking about stuff...

6:49 am  

47kg is still considered light thin, i supposed. you're not too short either so I supposed you have bigger bone structures than your friend,PY, which is probably the reason why you dont wear a size 6.
Trust me, I used to work in a boutique so i am quite familiar with sizes.

7:49 am  

How is it like working in a boutique? My parents are encouraging me to take up a fashion design course. Or to open up a boutique, since I adore wearing clothes and love dressing up. But that's a whole different story....

47 kg and 164cm tall is fine for me. I am happy the way I am, tits and all. I think often time, most ppl are comfortable being themselves, until they get compared to models in magazines, actresses and people who are generally not real...

I should also mention that PY is 156cm and a size 6. Don't knw her weight.

I am just concerned that people are placing so much emphasis on being thin and being waiflike, to the point that it is not healthy for the mind and it makes people unhappy.

8:21 am  

The way I see it, if PY works so hard to inspect every inch just to pick every line and pore, I'd say she's just jealous of the bigger picture.

Often, ppl with low self esteem aren't comfortable with perfection, and would resort to tearing it apart so they themselves feel better.

Anyway, if you don't mind me saying.. you're HOT!

12:00 pm  

First time being described as "hot"... *LOL* I'll take it as a compliment. Thank you.

I must add that these comments do not come solely from PY. She was a mere example. I just find it ridiculous how some ppl insist that you look better thinnner when you are seriously borderline underweight.

I like girls who are wholesome - thin but with a nice waist, perky bosoms and a good bottom. Those are the qualities that separate the female form from the male.

You are based in Edinburgh :) I was in Edinburgh a couple of times and the last was to its Fringe Festival where I watched the Penis Puppetry... It was aINTERESTING... and liberating experience.

What are you doing in the city?

1:36 pm  

ever read bridget jones? py sounded like rebecca the jellyfish.

and i am very jealous that you are 164cm and 47kg. i'm just 2cm taller but am almost 50% heavier. gah.

1:42 pm  

I've read Bridget Jones and I don't remember Rebecca the Jellyfish. By the sound of it, she's funny, a cross between Christina Aguilera in Carwash music video and probably Dory of the Finding Nemo fame...

I eat enough to fill me (although E and I have meals consisting of half kilo of spaghetti with a can of cornbeef - that's greedy, I tell you) On days I feel like eating loads, I eat. On days when I don't, I eat lots of vegetable. It's all that my tummy can take *hahaha*

I think society should stop obsessing abt weight. If you are happy the way you are, then that's good enough. Why let people tell you that you are too fat/too thin/too tall/too short/too everything?

And people wonder why children are turning anorexic? It's scary when you hear 8 yr old girls saying that they need to diet. Now that's sick.

1:54 pm  

Haven't you heard the song Intuition by Jewel? Thin/waiflike is out. Curves are in.

4:31 am  

I'm doing my postgrad here.

I just missed the festivals as I moved over in September. Everyone says it's great fun.
Will be around for the next one :)

12:12 pm  

I've heard of Intuition but not understood its lyrics until 5 minutes ago... just so we can carry this conversation on... it appears to me that the song is about body image... now THAT I didn't know...

Oh the Fringe is fantastic. A definitely MUST see. Loved the whole feel of the place. Wished Msia had stuff like that but I think it's gonna be tough luck (esp in West Msia).

12:51 pm  

You're a babe, so don't let other people tell you otherwise :). I'm your weight and only 5 feet 2. I would kill to have your height. Everyone have their plus and minus la. Haaha, so that's a plus to you though I'm not saying that so you can feel better about yourself in comparison to me. Still if that helps, by all means .. hiak-hiaks ^_^! And what the hell is wrong with being UK size 8? I'm size 8 also wat ;)

1:35 am  

Melancholy Thongs
I am just an inch taller, don't think it makes much difference. I would kill to be two inches taller (then I don't have to wear all the kiasu heels that I do - haha).

I guess it's everyone's nature to want more and be more.

BTW you have beautiful eyes =)

1:51 am  

47kg??dats like underweight.i'd do anything to have ur weight

8:14 am  

i'm ur height and 45 kgs. even being terribly underweight, my hips measure 34.5 inches. i can be 40 kgs and still wear a size 8 and look like i weigh 50kg. what to do? huge-ass frame ma...

4:35 am  

Standing at 155cm and I'm a size 8 too.. so what?

I love being size 8, I can actually recall a time when I was bigger, so count your blessings! Plus its somewhat amusing when I can actually fit into a smaller size but end up buying the 8 anyway cause I can't move my shoulders or my boobs look like they are about to burst out and say hello to the crowd..=.=

6:45 pm  

I think that subordinated class is the worst nightmare of every woman, at least so I see my girlfriend and my sister, this becomes a nightmare for anyone, good blog that the theme very nice and interesting.

4:41 pm  

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