Had a medical appointment today, just a bit of physio for an old shoulder niggle and the physio called me skinny!
We were just going through my general health, like you do, and she just came out with it: “Well you are skinny aren’t you?”
I did pause for a slight moment but it was only later on that I thought she really shouldn’t have used that word, especially as a medical professional.
I put the word ‘skinny’ in the same camp as ‘fat’ – in my view it’s quite a harsh way to describe the way someone looks and I don’t for a second think she’d ever call a patient ‘fat’ would she?
So what’s the difference? Why is skinny not offensive but fat is? I think there is an assumption that skinny people are happy with their weight, healthy and content with the way they look which isn’t always the case. Now I can’t claim that I’m terribly unhappy with my body and the way I look, I feel pretty confident, but I have recently battled to put a bit of weight on and I do have to think carefully to make sure I eat properly to stay feeling well – much in the same way people of all sizes do I’m sure.
Think carefully about how you describe someone, be kind! You don’t know what personal battle someone has been through with their body image and a throwaway comment can easily stir an anxiety.
We all have insecurities and if you do have to comment on the way someone looks make sure you do it in a positive way. Today, the only thing skinny about me is the milk in my latte…