So, I just came across a meme on social media the other day that said this:
“I’d rather eat pizza and drink wine than be a size zero.”- Sophia Loren
Most men responding to this post went gaga about how they like women where there’s something to grasp, how they like the kind of bodies that were depicted in our temples, how only women with love handles are the ones who can be called women.
Then there are memes that say things like “You’re fat. Don’t sugarcoat it, cause you’ll eat that too.”
There’s fat shaming and there’s fit or skinny shaming. And no end to opinions about both of them. I have stopped even pausing to glance at these memes or taking part in these discussions.
Arbitrary Standards of Beauty
I find imposed standards of beauty a little silly because they’re so arbitrary across the world; because women’s bodies are different across the world.
An Indian woman’s body is very different from a French or Chinese woman’s body, just like a Brazilian woman’s body is different from a Japanese one. Indian women tend to have bigger breasts and hips, while Japanese women are shorter with smaller frames.
Let’s face it, we don’t usually look very good in western clothes just like a Caucasian doesn’t usually look good in a saree. There’s something very special about our curves that a saree brings out the best in. Regardless of our cultural backgrounds, we should be very proud of the way we are genetically made. And at the same time dress in clothes we feel the most comfortable in. The brain is the best guide there.
As for me, society considers me to be a freaky Indian. I have a Keira Knightley kind of bone structure with collar bones jutting out and skinny arms. I also have small breasts, which I can assure you, is a sacrilege in India. And believe me, I’ve had to bear the brunt of a lot of jokes right from my teenage years to this day, and quite a few times from other women.
And I have always been reminded - not so politely - that Indian men abhor my body type.
Every once in a while, I recommend stripping down in front of a full length mirror and taking a good look at yourself. The beautiful you. Your body is one of nature’s best creations. Explore it. Run your hands over it and discover the parts that are sensitive to the touch, parts that are erogenous for you and not what all those erotic books and movies tell us.
Learn to make love to yourself. It’s a beautiful thing that makes you feel rather complete. I promise you, you’ll feel a sense of empowerment and liberation that’s unique just to you.
A uniqueness just like your own body.