On the operating table, I was prepped for the procedure by a female nurse and a male doctor. When the nurse lifted the hospital gown above my abdomen, she exclaimed, “Look at that pretty flat stomach!”
I processed this statement for a moment. A medical professional had complimented me on my thinness, which was so extreme as to prevent me from having life-saving surgery, while prepping me for a procedure intended to help me gain weight.
To his credit, the doctor quickly snapped, “That’s the problem!” but her message couldn’t have been clearer.
We live in a culture that so values thinness, that values such extreme thinness, that I received a compliment about my body when I was on an operating table, when I was so ill and weighed so little that doctors feared I might not survive major surgery.— Amber Leab, guest posting at Shakesville
Your daily reminder
…that everyone in Hollywood is really, really hungry.
Sex And The City star Kim Cattrall has confessed to being on a diet for most of her adult life. And the svelte actress, 54, admitted she is finding it harder to stay in shape as she gets older. ‘I’ve been dieting my whole life because I have a tremendous appetite,’ she said.
No, you’ve been dieting your whole life because you have an appetite, and you have a job that requires you not to.
R.I.P. Isabelle Caro
Dodai at Jezebel reports that Isabelle Caro, French model turned anti-anorexia activist, died last month. Caro’s billboard campaign was controversial in part because it relied on the visual shock of her naked body, thematizing one of the biggest fears of a person with anorexia: that one’s body will be uncontrollably exposed to the scrutiny of the world at large.
If we want to live in a community in which people are not vilified for the size and shape of their bodies, then we have to be part of creating that community. One way of doing that, as I know many readers have seen for themselves, is by speaking up when you see fatphobia in action. Another way is to deflate and correct unrealistic expectations that are imposed upon us — doing a scaled-down version of what Isabelle Caro has done in the anti-anorexia campaign: telling the truth when we expect to see lies.
Rest in peace, Isabelle Caro. Thank you for your activism.
One article, two quotes
- It’s not a secret that stars have to watch their weight […] and for “Big Love” actress Ginnifer Goodwin, the answer has been to stick to Weight Watchers…for the long haul. Goodwin reveals in the January/February 2011 issue of Health magazine that she’s been on Weight Watchers since she was 9, and in fact, she was back on it at the time of the interview.
- “And working with my amazing stylist, I’m really good at hiding things, so I’m always pretty confident. Except when I’m in a bathing suit. It doesn’t matter what my body looks like, I hate putting on bathing suits in front of other people.”
A Christmas gift for everyone who is not a Hollywood actress, and also everyone who is: