5 Fatphobic Comments More Indigestible than Greasy Chole Bhature

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We were not born body positive or negative or neutral. Infants were not born knowing that there is a wrong or right way to have a body. We were conditioned slowly and taught through punishment and reinforcement. That’s how we learn anything in life. Society slowly taught us to measure our self-esteem using the weighing scale. The disgust at the fat on our bellies and thighs and the lust at the fat on our breasts and butts, speaks volumes about how our bodies are just looked at from the male gaze. Our vocabulary has been invaded by the male gaze, which never left.

Skinny has pervaded our ideologies from narrow jeans to narrow t-shirts to a narrow mindset also. The waists of our minds are so narrow that we fail to see anybody who is not as skinny as unacceptable. The idea of fat is so dangerous and cellulite is looked at as scary. Indian society looks at it as humiliating and inferior and discriminates against women by this thin yardstick.

We have sifted some comments which women receive all the time about their body type which are more indigestible than your local Chole Bhature:

1. “Kamar se patli ho jao. Sab theek ho jayega.”

Waistlines of Indian women often remain objects of scorching gazes and continuous ogling. If these waistlines do not fit a particular size or shape, they are condemned. The life of a woman is attributed to her sex appeal and beauty. Career, personal life, familial happiness, and social identity are shaped stubbornly. Weight is given the power to define one’s confidence and self-esteem. Being fat is almost synonymous with being an insult in Indian households.

2. “Tabhi shaadi nahi ho rahi, Ladki heavy haina.”

As much as body type defines a woman, her relationship status also determines the snippets of respect she shall be given in society. A single woman is often looked at as an aberration. Her status is then painstakingly attributed to her cellulite and weight. The chances of her being worthy enough to receive a groom are directly proportional to her body type. The institution of marriage and the parameters reek of misogyny.

Also Read: Girl Talk: Should I Feel Guilty About Losing My Virginity Before Marriage?

3. “Bahu toh patli-dubli honi chahiye.”

Once we take off the blingy lenses which we use to look at the celebration and frolic during weddings, we must notice how the pressure on the bride is to look a certain way, to have a certain complexion, to be of a certain shape, whereas the groom rarely goes through these pressures. A stable job, career, good habits, and family background can still be developed over time through hard work and reasonable intention. Our body types are the result of complex genetics, social background, cultural habits, and often illnesses and psychosomatic causes. There is zero sensitivity in the Indian society for these causes.

4.“Healthy hai ladki thori si. Beta aapne gym try Kiya?”

The word healthy is often used as a polite disguise to remind a woman of her increasing weight or cellulite. It reeks of silent hatred and disgust at a woman who forgot to keep herself in shape because society doesn’t approve. Our lives are so focused on the validation and approval we receive through our bodies that we do not know any other way to feel good about ourselves. Gyms are places of becoming socially desirable instead of exercising to stay fit and agile.

5.“Khaana ek time ka chor do. Apne aap pet andar.”

The food of a woman is often controlled post-puberty so that her body remains proportionate and does not increase undesirably. Women have been sculpted since birth like potters shape objects. Only difference is that objects do not require rights and we do. Our bodies have looked at the mirror from the male gaze since primal times. After all, without a man, who would tell us that breasts should be big? Or tummies should be flat?

Also Read: Comedian Bharti Singh Nails It In Body Positive Campaign

Akshita Chugh is an Intern with SheThePeopleTV, views expressed are author’s own