Thoughts about weight, ice cream, and how men treat women…
As some people who follow our blog might know, I work in an ice cream shop. Last night we were very busy and on two occasions, I noticed something happen with customers. In the first exchange, there was a family with two teenaged daughters, a mother and father. One of my coworkers was jotting down their order while I worked on scooping my own. The daughter ordered a cone with, maybe, two scoops? And the father turns to her and declares, “You’d better fit in that five hundred dollar prom gown I bought you.” The girl said nothing, and her sister cut in with, “Dad, she’ll fit!” If that girl went home and made herself throw up, or at least was completely unable to enjoy her dessert, I wouldn’t be surprised. The man the words came from wasn’t much of a trim athlete himself, and she was honestly gorgeous and fit, so… well. Fuck him.
Next there was a couple that I served. I passed out their sundae and cone and the man turned to the wife (who was a few feet away) and called to her, “I think somebody’s going to have to run a few miles tomorrow!” She couldn’t hear him, so he repeats this to her three times before she nods and responds with a half-hearted, “Yeah.”
Where do men (nay, people in general) get off telling women how to live their lives, what to eat, how to eat it, what to wear and how clothes should look on their bodies? It’s a wonder that society seems so puzzled about eating disorders when we have douchebags attached to girls saying things that make them feel beyond insecure. Now, you could argue that in the second case, she could just dump the man (never mind the fact that they might live together, may have been married, etc…)- but in the first instance, that girl presumably lives with her father and has been since birth, and will until she hopefully moves out. So, she’s stuck with this hyper-critical voice of a man who has no idea what power his words carry.
From personal experience, nothing made me feel worse than when my dad would grin, pinch my side and chuckle, “You’re getting a belly there, kiddo.” At the time, I was crushed. Now, I wouldn’t care very much and would call him out— I mean, I love my tummy and my goofy-ass dad. But, for the average girl who is unexposed to fat acceptance, indeed, to the average girl who isn’t even fat and just needs to hear about BODY acceptance, no matter how sweet their father/brother/whoever is, the jokes those men make are serious.
I hope those girls enjoyed their ice cream. I mean, we make some quality shit. And I hope they could get ready for bed, look in the mirror, and see the same beautiful women that I saw.
What’s really weird is that’s what my mom does. She’s the one who tries to get me to stop eating or drinking sodas. She keeps telling me that if I eat something I’m going to need to work it off. It kind of hurts but I get through it because my dad is the opposite. Every time my mom does something like that he tells me to have another helping and that he’ll laze around with me on the couch for a few hours afterwards. He never comments on my size but my mom shuts me down when she tells me that I can’t buy a two piece swimsuit because of my stomach. It’s a little exhausting if you ask me.
I agree. This isn’t about how men treat women, this is about how parents treat their children. My dad could care less what I eat. He’d like me to get outside but that’s more coming from a “you are a lazy bum” place than “you are fat” place. My mom, however, has resorted to shaming me on more than one occasion to influence my eating habits since I hit puberty when I was eight. She still sometimes bullies me about eating habit nineteen years later every so often as well.
The latest food dramaz between my mom and me was when I started eating bread again because I was making it myself. I usually substitute a tortilla in place of bread. She just RODE me about the bread even though I know that if you look in terms of salt, sugar, and calories, a tortilla and a piece of bread are actually probably maybe 98% the same.
Now I just make bread occasionally not because I feel shame with it or anything. I just don’t want to have to listen to her lecture me for a whole week straight. I didn’t even eat more bread helpings than I have tortilla helpings, so I honestly have no clue why it has to be such a big deal when I make it.