Have you gals seen the recent results from the Weight Stereotyping survey from Glamour? It had some interesting results,like overweight women were 6 times more likely to be viewed as lazy? On the other side of the scale, lean women were 8 times more likely to be perceived as vain.
So what do you think about the survey’s findings? They’re interesting, for sure. But are they shocking? I don’t really think so. The stereotype that skinny women are bitches has been around for decades, just like the stereotype that heavy women are sloths. What I was interested in learning about, which incidentally the survey didn’t cover, was why people believed these stereotypes to be true.
I think stereotypes are often based on one (or several) very real incidents. For example, if you’ve been mugged twice by two Afro-American males you may start thinking that all people in the ethnic group are robbers, especially if you’ve had little to no interaction with the group besides the mugging encounters. If you experienced teenage tyranny at that hands of a catty sneering girl, who also happened to be thin, it wouldn’t be totally incomprehensible why you were wary of anyone who reminded you of her. And as for the whole “fat people are lazy” thing, I’m not really sure. I always thought the stereotype referred to the belief that the overweight are too lazy to do anything about their weight, but according to the study the overweight aren’t just considered to be lazy about their diets but their jobs as well.
The chances are pretty high that in your lifetime you may meet people who actually hold true to these weight stereotypes. I’ve certainly met my fair share of “skinny bitches” and I’ve also know plenty of overweight people who are self admittedly too lazy to change their lifestyle. But here’s the thing- being skinny is not indicative of being a bitch. Being fat is not necessarily a sign of laziness. The fact is that human beings are complex creatures. Sometimes were nice. Sometimes we’re not. Sometimes we’re ambitious, and at other times we rather be on the couch. I’m not sure why we can’t understand this.
I’ve certainly been inappropriately questioned about my diet habits, how much I work out, and if I do anything else to stay thin. If I believe the questioner genuinely wants to know in order to apply my methods for their own use I’ll give an honest answer. But mostly I get the sense that people are just hoping to hear that I resort to extreme practices to maintain my look. I don’t answer them. Sometimes I’ve straight up lied. I don’t feel bad about this. I’m not going to feed into someone’s insecurity and jealousy issues. And that’s really the issue, isn’t it? That people are insecure and self-hating and in means to cope with this they look towards others to tare down.
So, what do you think about the survey? Do you think the results are true? What else do you think should have been in the survey? Have people stereotyped you? Maybe you’ve been the one doing the stereotyping? Let’s discuss below.