Sunday, Feb 25, 2018 | Last Update : 10:44 AM IST

Shame on you, shamers

THE ASIAN AGE. | CATHLINE CHEN
Published : Feb 15, 2018, 12:28 am IST
Updated : Feb 15, 2018, 12:29 am IST

Body shaming is the most cruel thing one can do, feel those who have been shamed.

Gigi Hadid
 Gigi Hadid

She has been in the news, and trolled and shamed for a body which keeps gaining and losing weight. And Gigi Hadid’s response was apt, “For those so determined to come up with why my body has changed over the years, you may not know that when I started @ 17. I was not yet diagnosed w/Hashimoto’s disease; those of u who called me ‘too big for the industry’ were seeing inflammation and water retention.”

Yet, it does not make it right for people to shame someone based on how they look. Some influencers, models and experts share their experiences with ‘body shaming.’

Soniya Thiyam, a model-cum-fashion blogger, was a chubby kid in college, and bullied endlessly, she recalls, “I honestly feel that Gigi did the right thing by giving back, not just because she shut all shamers but also because she is empowering others suffering with her rebuttal. People will always have a problem whether you are big, small, thin or heavy! Some people have the power to deal with shame, some don’t. Those who can’t suffer with depression associated with their diagnosis, whether it’s Hashimoto or Graves’ disease or even diabetes mellitus. I am so glad Gigi voiced her thoughts beautifully.”

For city aqua coach, Pooja Arora body shaming is a topic close to her heart, “Having been an obese child, an awkward teen who was never body confident to being an aqua coach where my job entails being in a swimsuit, I’ve always been scrutinised for my body and body shamed, no matter what my size is. From a school teacher calling me a baby elephant, now I’m a fitness coach and my body is strong and leaner, but definitely not size zero. Recently, I was body shamed by a colleague who said that if you want to survive in the industry, you should get liposuction done at a time when my personal life was playing havoc. What Gigi is going through is just another example of how people think it’s their right to comment on size, especially if it’s a woman. Body shaming has a strong impact on self-confidence. One feels attacked and encroached at a very personal level and no one has the right to do that to you. I give a big thumbs up to Gigi for snubbing her shamers.”

Pinky Chandran, a city-based sociologist feels, “We need to move conversations away from how fat or thin, short or tall, or how our bodies are shaped to how well-nourished — physically, mentally, emotionally, we are, and how healthy. Body shaming is a mental conditioning we are socialised into. Nobody is born thinking about how physically beautiful or not our bodies are. The language used in our homes, schools, and playgrounds have a lifelong impact on how we view ourselves, and it projects insecurities onto others to hide anxieties. It starts with how we talk to our children.”

Tags: designer soniya thiyam, gigi hadid, hashimoto, pinky chandran