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Speak Up: Holidays, Family Visits, and Comments About Your Weight

If you're like me, you don't get to see your extended family too often, except around holidays. No matter what, I always get comments from relatives about how I look (that's just how my family is). It makes me feel self-conscious, especially when the heavier-set women remark about my thin frame. It's not that I'm super skinny at all, I just eat right and work out, and well, they don't. Does this happen to you? How do you feel about this time of year, when you get together with family members and they comment about your figure? If you have lost weight and a relative notices does it make you happy or uncomfortable?

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DivaDivine DivaDivine 7 years
My aunt is especially insecure and used to taunt me about my weight all the time because she was "worried about my health". She called me fat every chance she got--even though she's roughly 80+ lbs overweight. Now that I've lost 45 lbs, she tells me I should stop because I look like a crackhead. Ah, the holidays :|
arcticpuppet arcticpuppet 7 years
i hate this type of stuff! don't even get me started on it :P i just would like to know why it is ok to interrogate someone about how thin they are, yet it is rude to tell someone they have put on weight. makes no sense to me.
Zulkey Zulkey 7 years
I used to be overweight and I have 2 family members who always comment about how skinny I'm getting (I've been maintaining my weight for a few years now--I guess they're just not used to it or expect me to gain it back). I don't know, I don't love it but it doesn't bug me that much. I feel bad for them I guess if they don't feel comfortable in their own skin but I've worked hard to get where I am, in a healthy way, and I'm not going to be derailed by a few annual snarky comments. Although I did get demoted to the kids' table one year to get an "ego check."
Beaner Beaner 7 years
My hubby's family is super-conscious about weight. They're always trying to lose weight or complaining about their bodies. I've had my own struggles with weight, and with a healthy diet and regular exercise, the past two years, I lost the weight I wanted. So now when I see them they see things like, "You're so skinny," or "Did you lose more weight?" I know they're just being nice, and think they're complimenting me, but I feel really uncomfortable because they're so observant. What happens if I gain weight? I just hate that people are so critical when it comes to appearance.
kittyhawk78 kittyhawk78 7 years
I get those kinds of comments too. It smarts most especially when it looks like I'm being dressed down in front of colleagues. As a food writer it's almost expected that I be bulky and obese. They see that I eat multiple portions just like they do yet they still comment about my skinniness. Other people don't realize just how rude they're being when they comment on my weight. I have my moments, too, when I feel like telling them they're getting fatter than ever! You're all right to say that they (these other people) should adapt an exercise regimen. I have a yoga home-practice and I pick my food: very lean meat if at all, mostly veg, no salt, and still working on the sugar. I'm glad to know this group exists. Thanks for posting this topic!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 7 years
I get a lot of weight/body comments from my husband's family. Truthfully, it bothers me, as the comments stem from resentment rather than praise. Sometimes, I don't receive comments, but get the rude looks. My sister-in-laws are notorious for this. They size me up, and look me up and down, and there are dark expressions on their faces. One time, one sister-in-law blatantly asked, "What bra size do you wear? What size dress is that?" I happened to be a natural 34C, and my dress was a 4p. I told her gently, and she did not seem to like it. Over the summer, we received a visit from another sister-in-law. I had grown out my hair. It was past my shoulders. She grabbed my hair (so rude), and said,"This is so thick. Do you have extensions?" I told her no, and gently took my hair back. I wish they would keep those pushy inquiries (and up-and-down looks) to themselves. I find it so rude.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 7 years
yogaforlife - thanks! I've considered just telling them I've taken up exotic dancing, but I don't think they'd find it so funny.
genipher85 genipher85 7 years
I recently lost 40 pounds, but I guess it isn't noticable. No one has said anything.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
I get the same type of comments that a lot of you get--you're too skinny, you need to eat more, etc. from my family. Although, I must say that lately it's stopping because my aunt (who used to be really really heavy) lost about 70 lbs this past year and my sis is trying to lose her baby weight. I guess in comparison to everyone else, I always looked really thin so people acted like they were all concerned about me. But now, they're starting to realize that life is not all about food and they are adopting healthier habits as well.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
I come from a big Mexican family, physically and literally. Many of my extended family are overweight and many of them have server illnesses like diabetes. Last year I slimmed down from 160 to 120 (currently 130) and at the annual Christmas party, mi familia would call me "flaca", comment how I'm even more "wetta" than before (wetta means = white/fair girl) and would pile things on my plate to eat. It was annoying but they care. I don't want to be fat an unhealthy, which I was, but if I hear that I need to put more meat on my bones I will chuck a tamale at their heads or perhaps I'll just wear a big sweater :)
kclulu kclulu 7 years
"You wouldn't be so cold if you put some meat on your bones." JMarsh512, I get that all the time! These comments used to bother me but I know that I am healthy and happy and if someone else feels the need to comment on it then that is more a reflection on them. This is not so easy to do with my boyfriends family members though. He recently lost about 30 pounds (before he met me) and I am very into fitness and eating healthy so his interest has been futhered since he met me. He gets a lot of crap about it from them and it is hard for me to hold my tongue! God forbid a family member that you love and care for has taken interest in his health and wants to better himself. Neither of us ever comment or say anything about the way they eat. We never bring up the way we eat or exercise either because it can feel like shoving it down their throats, yet they still have to say something. It is strange that when it comes to weight, people feel like they can say whatever they want as long as they frame it like they are concerned and it is also strange that we take it so personally when they do.
Yogaforlife Yogaforlife 7 years
OH - TLS - they need some compassion! Tell them to try and switch careers and find a new job and see how easy it is!
tlsgirl tlsgirl 7 years
I don't get comments about my weight. I just wish that my relatives would stop asking about my job search. I graduated in the worst recession ever! Shut up!
tuliprush tuliprush 7 years
My weight has fluctuated a lot over the last few years, and it seems that every Xmas, I am back to my thin side. So I feel like every Xmas, when I see family that I have only seem sparingly throughout the year, I am getting bombarded with "Wow! You lost weight!! How'd you do it??" I find it sooooo uncomfortable b/c we just had this conversation last year, and it's a reminder they saw me gain it back, and lose it again. Oh well, since I won't be gaining any weight back in 2010, I won't have to hear it next Xmas =)
Yogaforlife Yogaforlife 7 years
My family would only be so kind to stop at my weight. They don't see me as often and normally comment about me being "too thin" and how "you'd be healthier if you put on weight". They're all overweight and seem to forget that I've always been really thin - it doesn't matter what I eat. They're convinced that as long as I'm on the thin side, I'm going to be susceptible to catching a cold and dying from it. They don't stop at weight though - normally they comment about my hair, how they hate the length and wish I'd grow it out long like when I was a little girl, and how they hate that I dye it darker instead of wearing it my natural blonde. They like to make fun of me for being so pale and that I should go to the tanning bed (even after my mom has had cancerous moles removed!) and according to them, I always look tired. My husband gets so pissed and can barely hold his tongue when they start criticizing me. I get it from his side of the family too - they tell me I always look sick because I'm so pale. How is this not offensive? You're telling me my natural skin tone is sickly!!
Arike Arike 7 years
I get comments around the holidays from extended family because I have lost weight, but they are positive and they usually want to know how I did it because they all want to lose weight too. I know this year I am going to get comments because last time they saw me I was 2 months postpartum and since then I have lost all the pregnancy weight and I am smaller than I was before because I intense weight training.(thank you P90X!) I hate comments from my mom though because she only mentions negative things; she rarely ever compliments me on my efforts.
JMarsh512 JMarsh512 7 years
I have a naturally thin build- 5'10' and about 130-135 lbs... everyone, from family friends to coworkers, seem to think that it's OK to comment on my weight. I agree with Chloe- it would never be appropriate for me to say, Wow... you're getting fat. What makes people think that it's appropriate to comment on MY weight, just because I'm thin? Because it's considered the ideal? Jealousy? IDK. "You wouldn't be so cold if you put some meat on your bones." "You've lost more weight." "You're looking as stick thin as ever!"
graldi19 graldi19 7 years
This happens to me too! I'm very thin, but healthy, thanks to eating well and working out and my relatives looove to tell me to fatten up! Its so frustrating. Sometimes I'll purposely wear bulkier sweaters and stuff just to look a little meatier. But I like the way I look and live my life so hopefully they'll leave me alone one of these days....
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
Yes, I get the exact same thing! The absolute worst was the year I came home from college and explained that I had become a vegetarian. I was met with what can only be described as a mixture of shock and disgust. I'm still trying to figure out a good way to respond to it, but usually when someone comments on how thin I am, I say something like "oh, I just look the same as always" or "well, I've been running a lot lately," etc. It's so annoying an inappropriate. I mean, I don't look at people and say "wow, you've really packed on the pounds this year!"
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