10 Struggles of Being Not Fat, But Not Skinny Either

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Okay, so I want to start this post off by clarifying that I don’t think I’m fat. However, I know I’m not stick thin. And that’s fine. No I’m not looking for comments from people being like, “OMG Sam you look GREAT” or “girlll you have been looking so thin lately, stop it!” because in all seriousness, I am not Beyonce. I am Sam. And I am really busy so I can’t go to the gym every day like I used to. And I like french fries. And alcohol. But I have a nice looking face, I work out at least three times a week, I drink green smoothies (it’s like, they’re not that healthy, but they look like they are… so whatever), and I’m not obese so I REALLY DON’T GIVE A FUCK.

Here are 10 struggles of being not fat… but not skinny:

1. Analyzing the “You look so thin!” comment on a picture. Wait, do I actually look thin? Because I didn’t lose any weight. Are you just amazed as to how good I look in this picture as opposed to other pictures, or to what I look like in person? People don’t comment “skinny mini” on a skinny person’s picture. So now you have me thinking… do you really think I’m skinny? Or do you think I’m skinny just in that picture?

2. Eating with people you’re not close with. So you’re at a restaurant with a person or a couple people you’re not close with. They could be co-workers, a date, acquaintances (AKA not your BFFs), people you just started to become friends with, etc. You scan the menu and see a lot of things that make you want to have sex, i.e. macaroni and cheese, pizza, a burger with fries. However, your inner skinny person is telling you that should probably get a salad. Your inner fat person, though, is begging you to get the fries… but umm what is everyone else getting? What if no one else gets a big meal? What if they all get salads? You can’t be the fat one who gets carbs. Then they’ll think you’re fat… even though you’re not… but you’re not skinny… so… whatever. You’re getting cheese fries salad. You’ll probably have a snack when you get home. It’s fine.

3. Choosing an outfit to wear out on a weekend night. You can’t cover yourself in an oversized sweater now. You have to look good, which usually means your clothes have to be tight fitting – UGH. You try on an outfit. You look at yourself in the mirror. You look at yourself from the right side. Then the left side. You maybe put on spanx and check out the side views again. Then you take a mirror selfie from a high angle and look at the picture, because the way your phone views you is a great representation of how others are going to view you. Duh. If you’re still not sure if you look fat or not, you send the picture to friends asking for their opinion. And if anyone is around you, you ask them if you look fat… FROM THE SIDE. Eventually, you change approximately six times until you find an outfit you don’t question. Because from the minute you start to question an outfit, you’ve already basically decided that you look fat — even if everyone else thinks you look bangin.’

4. Buying jeans. Especially when people ask you if you need help… and then even worse, when you have to get their help. When answering “what size are you?” you probably say a size below what you actually are, pretend you’re doing okay in the dressing room when they knock and ask, and then leave empty handed… planning to return later when you won’t have to tell people what size you really are. Asking a girl who isn’t skinny but isn’t fat her pants size is like asking any human being how much they weigh – NOT OKAY. They should make some sort of system at stores where you can type in what size you’re looking for and have it magically appear without you having confront anyone about it. Right?! This is 2014. Where is this technology?

5. Wondering what guys refer to you as. Do you they think you’re skinny? Do they call you average? Do they just say you’re a gigantic gross fat ass? And, like, what number are you on that world famous ratings scale? Would you be higher if you were thinner? You wonder these things constantly, and you’ll probably never know the answer. Even when you ask your boyfriend a million and six times. He’s never going to tell you (the truth). Unless he is actually telling you the truth. But you’ll never know. Because you can’t even decide what rating YOU would give yourself. Like if you were a guy would you call yourself skinny or fat? You don’t even KNOW.

6. Taking your cover up off at the beach. This is, legit, the worst thing ever. You don’t want to bend over in a bikini (someone could see your roll!), so you’ve mastered the take-off-the-dress-while-already-lying-down act. Sure you could just wear a one piece to avoid this problem, but you’re not going to wear a fucking one piece – YOU’RE NOT FAT. The struggle continues through your entire beach trip. When coming back to your towel after going in the ocean, you are faced with a big dilemma. You don’t have your cover up on, so you have to lie down quickly before people see your fat shake around too much. But your towel is covered in sand and you don’t want to lie down in sand while wet. However, your alternative is bending down to shake the towel off. I’d rather be a sand monster than bend down in a bikini… thanks.

7. Deciding whether or not to eat free food at work. You don’t want your co-workers to think you’re fat, so you usually say no to the free snacks in the kitchen and you definitely do NOT participate in bagel Wednesday (unless you’re hungover… and vow not to eat anything else the rest of the day). You also bring your own lunch every day instead of eating any sort of free lunch that comes your way. But when a co-worker comes around with cookies she baked for the whole team (or even worse — if she made a couple just for you — gluten free/nut free/dairy free/whatever the fuck you are), you have to eat them. Only an asshole would say no (Right?! Because you don’t want to be the fat ass saying yes to chocolate when every one else is saying no). After you DO indulge at work, you’ll feel bad about your entire life for about a week. Because, after all, you’re on a day diet. AKA you starve yourself during the day because you don’t want anyone to think you eat too much, but when you get home it’s balls to the walls in the pantry. You didn’t eat all day. You’re hungry. It’s fine. And you wonder why you can’t lose weight…

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8. Losing and gaining weight. Any weight. Even if its .2 pounds. You’re already not okay with your weight, and you don’t need it getting higher. You’re so close to being skinny and so close to being overweight. When Regina George said “I just wanna lose 3 pounds,” people were supposed to laugh. But not you. That’s your reality. You just wanna lose 3 pounds. I mean, it could really make all the difference.

9. Trying to figure out what guy(s) are actually interested in you at the bar. They’re talking to you, but are they actually into you? Or are they just thinking of you as the “fat friend” while they try to make their way into your thinner friends’ pants? And then if they DO choose to pursue you for however many minutes you let them, is it because they think you’re thin? Or is it because they’re drunk and you’re there? You are just way too hard on yourself and can’t accept anything for what it is. Would you be into you at a bar? You’re not sure.

10. Explaining to people that you’re staying in because you… just wanna lose 3 pounds. As I said above, a lot of people think 3 pounds is nothin’ …but to you – it’s everything. And a night out means you’re either going to gain 3 pounds after drinking non-stop red bull vodkas and eating late night pizza, or lose 3 pounds after throwing up everything you’ve consumed in the past week due to too many red bull vodkas. But it’s a risk. And it’s one you’re not always willing to take. Sometimes you just need ‘a weekend‘ to feel skinny again. No, you’re not magically losing a pants size overnight. But in your mind you are. And guess what – whether you feel fat or skinny – it’s all in your head!

You’re not skinny. You’re not fat. YOU’RE AVERAGE. And you look fine. Get over it.

Samantha Matt

Hi I’m Sam. I made this website in 2011 and it’s still going. I like pizza, French fries, barre class, spinning, more pizza, more French fries, and clothes. I have a serious shopping problem. Writing is fun. Follow me on the twitter - @samanthamatt1.

24 Comments
  1. Boo. Just boo. This article is so depressing. You know what makes me feel better about myself, getting out of my own head, to stop fixating on all the problems I have and helping someone else. Nobody thinks about me, never mind obsesses about me as much as I do so I just put my big girl panties on and go out into the world because there are way too many real problems going on out there to be consumed with having a “fat day”. Do I still get them yes but I try my best to get over them and grow the fuck up because LIFE.

  2. Oooooooh girl, I am right there with you. Trying on jeans is THE WORST. The beach cover up just stays on until I go in the water, which is, like, never. And I am always down for free bagel day. Always.

  3. Thank you for epitomizing me, and 99% of women I know. The thing about the jeans though, they have invented something for that. Check out Charlie’s Jeans in Philadelphia. They’ve been around for years but you walk in, and they already know what size you wear. You just put them on and they fit. It’s insane.

    If you’re not in the area, I think they’re going to start selling online soon via the brand they carry (Sebastian McCall)’s website. It’ll be interesting to see how it turns out.

  4. 1) This is really sad. As a fat girl, I can tell you that I don’t stress out about this stuff half as much as you–and apparently not-skinny/not-fat girls everywhere?–seem to. Maybe it’s time for some yoga and therapy and self-acceptance training? Life’s too short to worry about belly rolls.

    2) Gluten-free isn’t a real thing unless you have Celiac’s. The scientist who came up with it reversed his decision recently. So unless you are a physician-diagnosed celiac, go ahead and have that bagel.

  5. these are fat people problems dressed in medium people clothing. If you go to the gym 3 times a week and have these problems you need to re-evaluate what it is you’re doing there. Eat healthier. Don’t even consider the burger and fries except on rare treat days. If you think about how bad it is for you maybe it’ll gross you out and you won’t want it at all anymore. Eat vegetables and lean meats, use cardio machines for more than a half hour, and get sleep. Then your next article can be you owning how you used to be fat instead of denying that you are,

    1. That is a really horrible thing to say. I mean really, we ‘not fat, not skinny’ people are just BORN like that. I’m not fat, I know it, but I’m not a flippin’ BARBIE. And like Sam said, losing 3 pounds makes all the difference. More to the point, why are you reading an article that is supposed to make women like me feel better, and just pushing it away like it’s nothing? Something about that just makes me feel as if you don’t like hearing it. If you have a problem with this article, then say it. But you can’t label people like myself, like Sam, as ‘fat people dressed in medium people clothing’. That’s wrong, and I hope you learn that soon, because you need to. Oh, and by the way, this is from a girl who is under 18, so just be careful what you say on the internet.

      1. She did state she had a problem with the article. The entire thing is pretty offensive towards fat people of you think about it. Like the author is desperate not to accept she’s chubby so she makes it sound like it’s a sin. This whole article is shameful. If you have this Manu problems see a counselor and work on your personal body image.

    2. The author never said she overweight* (not fat), she said she was AVERAGE. It’s not about eating healthy or killing yourself in the gym, it’s the way her body is. And I can relate because I fit into that category as well. I’m nowhere near overweight but I’m not starving. Oh and FYI I actually AM a medium not “a fat person in medium clothing”. How much more insensitive can a person get? Geez.

  6. Also when you are in between fat & skinny, if you lose a few pounds ur clothes dont fit or if u gain a few pounds ur clothes dont fit, its a win/lose battle.

    1. This is totally where I am! I’m like halfway between two sizes so all of my clothes have the potential to be too big or too small on any given day.

  7. lol like being skinny is any different, people go “damn your skinny what do you eat? you should eat more”

    if you skip eating lunch there like OH MY GOD you should eat lunch

    I am a skinny guy and look weak apparently but I put to shame people with bigger mass of muscles than myself.

    I this one guy people said was stronger than me we were goofing off wrestling he was shaking every muscle I was steady as a rock the whole time, I say that cause I was not even breaking a sweat and this guy was a football player in college”

    girls say they’re attracted to stronger guys then myself, without actually knowing how strong I am.

    they think cause I am skinny I can’t even pick them up lol I can bench press 500 pounds leg press 1000 pounds.

    so being skinny is not a good goal, your personality is what should shine not how you look if you want to know what guys look for as well as women its simple.

    everyone is looking for someone that loves themselves for who they are and is not afraid to express it, they are drawn to you no matter how you look if you are.

    no one wants to be around those that are self hating cause then what will happen if you get involved will that self hate make you regret ever knowing the person and make you hate yourself?

    my friend was obese you think he had any problem making friends? nope not at all quite the opposite his personality was one of the best ones I seen with a sense of humour to boot, he could make fun of himself far better then anyone calling him fat.

    and he did that alot lol, so its not what you are it’s who you are. yes the old saying rings true.

  8. This is so spot on! It’s like I wrote it myself! This is my daily running stream of consciousness. Soooo many women of all ages can relate. Thank you.

  9. Holy shit, half of this stuff reeks of eating disorder (or at least extremely unhealthy body image). Everyone has fat days, but obsessing over .2 pounds is probably a sign that your priorities are more than a little insane.

  10. SO TRUE. This is sooo like me. Even if I’m ‘too young’ they say, you have to battle because that’s just how society is. You know, everyone is fooling themselves and shit. How dumb. I am working out everyday but I’m also eating junk everyday. And that’s why I remain the fucking same everyday. Not improving, but also not getting worse. Fuck my life.

  11. Hahahah! i love this. Specially the part about people commenting on your photos or appearance saying ‘YOU LOOK SO SkINNY!’ or ‘HAVE YOU LOST WEIGHT?’ its like: was i big before or something???

  12. LoL – I used to be size 00 was a size 00 right up until age 50 – then menopause hits, you suddenly lose all your precious estrogen, hormones are completely out of whack. Nothing can prepare you for it – you can work out insanely 5 days a week and eat a healthy balanced diet, but menopause and your body don’t care, Ir’s an instant 25 lb weight gain, all around the middle. Sorry girls, but many of you will find yourselves in the “not fat but not skinny” catagory one day too. And you know what? it sucks. I liked this article because it describes me to a T now. Menopause, the great equalizer.

  13. It’s been years since this was published but I just came across it tonight and thought it was laugh out loud hilarious. Especially the part about asking your boyfriend how you look. If you look good, they say you look good. If you don’t look good, they still say you look good. So you never really know!

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