Today a dear friend asked if I was smaller, and if I had lost weight. It wasn't said with that common tone women use when asking about weight loss though, it was a genuine question. But it got me thinking. We will usually comment on weight loss with a positive phrasing, tinged with a congratulations.
It is rarely repeated for a weight gain, which we usually pretend we can't notice. So why and where has this praise for loss come from?
My initial thoughts is a vague relation to health. A lot of us carry a tad more weight than is perfectly healthy, and many of us can lose a bit of weight and still be a very healthy size. Weight is linked to health and lifestyle difficulties, and therefore it could be pretty logical that we praise each other for slimming down.
The second theory could include some sort of reference to the media pressure to be thin. Are we congratulating each other on getting closer to the perceived ideal of body shape?
Are we just being polite? Do we recognise that commenting on a potential weight loss of a friend will please her? Are we trying to be nice?
Is it a subconscious nod to what we ourselves would like to hear said back to us?
After being asked about my current weight today, I reflected upon how it made me feel. I'm not trying to get smaller, I'm pretty ok about my size. But I do try to make sure I don't get bigger again.
I included a picture of me where I look a tad bigger. Don't get me wrong, I'm far from obese, I'm a 14, rather than my current 12, but that small difference does affect how I feel about myself. I am pretty happy at 12, and would never want to be a 10. If anything, I'd love to sculpt/shape my body with weight lifting, but right now I just don't have the time to dedicate to it!
So.....do you comment on your friends' weight? How do you feel when people say you have lost weight?