No. Stop. Just Stop This Shit

Someone on Facebook sent me a link to a body shaming article.

The headline alone made me furious. This article is about a high school principal who told students that they couldn’t wear leggings if they were over a size 0 or 2. 

Fucking hell, are you kidding me? Seriously? This is what a principal says to these young women? What a piece of shit. What an asshole. I am so done with this bullshit.

Well, then I read the article.

I thought I was super pissed when I read the headline. I wasn’t anywhere near as pissed as I ended up.

The principal is a woman.

A goddamn woman.

A woman told impressionable young women that unless they were very skinny, then wearing leggings would make them look fat.

This shit has to stop.

I don’t know how to say this next thing because it’s going to sound very insulting to men. To the men in my life and the men who read this blog, I know it’s not all men who behave badly. I know this, but so many of you do. I assumed the principal was a man. I was angry, but not shocked. It feels shitty to say that, but it’s true.

Then, I read the principal is a woman and I felt anger and betrayal that makes my stomach hurt.

She needs to step the fuck aside. Women are kicking ass right now. Women are stepping up all over the world. Women are the resistance.

Now this woman is going to body shame the children she is charged with guiding to adulthood?

Fuck. No. We don’t have time for bullshit like this.

We are in peril right now and if there are women who don’t want to step up and help, then at least don’t get in the way. But if you are going to actively hurt women by telling children they look fat, then shame on you.

Shame on you.

I can literally not think of a worse thing to say. Shame was an overwhelming force in my life. I was an expert at feeling ashamed before I reached junior high. Shame is something I hate and and shame is not something I would wish on someone lightly. Shame on this woman. She is what is wrong. 

Do me a favor, okay? It’s a big fucking favor. You might have to leave your comfort zone. But I promise you this, I will not ask you to do something I won’t do.

When you see or hear someone behaving in a way that harms women, point that shit out. Denounce the behavior.

There is no reason to scream and yell and stomp. Although, if that is your preference, then stomp away. 

Just denounce it. Call out bullshit when you see it. I will, too.

Baby steps.

Also, if you are a woman, and you back shit like this up? Step the fuck aside. The rest of us have work to do and if you can’t help, then get out of the goddamn way.


Add your comments below. Profanity is encouraged, but not required. ;)
  1. Paula says:

    This made me want to vomit. Who the hell made her fashion police?!?! Women — girls have a hard enough time without this shit. Of all the things to put someone on administrative leave this bitch should be one. And then she apologized. Too little to late, the damage is done. I had the other problem in school, I was skinny with braces. Nevertheless, I am no longer a 0 or a 2 and I have leggings on right this minute. If she wants to say something, I guess make sure your shirt is long enough. But good gosh, I would rather see leggings than skirts that are too short and underwear showing. Give me a break!

    • Michelle says:

      I am appalled by the whole thing. I wear leggings as well. I personally choose to wear a long shirt because that makes me feel comfortable..but I’m not going to judge people who don’t. Our bodies are our bodies. Period. I’m tired of the shame and the judgement. It’s not productive and it’s not helpful and it is meaningless. My contribution to society will be the same whether I am a size 14 or a 4. The size of my ass does not matter. Nor does how I choose to adorn my ass.

  2. Billie says:

    Shocking. What easier way to utterly shame someone than to make fun of their body? Very triggering to me, too, as my psychopath narc of a father used to shame me at every opportunity about my fat arse which was not fat any way. He was just a twat. He once told me not to bother putting suntan lotion on the backs of my legs as my ass kept it in the shade. Yes, he actually said that when I was about 11 or so. Thank God am no contact.
    Yes, I like your challenge of pulling people up on their anti- women, misogynous behaviour. In public, too. It will not gain me friends, but am so way past caring.

    • Michelle says:

      I am with you. I am beyond caring. And I am so tired of being told to not rock the polite. FUCK POLITE. POLITE ENDS WHEN YOU FAT SHAME! I’m done.

      • Billie says:

        So true. What a fascist that woman must be, to even think that was in any way appropriate or relevant. There’s nothing MORE impolite than shaming another human being because of their appearance, so you are so right Michelle, who cares if it sounds impolite to challenge this type of depicable behaviour? (Sorry, behavior for my US friends).

  3. mydangblog says:

    World: 0
    Hell in a Handbasket: 1 gazillion plus 1

    Honestly, are people just getting stupider? Is it related to climate change, like people’s brains are frying from the sun’s extra radiation? Give my head a shake. She should be fired.

  4. DISgusting! Chick oughta lose her job for this. How did this clueless twat ever get s job working with children?

    Also, is this projection on her part? Is she anorexic or have other food/body issues (on top of being humanity-impaired)?

  5. Lisa K says:

    When I read your fabulous writing?
    I get goosebumps.
    I got chills.

  6. As a man I don’t feel insulted by your words.
    I feel insulted by the shitty example set by other men like me. And, yes, I’m saying “like me” because we share responsibility. I feel insulted that other men think telling women to be ashamed of their bodies is not only acceptable but necessary.
    And I think this principal was influenced by men. There are two very good reasons why you assumed the principal was a man. The first is the job of principal has traditionally been held by men because of an ignorant belief that a woman can run a classroom but not an entire school. The second is men, especially men in positions of authority, say stupid shit like this all the time. And when they do they create the impression that it’s what people in authority are supposed to do.
    Not that I’m letting the principal off the hook. If she’s smart enough to rise to the job of principal she’s smart enough to understand what she’s saying.

  7. Erin says:

    Uggg… I have an adult step daughter who’s like that. So vain and shallow. She fat shames everyone, including her beautiful niece. Called her out on it now I’M the bitch. Lol. I wear the label proudly. Haha

  8. Mary-Anne says:

    It saddens me no end that this is still still happening to our young women.

    Myself – I speak out – and also I wear what I want. I put on a t-shirt dress the other day that I love – but it shows my tummy and my bum and my thighs.
    And you know what?

    Fuck it!

    I love the feel of that dress. And if anyone dares to shame me for wearing it???
    Watch out!

    I also rock my cutoff denim shorts – shar pei thighs and all!

  9. Dara says:

    I forgot who said it, but I say this to myself every morning, “No one can make you feel insecure without your permission.” These girls she is shaming should wear leggings every day and make it a mission to run into her as often as possible and say something nice to her. I like to freak people who are just plain mean by doing that. What a pathetic little life that bitch must have to attack beautiful young girls. Karma Baby! What ever happened to “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anyfuckingthing!”?

    • Michelle says:

      I THINK that was Eleanor Roosevelt who said that. I’m too lazy to google it. haha. And YES…it’s like Thumper’s mom says..if you can’t say anything nice..shut your fucking face hole. Or something like that.

  10. Renee says:

    I saw that article and I was too pissed to even reply….WTH is wrong with people? Especially a woman who is supposed to be in a position where she is affecting these young girls lives and thoughts about themselves in a positive way and this wasn’t it….

  11. Karen says:

    What in the ever living F*ck! This makes me sick. Sounds like the CEO of Abercrombe who didn’t want anyone fat wearing his clothes. Asshole. I am the mother of a 13 year old who is starting to develop. Ironically she is a size 2 but I know that will be changing… soon. She is already concerned and says she is fat. WTF? How do we get this message across that we are all beautiful in our own way, and each have our own special gifts. This principal needs to be put out to pasture. Word.
    PS Michelle I love your blogs… you rock =)

    • Michelle says:

      Thank you so much! And yes, she needs to step the fuck aside. I’m sorry your daughter is struggling, so many young women do because they are bombarded with images and opinions of how we “should” be instead of just being allowed to be.

      • Karen says:

        Thank you Michelle. She is very confident… I just worry as she gets older and changes size and shape she will have body shame. I tell her she is beautiful every day. That is all we can do. Takes a village of woman to stay strong agains morons.

  12. Emily says:

    I hope with all my heart that their parents step up here. Children entering adolescence are really vulnerable and this shit should just not happen.

  13. Mila says:

    For all it’s worth, the principal bitch is probably acting out her own adulthood, where most likely she was denounced in a similar way.
    But you’re right, this shit storm of a cycle needs to stop. Also, I hope she’s a 4 and thus cannot wear leggings.

  14. Kate says:

    YES! I take that challenge as I am already known for forcefully blurting out opinions to strangers. 😉 No problem!

    This woman is projecting her own damaged esteem onto these impressionable girls. Whatever body image issues she was raised with have crippled her psyche to the point where she feels she is doing them a favor by being “real.” Her lack of self awareness is horrific, considering she has been an educator.

    When adults don’t confront their own pain and/or ignorance at some point in their lives, they pass that toxicity and skewed worldview onto young people – their children, or, as in this case, other people’s children.

  15. Shani says:

    (Preface by saying I know guys have self confidence issues too).
    Adults, especially women, need to be the ones to help these young girls/women a) realize their beauty as is and b) realize there is MORE to them then how they look.
    Sorry for the length.
    I was always thin when young. Though my thin at a size 8 at five foot 9 would be considered fat now a days I’m sure.
    Anyway, I was smart, I was artistic, I was kind. But I lacked curves. And so I spent too much time wishing for a body that could be thin yet provide me with a butt and some boobs. I remember being 15 years old and wanting plastic surgery. 15.
    I never felt attractive. Then when I got the boobs (butt never really came) because I gained weight after college I cried. I didn’t lose weight until later (size 4 still with curves) and it was THEN that for about 4 years I was happy with my body. I mention the size and still having curves because it is ridiculous that it took me that to be happy with my body. Thinking logically that was too small for my size but my brain doesn’t think logically for myself on these sorts of things. Then I had life saving surgeries and I am scarred. I’m in my 40s. Given I didn’t care as a kid kid there are about 14 years in my life where I was happy with my body.
    And because I wasn’t/am not happy with it all of the other things mattered/matters less to me when thinking about myself. I’m kind. I’m a hard worker. I’m funny. I’m loved. And so many days (aside from the loved part) none of that matters more to me then the body issues I have.
    Why am I bringing this up in response to your excellent post?Because I think if I had people help me see how warped my mind and priorities were by this physical shit when I was younger it wouldn’t still be so much a big part of my every day. I can’t blame it all on others. Yes I am responsible for myself. Yes I grew up with a mother with narcissistic tendencies and an eating disorder that she still battles. Yes my looks were constantly being harped on growing up and still are. So no, I’m not blaming school or even the outside world for all of it. But they have a part to play too.
    I want better for my younger sisters in humanity. I want them all to work to change the world and let that be what they are most proud of. I see nothing wrong with people working to be their best physical self if it makes them feel better. BUT their entire being shouldn’t be tied into how society sees them in leggings.
    And that should be the lesson that adults in the hell that is school helps them discover/remember.
    So they can grow up to be the awesome chicks that they are fighting the world from evil.

  16. Doug in Oakland says:

    You’re right about the men. Way too many of them believe that women exist for their pleasure, and have been sold an image of women that does not resemble actual, beautiful, women, but was instead created by marketing professionals who figured out the exact image that would push their buttons the hardest in the shortest amount of time. And now they want all women to always look like that, when, really, none of them do, even the models whose images are used in the marketing photos.
    But a woman should know better, especially an education professional. This story makes it sound like that principal never mentally made it past junior high school, which is the last time I remember girls acting like that.
    The words that keep running through my mind as I think about this are “human decency” and I keep thinking she should try to get some.

    • Michelle says:

      Yes! So so so many people need to find their decency. And you are right, we are told to reach for unattainable goals and then are ridiculed when we can’t. I am done with this horse shit.

      • Doug in Oakland says:

        Did you by chance see this guy’s “rules for dating my daughters”? I found them hilarious and somehow thought you would like to see them.

        “J. Warren Welch and his wife, Natasha, have five daughters and wanted to share “rules” that empower their girls, instead of issuing a set of threats.

        “You’ll have to ask them what their rules are. I’m not raising my little girls to be the kind of women who need their daddy to act like a creepy, possessive badass in order for them to be treated with respect. You will respect them, and if you don’t, I promise they won’t need my help putting you back in your place,” he wrote.”

        I read that and thought, wow, those girls sound like pretty much every woman I know. What that says about me and my friends I’m not quite sure, but I definitely like it this way.

  17. Absolutely! I have found myself speaking up for girls and women more and more these days. We really are under siege all over the place. I almost don’t believe the principal said that, for one thing, it’s just plain discriminatory. But you know yourself that women can sometimes be as bad as men when it comes to judging other women. Not me, like you said, no time for this shit.

    • Michelle says:

      Apparently, they recorded her saying it, but I didn’t hear a recording, so I obviously don’t know for sure. And some women are as bad as men. Worse even. I remember an actress, can’t think of her name right now. She was with Hugh the first Austin Powers movie. Nope..can’t come up with it…ANYWAY..she was talking about Jennifer Lopez and said that if her butt were as big as hers, she would kill herself. KILL HERSELF. Over a perfectly gorgeous ass. I just don’t get it.

      I had to look it was driving me crazy. Elizabeth Hurley.

  18. Linda says:

    Yes to everything you said! It’s true we MUST stand together, girls, older women and everyone in between, to stay strong in an increasingly shaming culture. However, we have to acknowledge that some women ARE the enemy. I was painfully thin and got made fun of for it constantly. But my ass was curvy so someone who should know better insisted that I had to diet to lose that ass. As I grew older I realized (1) she was projecting, (2) she hated me for how I was born & nothing could change that and (3) I had a great ass. Luckily, I had positive female role models to somewhat counteract that one horrible person!

  19. Gabrielle Adams says:

    Where has kindness gone? Why are we constantly bombarded with negativity? Even comedy seems to consist mainly of abuse and insults. Watch any current sitcom and you will see what I mean. Demeaning people seems to be an international sport. I am the same size and shape as a hobbit and am in my late 60’s (so probably, according to THAT woman, I have nothing going for me) and I will be wearing leggings until I die. Then I will wear them in hell (asbestos lined). If anyone is offended by my leggings I will follow them everywhere carrying a sign with an arrow pointing to them and saying “This person is a complete FUCKWIT”. I have some leggings with Southpark characters on them just to be really sure of upsetting bigots. I am off to the supermarket in my leggings now. If I see anyone averting their eyes I will bite them. Really hard.

  20. Kate says:

    I read this a while back, and what a 180 from this principal. These teachers decorated the middle school girls’ bathroom with inspiring and encouraging messages. More of this please!

  21. Harry says:

    It’s hard to imagine what was going on in the principal’s mind for her to say that. I mean, I assume this isn’t her first year working with children. Not that it would be okay in pretty much any context, but certainly not for a principal.

    And by the way, I say, “I assume it was a man” all of the time when discussing stupid thing, and I say plenty of stupid things myself…

    • Michelle says:

      We all say stupid things. I am the queen of saying stupid things. I just assume it’s a man if something is said that denigrates or oppresses women. Sometimes we are our own oppressor. That disturbs me to no end.

  22. I read that article a week or so ago. It infuriated me, too. I read some follow up where the senior class wrote a letter in support of her, saying she “made a mistake” and it just made me even more sick and I can’t believe that the student body wasn’t pressured by the administration in some way to show their support so she would not be fired.

    This woman had the gall to say she didn’t mean to hurt anyone. Bull. Shit. What exactly is the intention of saying “you look fat when you wear these, so don’t wear these?” I’m just… twitching in fury.