Acquaintance: “You look good! Have you - starved your body since I saw you last, causing a whole host of side effects and harming your psychological well-being, while almost certainly accomplishing nothing long-lasting because nearly 100% of people gain back more pounds than they shed - lost weight?”
Friend: “You look good! Have you - gone to bed hungry, woken up hungry, shivered your way through life because your body couldn’t warm itself - lost weight?”
Mother: “You look good! Have you - listened to all the cruel things the world says, realized that you’ll probably never find a job, been shouted at from street corners, found discrimination in medicine and education, internalized all the hate and disgust and loathing directed at you and your body - lost weight?”
Body: “I look… sick. You have starved me, over-exercised me, depleted my immune system, caused nutritional deficiencies, reduced yourself to tears, crashed my metabolism, stripped me of my natural defenses, and overall treated me abysmally. And now I will fight like hell to regain my old size, because knowing what you are capable of, I need to protect myself in case you try to do it again.”
Thin privilege is not hearing the unspoken words behind everyone’s happy ‘compliments’. Thin privilege is not being gushed over by everyone you know when you’ve starved yourself and/or been ill, because you are thinner, and that is all that matters. Thin privilege is not having people think that the ultimate compliment they can give you is to tell you that you look like there is less of you.