I'm a size zero. I get shamed for it all the time.

The secret pain of being thin

Body shame.
(Image credit: iStock)

There were dozens of dresses. Swishy, colorful gowns, hanging in the bridal shop, waiting to be plucked by giddy bridesmaids. I sorted through them, and paused at one I liked. I glanced around to make sure no one in my bridal party was nearby. I picked up the tag and quickly scanned the size: four. I lifted the hanger off the rack and examined the dress. After trying to negotiate the size — the flowing skirt isn't fitted anyway, I thought, so the size won't matter! I'll have to get it hemmed regardless of how long it is! — I concluded that it was definitely going to be too big. I put it back on the rack and opted for a size two. I scurried to the fitting room, while carefully concealing the size tag.

As the other bridesmaids paraded in and out of the fitting rooms in the dresses they'd selected, the other women ooh-ed and ahh-ed. Their support was unwavering and genuine. I stepped out of the room in my dress, pleasantly surprised at how much I liked it. Who said all bridesmaid dresses were terrible?! I received a mashup of praise from the bridal party — "It looks so great!" said one. "Wow, what a beautiful dress!" said another.

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