What’s Weight got to do with it?

Hey Leggy Lovelies,

Last week on the ATTT Facebook page, I posted that a well known magazine was looking to feature a woman over 6 foot who weighed 10 stone.

It caused a bit of upset amongst a few of you; initially from ladies who believed that a 10 stone woman over 6 foot was dangerously underweight, and then from others of you who ARE that weight defending your natural slimness. It was the first time in the history of All the Tall things when we’d discussed weight rather than height, or at least, our perceived relationship between weight and height.

‘Weight’ is an issue that affects most women at one time or another, but I couldn’t help thinking about how it specifically affects women over 5’10. As someone who battled eating problems when I was younger (12 stone seemed so big when all my friends were a diddy 8 stone — It DEFINITELY WASN’T), your comments on Facebook really got me thinking.

When I was 19, at university, and supposedly having the time of my life, I became obsessed with my weight. I would write down every calorie consumed and chastise myself if I ever had a binge. I became dangerously thin. My skin went grey, my eyes went hollow and my periods were erratic. I would go out clubbing and be so cold that I’d go and sit in the toilets for half the night under the hand dryers. I would lie awake, starving, counting down the hours until I could have the handful of sultana bran I’d allow myself to eat for breakfast. I’d have huge highs of emotion followed by crashing lows. I was a dull, miserable and freezing cold shadow of my former self.

Why did it happen? Various reasons, some too cliched to even mention. But I can’t help thinking that my height may have given me a skewed idea of my own body image. I felt a lot bigger than my friends. I’d look at photos of me next to a 5’6 size 8 girl and feel huge. I dated skinnier, shorter men than me and wondered if I should be ‘improving’ myself by bring thinner.

Fortunately I was one of the lucky ones and came out the other side of it within a couple of years. I dread to think what would have happened if I hadn’t. A lot of people say that once you’ve had an eating disorder, you’re always susceptible to it again. But I know my triggers and how to avoid them; I never read magazines about dieting, I literally walk away when my friends talk about their weight, and most importantly, I threw out the scales and am proud to say that this new year marked ten years since the last time I weighed myself. I refused to let the midwives tell me what I weighed during pregnancy, and it was so liberating. I’m slim now because I exercise (not obsessively), and try to eat healthily (sometimes!), but I’ll never be much thinner again because I know how miserable I was in reality.

But now being the proud parent of a baby girl, it terrifies me that she will one day see images of ‘thigh-gaps’ (not even a concept that existed when I was a teenager), protruding collar bones and glossy, airbrushed images of celebrities, and see those as goals. It’s made me even more determined to stay on track with my idea of a healthy body image, and banish weighing scales from the house forever. And it worries me that young women (or any women for that matter) that read this blog might be going through a similar thing that I went through.

So here are some myths that need busting, NOW.

1) Tall women are naturally skinny.

Um, no.ย 
We hopefully all know that this is bullsh*t. Not everyone has hollow legs. I know petite women who can do three rounds at the Carvery. I know tall women who sniff a cheesecake and get instant fat face. Give yourself a break. It’s fine for a 5’1 woman to be a size 16, and it’s fine for a 6’1 woman to be a size 16 as well.ย 

2) ‘Weight’ matters.

Do your clothes fit? Can you climb the stairs without fainting? Yes? Chuck the scales out then. And NEVER compare your weight with a person of ‘normal’ height. Your skeleton is twice as long for a start. Your head is bigger. Your feet are massive. YOU WILL NOT WEIGH WHAT CHERYL FERNANDEZ-VERSINI WEIGHS.ย 

3) Your hubby/boyfriend/one-night-stand should be bigger and taller than you.

Unless you’re particularly fussy or happen to use the Dutch version of Tinder, your other half could well be about a foot shorter than you. He might even — gasp — be thinner than you too. If you’re dating the kind of man who can eat KFC bucket after KFC bucket and still not pinch an inch, you may want to hate him at times, but if he loves you for who you are, then remember that kindness, good humour and excellent manners are much more important than the ability to make you feel tiny.ย 

I’m really interested to know your thoughts on weight as a tall woman. Do you think your height has had a negative or positive affect on your attitude towards your weight and frame? If you’ve also suffered from an eating disorder, do you feel like your height was a factor?

You’re never going to feel ‘little’. You might rarely be described as ‘cute’. But you can be glamorous, statuesque, feminine, commanding and strong. Once you accept the fact that you’ll never have the build of your smaller mates, you can start loving everything you do have. Remember, life is short. Even if you’re not.

L xx

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90 Responses to What’s Weight got to do with it?

  1. I’m one of those 10 stone 6 footers, well 6’1″ in my case. A small framed torso being mostly resposible there. I did the eating disorder thing at uni too – not the slightest bit related to height, it was more anxiety and lack of control, turned out to be more of an asperger’s type issue, and ultimately related to mercury toxicity and coeliac disease, an pattern I see in clients that i work with now.
    Being tall and slim – the pressure is more from the judgement of others, an example would be friends not wanting you with them when shopping as it highlights their own insecurities around body image. A fridge magnet I saw summed it up “God, if you can’t make me thin, at least make my friends bigger than me”.
    People seem to like to hang out with those who are similar in physical attributes as well as interests, so being the lone giraffe can be isolating at times.
    My response to all this? Dress individually, in bright colours, and wear stonking great platform boots. I’m going to get stared at whatever I do, this way, it’s on my terms!

    • Hi Fi,

      I think we’ve all felt that isolation at one time or another…. Whether it’s being out in a bar and not being able to hear what your group of friends is saying below you, or not being able to swap clothes and shoes with anyone! You’re right to celebrate that difference now though, it’s so important to embrace what makes us unique ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

  2. I’m 6’3″, and having always been the tallest in any group of friends, I’ve always been pne of the heaviest. I’m not naturally stick thin: my body is a mix between curvy and athletic. I used to obsess over my weight, thinking it was too much, but after a while I realized I was healthy and happy, despite what the scale says. As it turns out, the BMI scale is weighted against tall people anyway ()

    • I keep hearing this about the BMI scale and tall people. It sounds like it’s not the one-size-fits-all approach the doctors claim it is. Since I don’t weigh myself anymore, I’ve no idea where I am on the BMI chart either! X

  3. I am massively self conscience about my weight. I’m 6ft and about 10 stone 7. I’m not skinny nor am I fat but I massively struggle to comprehend and convice myself it’s ok I’m 2-3 stone heavier than my shorter friends. I’m sure I’m not the only tall woman who is big boned. I look at pictures next to female friends and most of the time want to cry becuase I look so massive next to them. It’s so hard being tall I always feel I look like a man in drag I’m not dainty and delicate I’m not “cute”, the weight issue only fuels this. I did that other woman are the cause of most of the issues I have: comments about my weight height said in a kind way with a snide undertone, comments about their size 6 figures and my size 12 36inch legs. I think it’s very hard as a young tall woman to accept and understand your tall your always going to be “heavier” than your shorter counterparts.

  4. I have a 6 ft 3″ 16 year old daughter and feel that on the whole I have navigated the possible pit falls well. I got all 3 of my children into sport mainly so that they would feel confident about their height. The oldest 2 were fast tracked and have both represented their country in their chosen sport even though that wasn t and isn t my aim. I wanted them to have a lifetime of eating well and being physical. As part of their training they are educated about eating well and not taking supplements.my son is better at this than my daughter who has a massively sweet tooth! Going on BMI both would be considered obese which is so wrong because they have very little excess body fat. I have no idea how much my daughter weighs at the moment and I don t think she knows either. She goes by how she feels and because she is confident about her body image she has no worries.

  5. My issue with some of the comments on the Facebook post was that some people were not realising what a sensitive issue weight can be, and using words that could easily upset others (and I didn’t find them terribly pleasant either).

    I’m around 6′ and weigh 10 stone or just over – I have a belly, I eat a balanced diet, and enjoy the occasional giant pizza and cheesecake. I never think of myself as ‘skinny’ or ‘thin’ since I’m wearing size 10-12s when friends of mine are wearing 4-6-8s, and my belly bothers me – I definitely won’t be gracing the cover of magazines anytime soon! But find it unnecessary when people think that someone else’s weight is their business, and feel that they’re completely entitled to judge them for it. There are so many factors that affect weight rather than just how much we eat and how tall we are – genes, muscle, boobs, etc. – so you definitely can’t categorise someone purely based on weight or BMI, that number has so little relevance!

    • You’re right Becky, weight is such a personal thing.

      It annoys me when magazines see fit to list celebrities’ weights; a) it’s NONE of their business and b) they’re usually guessing and you can see from everyone’s comments that guesswork about weight is impossible!

      Xx

  6. Great post! I am 6’1″ and never thought about it at the time, but all through high school I struggled with it. Granted, I was a little larger than I thought what was appropriate even for my height, but when I was with friends, I felt like an ogre. It is so sad that I thought me being tall made me somehow less pretty, and delicate, and feminine. Now I know that is completely silly, but then I didn’t really no any better. In pictures I would always try to make myself smaller, which made me look awkward. If I had just owned it back then everything would have been so much better! Thankfully though, I had no eating disorders come of it and now know that tall is b-e-a-utiful!

  7. Overall I think that my height has had a positive effect on how I view my weight. At 10 and a half stone I weigh a lot more than my smaller friends, but I am the slimmest as the weight is stretched out over my 6ft 3″ frame.
    I’m athletic and play sport (because I’m competitive, not to lose weight) and it frustrates me when long-limbed thin people get slated as bad and unrealistic role models in the press. I eat significantly bigger portions than my shorter friends and am forever hungry and snacking and consuming calories, and being tall and thin is just my shape.

    Once when I was feeling bad about how much more food I had on my plate compared to all my other female friends around the dinner table, my friend’s husband (who used to be on the GB Volleyball team) said to me to think of it like we are all cars. Some cars are big, some are small, some have huge engines and go fast, some are nippy and economical, and he told me to imagine that the food is the fuel and that every car needs different amounts, different types and burns it differently, and that if I was hungry for seconds after a meal then I should damn well stop holding back because I thought it looked bad or greedy, and go for what my body needs.

    Weight’s got nothing to do with anything when you’re tall because if you’re above average height, then you’ll be above average weight.

  8. I am 6 foot tall and weigh around 10 stone.This is my average weight, sometimes I’m a little more and vice versa.
    I don’t look ill nor skeletal. I do quite a lot of sports(running, weights etc) and this means I can eat more pizza and cake but even before when the thought of running horrified me I still ate what I wanted and was usually around this weight, so for people to say this is underweight or unacceptable is totally wrong!!
    Everyone is different, some people even have bigger heads than others (surely they must weigh more) haha
    I am not ill, quite the opposite.
    We should just embrace everyone’s differences height/weight/hair colour/ head size ๐Ÿ˜‰ and not judge!!!!
    We are what we are

  9. I am 6’1 and weigh about 13 1/2 stone, which is at the top end of a healthy BMI

  10. Hey!
    I am 5’11 and a bit (don’t forget the bit ;-)) and two years ago I weighed in at 22 stone… Because of my height I felt I could carry it off but sadly I boarded a flight and not only was the leg room cramped but the seatbelt wouldn’t do up so much to my horror I had to ask for an extender belt. That new year I made the decision new year new me and two years later I’m 6 stone lighter and so much more confident in myself but I’m at a point as to how low do I go with my weight loss as I’m a curvy girl (huge child bearing hips!!) and if I was two strive to get into the bro it would mean shedding a further 3 and a half stone which I’m not comfortable with as well it wouldn’t be me anymore. I believe as long as you are healthy make sensible food choices and are happy no one should judge ๐Ÿ™‚ x

    • Sorry bro is bmi x

      • Hi Laura,
        This is a little aside from the general conversation to say congratulations on your achievment and to say i know exactly how you feel! At my biggest i wore a size 22and wore it well, or so i thought. I wouldn’t have decribed myself as fat, when you are tall you feel in proportion don’t you? After a break up i felt i had something to prove and went from an 20 to a 12 (healthily) aiming for a ‘mid’ way BMI, but at size 16 i completely freaked out….Who was I if wasn’t wearing my wiggle skirts and my 50’s style dresses that had suited my curves so well!? Everything from my make up to my music taste was guided by the way i dressed to suit my larger shape.

        Fortunately after a very lost feeling month i stumbled upon a dress that couldn’t have been more ‘me’ and just worked despite all my proportions being that much more streamlined- it all clicked- big or small, skinny or chubby, I was going to be me what ever i weighed and what ever clothes i chose to express myself with. It was a revelation! I continued the weight loss to a bit above my target weight which it turned out was a bit skinner than my frame looked good at, evened out at a 14, and have never looked back. Finding out that slim me wasn’t a new me was the best thing about losing the weight (though i’m sure Dr’s would disagree!). Give yourself the time to adjust and see what you want when the dust has settled. Happy and healthy is the target to aim for xx

    • Laura, you sound like you’re at your happy weight and I don’t think a big extra weight-loss is going to serve you any better. Well done for getting there and making healthy food choices, am sure you look fabulous xxx

  11. It was a great debate on facebook and i may of been one of the offending term users, i didn’t mean to offend anyone, at 6ft 3, 11 1/2 stone (pre pregnancy) and 33 years of age i finally feel comfortable with my height and weight. I spent most of my teenage years under-weight and not for the want of eating too, nothing self inflicted but i received many hurtful comments because its difficult to hide in the crowd when your head is always a foot above everyone else’s, looking at this debate from a mothers perspective my main concern now is how height/weight is perceived not only by the media but also by authority bodies, i understand that when my daughter starts school she will be measured throughout her childhood and this is always marked against them, as someone mentioned earlier the BMI scale is not drafted for women over 6ft, so when looking at the scale you have to compare against male height/weight, i want my daughter to be proud of her height, never worry about her weight and embrace diversity. Incidentally now i am carrying my second child people will not believe that i am 6 months + pregnant as my ‘bump’ is very compact, same with my first but i delivered a healthy 7lb 12 baby they just tuck very nicely under my rib cage, lucky me

    • Hi Linzi, I definitely wasn’t pointing figures or meaning to suggest that anyone was an ‘offender’ of any sorts! Thanks for commenting initially because it sparked a really interesting debate, and proves that tall women can be ‘healthy’ at many different weights x

  12. I was a chubby child that turned into a curvy teenager. Tallest in my school year at 5′ 10″ and first in a bra. Naturally shy I always tried to hide myself. I struggled with yoyo dieting for over 20 years before discovering power walking. I realised my body was worth taking care of and began to see food as fuel for energy and activity. I lost 6 stone and have since stabilised at 10 stone for three years. Now I actually occasionally wear heels! Still curvy but I try to focus on the things I like about my body rather than the negative. Stand tall ladies!

  13. Hi Laura,

    I’m not the kind of person who comments on blogs or articles, but I just wanted to reach out after reading your article today. I am 26, 6’1″ and alternate between sizes 10/12/14 depending on the time of year and how gluttonous I’ve been feeling. I’m currently just over 12stone, and though I have a small frame for my height and am jigglier than usual at the minute, I don’t feel overweight. I’m by no means skinny, but I chose not to obsess over my weight as I’ve seen how damaging it can be. That said, while I am healthy I do think about my body almost all of the time. It’s frustrating, because I always wonder about what women could achieve if they hadn’t been duped by society into feeling they have to be an average ideal. Who wants to be average?

  14. Hi,
    I’m 6ft 2″ and weigh approximately 11 and a half stone, my weight has been steady over the years, fluctuating when I was pregnant, but not by too much. I have three lovely teenagers now and I am 46 years old. We don’t have a weighing scales at home and my only check is when I go to the docs & then they assure me I’m well within the correct weight for my height. I tend to go on the feel of my clothes and whether I’m comfortable or not. I’m an active person and my main source of exercise is walking, several miles a day. I’m happy with me, although height more than weight was more of a confidence issue with me as I was growing up.

    • Thanks Sharron. Yeah, it tends to be clothes that I go by. I rely on the doctor flagging it if they think I’m outside the realms of normality weight-wise, but I never look and tell them not to tell me xx

  15. I haven’t owned a scale for years and try to just focus on how I feel and having a healthy roast balanced with exercise. Now that I am pregnant I am starting to become more selfconcious about it, which I am trying to let go of. Reading all these posts I actually start to wonder if I am not on the bigger(ish) side being about 12 stone last time I checked. Not pregnancy weight I might add. Not sure what I weigh now and I won’t check either.
    Beeing tall growing up I was quite skinny and all the comments made me very selfconcious – the way my rib cage show when I lay on the beach for example (which is still does ). And moving from Sweden to Ireland I was very aware of how much bigger I always was.
    I think it’s true what a lot of people have said already – weight is so individual and looks so different on different people. My main aim now is to like my body, keep moving both for body and mind and to eat well and enjoy what I eat!

  16. I am just over 6ft and 12 stone…I feel horribly self conscious about the numbers compared to my smaller friends and wish I didn’t! I get married in 6 weeks’ time and haven’t been on a wedding diet,nor do I intend to because I am at a weight I can maintain and don’t want to always look back at my wedding photos and wish I could be that size again…but I do feel that there is almost an expectation that brides should /want to be on some sort of regime to be a smaller (and by implication more desirable) size and weight. I know that my concerns about height/weight will always worry me but hopefully, on the big day, I will look good, feel confident and be able to enjoy it!x

    • Congrats Claire, am sure you’ll make a beautiful leggy bride!

      Defo a good plan to stay at your happy/ sustainable weight for the wedding — that way you’ll always be able to fit in your wedding dress to dance around the house in! Xx

  17. I’m 190cm or nearly 6’3″. I’ve been in the mind space of all the things you mentioned in the blog, especially about feeling huge next to regular sized people and particularly self conscious around men. Nevertheless I have liked and loved people of all sizes, in the end it just doesn’t matter enough.
    I remember one time when I was about 17, Oprah did one of her shows on weight loss or something and she mentioned what size clothing she wore. I wore the exact same size. Yet, of course, I looked completely different as I was over 8 inches taller. I think from that moment on it slowly but surely started sinking in that numbers are just numbers, you shouldnโ€™t value them to be something you base your self-worth on. I stopped using a scale, because even if I knew that my height meant that the number would be higher than all of my friendsโ€™, it would still be a high number and I think we have all been programmed to fear and loathe high numbers when in comes to our bodies. I figured, and still do, if I really gain weight I will be able to tell by the way my clothes fit and by the way I look in the mirror. And trust me, I found out the truth in that. I started getting heavier as soon as I left for university and struggled for about 8 years to find the right way for me to feel fit and healthy. But I’m figuring it out more and more and feel great in and with my body and I have not used a scale to tell me that for a decade!

  18. I am 6ft 1 and currently weigh about 11st 3. Growing up I was at my heaviest 14st 6 and very self conscious about everything to do with my appearance. I did feel like a giant tank as a teenager! I dropped down to around 10st 4 when I got married and looked very gaunt so have now settled at my current weight for the last few years. I’ve never been too fixated on my weight as I just comforted myself that i was so much taller than all my friends so could not possibly weight the same. I am reasonably happy with the size I am now. However reading all these comments I am beginning to wonder if I am on the heavy side, I have never had anyone to compare my weight to before! It’s probably the first time in a very long time I have given my weight serious thought.

    For me, my actual height was and still is a much bigger issue than my weight. I still don’t love it and there are days I struggle with it even now at 30. Even if I can accept my height it’s the constant comments and looks from everyone else that I struggle with.

    • Oh Nikki… I really don’t want anyone to start questioning their weight because of this post. Luckily it sounds like we’ve got a real mix of ‘happy weights’ on here and 11 stone 3 sounds very very slim for 6’1. As I said, I haven’t weighed myself for ages but certainly wouldn’t imagine I’d weigh less than that. I certainly hope we can help you on the loving your height front though, keep reading โค๏ธ Xx

  19. I dont normally comment but felt I would on such an excellent topic. I am 5ft11 (not as tall as some lovelies) but still all my mates whilst growing up are were 5ft1-4 and a size 8. Immediately I felt the pressure because I was alot bigger and taller. I also was severely bullied because of this which has had such an impact on my self esteem. Now I still get criticised over my size and weight. People do even now suggest I should be alot smaller or thinner. Im in a constant debate with various doctors I see over what bmi I should be or what I feel more importantly is if ii am loving a healthy lifestyle. I eat healthy and exercise. I am currently 13 and a half stone. Usually being anything from a 12 to a 16. But I dont think there is anything wrong with wearing these sized clothes. Yet theresstill seems to be a stigma for being a 16. (God forbid a 16!) I sometimes need to sew the waist in but im happy with my curves. Im trying to pass on a positive attitude to my younger sister at the moment, shes just started secondary school and its hard. Shes getting bullied as i once I did. And she comes home saying she has a belly and how she thinks shes fat. Yet at 11years old she’s 5ft6 and a talented ballet dancer. And I think its a shame she is feeling the pressure so soon, which is wrong.

    • It is quite terrifying the pressure on young girls… I think it’s even worse than when I was at school. Look after your sis and remember that the only opinion that matters about your weight is yours. I bet you’re a fab role model xx

  20. I’m 6’2″ and weigh around 16 stone. Apparently I’m extremely overweight and my BMI says I’m nearly clinically obese.

    I’m actually quite well muscled. I’m not talking Vin Diesel here, but what people see and perceive to be fat is actually muscle. I walk a lot. I’ve been in a ‘job’ which involved a lot of heavy lifting, so I have clearly defined biceps.

    I have a bad back as a result of that ‘job’, so I do aerobics (using hand weights) several times a week to build and maintain my back and abdominal muscles to protect my spine from re-inuring itself.

    I had a doctor who was convinced I was morbidly obese, wouldn’t listen to a word I said, just looked at the numbers (specifically my weight) and concluded that I was a fat slob who sits on her arse eating junk food all day long!

  21. It’s so nice to see a discussion about this! I decided a long time ago that I must not compare weight with my much shorter friends as it really is all relative to height, muscle etc; however this is much much easier said than done and I have struggled with accepting my size for most of my life.

    I am 6ft 2, 24 years old and my weight has fluctuated wildly from 13-18 stone and back down again over the past 10 years as has my fitness. I am quite proportionate to my height now, even at 16 1/2 stone, with very broad shoulders, hips and chest and have accepted that I was never desitined to be a ‘skinny’ tall person despite the inevitable “you’re so tall you should be a model” comments when I was a teen (which only serve to inflate the ego and subsequently cause you to question your looks when you reach 18 and no one has talent scouted you yet).

    The biggest problem I have with the weight versus height issue is that shops such as pepperberry cater very well for larger chests and figures but not at all in length, and conversely shops such as long tall sally cater for length but not so much figure. I am also a strong critic of the BMI scale as it led to me believing I was actually obese for many of my years at uni, looking back at pictures this was far from true and it is only in the last few years that I have grown into having a more realistic view of my body and I am still fighting with myself to have a more positive relationship with food.

    • Hi Vashti,

      I hope you work things out food-wise, it’s lovely to enjoy food again and not obsess over it. I’m even learning about moderation in my old age!

      I think the modelling suggestions are always a double-edged sword. Very flattering but it can make tall girls feel that they have to fit a certain ‘type’. This discussion proves that there is so much variation between tall women, there is no one-size fits all and our height doesn’t define us.

      Xx

  22. Hi Laura, I loved your post and despite being a ‘shortie’ at 5″9.5 I’d love to wade in!

    I went to school with you and I’m shocked to hear how self-conscious you were at in those days. as I always had you down for being incredibly confident. I remember feeling shocked when you told me of your Uni weight struggles as it just didn’t seem like ‘you’. It just goes to show that we can’t presume anything about anyone.

    I feel like weight and BMI is a sort of ‘presumption’ made before really knowing a person- under = anorexic and neurotic/vain, and over = slobby/greedy. So I’m with you in hoping for everyone to abandon those scales!

    Though it’s always good to question things, I reckon anyone involved in that post will think about calling a certain weight ‘unhealthy’ before even seeing the people behind the ounces now, which is great. As someone who has often been under fire for weight/height/appearance, as well as having my struggles with all 3, thank you for bringing attention to the issue.

    xx

    • Hi Rebecca,

      Loving your blog, keep up the good work ๐Ÿ™‚

      I think what this debate proves is that there are many versions of ‘healthy’ weight, even for women of the same height. At our height those can vary hugely. Weight has so much to do with bone structure/ boob size/ metabolism etc, and can’t always be put down to vanity/slobbiness as you say!

      Xx

      • Well exactly! Apparently I’m an unhealthy BMI but the shock on people’s faces when I have seconds and thirds and THEN dessert, as well as the size of my bottom, says otherwise!

        Thanks fellow blogger, I love yours too x

  23. I am 6ft and 12.5 stone. ..slim build with a bit of jiggle and a sizeable arse! I run 3 times a week and play netball but also love my food. I think weight is completely relative and as long as you are fit and healthy for your natural build, a number on the scales really does not matter.

    Having been called big (why can’t people say Tall?!) all my life, there are times I have started to believe what I hear, feeling really self conscious and beating myself up over my weight. I think it is very easy to become very negative about your build and size when you are tall, especially when your weight is compared to that of your smaller friends.

    As I have got older (now 28) weight comparisons bother me a lot less and I have learnt that weight is all relative. One struggle I do have though is if the conversation of weight comes up with my boyfriend. Now don’t get me wrong…my Boyfriend loves my figure and tells me daily, I know he doesn’t care how much I weigh, but I do. On the odd occasion the conversation of weight has comes up he guesses that I weigh less than him ( he is taller than me, can eat like a horse but is naturally very slim) I just can’t bring myself to tell him I am heavier than he is. I just feel it will make me seem less feminine! Silly really as it know it is all in my head and he wouldn’t care less!

    • Aaaw, AC that would be one of the main reasons I’d chuck out the scales… It’s lovely to be able to say ‘no idea,’ if someone asks.

      And yes, people need to stop substituting ‘big’ for ‘tall’ like it’s the same word xx

  24. BMI is a really bad measure for individuals and is particularly bad for short, tall and athletic people. It is only used because it is so easy to calculate and more meaningful measures are difficult and expensive. It is useful for comparing populations of people. If a nation’s average BMI changes one way or the other, it means something. But if you doc uses it and calls you obese or skinny and doesn’t take other factors into account – well – shake your head and laugh.

    As women we’re taught to be critical of our bodies. I’ve been so critical of mine. It is too curveless, tall and freakish looking if I believe what those who ‘know’ that women should look like some ideal say.

    I had to look up what a stone is. I’m 190cm and 57kg, so 6’3 and 9 stone. I’m very thin as is everyone on both sides of my family. Apparently there is a small percentage that naturally tends not to gain weight. My eating habits are good, but my weight won’t budge. It would be healthier if I could gain weight, but I’m stuck looking like a bird.

    Running and cycling gives me a lot of confidence and keep me in good shape. It was suggested that I start lifting light weights to strengthen my bones. I’m using light free weights.

    The down side, apart from all of the time to get comfortable with my own body, is that others, mostly women (!) criticize my weight and tell me I have an eating disorder. It is more annoying than being told that I’m tall.

    As far as the boyfriend thing goes. If I had to find a taller guy I’d be throwing away most of the guys who might go out with me. There are things I like in a guy – very few of them are physical. I used to think it would be impossible to find a guy who would put up with a tall thin one like me. As I gained confidence I started asking and that works.

    We come in all kinds of colors, shapes and heights so we can tell each other apart at sight. We’re visual creatures. I imagine we’d be judging the smell of others if our noses were as developed as those of our dogs.

    Maybe we should all wear bright blue wigs to force the comments in another direction. Maybe that would help build our self esteem. Really – our bodies are our bodies. They’re wonderful if we take care of them and keep them healthy no matter what shape or size. If someone takes issue with that, they’re just not worth knowing.

  25. I never comment on things like this, but I thought I’d reach out because this is something that I struggle with and I know that everyone here will understand because you’re all so beautiful and tall! I’m 18, 6 foot and a bit and I weigh 9 stone 3. I have always struggled with my height and weight, especially when I was going through secondary school. I was surrounded by a lovely group of friends, but others used to call me stick insect, tell me that I needed to eat more (I eat the most food out of all of my friends, anyone that knows me well enough can tell you that). It never used to get to me, but when I used to here those comments every day as well as why are you so tall? How are you so skinny? I used to hate my height and weight, I shouldn’t have because this is a part of me and it’s who I am. The thing that pushed these thoughts over the edge was when my school tutor asked me in for a meeting because he was worried about me, he thought I had an eating disorder and was anorexic – I was far far away from anything like this! This made me so self conscious and I remember crying myself to sleep that night. My mum ended up ringing him up and explaining that it was a family trait, everyone in my family is tall and thin (not skinny, I really don’t like that word). Since then I have accepted my weight and height, it took time and a lot of forcing myself to think ‘who cares what anyone thinks about me’. I’m at uni now and, everyone is so accepting, I still get described as ‘the tall one’ but I’ve learned to love my height and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I’m proud to say I’m 6foot! When I have girls of my own, I am going to make sure that they know they are beautiful no matter what. I missed out on so many opportunities and beautiful clothes because I was embarrassed to show what I really looked like. I went through secondary school wearing big jumpers and jeans. My sister, who had the same experience as me (except she’s average height so didn’t stand out in the crowd as much) used to wear thick tights under skinny jeans to make herself look bigger and not as thin – how have we ended up in a society that makes us feel bad for being on the lower end of the weight scale? Keep going with this blog, I love it!

    • Thanks Becca, really grateful you took the time to comment, because what you say is absolute proof that we can’t judge someone by their weight. Keep eating the extra portions and enjoying them! Xx

  26. Last year, when I was bridal gown shopping, a woman at some store told me, that she hadn’t enough clothes in my size to choose, if only I would be a size 8 it would be so much easier. Yikes!
    I could do nothing but grap my clothes, tell her that being 6’4 I would be in hospital if I would have that size because of nearly dying due to a serious underweight – and left. How rude could one woman be?
    I, for my part, discovered that I would be very unhealthy if I wear a size 12 or less. 14 is my “8” in regular tall girls size and 16 or 18 are good, too.

    I actually don’t know my weight, ditching the scale after being very slim in my youth (naturally, I ate nearly a pound of chocolate each day for not losing more weight. Teenage years!), but it’s really hard to get in peoples mind that smaller women standards are not mine and never will be – so I cannot talk their weight-talk and never will (and am walking away as you – for what should I say?).

    I think the most important thing is to get as strong as you could be knowing that the average sized women do not have any idea or concept of your size, your, weight, your body – only you could have that, so you have to be your own style expert, ditching other peoples opinions … unless they fit yours, than keep that precious human being for he or she is brilliant enough to look behind numbers.

    As for the bridal gown – I went to another store, where they let me try a style I wanted and knew would look good on me, it fitted, it was long enough without alterations, I looked gorgeous! Yay!

    • Good advice Christine… It’s amazing how much we care about other people’s opinions when other people so seldom think about us!

      We definitely can’t live by the standard sizing either. Glad you found the dress of your dreams xxx

  27. It’s interesting that t(all) women (including me) want to be small and dainty, as though we want to physically embody our relative powerlessness in this deeply patriarchal society we live in.

  28. I second the perception that BMI doesn’t scale well. By BMI standards I’m 10 pounds overweight. Visually I’m just right, 6’1″, (Canada/US) size 14. I was anorexically skinny in my teens (body image issues…), and have no desire to be that thin again.

    I have also seen the slippery slope of eating disorders. A few years ago I lost 160 pounds. Along the way I sometimes felt “I’ve lost weight. People like me now. Maybe if I lose more weight people will like me more…”

    Not somewhere I wanted to go.

  29. What a lovely discussion.I am so touched to read these thoughts and feelings, really sharing in a deep sense. I applaud all my tall sisters, this is such an excellent use of this medium.
    I am 67 years old, 6′ for most of my life, although I have shrunk to a mere 5’10 1/2″ by now. I have always weighed about 10 stone. At various times in my life I have felt all the ways described in the comments, including a glad late arrival at a place of fitness, health, happiness and pride.Rock on tall girls, although I gave birth to only sons you all feel like spiritual daughters to me.

  30. I am 6ft, wear a 10/12 and my weight naturally sits somewhere between 10 and 10.5 stone. I fortunately have always been able to eat pretty much what I want and stay roughly the same weight. I was at my heaviest in my final year at university at about 11.5 stone mainly due to lack of exercise and lots of wine and chocolate! I never had a problem with body image or how much I weighed until I got pregnant 4 years ago. Despite being delighted about being pregnant, it took me a long time to accept my expanding belly as baby and not fat, and looking back weighed myself slightly obsessively. I put on a healthy 3.5 stone, and 10 days after giving birth I was back in my pre pregnancy clothes. Shortly after, maybe due to Breast feeding and being busy, but certainly not through any concious dieting, my weight dropped below 10 stone. My husband (who incidentally is shorter and lighter than me) was a bit worried about me, sent me off to the GP for a check up and started trying to feed me up! He is really supportive and tells me regularly that he loves my body. I now weigh the same as I did before I got pregnant, although I no longer feel as confident about my body size or shape. I know its irrational and because of it I rarely get on the scales these days, like many of you I rely on the fit of my clothes.

  31. I accepted a long time ago that I was never, ever going to be delicate and dainty. It’s just impossible when you’re tall. Instead, my mom always encouraged me and my sister to stand up straight, to be proud of being tall. So I am. I’m not big boned, and around 11 stone is a good weight for me. Much heavier than most of my friends, but who cares. I’m a size 12 on the bottom, size 14/16 on the top (big chested…) and if the fat starts to bulge over my trousers then I know I need to watch my weight. But everyone is different – some tall girls are naturally skinny, others are naturally curvy. We all need to learn to accept ourselves, be happy with who we are and what we look like, and never compare ourselves to anyone else. We’re unique, embrace it!

  32. Hi there!

    I don’t usually comment on these things (a silent lurker) but this post is so relevant to all the tallies out there!!

    I am 6.1 and weigh 70kg (just over 11 stone). I know this because I row and weight is one of the things that we use to adjust people’s erg (rowing machine) scores to see how efficient they are. Before I started to really care about improving my rowing, I didn’t know what my weight was. I never really saw it as relevant. Clothing size was an issue for me growing up though… and I remember when I finally started to fill out I was so devastated that I no longer fit in a size 10. I remember being mortified because a friend bought me a skirt as a gift in a size 8 (ha!!) and I had to secretly take it back to get a bigger size. I was so embarrassed, because when she found out she couldn’t believe I was so “big”. I started to cut the labels out of my clothes so no one would know I was a size 14.

    Back then I was ballet dancing 5 times a week and pretty obsessed with it. I started going to external classes and teachers would comment on my height. Then I really looked around me and realised I was in a room full of tiny people… I had never noticed before. I read some magazine article about ballerinas and weight… by then I was pushing 10 stone at age 16 (6ft). I then remember having a conversation with my mum, who basically said that I would probably never be less than 10 stone, as it would be physically impossible given all the bone and muscle…”Imagine how silly you would look”. After that I never looked back.

    As an athletic person, I wish that someone had said earlier on to concentrate on sports where height is an advantage. There aren’t actually that many, but rowing, swimming, basketball and ballroom (not latin!) dancing are some. I loved ballet, but would never have made it professionally, I am too tall (really too tall, taller than Darcy Bussel who is always cited as a tall ballerina).

    The thing worth noting for other tall athletes out there – muscle weighs lots more than fat! I am probably the fittest I have ever been right now, and I have put on weight! It’s just a number after all…

  33. Great topic! I was always the tallest one in secondary and college (and my female relatives). I never really let my weight bother me until I had to shop in the ‘plus’ size clothing, when no one would have ever thought I would be anything but slim. It didn’t affect me other than make me think about my lifestyle and what I needed to do to be healthy. I have naturally muscular legs, so normally I just get frustrated with fashion for making clothes to fit a body type (skinny jeans look TERRIBLE on me). Right now I have a trainer to get myself back into shape so I have a weight goal, but my priority is that it’s weight I can maintain with my lifestyle rather than I want to be my 18 year old weight or something equally unattainable.

    For those of you with tall daughters (both of my parents are shorter than me and I was the tallest person for 6 years before a brother finally overtook me) – I don’t know what my parents did, other than my mother clearing her throat indicating we should sit up straighter and telling me to stand tall because slumped shoulders on a tall person looks bad. You’ll do great!!

  34. If you’re tall, you can knock a whole point off your BMI. You’re not as big as you thought you were – hey presto!

    http://people.maths.ox.ac.uk/trefethen/bmi.html

  35. You really can t go by the size on clothing. Every manufacturer seems to have a differing idea of what a size 10 looks like and I think if you compared a size 10 from 2015 to a size 10 thirty years ago, there would be a great difference. People are so obsessed by what size they are that manufacturers started to make sizes bigger! ( using size 10 as an example by the way!). I tend to look at the garment and gauge if it will fit me , ignoring the size on the label, and work from there. I often have to size up to accommodate my shoulder width and arm length. I am a size 18/20 but most people don t believe me because my height alters the perception

  36. I am 6ft1, am just under 15 stone and wear a size 16-18. (I hate telling people my weight) I rarely meet women who are my height so have nothing to compare myself to. I think I am fat but I know I shouldn’t compare myself to ‘normal’ height people. If I see someone my height I always demand whoever I am with compares my figure to them to help me understand my size! I am often pleasantly surprised when my friends insist I am thinner than someone I think is pretty thin!

    I have always thought of myself as a different scale to other women; like a Barbie stood next to a dollโ€™s house doll. I am actually glad I am so tall if I was short I like my food so much I would be almost round!

    I have always felt like a massive heffer. It is only in the last couple of years (at 30) I have got used to my body and now actually think I am not as MASSIVE as I have always thought. Until I stand next to a 5ft3 size 8 friend and I feel like a different speciesโ€ฆ

    Also as a lesbian I have just got used to knowing that everyone I ever date will be shorter than me. Luckily I like small cute girls so I just make them stand on steps!

    • Hi Hannah,

      So glad you’re in a good place. And you’ve solved tbe age old tall woman dilemma of hunting down a taller man ๐Ÿ˜‰

      You don’t sound remotely heffer-like! I too am in a much better headspace as I turn 30 (next month… Eek!) xx

  37. Hi Laura,

    I too don’t usually comment, but I can really resonate with your experience of eating disorders, having recovered from one myself that completely dictated my life for almost three years while at school. I totally empathize with all your points – the constantly being freezing, lack of periods and fixating over the number on the scales. I used to weigh myself three times a day, but am proud to say it has now been over a year since I last stepped on a scale.

    It’s been really reassuring to hear of other tall women who went through the same thing, and so inspirational to read about your success story. At 6’2″, I was insecure about my height and petrified of being ‘big’ where all my friends were tiny. It was also the one element of my body shape that I could control, where as I felt so helpless to growing tall. I thought that I could compensate by being skinny, but even once I had starved myself to a size 6 didn’t feel this was enough, in reality all I did was make myself ill and miserable.

    I’m 19 now and a healthy weight (size 12, yay), though still have a precarious relationship with food and size. Your post has been a huge reassurance to me, and a reminder that I don’t need to let my weight hang-ups dictate my life, as well as a reminder to steer clear of the triggers that have began to slide back. Thank you.

    All the best to you and your beautiful family,
    Sophie xxx

    • Oh Sophie your words just made me cry! Thank you so much for commenting and I wish you ever success with your newfound peace with your body ๐Ÿ™‚

      One thing you said really struck a chord, in that eating less was the only way you could control your body shape when growing tall was unavoidable. I’d never thought about that before but it really resonated with me.

      Thank you xxx

  38. Excellent post. As a fellow over 6-footer, I love your blog anyway but this post really resonated with me. I’m a good bit taller than all my girl pals and it can be hard not to feel huge next to them (even when you know you’re a healthy, normal size really)! So thank you, this all really needed to be said! Keep up the good work and congrats on your wee girl xxx

  39. New to the site – 5 ft 10.5 inch lady, weight approx 130lbs.

    I appreciate this discussion! In high school and college, I was always the tallest of the group, and most of my best gal pals were between 5’1 and 5’7, so i INSTANTLY compared weight numbers. It took me forever to accept that I would never be the same weight as those less fortunate in the height department. Through college I fluxed between 130lbs and 150lbs, and now I finally feel at ease. I focus on eating well, exercising when I can, and ditched the scale.

    I loved the remark about never being called “cute”. I’ll take commanding or “statuesque” any day over “cute”!

  40. Hmm so glad I found this! I’ve been looking on the Internet recently for some kind of, well, this I guess. I’m 6ft and 20. I’ve struggled with body image for ages now, but recently things suck again. During my A-levels I lost a lot of weight- as in I was 7.5 stone- and for 6ft I now realise how ridiculous that was. I managed to sort my head out enough to put on weight, but I feel like it just kept going on. I’m now 11 stone and I hate my body. I read this forum and other stuff online and feel I should be okay with it. But despite working out I still have rolls on my stomach when I sit down and generally feel huge. It’s mostly to do with being tall! I’d love to accept my height but I really struggle to. I think In some weird way I was losing weight before to try and shrink down- well obviously it doesn’t work like that and I just ended up really ill! I hate the thought of being on holiday this summer with my uni mates because they’re all small- I will look huge in photos etc. I just don’t know what to do atm because I’m worried that if I try and get back to 10 stone (which is where I’m probably best) I’ll go too far.. It’s so tricky. But very reassuring reading about other tall ladies ๐Ÿ™‚ x

  41. Ok so I’ve missed the boat with this discussion but I’m just chipping in to say that after visiting the Topshop site today to check out their Tall items, as I regularly do, I decided to cease buying their leggy (and standard fit) wares. Yes, I’m tall and I find it difficult to find clothes that fit but on the moral basis that the models they use to advertise their clothes appear to be seriously underweight, I’m waging a one woman moral boycott! Anyone with me?

  42. I just want to say thank you. This post is amazing. I facilitate an eating disorder peer support group and many people there have had problems with their body related to their height. I myself have always felt “big”, clumsy and sometimes monstrous and I am 5ft10 and a size 12. Having 5ft4, size 8 friends made me feel terrible as a teenager and there are many photographs of me looking huge and awkward, leaning in or stopping down to look smaller. I got married a few months ago and I have photographs with these same friends, but at age 30 I finally stood tall and proud…and I look delighted about it.
    Thank you soooo much! I can’t believe I’m only just finding this blog…off to read the rest now ๐Ÿ™‚

  43. I rarely leave comment on blog but this one got me typing

    I am a 5’10″(shortest of the tall girl pack)
    But I live in asia, which every clothings size is small, the large in here is actually a size 8(can you believe that?)
    I never thought I am big, being average tall and size 12 is normal. However, I just realize that I have to lose 10 more kilos in order for me to be able to buy something in the normal store
    The horror of growing up this size, I always have to order school clothing in man’s size. And it truly devastating because I am the tallest girl in my grade and I am bigger than the fatest female(she is 5′ tall) and I have many unpleasant nickname
    University didn’t get easier too. All those cute clothing will not fit me, they said tall people look good in jumpsuit, but the asians forget the definition of tall.
    The “big size” clothing store didn’t fit me well because they are big horizontally, not vertically.
    My breakdown point was when I join a sport club and the seniors told me to crouch as low as my less than 5′ female friend. I told her “she is 20cm shorter than me!” And guess what her answer : “I don’t care! If she can do it then you have to do it”
    I guess I was bullied at that time?
    And somehow it tramutized me to even jog. Making me dizzy and sweating before I even do anything

    I want to thank you for this post, this make me very happy
    I wish there are more tall blogger who raise this issue: tall people might have bigger clothing size because they are simply longer in every bone.

  44. I’ve found this thread very late but want to comment on it as I have had big hang ups with my weight for years, mainly due to not being able to find clothes to fit. I’m 5ft 10, so not that tall really, although I seem to know a lot of midgets. I’m now 53 and currently weigh around 12st 7 to 13 stone. Like many of the other contributors, hanging around with my 5ft 2 friends I always felt like a freak and constantly strived to be 8 stone, although I was around 10 stone. Looking back at pictures when I was younger I can see how beautiful I was, lean and long legged but I didn’t feel it because I was also busty. Not only could I not find any clothes to fit me buying bigger bras was a nightmare in those days. I had to wear an unflattering matron style thing with scaffolding, and huge straps called a Doreen while all my friends had little wisps of flimsy material. Nowadays it is easier to dress well as bras come in big sizes and there are more tall clothes.
    However, I love fashion and find long tall Sally things are so boring and safe, but the more trendy range is now too young for me. Like another woman earlier, all the Pepperberry stuff might fit your bust but it’s all made for a 5ft 5 woman so doesn’t fit anywhere else and being tall my bust is lower so all the darts are in the wrong place. I spent most of my university years and rest of my 20s feeling ashamed of my weight, peaking at 12st 4 (hardly that big I can see now), I was around 11stone in my early 30s then became ill after I got divorced and for the rest of my 30s and 40s weighed around 10st. This was the only time I could find clothes that sort of fitted me because my bust was smaller (still a 34E at its smallest and a 36GG now). I recently hit my top weight of 13st 10 as my current partner loves to eat and cook and I’m very happy but I was astounded at being heavier than I was when I was full term pregnant (at 13st 7). So I’ve been to weight watchers and lost a bit of weight. But I don’t feel unattractive or even that heavy at my current weight, which is around three stone more than I had been for years. However, I think I would have been more reconciled to the height weight issue if I’d been able to buy decent well fitting clothes when I was younger. What annoys me also is that we are all tall in different ways. I have a 6ft friend whose length is in her legs not her body so she can still buy dresses and tops in high street shops and just needs to get her jeans at tall shops, whereas my length is more in my body and even LTS dresses do not fit me well as they seem to design for a pear shape so if I get a 16/18 to accommodate my bust it’s always massive on the hips. My next project is to try to sew myself some clothes but if you are tall AND busty standard patterns won’t fit and you have to alter them. I’ve bought books on it but not tried yet.

  45. Thanks for giving such well put together content material

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