Real men love curves, I repeated to myself as I ran my hands down the side of my body. They trembled, my fingers burning through my own skin. The sides of my hips were straighter than the edge of a picture frame, but I was not what you’d want to have on your mantelpiece. I was not something anybody could be proud of.
I didn’t even feel my eyes glaze over, didn’t notice the tears until they dotted the bathroom floor, forming puddles that would dry within minutes, but would leave a mark for hours, days even. I’d gotten used to it. No matter how hard I tried, no matter how numb my feet felt after pressing them together, my thighs wouldn’t touch.
I lifted up my faded grey shirt, ignoring the scars winding their way around my stomach. Bones poked out from underneath my paper white skin. That extra layer that other girls whined about, I longed for. I longed for the C cups and the figure-hugging dresses. Instead, I was stuck with a square like body and leggings that were baggy at the butt.
She’s so skinny, I’d hear them say, their eyebrows pulled together and the side of their lip lifted, as if it were held up by a string. They pointed too. It wasn’t a compliment. They weren’t admiring my stick legs or my too-small-for-children’s-size waist. Everything other girls thought they envied was everything I was. And everything I didn’t want to be. Real men love curves, right?