34-24-40. Those are the measurements that I go by and I am sure many others do too. Our body shape can be described as an hourglass figure in magazines, a Coca-Cola bottle by men or just simply “thick” by onlookers.

Those onlookers are something else, aren’t they? As we walk to go about our business, its become “normal” to be stared at, approached or even followed by admirers of this “coveted” body shape. And the attention is almost always sexual to the point that you’re presumed to be promiscuous or atleast “good in bed” if you’ve got a big butt. A voracious sexual appetite and curves just go hand-in-hand, don’t they?

And let’s not talk about finding clothes to fit your “exceptional” waist-to-hip ratio. No matter how popular curves are on the sidewalk and the stage, they’re still a rarity on the catwalk and in clothing stores. Get ready for the gap in the back of your jeans to be an ever-present, nagging reality. And don’t put on a pair of leggings unless you want the attention that comes with it.

In black and Latino communities, it seems like curves will always be in style. But that favor comes at a price. Being objectified in the media, on the streets and in our homes in the name of being “thick” is not as pleasurable as one would think. And that objectification has only gotten worse in recent years.

The fascination with curvy body types is now being embraced by wider audiences. Women without curves are seeking a number of methods including plastic surgery to look like video vixens, booty models and some shapely pop stars. But do they know what they’re getting into?

Don’t get me wrong. It feels great to be complimented and desired for a curvy shape but don’t ignore the objectification, (often) negative attention and fit problems that come with it.

Do you have curves? Have you experienced the downside to a shapely frame?

-Tunisia Z. Wilson

  • eSPy

    Ok women have to deal with being objectified in GENERAL… EVERY body type.
    So dont try to make it seem like ONLY “thick” women have this problem… This issue is part of being a WOMAN.

    Now, there is a THIN line between thick and FAT. Im sure a lot of women commenting have surpassed the thick stage… Just saying. If you are 5’1″ and weigh 160 you are not thick, you’re FAT Im sorry.

  • Sara

    AMEN. A few weeks ago, it took me nearly three hours just to find a pair of pants that look right… and that’s not right. Cmon, fashion designers! Open up that back door a little more so we have some booty room to BREATHE!

  • Jess

    LOL. Its not easy being beautiful, huh?
    For years I was a size 0, and super jealous of thick girls. I was always suprised (and annoyed) when women with body types I envied would tell me they wished they could look more like me. I guess people will always find something to nitpick about. The grass is always greener on the other side.
    Some women will die to have bodies like yours. Embrace it.

  • Zoe

    The downsides of being curvy are always apparent to me the most when I go to clubs or parties (which is why I l don’t like going out that much). And the attention I get is not just exclusive to one race (which may be surprising to some). I’m 22 5’2 and 33-26-38. Don’t get me wrong I love my body but it really irks me when all guys want to notice when they meet me is just that. As if I’m a sex object. I know my deririere is large for my size but it would be nice if I could me someone who looked past that. *sigh*

    • Bronze

      Ladies…I really do believe the harassment is worse now than it ever was. Men are just down right looney now days. Thug culture has changed the game big time. I guess it depends on where you live and where you party. I live in the SF Bay Area and frequent house clubs—–no problem. Most of the men are just trying to separate the chicks from the dudes w/boobs. But I would never set foot into a rap club in Houston, TX……oh lord! I’d be scared 2 deaf. Those men are mean, rude, sexist, aggressive and don’t mind pulling your weave out.

    • http://www.tumblr.com/annaleishamae Annaleisha

      I agree, men are getting worse. Although I expect that to happen. Its to the point now where I try to dress to avoid attn. I have been experiencing sexual harassment since the age of 9/10.n I really don’t feel safe walking past a group of (W.I/ or West African middle aged men) I feel they are the worse perverts. I think that the majority of them (where I live and by the sound of it other places too are filth.)

      I agree with a previous post about moving out of the area it is something, I will be doing AS SOON AS I can afford to. Those pathetic adult males (they don’t deserve to be called men) have no clue of the impact. They taint other men who may be good ppl. I have become wary of W.I and West African males.

  • Melissa

    Just be happy with what you have ladies because we are all women, with curves or no curves. My problem is that I am busty, 36E. Even though I wear a size 6, my blouses are a size 10 or 12 because I have to fit the largest part of my body. I have to get my blouses tailored. I hate buying suits because the bottom fits but the blazer is tight on the chest area so I just wear it open. It adds up going to the tailor. Ladies, if you have a nice bottome or hips, wear your shorts to the gym as long as you feel comfortable in them. Just by being a women, we will get attention from men, but we want the positive attention.

  • Miss Lady

    We’ve got to adjust our culture. I’m shaped like a woman, but I don’t have no big ole booty, and Black men act as if I’m less than a woman because of that. I do have the luxury of not being sexualized all the time though. As long as the men in our community define our personhood in our figures, there will be a lose-lose situation.

  • Jane

    I’m glad I don’t have a big jiggly ass.

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