Charli Stevens just went to the store to buy some gift tags, but she ended up crying in her car without the tags she needed to wrap presents for her family, all because a stranger thought it was appropriate to comment on her weight.
While at the store, she noticed an older woman staring at her. Even though she hates it when people stare, she didn't say anything to the woman. Then everything went downhill. "A couple minutes later, she came up to me and said 'I think your clothes are a little too small on you,'" Stevens wrote in a Facebook post about the incident.
Stevens is a mother of two, one who's only five months old, and wrote that "It’s no secret that I’ve gained weight throughout life. I’ve birthed two kids so it’s bound to happen." Just because she has gained weight, like most people do, doesn't mean that anyone has the right to comment on her body, though. Especially not a stranger, and especially not when she was just making a simple trip to the store.
"Completely caught off guard and baffled and also hoping she didn’t say what I thought she said, I said, 'excuse me?'" Stevens wrote. But the woman did say what she did, and then continued to be rude. "She said, 'well no offense but you’re just a bit big to wear those type of clothes,'" Stevens wrote. "Instant tears. I didn’t know what to say."
She said that she froze at the comment, and wasn't able to respond to the woman. When she saw that Stevens was crying, the woman tried to explain that she wasn't trying to be mean, but then suggested that Stevens "reconsider your outfit before leaving your house from now on."
Stevens dashed out of the store with her baby son in tow and sat, crying, in her car.
"How are people so rude?" she asks on Facebook. It's a fair question. This woman was a complete stranger to Stevens. She didn't know anything about her life or her mental health or what her body has already been through (Stevens mentioned that she has actually lost 50 pounds since having her son). Yet, this stranger still felt entitled to comment on Stevens' body.
In case it still needs saying, you can't tell how healthy someone is by looking at them — and not to mention, body-shaming can be way more harmful than you think.
"But people have got to start being nice. Having common sense. Being respectful," she wrote. "You never know what someone is going through or if your one little comment, snicker, stare, whatever will be enough to break someone down or push them over the edge."
Refinery29 has reached out to Stevens and will update this story when we receive a response.
Read these stories next: