Author Topic: Help me chose the right words, please  (Read 4116 times)

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Queen of Clubs

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Re: Help me chose the right words, please
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2012, 06:04:23 PM »
But, by dictionary definition, a non-average size woman s not "normal".

Quote
nor·mal/ˈnôrməl/
Adjective: Conforming to a standard; usual, typical, or expected.
Noun: The usual, average, or typical state or condition.

Synonyms:   
adjective.  regular - standard - ordinary - common - usual
noun.  normality - normalcy - perpendicular

It's not a value judgement, nor does it say anything about non-average being "unacceptable".

I had to think about why the statement "normal women have ___" bothers me.  It's because, by definition, the opposite of normal is abnormal.  While, I'm sure, that not everyone who uses such a statement means to imply that everyone outside that group is abnormal, that's what I hear.  Abnormal isn't a compliment, IMO.

Either way, the statement involves a hint of body-shaming.  Hopefully, that's not what the woman meant to do.

Tabby Uprising

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Re: Help me chose the right words, please
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2012, 08:49:34 PM »
But, by dictionary definition, a non-average size woman s not "normal".

Quote
nor·mal/ˈnôrməl/
Adjective: Conforming to a standard; usual, typical, or expected.
Noun: The usual, average, or typical state or condition.

Synonyms:   
adjective.  regular - standard - ordinary - common - usual
noun.  normality - normalcy - perpendicular

It's not a value judgement, nor does it say anything about non-average being "unacceptable".

I had to think about why the statement "normal women have ___" bothers me.  It's because, by definition, the opposite of normal is abnormal.  While, I'm sure, that not everyone who uses such a statement means to imply that everyone outside that group is abnormal, that's what I hear.  Abnormal isn't a compliment, IMO.

Either way, the statement involves a hint of body-shaming.  Hopefully, that's not what the woman meant to do.

I can see someone using the term "normal" in this situation as a short hand way of saying:

I'm not especially thin and I'm not especially heavy.  I'm not really pear-shaped or apple-shaped and I have an average sized bust.  I'm not top heavy/bottom heavy.  I'm not especially short or particularly tall.  I don't have a long torso or narrow hips or a flat butt.  I don't have a specific "problem" area that needs to be specially addressed in my hunt for the perfect pair of jeans. I'm average, I'm normal, I can't find a good pair of jeans to save my life.

But looking back at the original post, she does follow up "normal" with the phrase "not a single digit size".  That does tip the sentiment into potential snarky territory.  I still wouldn't address it, but the two comments together are not entirely innocent.