Since young, I was told that being fair = beautiful.
“Don’t play in the playground during the afternoon. Don’t play as much outdoor sports. Don’t stay under the sun for so long. Get an umbrella when you are walking under the sun. Put tons of sunblock and don’t go suntanning in the beach. Drink soya milk so that your skin will be fair and smooth. Use this whitening cream. Use that moisturiser – it has whitening elements! No boys will like you if you are so dark!!! -__-“
Believe it or not, the above is what the older folks have been telling me since young! Because I am stubborn like that, I have never really put much thought on my skin tone nor make a conscious effort to be fairer. After all, I’m already considered dark/tanned as a Chinese. So much so, people always ask if I’m a Malay or with mixed parentage.
“Kamu Cina ke Melayu?” (Are you a Malay or Chinese?)
When I was young, I hated these kinda questions. Does it really matter if I’m a Malay or a Chinese? Does it make me less of a Malaysian? I felt like an outcast because I wasn’t like any of my cousins or friends. Felt like I was neither here nor there.
Fast forward to today, I’ve gotten comfortable with my own skin colour regardless what people say. It’s a good thing that I’m happy the way I am now – physically wise – and I’m not complaining. Ok fine, tummy abs will look better on me than my seemingly-pregnant-looking-belly. 😀 ANYWAY… In fact, being tanned is an advantage now – people can’t tell what race I am, so they won’t be racist and be nice to me!
So, my point is.. I’ve had enough of the RIDICULOUS remarks and comments when I came back from a 3 weeks beach vacation in the Philippines last year. The aunties whom I’m not really close to and other random people really don’t know how to watch what they say . The most recent one came about 2 weeks ago when I returned from Philippines (I LOVE THIS PLACEE!).
“Wow, why you so dark already? Didn’t you put sunblock?”
“Oh wow, you are so freaking dark – looking like an indian now!!!”
“WHY OH WHY did you do this to yourself? You paid money to get yourself to be like this?”
“Why can’t you go for holidays that wouldn’t make you look so dark?”
“You look so ugly now!”
“It’s a good thing you have a boyfriend now or else nobody wants you”
“Oh hi, you are so tanned now, hmmm.. *gives the judgmental stare”
Do you even know what you are talking about ah? How does getting tanned equates to being an Indian? -_______- So racist somemore. These people deserves a slap la really.
I’m loving my tanned skin, thank you very much.
It’s a shame that the tan will disappear in few weeks time. 😦
Even after I explained myself, I still get crap for allowing myself to be 3 shades darker. LOL. I wonder why I bother.
It’s just that it’s very sad to see these “older wiser ones” imparting these kind of values to the younger generation with thoughts like these. Especially to the younger girls – that you need to BE or LOOK a certain way to be accepted. Don’t do this, don’t do that. Can you believe it that my aunt once told me that I should keep my hair long because a girl should have long hair? -___-
..and you wonder why the world is so messed up today.
Honestly, it’s so easy to allow what people say to affect your self-esteem. It allows you to wonder if you are actually okay, if you should change to fit into the mould of the society. If I actually allowed these words to affect me, I would have reconsider my travel plans or hang outs which then stops me from meeting awesome people and see the amazing world out there. See how FEAR can cripple someone? The fear of what other people think of you.
Come on girls. Don’t let the words of these people change who you are. You are the most beautiful version of yourself and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Confidence is sexy, so listen to that voice inside of you and live it!