Through her parents' continuous reprimanding, Lori learns not to speak what she feels or thinks out loud. She learns this because every time she tries to express herself, her parents see it as talking back and she gets punished. Because Lori is very intelligent for her age, her sarcasm and advanced thinking cause her to be seen as disrespectful. She now bottles up her emotions and doesn't talk to anyone about them.
That's quite enough of you, how many times have I told you to not talk back to me?
Every time I speak my mind, I get yelled at for it.
Julie's mom, the mother of Lori's friend, introduces Lori to the idea of dieting. She starts to encourage Julie and Lori to diet so that they look more like real women. Julie's mother only eats salads because she often goes to events that require her to fit into small dresses. Lori observes this habit, and starts to think that maybe she should eat like that too (especially since her mother also encourages eating as little as possible).
Isn't the whole point of eating to get full?
Remember to leave the table wanting a little more!
While visiting Washington D.C., Lori meets her older cousin, Kate, and her aunt and uncle for the first time at a restaurant. She learns that Kate does not eat much, and because of this she is seen as being very skinny and beautiful in Lori's eyes. Kate also does not speak much, and Lori sees her as "a real woman" (61). Lori's parents fawn over Kate, and Lori wishes that she could be like her.
Maybe thats why she's so skinny and beautiful...
Why do you eat so little?
That's just how much you eat when you get older.
Lori learns that if you're a woman, you must try to look and act like one. She thinks that you have to speak little and maintain a "girlish figure" to be respected like everyone else. Her mother praises her for acting like a lady after Lori stayed quiet the entire night, promoting the idea of being silent. Her father encourages her to keep in touch with Kate, and her mother says that Lori can learn a lot from her.
That's just because I barely spoke.
You acted like a real lady today!
Lori weighs herself for the first time. She discovers that she's 70 pounds and compares that number to the weights of Kate and her mother, but she isn't exactly sure if her weight is good or bad. After returning from the bathroom, she asks Kate if she loses weight from not eating very much, but Kate says that she's not on a diet. Lori is confused, so Kate explains that you just don't eat much when you're older.
Is 70 pounds good? Maybe I should ask Kate...
Lori starts to skip some of her meals, as she wanted to be skinny like Kate was. While at a restaurant, Lori refuses to eat her lunch. Her parents notice that she hasn't touched her food, and yell at her for it. When Lori stays silent and still doesn't eat, they ground her and end up buying her a milkshake later on. She tells them that she drank it, and throws it out without them noticing.