This is a place of encouragement, a place to discuss body image, insecurities, self-esteem, and everything under the umbrella of fighting self-hate and finding self-love.
No matter what you look like, what color, what gender, sexual orientation, what size or however many "flaws", healthy, not healthy, working on it, abled, disabled, we are all human, we all deserve to be happy, we all deserve to love ourselves. With this blog you will see all kinds of REAL bodies, REAL people, REAL stories.
-PLEASE READ FAQ before messaging
-BE AWARE some posts may be triggering depending on submissions, check for trigger warnings and tags. Also any harassment will be met with blocking and a report to Tumblr Support
I just want to write a quick note to introduce myself again, and to thank all of you for the warm welcome I have received!
You have been so kind, and have made my first few weeks on the “job” a breeze. :)
(my primary blog, which I never use, is WheelieintheKitchen, so any likes, replies, or follows show up under that name, FYI)
I am a full time student, majoring in social work and political science, and my husband and I run a little Etsy shop, The Paper Poppy Store.
I live in Utah with my husband of almost 2 years, my service dog, Cash puppy, a chihuahua, and 3 cats!
I have been disabled since July of 2010, and started WheelieWifee one year ago in an attempt to find some support in dealing with the major life changes that followed my injury.
StopHatingYourBody was the FIRST blog I followed, and Amber was the first person who followed me. This site has helped me SO much in my journey, I am absolutely delighted to be a part of it now!
Please let me know if you have any questions, or just stop by to introduce yourself! I am excited to get to know each of you:
Maintaining positive body image with disability, chronic illness, and chronic pain
Body positivity is especially difficult when your body is not a healthy one.
When you spend every moment fighting pain, struggling with basic tasks, and rearranging your life around your limitations, it can seem impossible to think of your body as anything but an enemy. Acceptance probably seems far-fetched, and love surely sounds like a joke; however, I’ve learned that it is crucial.
I spent the first eighteen months after my disabling accident desperately trying to cope with the changes in my body, and my initial focus was solely on recovery. I focused on research, diagnoses, treatment, and cures, and when none of the professionals could help me I slipped into despair. I had placed every single one of my metaphorical eggs into the “basket” of healing, and when I continued to decline I became completely lost.
It was not until I shifted my focus from healing my ailments to healing the relationship with my body that I found peace.
The journey is different for everyone, but I am going to share a few of the things I had success with along the way:
- Accept Your Body (in it’s current state, limitations and all!)
I am a very visual learner, and so for me this took a very concrete form. I created an art journal where I utilized many art therapy techniques which I learned in eating disorder recovery in my early twenties. I drew pictures of myself with exaggerated positives and negatives and I made collages about pain and disability. I wrote lists. Lists of things I was still physically capable of, lists of (reasonable) goals, lists of strengths, lists of positive things and things I love. I also wrote letters. Letters of love to my younger self, letters of apology to my disordered self, letters of recognition and appreciation to my current body.
For you this process may be less visible, but it is just as important. Unresolved conflict, grief, anger, and self-hatred cause internal turmoil and interfere with the goal of self-love. Attempt to identify where you have nagging, negative, emotions and figure out a way that works for you to resolve them.
- Accept Your Disability
This is similar to the first one, but different in that the goal is to focus on your limitations. As strange as that may sound, it is a vital step.
When I stopped obsessing over getting “better” I was able to make life so much more livable. Accepting the label of “disabled” actually opened many doors for me, because it enabled me to recognize my restrictions and then work around them to empower myself!
It is very difficult to sort our accommodations until you know acknowledge that you need them.
Instead of fighting your body, learn to listen to it and figure out what is needed to increase your quality of life.
This Valentine’s Day, love your sick and disabled body, and watch as it changes your entire world.
Part 2 will discuss beauty and hygiene, and Part 3 will go more into relationships. Let me know if you’d like me to add a topic!
This is Stacy!
Stacy’s been a member of SHYB for a long time, and among the posts she’s submitted, she’s also provided some incredible art for SHYB as well! She’s a gorgeous individual inside and out and she has a lot to bring to the table, we’re SO happy to have her on board!
Here’s some background on Stacy in her own words!
"The world of body image struggles began very early for me; I was self-injuring at only 7 years old, and was in full blown ED mode by age 12. I spent 6 months in an eating disorder treatment hospital when I was 19, and I’ve spent the following 8 years working diligently to heal the broken bonds between my body and me. I made great progress, and have been fully recovered from Anorexia and Bulimia for more than 6 years, and I have not cut myself in almost 4.
In 2010 I was in a car accident which resulted in a variety of permanent injuries, including herniated disks, severe nerve damage, torn ligaments, trauma-induced fibromyalgia, and even more that is still undiagnosed. During the last 2 years I’ve continued to decline, and a result I now spend almost all of my time in a wheelchair. When I lost my health it felt like I lost everything; from big things like my career, my health, and my mobility, to more unmeasurable things like my wardrobe, my respect, and my confidence. It felt like I lost all the ground I had gained through my ED recovery, and I was right back to loathing my body. I became extremely depressed, and attempted suicide in January 2012. After I survived, I realized that I had to do something, and soon. I developed a “Body Peace Project” which was a very genuine effort to apologize to my body, to forgive myself, and to accept my current condition. I also began to be an advocate for others with disabilities and chronic illnesses, and that activist work was tremendously beneficial for my own mental health.”