Stop hating your body
After recently downloading Tumblr I have become in such great awe of the world young girls have created, a dark world where it is all to easy to stumble upon pictures of girls striving for “perfection” and embracing and sharing their thoughts on EDNOS, bulimia and anorexia.
This all came upon me with out even searching for it, curiosity and a trail of woman’s blogs lead me to pages and pages of blogs about woman’s self loathing and body hatred. I was startled, although its not new to me as I have seen very much the same on Instagram.
I couldn’t imagine the harm this would have done to me if I were exposed to this as a young teenager. Thinking about this makes me wonder how many young girls are negatively impacted from images and stories share on these sites, thoughts that may have not originally entered these girls’ minds.
This made me question how I have came to this point in my life and how I have formed my own opinions on body image.
The only person I remember comparing myself to in early high school was my (step) sister, who looking back, probably was anorexic and some stages. With her sharp collarbones and hips that almost looked as though they would pierce her skin. I was envious, but thought, “my legs are thinner” so I guess that made it even in my mind.
Another memory is my in about year 9 (14yrs) I would lay on my bed dandling my legs over the side to feel my hips and ribs, doing 100 sit ups at night, because that’s what my best friend did. So it must be a good idea. I used to poke my stomach through a small layer of fat and feel my stomach muscles and be satisfied.
Overall my diet for my whole life has been poorly, that’s the only thing I could fault my mother on. Eating chocolate yogos for breakfast made me happy but it definitely has set me up for a lifetime of bad eating habits. My lunch boxes where full of chips and rubbish, I’d struggle when I visited my dads house where only healthier food was on offer.
This has not helped me at all, Now at 22 I find it a challenge to change my ways. Dieting for me last a few days of healthy main meals until I return to eating a bad of M&M’’s or block of chocolate in one day.
As a young adult my body consciousness has been closely linked to what I see in my friends and family.
Thinking about the relationship with my sister and body image has made my dads role in my body image stand out, remembering back when I was just 18 I became ill and lost over 10kgs in under a month, I was 54kgs when I was weighed at Monash hospital just before a scan found I had blood clots on my brain (that had caused my migraines and made it impossible to keep any food down for over three weeks). After a few days in the hospital mum had me stay with dad as she couldn’t have any more time off work. Over a family Dinner with my dad, my step mum, step brother and myself I said something along the lines of “Its so good to eat normally” later in the meal my dad said something about “maybe you should try and keep the weight off” my step mum jumped to my defense saying what a bad idea that was considering how ill I looked.
After this, I looked at myself in the mirror, I looked at my bruised stomach where I had been injected twice daily with blood thinners to the point where my skin was mostly purple, I looked at my pajama shorts that once fit well gaped on me and had to be pulled tight just to stay up, I looked at my flat bruised stomach, and my boney legs that woke me up at night when my knees bumped together. Was this my fathers image of beautiful? Why would a man that cried once doctors told us why I was sick want me to remain this thin?
As months passed by I put back on the weight and lingered around 64kgs from memory. I was fine with this.
I guess about two years ago, I was at my dad’s and we were having ice cream for dessert, my (step) sister and her male friend where there as I dished them out. I lumped a spoonful of milo onto my ice cream and my sister responded with the comment “do you really need that?” I lost it.
I cried and cried and dramatically put the bowl in the sink. There was probably more conversation that followed but I honestly could recall any of it.
My sister’s friend came and apologized and tried to comfort me. My dad didn’t.
(I think I forgave them pretty quickly, I don’t think I have realized the full impact until now),
I left the house drove a for a few minute and realized how dangerous it was driving while crying, I pulled over and continued crying, wailing, sobbing onto my steering wheel.
I went home to my mums house and told her and my step dad through even more tears then before what had happened, mum cried with me, even though I begged her not to she called my dad and abused him. They held me and suggested things I could do to be more comfortable with my weight like walking, joining the gym and eating health or doing shakes. This was no time for a love you the way you are talk in my head. I joined the gym that week.
Another major concern from my past is only a year or so ago when my parents travelled America for a month, during this time I had fascinated myself with pages showcasing skinny girls or pro anorexia/ bulimia sites. I started throwing up my meals. This only lasted a month, but it happen again every now and then, I didn’t see it as a concern.
Taking time to write down and properly process all these thoughts for the first time has made me really consider where I am now in this very moment with my body image and how I have come to this point.
I really am happy when I look in the mirror, at 76kgs, I still feel sexy, womanly I’d call myself chubby over fat, I’m is a healthy weight range, the only time it upsets me is when I lay on my side and can feel my stomach roll. It always been about the stomach area for me.
All though I am happy with myself today I found myself buying slimming shakes, and signed up to a boot camp.
I love my body, but I still wonder, when is this all going to stop?
Before I wrote this I typed in “fat” to tumblr to see what kind of images it would show me, most where again thin girls striving to be thinner. But then I found something beautiful a blog entitled “stop hating your body” that blog has really opened my eyes to some fantastic role models and woman just like me, but most importantly it has made me critically think about my body image and how my life has and continues to impact on my thoughts of beauty and self confidence.
If you can look in the mirror and smile, your half way there baby.
If you ever want to talk, help each other or share something, please message my page elloellee or instagram elloelle__
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