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.
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My PSA for the day:
I’ve seen this come up a few times in my follow list today from rants and blogs and notes.
When you go to the Doctor, you have the right to not be weighed.
There was a time in my life when knowing what the numbers on the scale said would have sent me into an absolute spiral of loathing, self-injury and suicidality. And that was even if they were “good.” I finally got to the point where if I knew my weight had stayed relatively static, I refused to be weighed when seeing the Doctor.
If you have not gone to the Doctor specifically for a weight-related issue (ED treatment or other related problem that they consider to be tied to the scale), you are under no obligation to be weighed.
It took me a long time to figure that out. But once I did? I never let some know-it-all nurse shove me on the scale. I have only once ever had one even give me push back about it.
Generally my answer was, “My weight has not changed significantly since I was last here so I would prefer not to be weighed.”
The only time I had to say more than that was with one bitch nurse who said, “Well, if you don’t want to see you can just step on backwards and I won’t tell you the number.”
To which I replied, “I have a severe anxiety and depressive disorder. I have major body issues. If you TAKE my weight, I HAVE to see it. If I see it, whether it is what I expect or not, I will leave here, obsess about it, and ultimately- end up doing myself a great deal of physical and emotional harm because of that number. If you won’t let me see the Doctor without being weighed, I’m leaving.”
Your emotional and psychological health and well being are JUST as important as what the medical profession considers your physical health to be. You are a far better judge of your own health and how your emotional state plays into that than some nurse who’s never had a single second of genuine worry about what those number say about her.
Outside of being a marker for ED and recovery (which I can’t speak to very well because admittedly my ED issues were always overeating related), or a drastic change in weight which can affect dosage recommendations on SOME medications, your weight is not a diagnostic tool of any kind unless there has been a sudden or drastic change in a short period of time- which quite frankly, is usually obvious WITHOUT a scale to tell them so.
Don’t feel obligated to put your emotional and mental health aside because someone in scrubs has asked you to step on a scale.
Whether you think all bodies are beautiful or you never said there isn’t anything wrong with being overweight you are still missing a key point in body positivity.
Which is respect.
Saying, “but it has been proven that being extremely overweight is unhealthy” is invasive and that is disrespectful.
Saying, “aren’t you concerned for your health, though?” is invasive and disrespectful.
Saying, “I’m all for loving yourself but aren’t you concerned you are promoting an unhealthy lifestyle?” is stigmatizing fat people and therefore EXTREMELY disrespectful.
Saying, “Don’t you want to live longer? What if you have kids? Don’t you want to be there for them?” is invasive and disrespectful.
You act concerned. Maybe you are. But your concern is problematic. Often times disingenuous. And always, always hurtful.
This behavior effects self esteem. Health and self esteem are connected to fat bodies because we are told how unhealthy we are simply for existing. It shapes our self esteem. It wears down on our body image. It tears at our mental capacity to feel good about ourselves. And saying that shit perpetuates these stigmas and fucks with us. So kindly understand what your invasive, disrespectful, faux concern does to us and rework your attitude toward health and fat people.
*sigh* I just typed this whole long thing up, and tumblr logged me out and lost all of it -_-, so here it goes again!
I’m going to take you all back in time to a place called elementary school, a death trap filled with ignorance, arrogance and uneducated shit heads (pardon my french). I can distinctly remember a time as a 12 year old at the lunch table with most of my class discussing weight and how heavy or light everyone was. Now in my home we didn’t have a scale because my mom thought it promoted poor thinking, which I appreciate now knowing how dangerous those contraptions are. However, with a recent visit to the doctor for a regular checkup I knew that I was 150 pounds at 12 years old, now at the time I was already 5’6 bordering 5’7 and I was a completely healthy weight for my body and my doctor had no advice for my perfectly healthy self… However at the lunch table I learned something totally different, the number of the scale defined how skinny or fat you were and it also defined you as a person. I being naive and unsure of what I was getting myself into stated casually that I was 150 pounds, to the surprise of my classmates who all looked at me googly eyed and in awe… “I’m 100, 108, 120 at most” came from the mouths of all of my much shorter, skinnier classmates and I instantly knew I was wrong, weird and really fat. Deemed “Shamoo” for the rest of my adolescent career I knew that I was a disgusting chunk of lard that irritated people with my fatness.
(^ The girl on the far left is me, at age 13 still the owner of the nickname Shamoo)
Now this curse isn’t just the fault of young ignorant children who have no concept of weight, and health and beauty, it’s something that they have learned from their parents and the media. My mother, someone who belongs to the health industry even said to me one time just by looking at me that 160 pounds should be what I aim for at my height… Which was TOTALLY off base! If I weighed 150 almost 160 pounds in the photo above at 5’7 does it really make sense that I should weight that amount at 5’10 bordering 5’11? No, not at all! And this goes to show my point! Weight cannot be determined by looking at someone alone, you must know all of their physical details before making this assumption and that job belongs to the owner of this skin and their doctor who helps them determine their nutritional needs! Not you, a parent, or a friend, or a bystander who believes that your arrogant and condescending opinions help or even change the victims ways.
With a visit to my doctor I found out that my current weight of 185 is healthy for my size and if I would like to work out more that would be fine but going anywhere below 175 would be dangerous for me in particular!
So to all of you who believe you can judge a book by it’s cover, learn that you cannot at all! And stop trying to give your advice to people on how they should treat themselves or their bodies, because you have absolutely NO IDEA!
Love always, the girl with natural rolls, thunder thighs and small breasts.
Yes, you. I know you’re reading all of this fat positive stuff, all this self esteem stuff and the general concept seems really wise and kind. It makes sense to you on the surface, after all, generally speaking, that’s how you approach the world right? You see everyone has value and is important in the world, and you don’t care about the size or shape of people in the world around you. What matters is their mind, their heart. How they treat people and how they behave right?
The problem is, I think you’re struggling with feeling that way about yourself. You feel the need to be perfect, to be beautiful, to be confident and awesome and amazing right? But you just don’t feel that way. You’re feeling things like scared, lonely, unworthy, stupid, ugly, not good enough. You just can’t seem to get those old recordings in your head to stop playing, all the times that you’ve screwed up, or someone has told you you’re not good enough, or that they think you’re ugly, stupid, worthless. No matter how much you “get” self esteem on paper, you just can’t seem to grow your own.
Am I right?
Let me tell you a little secret. All those confident people you see around you that you admire but think you could never be like them? You are already like them. Not only because you are taking that step out into the great world of self acceptance and positive self esteem (which is awesome!) but because they feel just the same way as you do. They feel scared, they feel like screw ups, they feel like imposters, they feel ugly, stupid, not good enough. The difference is, they know that those feelings are normal to have, and that they’re not always accurate depictions of themselves. They acknowledge those feelings first, and then they examine why they are feeling them. They realise they’re usually because of stress, because of carrying around other people’s behaviour and attitudes, because of tiredness, because of worry. Sometimes they’re chemical – lots of us suffer depression and anxiety.
There are lots of things that you can do to help work through these feelings of inadequacy. Surround yourself with positive people who value you for who you are in your heart and mind. Engage in self care – be it a good night’s sleep, a swim or some yoga, a night out with friends, or a long hot bath. Whatever it is that makes you feel good. Fill your life with the things that inflate you, not those that crush you down. Throw away those magazines. Stop watching TV shows and movies that engage in fat hate or criticism of women over their appearance. Don’t give media that engages in bullying your time and attention. There are plenty of other fantastic things out there you can read, watch and do that build you up, rather than tear you down.
But most of all, you need to know this: You don’t need to be perfect. Or beautiful. Or pretty. Or even confident. You are valuable right now, as you are, with all your flaws and imperfections. Because we ALL have flaws and imperfections. Every single one of us. Perfection isn’t compulsory, nor is it possible.
Start to see yourself as other people see you. When they tell you they love you, for whatever reason they love you, there is your evidence of your value. Turn off those old recordings from the past. They are just that – the past. They no longer matter. What matters is who you are here and now. Learn from and fix those mistakes as best you can, and value who you are now. It’s never too late – whether you are 16 or 96.
Something starts to happen when you do this. It takes a long time, but you start to see those qualities in yourself. You may not recognise it when it starts to happen, but you will feel it. You’ll feel brighter and lighter. You start to see yourself as the amazing human being that you are.
And you are an amazing human being. I can see it already.
Lots of Love