Hey you. Yes, you.
Your ass is far too large. Your thighs wibble grotesquely.
Frankly, it’s disgusting.
Your bingo wings are really unappealing, and everyone is looking at the way your second chin comes out when you smile.
Oh, and let’s not forget your jiggly belly that folds into ugly rolls when you sit down.
I can’t believe you’re wearing that outfit – you really think it hides the flaws?
Oh, are you gonna cry? Are you ashamed? You should be.
You are fat and worthless.
Are you getting mad yet? Would you let anyone talk to you this way? Of course not! You would be offended, angry and you would probably speak up for yourself. And you should! Damn right! No one has the right to talk to you that way. NO ONE.
Remember that, because if you’re anything like me, this is exactly how you talk to YOURSELF.
Recently I saw this video put out by Special K as part of their Shhhhut Down Fat Talk campaign. At first, I rolled my eyes, but then I got upset. 93% of women engage in Fat Talk. We tell ourselves we are less than anyone else because our body composition is slightly different. We look at ourselves with the most critical of eyes, seeing what no one else would think to look for and judging ourselves by our own impossible standards.
Why are we allowed to speak to ourselves the way we would NEVER accept anyone else talking to us? Why do we focus on our outward appearance as an indication of our worth?
Watch this and think about it.
I mean, what would you do if confronted by someone else with the same damning sentiments you say to yourself on a daily basis? And more than that, would you say to anyone else the things you say to yourself?
I didn’t think so.
It’s time to readjust our thinking and realize that what we’re doing and saying and thinking is having a damaging effect. Not just on ourselves but on everyone around us. What do our daughters and nieces and pupils learn about the world when they see fat shaming on television, in magazines, online and most especially in their own homes?
Hans Christian Andersen once wrote a story which tells of a looking-glass “which had the power of making everything good or beautiful that was reflected in it almost shrink to nothing, while everything that was worthless and bad looked increased in size and worse than ever.” In the story, some demons take the mirror all over the world laughing amusedly as they see every person through it. But when they try to take it to heaven to look at the angels with it, “it slipped from their hands, fell to the earth, and was broken into millions of pieces. The looking-glass caused more unhappiness than ever, for some of the fragments were not so large as a grain of sand, and they flew about the world into every country. When one of these tiny atoms flew into a person’s eye, it stuck there unknown to him, and from that moment he saw everything through a distorted medium, or could see only the worst side of what he looked at, for even the smallest fragment retained the same power which had belonged to the whole mirror.”
I can’t help but think of this story, as it seems that most of us have a fragment of that mirror in our eyes. We see our worst features exaggerated to the point where we become disgusting to ourselves. What is worse is that we are making our physical features the most important thing!
This clip of Jennifer Lawrence made me shout “HELL YES” at my screen because she seems to get it and is speaking out against those media outlets that thrive on fat shaming.
And we have the Dove Real Beauty campaign which seeks to help women accept each other – accept THEMSELVES – whatever shape, size, skin color, body type, hair style, etc.
This is not to say that some of us don’t need to lose weight or get fit – being healthy is always a great choice. But healthy means different things to different people. And it should be a choice we make to be HAPPIER, not just to feel prettier. We need to focus on self empowerment rather than self punishment! See what is beautiful about yourself rather than what you think people are judging about you.
This is me. With my frizzy hair and uneven skin and my wrinkles and my eyebrows that need plucked and my double chin and… my beautiful blue eyes that my sons both inherited, and my smile that brings out my wrinkles and still genuinely makes me look younger… This is me focusing on the positive and seeing myself in a new light. This is me. #FightFatTalk
Join in. See yourself as beautiful. Forgive your body for being less than perfect. Be you. That’s all you ever had to be in the first place.