It's okay to admit you need a break. And most importantly it's okay not to be okay, and the sooner we admit this and talk about it with the people around us, the sooner we can get rid of the stigma attached to be anything but happy.
Fat is political, sometimes so powerful it can govern over us. While I've worked hard to overcome my eating and body image issues, now feeling comfortable in my skin, I believe my fear of fat will remain for as long as society is afraid of it.
Every time I saw a post like this, I'd have a brief moment of happiness for them, followed by a sinking feeling and a little voice telling me that they might be able to accept who they are, but I can't - shouldn't - because I am gross.
Until you reach the point of truly loving yourself, take baby steps. Surround yourself with positivity and love. Don't listen to people that tell you you aren't good enough because you are. Keep yourself motivated and upbeat as much as possible. Remember that self-love is so much more than physicality and the superficial aspects of yourself.
The models were not duped or forced to be depicted as skinny, nor are young women mindless consumers. We can and should express concern for things we see in the media or consumer culture, but if we look at how women's bodies are always up for public scrutiny, then what does that say about culture, about patriarchy, about privilege?
I see tall ladies stooping down, short ladies raising themselves up with heels, flat-chested women padding their bras, voluptuous women hiding behind baggy, dark clothing. How comfortable are you in your skin?
Throughout my life, you have always been there... loving and supporting me, working hard, never giving up on me (even at times when I have felt like giving up on you), being so resilient, adaptable, courageous and strong. I have never stopped to think how brilliant and amazing you are, let alone thank you for it. I guess I took you for granted.
Living with my Lady Beard has been amazing, but that doesn't mean that I have not had to face hard times too. I have been body shamed all my life, and I have come to realise that it will never stop unless I try to change people's perceptions of what beauty really is. I will forever challenge people's thoughts about what they think to be "normal" is.
With SRE being made compulsory in schools by 2019, hopefully people will become more aware of gynecological conditions at a younger age. By normalising the way we discuss gynecological issues and talk about vaginas, hopefully people will feel more confident and will be proactive about taking control of their sexual health.
I have recently finished a book called The Island by Victoria Hislop. A friend lent me this book following my repeated attempts at starting books that...
While many body positive activists, myself included, exclaim as loudly as our caps lock lets us that, BODY POSITIVITY IS FOR ALL BODIES and that WE CAN WEAR WHAT WE WANT and that WE ARE WORTHY OF LOVING THE SKIN WE'RE IN - our words are still falling on ignorant ears. The fact is, while body positivity has made the mainstream a (slightly) more diverse and bearable place, the body positive crowd seems to have thinned out somewhat in recent months.
While there's nothing wrong with being naturally slim and tall, it's not representative of what our society looks like, leading to greater anxiety and fear among people of not being able to live up to what's considered beautiful.
"What do you think pretty is?" This was the question a teacher at my daughter's school asked during a PSHE lesson last week. The responses from the group of 13 year olds were varied but the one that provoked the greatest reaction was "Blonde hair, clear skin, a thigh gap and a flat stomach!"
It wasn't easy to write and when I think back to a few years ago, I know there is no way I would have written this. However, I've come a long way since then, mentally and physically and I now realise the importance of sharing this.
It is truly about time that today's society included all females of any age and any size. What a fantastic message to send to young girls that it's fine to be curvy, it's acceptable to have a rolly tummy and it's amazing to have grey hair. Love your self, Believe in your self, we are all unique.
The problem is not that we appreciate beauty but that the definition of beauty is so narrow, too narrow to include afro textured hair, so while society is waking up to the damaging effects of its narrow definition of beauty, advocating for body acceptance, even skin colour acceptance, hair discrimination still goes largely unopposed.