When the Body Acceptance Movement is just as Toxic as the Body Shaming Movement

Self love.

Body acceptance.

As you are.

We live in a world where we are told to love ourselves. Every social media platform has accounts with hashtags like #bodyacceptance, #bodylove, #bodyrespect. Videos with influencers and celebs offering motivational talks and inspirational quotes. I think the #bodypositivty movement is great, to a point.

Love your body.

Accept your body.

Respect your body.

Social media screams:

Be Yourself!

Love Your Body!

Accept Your Flaws!

Stop Comparing Yourself to Others!

It sounds so good. So simple. Just love yourself.

But...C'mon. We know it’s not that easy. When it comes to external appearances, we are told that we should love our bodies unconditionally, no matter what. We are told to love every dimple, divet, stretch mark, scar, and imperfection.

We are told to accept and take pride in our shape, size, disabilities, and features.

And while this is the ultimate goal, while it would be such a better world if everyone could love themselves as they are, love each other as they are, judge and compare less, and just smile more... It doesn't happen.

The too large nose, lopsided smile, weird feet, cellulite ridden thighs, small ass, short torso, crooked teeth, oddly placed beauty mark, receding hairline, too fat, too thin, too short, too tall... it just does not stop.

But here’s the real bitch of it all. When a person, more often a woman, finally, FINALLY gets comfortable with her body, can accept herself and perhaps even love herself, and begins to experience the joy and freedom that comes with that....

Something happens. Maybe a pregnancy that takes a little too much of a toll. Or perimenopause, which can cause utter chaos, mentally and physically. Or perhaps the discovery of a medical condition. Or worst of all, exposure to abuse, verbal, physical, or sexual.

It is so easy to talk about body acceptance and self love and all that. But, if I am being one hundred, the talk is always easier than the walk. I'd much rather focus on being happy, walking a jagged path than a straight line, and I also think it's super important and health to try to improve. Honestly, it doesn't matter what the goal consists of as long as it makes you better in some way, as in, feeling better, looking better, doing better.

I don't particularly care who says what about it either because, well, sometimes the self love advocates are just as bad as the body shaming ones.


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