Too fat, too thin, too ‘booby’, not booby enough! No matter your body shape or size, you’ve likely been on the receiving end of some body negativity at some point in your life.
For years a certain idea of beauty perfection has been pedalled as the ‘right’ way to look and anyone that falls short (or tall!) of that ideal can find themselves having their ‘imperfections’ scrutinised.
But despite the fact that the upset the comments cause is often unintentional, the result is still the same – piling on the pressure to conform to certain beauty standards.
So to highlight the problem people have been sharing the comments people have made about their bodies using the hashtag #TheySaid.
The movement was started by Sally Bergesen, who posted a body-shaming comment made by her dad at the age of 12 and encouraged others to share their own experiences on social media.
“‘Keep eating like that and you’re going to be a butterball.’ My Dad when I was 12. Pls RT and share a body shaming comment. #TheySaid,” she wrote on Twitter.
And before long hundreds of women were using the hashtag to reveal that body-shaming is something that can happen to anyone.
But though the sharing of the experiences was no doubt empowering, the #TheySaid movement is about more than just airing comments from the past. It’s also about encouraging women to rise above the shaming comments they’ve received.
After her initial tweet went viral, Sally challenged women to tweet the responses they wished they’d given to their shamers and help inspire other women with how to react moving forward.
“What replies can we arm our girls with? I’ll start: “Actually, all bodies are different and I’m just right for me.” #TheySaid,” Sally wrote.
Since then women have been sharing their amazing clap backs using the hashtags #SheSaid.
And #TheySaid #SheSaid isn’t the only body positive movement making headlines at the moment. Step forward blogger and mental health advocate Positively Kate who’s on a mission to help kickstart women on their body acceptance journey.
Kate regularly shares inspirational posts to her nearly 15K followers and her latest hashtag is possibly her most inspirational yet.
Sharing a video of herself dancing around in her bikini, the BoPo activist wants to encourage others to #JiggleForJoy
In the caption for the video, Kate discusses her struggle with an eating disorder and says that she deleted the video seven times before finally leaving it up online.
“No matter what my emotional mind thinks or others say, my body is perfect,” she writes.
“My body is whole. My body is beautiful. And, my body – in its entirety – is worthy of love. All of that applies to you too, sweet warriors.”
“So, dear ED that has been plaguing me as of late, go duck yourself. I am doing #jiggleforjoy and god darn it ED, you aren’t going to stop me.”
It's another gift of a day on earth and I am here to fight!!! Letssss get after it, warriors! Letssss gets after it indeed!! • I've been having some mighty fierce PTSD about my self harm and suicidality days. • The flashbacks are rolling in like the summer thunderstorms and my craving to hide hide hide from the world is coming in strong. • Additionally, last night as I was writing and organizing my computer, I also found photos of my notably underweight days and my silly brain latched on and created an even more dynamic chorus of self hate dialogue. The melody of their words rocked me – you are a failure. You are a shit show. You – in your existence- are unworthy of this world. • • But damnit, I am stronger than those voices in my head. I am human. I am a warrior. I am enough EXACTLY AS I AM. And, I am here to take up some beautiful space and make meaning out of it. Yes. I am here to bust up some stigma and make a difference in the mental health field. • I survived 10 years in the mental health care system. My privilege and access to services is WHY I AM STILL ALIVE unlike many of my peers who lost their battle with these illnesses to suicide. So I sure as hell am not going to waste this gift of a second chance and hide. I am going to honor them AND FIGHT FOR THE RIGHTS AND RESOURCES THEY WERE DENIED. • So today, I #jiggleforjoy for this privilege to be alive, for the roof over my head, for the food in my belly, for my job, for my family, for my loveys, and for all of you. • And above all, I #jiggleforjoy for my peers, my friends, my fellow warriors who do not have the privilege to do so today. • I miss you every day sweet friends. This is for you. • So yeah, screw you head and your nasty negativity. • I'm going to take up some space today. • Yes warriors, let's take up some space. • And in that space, Let's make meaning. Let's make light. Let's make it known: THERE IS NO SHAME IN HAVING A MENTAL HEALTH CONDITION. There is only shame in stigmatizing one. • Here to us and our courage to keep fighting. • Here is to us – the warriors that find gratitude and light – even in hardship and darkness. • With love, gratitude & jiggle, Yours, Kate Speer #takebackthebeach
A post shared by unapologetically kate speer. (@positively.kate) on May 30, 2017 at 7:33am PDT
Since posting the video and several other similar dancing vids have been viewed more than 24K times and received hundreds of comments from other women thanking her for her refreshing body positive attitude.
“This made me tear up from happiness and gratitude,” one follower wrote.
“Yes!!! I am going to take up some space today! I didn’t want to get out of bed this morning. Today is going to be a good day, because I will make it one! Time for some dancing and getting ready! Thank you for sharing this!” added another.
Your midday reminder that YOU – just as you are – are FABULOUS! • I've been struggling with my beautiful bod this week (and note, I know I have a thin-privileged, able-privileged, beautiful bod even if I can't always feel it to be so) and beating it up in my mind and trying to suffocate it with binging. So, today, I'm posting this ????even though it is terrifying me to do so (yup, deleted it 7 times). • I'm also saying this for me (and you)… • My body is MORE than its appearance. My body is NOT my value. My body is simply the vessel for my god damn fabulous self. • And no matter what my emotional mind thinks or others say, MY BODY IS PERFECT. MY BODY IS WHOLE. MY BODY IS BEAUTIFUL. AND, MY BODY – IN ITS ENTIRETY- IS WORTHY OF LOVE. • Repeat it. • MY BODY – IN ITS ENTIRETY – IS WORTHY OF LOVE. • ALL OF THAT applies to YOU too, sweet warriors! • So dear ED that has been plaguing me as of late, go duck yourself. Yup, ????you. • I am doing #jiggleforjoy and gosh darnit ED, you aren't going to stop me. • With love, dork and zinc sunscreen on fleeeek, Kate Speer #nowrongway #hereforyou #thisislearningselflove #takebackthebeach PS my quote for self love bootcamp is on my new stigma blasting/community building narrative art project feed ???? @_humansofmentalillness by the one and only Carrie Fisher about how WE ARE MORE THAN OUR ILLNESS!!! Check it, lovers!!! ????????????
A post shared by unapologetically kate speer. (@positively.kate) on May 24, 2017 at 9:57am PDT
So ladies if you’re not feeling the body love right now, how about we all do a little jiggle for joy. And if you get any negativity about it, turn to #SheSaid for some clap back inspo.
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