I Am Not the Source of My Struggle

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A few weeks ago, Beloved Body launched “A New Vocabulary” (ANV) – a series of blog posts designed to give you self-compassionate language for a variety of body image topics. The posts aggregate content from others on Instagram about a particular topic in one place. The next time you want to be kind to yourself but don’t know quite what to say, you can easily find new vocabulary right here.

The first post reminds us “Your Body is Allowed to Change,” and I’m excited to introduce ANV’s second topic: “I Am Not the Source of My Struggle.”

For the longest time, I thought my problem was me. I wanted to lose weight or look a certain way, so I did things to try to achieve that. But those things didn’t actually make me happy. But yet, I couldn’t erase my body desires (but felt bad about having those desires), which led back to those actions again. And then some of those actions – like dieting or being “good” and not ordering what I really wanted at a restaurant – created disordered eating that I thought was a lack of willpower or discipline (again my problem … when in actuality it’s your body’s natural & NORMAL response to restriction). My whole self was in conflict with itself. I would think, “WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?”

Have you ever felt this way? If so, I and the authors of the posts below are here to tell you the answer is NOTHING! You did not create this beast called diet-culture. You did not create this unrealistic body ideal that changes with the drop of a hat. You did not create a $72 billion diet industry that profits off your confusion, doubt and pain. You are not the source of your struggle. Try saying this out loud right now, “I am not the source of my struggle.”

The struggle is real, but it’s not your fault. Need more evidence? Read these nuggets of gold below.

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No word of a lie…yesterday someone told me I should be going to see a surgeon to fix my body (and get some silicone) to make my husband happier.⁣⁣⁣⁣ I mean, isn’t that a decision reserved for, um, me? Why is someone assuming my husbands happiness with me? CoNfusInG. ⁣⁣⁣⁣ First, I laughed.⁣⁣⁣⁣ Then, I was sad.⁣⁣⁣⁣ And finally, a little bit angry (FIRED UPPPP).⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ But then I was reminded that this type of thinking isn't new. In fact, it's quite historical. This notion that there is one body type to suit the needs of society. There is only one. Be that one, or you are nothing. ⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ But the mold changes. The template gets recreated. And yet we are expected again to change with it.⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ Let's break it down by history.⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1910: The ideal women's body was small, corseted waist, and a large busom⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1920: The "flapper" girl image immerged. Flatter, straighter, tiny legs.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1930: The curves were back! Be more sexy!⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1940: Ok hold off on the sexy, be more "feminine"⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1950: Marilyn Monroe was the goal body, and weight GAIN tablets hit the shelves.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1960: Hold up, lose that weight. Slim is in. Twiggy was now the ideal.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1970: Let's trim those hips and get bigger shoulders. That's what we want now.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1980: Jk, changed again! Can you be more tall and athletic? K, thanks.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 1990: Heroin chic. Be as thin as you can, it's hot.⁣⁣⁣⁣ 2000: WE. WANT. ABS. ⁣⁣⁣⁣ 2010: Wait wait wait. WE WANT BUTTS AND BOOBS. (We promise we won't change our…. omg wait what if we…)⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ I'm exhausted just writing that!⁣⁣⁣⁣ Since these changes happen slowly and progress over a decade, we often forget or lose awareness on just how much the pressure of "ideal" (of the moment) is.⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ Here's what we should hope for the future: ALL SHAPES AND SIZES ARE CONSIDERED IDEAL AND AMAZING.⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ You may think it's wishful thinking, but I think it's a goal we can all work towards.⁣⁣⁣⁣ Because lets be real. We might be the standard of the decade, but what happens if it changes? Do we simply obey? Or do we, I dunno… chill and do what's best for us?⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ Yeah. That sounds good 💕⁣⁣ ⁣

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$𝟕𝟐 𝐁𝐈𝐋𝐋𝐈𝐎𝐍 𝐝𝐨𝐥𝐥𝐚𝐫𝐬! That’s enough money to send 𝟐.𝟒 𝐌𝐈𝐋𝐋𝐈𝐎𝐍 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 to good universities and fully cover their 𝐭𝐮𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐜𝐨𝐬𝐭𝐬 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐚 𝟒 𝐲𝐞𝐚𝐫 𝐝𝐞𝐠𝐫𝐞𝐞. It’s enough to cover 𝐚 𝐲𝐞𝐚𝐫 𝐨𝐟 𝐢𝐧𝐬𝐮𝐥𝐢𝐧 — a lifesaving medication that many people can’t afford — for 𝟒 𝐌𝐈𝐋𝐋𝐈𝐎𝐍 𝐝𝐢𝐚𝐛𝐞𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐬. And it’s even enough to pay the 𝐦𝐞𝐝𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐞𝐱𝐩𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞𝐬 of a hospital stay for 𝟑.𝟒 𝐌𝐈𝐋𝐋𝐈𝐎𝐍 𝐩𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐬 recovering from 𝐡𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐭 𝐚𝐭𝐭𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐬.⁣ ⁣ $72 BILLION dollars is a whole lot of money and the diet industry 𝐃𝐎𝐄𝐒 𝐍𝐎𝐓 deserve it! There’s a reason that diets have a 95% fail rate, and that 2/3 of dieters will regain the weight back (plus more) within 5 years. 𝐃𝐢𝐞𝐭𝐬 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐝𝐞𝐬𝐢𝐠𝐧𝐞𝐝 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐭𝐨 𝐟𝐚𝐢𝐥, 𝐬𝐢𝐬. When you gain the weight back, they convince you that something is wrong with you and not the actual diets. 𝐘𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐫𝐞𝐩𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐝 𝐰𝐞𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭 𝐥𝐨𝐬𝐬 𝐚𝐭𝐭𝐞𝐦𝐩𝐭𝐬 𝐢𝐬 𝐰𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐂𝐀𝐒𝐇 𝐢𝐬 𝐚𝐭!⁣⁣⁣ ⁣ The diet industry doesn’t care about your health. They 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐟𝐢𝐭 𝐟𝐫𝐨𝐦 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐢𝐧𝐬𝐞𝐜𝐮𝐫𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐞𝐬 by pathologizing 𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐦𝐚𝐥 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐬, 𝐥𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐚 𝐭𝐮𝐦𝐦𝐲, 𝐡𝐢𝐩 𝐝𝐢𝐩𝐬, 𝐜𝐞𝐥𝐥𝐮𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐞, 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐭𝐜𝐡 𝐦𝐚𝐫𝐤𝐬, 𝐞𝐭𝐜.; then 𝐨𝐟𝐟𝐞𝐫 𝐮𝐬 𝐪𝐮𝐢𝐜𝐤 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐲 𝐟𝐢𝐱𝐞𝐬 for our “problem areas” that THEY pointed out to us. The whole message is basically, “𝐥𝐨𝐨𝐤 𝐚𝐭 𝐡𝐨𝐰 𝐡𝐞𝐚𝐥𝐭𝐡𝐲 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐲 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐰𝐨𝐮𝐥𝐝 𝐛𝐞 𝐢𝐟 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐰𝐞𝐫𝐞 𝐬𝐨𝐦𝐞𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐞𝐥𝐬𝐞”.⁣ ⁣ SIS, it’s a whole trap! 𝐃𝐢𝐞𝐭𝐬 𝐝𝐨𝐧'𝐭 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤 and losing weight is not going to magically fix all your problems.⁣ ⁣ #dietculturedropout #thethicknutritionist #dietculturesucks #weightstigma #enddietculture #youareworthy #nondiet #nondietapproach ⁣⁣⁣ #nondietnutrition #nutritionist #antidiet #nobodyshame #antidietclub #antidietculture #dietsdontwork #allbodiesaregoodbodies #bodyconfidence #yxe #foodfreedom #haes #healthateverysize #intuitiveeating #edrecovery #mindfuleating #selflove #eatingdisorderrecovery #ditchthediext #weightloss #bodyacceptance #dietculture

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In a society that profits from self doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act. I’ve been thinking a lot about these two quotes lately (the one in the mirror is by @happyhealthyhans). About how we as WOMEN are TAUGHT so much self HATE and DISLIKE from a young age. By brands. By media. By family members and partners and friends. It’s so pervasive that it seems normal. We even see it NOW, when there is a PANDEMIC but somehow WEIGHT LOSS has become the focus. But the horrible thing with all of this is that it keeps us feeling small. Fragile. Half broken or weak. We are taught to tear ourselves apart so we do – and along the way, we diminish our incredible, inescapable power. I lost years of my life to the grey haze that comes with being obsessed with the mirror. I’ve found just how vibrant the other side can be. So today, I want to stress this: What you see in the mirror is not your enemy. That body you have been so taught to hate is truly your greatest friend. And when women stand together, whole both in OURSELVES and as a community, that strength is momentous. We can change lives. We can change countries. We can help friends and make days brighter and raise children and raise cats and love with the full force of the goodness inside of us. We can do SO MUCH. SO MUCH more than DIET CULTURE would ever want us to even dare to believe. So let’s do it. Let’s try. Me, you, and all the wonderful, complicated parts of your reflection. We are in this together. No diets required. . . . #iweigh #feminist #perfectlyme #normalizenormalbodies #selflove

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