Before I became interested in dressing and style, I avoided thinking about my body. At all costs. I didn’t look in the mirror if I didn’t have to, didn’t focus much energy or attention on how my outfits interacted with my figure, and did my utmost to think about anything besides my own physicality. Because of this choice, the information I was given about my body came almost exclusively from external sources. And none of it was good news: I was chubby, disproportionate, my breasts were too small and my hips were too big, my arms were flabby and so was my stomach. Virtually all of this information was comparative: I was flabby compared to Gwyneth Paltrow, my breasts were too small compared to Victoria’s Secret models … you know the drill. I studiously ignored my body, hoping its perceived inadequacies would diminish if I pretended I was a brain in a jar. And yet this comparative information still crept in and made me feel inadequate.
Originally posted 2013-09-16 06:02:50.
I know I’ve told this story before, but it has shaped my worldview so I’m gonna lay it on ya again:
A while back, a dear friend of mine told me something that stopped me cold. She said (and I’m paraphrasing), “Sally, do you know why I don’t run for political office myself? It’s because I could never handle the scrutiny and criticism I’d take for how I look. Women in politics and power are constantly under the microscope for their bodies, grooming, and style, and I just couldn’t take it.”
Originally posted 2015-04-27 06:33:52.
Body image struggles come in many different forms: You may feel self-conscious or inadequate whenever your sister-in-law/substitute spin instructor/childhood pal is around, and relatively fine most other times. You may only worry when your weight fluctuates or you notice a bunch of new wrinkles or you have a big, painful acne breakout. But if you’re someone who struggles with your body image in a low-grade but near-constant way, you may not be fully aware of how much strength that struggle is draining off you, slowly but steadily.
Originally posted 2015-12-10 07:27:54.