Selective body positivity

More than ever before, the past few years have highlighted the woes of body shaming and have brought body positivity to light. Being a girl, I know firsthand that one of the things which will always be an easy target will be the body. “You’re too fat,” or “you’re too skinny,” or “you don’t have enough curves” are commonplace insults that are directed at women. What I like to see is both men and women praising all body types for what they are and accepting a person for who they are. Recently, though, I’ve noticed that body positivity is becoming strangely selective.

For a while, it seemed as if people were really getting the idea through their heads that just because some people don’t look like everyone else, that doesn’t make them unattractive.

The media has an astounding effect on what society thinks, especially with the younger generation. Not only do young women and men see others being put down for being plus-size, but they see individuals of a smaller size being praised. In my opinion, smaller builds have always been admired more than plus sizes and that’s not the way it should be. Being put down or viewed as less because of body type is probably the most unfair and most stupid thing I’ve ever heard of.

I’m all for individuals of all sizes standing up for themselves, advocating for positivity and support, but body shaming others in the process to bring themselves up? No. Smaller people shouldn’t be shaming plus-size people and vice versa. If everybody knew the kind of power they could have by simply deciding to join together instead of taking every chance they could to insult one another, the results would be amazing.

Recently, a few songs have hit the peak of the Billboard list, and I can guarantee that everyone has heard these songs at least once. “Anaconda” by Nicki Minaj and “All About That Bass” by Meghan Trainor stand up and give women of bigger, curvier sizes pride and satisfaction and bring feel-good beats to the table, as well. Throughout both songs, though, “skinny” women are consistently put down. Both songs contain lyrics that are too explicit for me to write about, but the message isn’t positive and is heavily directed towards women of smaller sizes. I don’t support either one bit.
If we’re all supposed to be joining together to show people that all body sizes need to be loved, then how are we supposed to feel when celebrities are throwing body shaming in our face? Do we shake it off? Do we embrace it and turn our backs on each other again?

The answer is simple: don’t cave or fall weak to selective body positivity. In today’s society, it is easy to see someone and immediately judge. What I believe, though, is that anything negative that crosses our minds when seeing somebody is what society has conditioned us to believe. What we all need to do, as a society, is stop shaming body types. I hate to get all corny and say “everybody is beautiful,” but it’s true. Nobody should be subjected to feeling bad about the body they are living in because they don’t look like the person next to them. Embrace yourself, embrace your body type, and embrace the body types around you. Don’t pick and choose when it’s okay to love a body, and don’t choose to insult somebody with an adjective like “fat” or “skinny.”
Everybody knows what it’s like to be uncomfortable in their own skin. The best thing to do for oneself and others is try to accept and love the body one has been given.