Dear Fat Shaming Facebook Friends

Dear Fat Shaming Facebook Friends,

Some of you are new. Since my stand for self-love I've received several thousand Facebook friend requests from people around the world. So many, in fact, that I maxed out at 5,000 and could receive no more friend requests per Facebook's policy - something I knew nothing about until it happened. I was overwhelmed with newfound fame and attention and know that my bravery and courage standing blindfolded in a black bikini was why you sent me a friend request in the first place. Some of you are old friends who've routinely posted body hating status updates in the past. A whole lot of you are trying to make your living off selling diet supplements or fitness coaches or nutrition plans. And that is just fine by me. You are free to post and sell whatever you like, as you are welcome to do whatever you want with your body, including dieting, "eating clean," or doing cross-fit twice a day. Seriously, I support your right to do what is best for you, even if that is different than what might be best for me.

But when you post commentary on other people's bodies as being bad or undesirable or wrong for being or looking or eating different from you, that's where I draw the line. I will not only stop scrolling at your status update, but I will very likely comment, with something along the lines of you cannot tell how 'healthy' someone is by just looking at them. And then when your friends comment in droves with even more shame and unkind remarks about fat bodies I will come back again, with something about how the $61 billion a year diet industry profits off making us feel bad about ourselves, even though they have a 97% failure rate after three years, but we keep buying into that shitty consumerist culture because offering a faulty product is apparently a BRILLIANT business plan. And when you respond to me with: but it's not a diet, it's a 'lifestyle change,' and folks just need to try harder and learn that eating whole foods is just better for them, I will likely respond with this:

How about we teach kindness? How about we teach that all bodies are good bodies, and that there is no wrong way to have a body. Or we teach that, in fact, food has no moral value. And we teach intuitive eating. How about we teach self-love.

And, historically, when I respond to you with this, you will not only refrain from responding or engaging in further discussion, you will delete my comments from your thread, and not only unfriend me, but block me.

Which is a little extreme for a simple disagreement on ideals. Except it's not just a simple disagreement on ideals, and you know that, too.

Courtesy of Son of Baldwin on Facebook

Courtesy of Son of Baldwin on Facebook

I know what I'm saying is a radical new (and therefore uncomfortable) way of thinking. It's difficult to hear that what you've been taught to believe about your body (and others') may, in fact, be wrong. What's right for me may not be right for you, I know, and we should all have sovereignty over what we do with, put in, and put on our individual bodies. I wish you love, kindness, and, most of all, peace on your journey to find your best self.

But please know that I will not scroll past the hate and body shame. It's important to open our mouths and speak up when we feel oppression, bigotry and injustice is being spewed, so I'll continue to put myself out there and be blocked on Facebook for something I believe so strongly in. It's been happening for nearly 7 years now, so I'm used to it. But it's happening less and less, and that, my friends, is progress.

Yours in the revolution of love,