“Don’t attach yourself to anyone who shows you the least bit of attention because you’re lonely. Loneliness is the human condition. No one is ever going to fill that space. The best you can do is know yourself… know what you want.”—
i want to be alright without you. i want to smile, i want to laugh, i just want to stop lying to myself. you've been pulling me down for way too long and i know now it's time to let you go. it's time i stop worrying about you and your precious little life; it's time i think about myself for a change. it's time i treat myself right and leave behind those who don't. it's time i dig myself out of this hole and start all over again with someone who just might be willing to give me the chance that you never did.
“Some women choose to follow men, and some women choose to follow their dreams. If you’re wondering which way to go, remember that your career will never wake up an tell you that it doesn’t love you anymore.”—Lady Gaga (via angelsdiewithyou)
The idea is pretty much everywhere, from the most radical of feminists, to the most superficial ad campaigns put out by companies that also sell skin-bleaching agents in India. “Love Your Body”. It’s about the only thing most feminists, most mainstream people, and the Empowerment Industry seem to find common ground on. And on its face, it’s a pretty good idea. The idea of the body as sinful, dirty, something that must be conquered is pretty fucking old. And it’s not just the mortification of the flesh and the idea that Eve’s taste for fruit salad is why my uterus is currently trying to claw its way out, as we all know. Every time I go to the supermarket or the drugstore, I get treated to an endless barrage of magazines helpfully pointing out what is currently too monstrous about my body for anyone to see. I thus can really get behind the idea of body positivity. I think it’s a great stance to have, and would like to see it more widespread.
But here’s the thing: It’s not something that can be forced on people. You can’t shame someone into thinking they’re a stone-cold fox. Snarking on someone for being self-conscious for whatever reason (hey, it’s not like there might be any cultural conditioning behind it, amirite?), isn’t really going to help.
And the idea itself is really ignoring a lot of privilege issues. It’s pretty ableist to think that someone is a bad feminist if they don’t have a great relationship with their body that say, is in chronic pain. It’s transphobic to insist to someone whose body is causing dysphoria that they’re beautiful just the way they are.
It’s also really kind of fucked up to try and leave a discarding of individual self-loathing as the only activism that gets any airplay against the system that sets up that self-loathing in the first place. People with disabilities, POC, trans people, fat people might love their bodies a bit more often if there was perhaps less oppression against those very bodies. The personal is political, but there really does need to be more than individual efforts.
And there’s still this idea that being beautiful is the most important thing out there. Which is kind of what the idea is based on, and I’m not comfortable with that at all. It is okay to be unattractive. Really. The idea that every woman is beautiful still posits that they’re around to be attractive.
So, what do I think would be a better solution? Getting past the body/mind dichotomy would be a start. Your body, like your mind is a part of you. Don’t think of yourself as better or worse if you love or hate how you look. Recognize that it’s okay to not love your body if it gives you grief, and accept it as simply another facet of yourself.
So this is pretty awesome and also timely because I’m attempting to work on the body/mind dichotomy for spiritual reasons too.
I never thought of it that way.
I’ve been trying to tell my mother this for what feels like most of my adolescence and adult life. Quit telling me I’m beautiful. It’s not going to make my body dysmorphia go away.