Stella, who I blogged about yesterday, wrote on her blog about her experience of being featured on Humans of New York.
Her words are really powerful and I hope you will take the time to read them. She hadn’t know the photo to be posted would be the half-dressed one … and she had a lot of mixed feelings — especially about the judgment and criticism she’s been facing since the photo went viral.
As someone in this sphere of body image/body acceptance … I completely can understand her confusion … wanting to show the world how happy she is with who she is, yet still — humanly — feeling upset about being thrust into the spotlight.
One could argue, “Well, you’re blogging about this and making yourself public!” or “You let him take your picture”! — True on both accounts. But when other people tell your story, you DO lose some sense of ownership … and it can be hard.
I know this first-hand. I know I felt SUPER violated last year when the Daily Mail took a photo of mine and slapped it online, changing the words around from the ABCNews.com article I was featured in and made it seem like I had been dealing with my issues during my pregnancy … which I most certainly had not. Yes, I wanted to be an advocate for women struggling with similar issues … but this was more than I bargained for! I was scared … I didn’t want my name/face out there, ESPECIALLY since the Daily Mail had spun the story.
So though there was nothing false in Stella’s story, I do understand in my own way what she is feeling on a much larger scale. What I’d say to her is .. .you are awesome. What you’re doing with your Body Love project is awesome. There will always be haters but more people are lovers; more people admire and respect you for what you’re doing. You’re helping change people’s perspectives … and helping girls and women see that they are far more than a number on a scale or the size inside the tag of their jeans.
What you’re doing is awesome, Stella. Let the haters hate … keep on keeping on. You’re human and it’s natural to feel disheartened hearing them. But you’re touching lives. And that’s nothing short of amazing.