A Joyful Journey...

Join Doris Smeltzer, critically acclaimed author/educator, as she muses on topics from eating disorders to the mysteries of life. Often "Featured" are select, astute observations made by Andrea during her all too brief 19-year life…it is she who taught us: the joy IS in the journey!

Reducing pain in the world

A few days ago I read an enlightening post by Jenny Copeland, PsyD on the Health At Every Size blog 

In it she talks about our culture's widespread and extremely harmful normalization of "body judgment."  I was aware of the obvious increase in weight stigma but did not have the research to support that its prevalence rivals other forms of bias, until the end of this article's first paragraph:

The rates of weight stigma have increased to the point that it is one of the most prevalent forms of bias in the United States. 1,2

The great thing about this blog piece is the perspective from, and about, the "thin" side of the weight spectrum. It is important to remember that judgments of people based on weight--no matter what size the individual--is harmful. The author discusses the recent Internet meme, "real women have curves" and then quotes Heather Cromarty who discusses this in one of her Shameless blog articles:

...society tells you that if you’re not extremely thin, you’re worthless. However, extremely thin women? They’re still people. Further, bodies are just bodies. They have no intrinsic worth, no moral value, other than what we assign them.

Those of you who are regular readers of this blog know that in recent months I've had some moments of judging my body and finding it "lacking." Yet that judgment was assigned by me...my body appears to blithely continue its miraculous work in spite of my toxic verdicts (although when my attitude gets adjusted and I recognize my judgments for what they are, I imagine my body may have an easier time--functioning with a negative mind has to be more difficult than with a positive one).

I loved how Dr. Copeland ended her "...Skinny on...Skinny" by naming the major consequence of judgments: 

Living as a thin person in a world warring against ‘obesity,’ or as a part of a family who has struggled with weight, does not make my life inherently easier or better. I experience pain as a result of weight stigma: not just my own, but also against my loved ones, my patients, and greater society. My experiences are neither better or worse, nor easier or harder, than others who are differently sized or shaped than me. Pain is pain. It cannot be compared – it is simply different.

Pain IS pain...so let's all attempt to halt our judgments (based on weight or any other criteria) of self or others. In so doing, we play a role in reducing the amount of pain in the world.

[1] Andreyeva T, Puhl RM, Brownell KD. Changes in perceived weight discrimination among Americans, 1995-1996 through 2004-2006Obesity. 2008 Feb;16(5):1129-1134.

[2] Puhl RM, Andreyeva T, Brownell KD. Perceptions of weight discrimination: Prevalence and comparison to race and gender discrimination in AmericaInternational Journal of Obesity. 2008 Mar;32:992-1000.

[Originally posted on the Gürze Books Eating Disorders Blogs]

Thank you Michelle Obama!
What a state of mind...

Related Posts

 

Invest in ending eating disorders:

Shop via AmazonSmile or:

Givva
Use Giving Assistant to save money and support Andreas Voice Foundation

Automatically support Andreas Voice Foundation by shopping at Office Depot, Old Navy, and Target.

The book, "Andrea's Voice...

Silenced by Bulimia

 

Silenced by Bulimia (Gürze, 2006). read more...

Gratitude for support from:

mechnaics bank logo

Tag Cloud

eating disorders, body image weight loss personal change healing, Mothers Day self-hatred self-compassion, Italy bulimia Austria self-love nature / nurture, Kenya spain wi-fi baby steps Body of Truth Internet meme shattered health and fitness, Africa self-forgiveness Mrs. Obama cellulite self-loathing magical thinking Rumi, vulnerability, body hatred crash diets, wedding bittersweet Passover models public ownership, health Cutting, grief bride & groom memories Easter workplace wellness body acceptance, independence social media International No Diet Day Alzheimers privacy, ritual breaking down walls Spring Labor Day dysfunctional family, Independence Day NEDAW recovery New Year fat talk metaphors, Resolutions lessons learned challenges extended family, intersectionality Renfrew Perspectives 4-wheel drive mental illness killer stress, Eating Disorders Awareness Month First Lady anorexia fat people, queer body love Sequoia National Forest Taryn Brumfitt self-acceptance dancing at bus stop love Lets Move! Chimamanda Adichie self-care, Silver Creek Falls Bailey Webber Florence binge Health At Every Size® weight Nigerian Health At Every Size®, mindfulness, white privilege preferred gender pronouns body Julie Wyman Weight Stigma Awareness Week Michelangelo competent eating weight stigma high school reunion fat friendly doctors, #Nuerofeedback4EDs body positive beauty Lindsey Averill Italians Intuitive Eating judgments only you can be you American Medical Assn., healing metaphors, black & white thinking Andreas Voice, fat acceptance, shame, non-binary gender

Andrea's Voice...

Silenced by Bulimia

 

Silenced by Bulimia (Gürze, 2006). read more...

Invest in ending eating disorders:

Shop via AmazonSmile or: