We say NO to body shamers!

Take a moment and think about it; how many times are you told to alter your appearance? And things are constantly changing, what worked for this season might not be efficient for the next. We are bombarded with advice, tips, recommendations on how to shed off our weight; how to change how we look – “to feel better about ourselves” or at least they give us the idea, all our problems will be solved when we fix the outside.

There is a constant reminder of how imperfect one is, and ideas on how to rectify our physical defects are constantly circulating, so to affect how we think and see ourselves. None of these people knows who we are on a personal level, or received clear information on how we feel, which concludes they do not care. Body shaming is everywhere; our television, magazines, newspapers, communities and the people we spend time with on a regular proliferate this disease.

Sometimes we are not conscious of the implications, but even in our own social gatherings, we have made it a norm to criticize and voice out how we are not pleased with certain body parts, either from ourselves or those around us.

Whoever established the movement of body shaming, and those embracing the course all share a twisted mindset. Body shaming is wrong, no matter what angle you approach it from,  come what may; public figure or to the average person, the impact is the same or even greater to the public figure, due to the pressure.

Nonetheless, we all know the damage this infuriating outburst of body shaming has on an individual psychologically, if we do not know, we need to research and read about the implication the movement has on a person. Yet day by day someone faces body shaming, incidents caused by opinionated people who believe they have the right to inform others how they ought to look and present themselves in public. Unfortunately, body shaming is no respecter of persons, no one is immune to the attacks.

Yes, it has been introduced to different platforms to help address the subject, hoping to eradicate this kind of mindset that has affiliated many. The social media is frequently used as a platform to address the outcry, commencing to the girl next door and the many celebrities who are either concern or affected.

Celebrity body shaming is a common factor regulated by the paparazzi and fans. It is not a recent issue that is taking us by surprise, no, rather it is escalating and getting out of hand. In South Africa the likes of Samkelo Ndlovu has been greatly affected; with the immediate effect, she posted an extensive Instagram post addressing the fans a piece of her mind for those who are juxtaposing her youthful weight at the age of 21 and her current body weight.

“My body has also grown… from a girl’s body into a woman’s body. What [irks] me are humans who last saw me on a show where I was 21…and say “you’re so fat now” or “go to the gym”…

“ I admire and hold respect for my job and I know that in order for me to do my job, you have to look at me. Even on those days when I’m not feeling my sexiest or most beautiful or leanest and happy. You have to look at me. I will only allow that pressure to be the only pressure I take with me to the gym. My job. I will not succumb to uninformed humans who emerge from their sloth homes and troll at me. I do encourage you to go tell your mom or sister she’s so fat now and returns back to me.”

You would expect people such as Gigi Hadid to have it better; runaway model and an ambassador for some of the biggest brands in Hollywood, but she is constantly bashed, either accused of being curvy for modelling or too thin; she is sometimes reminded she needs to eat, what a life!

We can never forget the former model – Tyra Banks, she has been a victim of body shaming after she gained weight and it became visible through an image taken by the paparazzi during her vacation while wearing her swimsuit. As I have stated, no one is immune, especially women.

Honestly, it is easier to get acquainted with body shamers, look no further. The method is straightforward; pregnancy hearsay, remarks about putting on weight and pressurising others with nasty comments on what is appropriate for them to wear. Although some of these stars are not governed by the opinions of others, those that are easily influenced have a hard time dealing with the pessimistic remarks they get. We are grateful for those that still appreciate themselves with or without the validation of others. Well, not everyone has a strong mindset, some do fall into the victim mode.

The Disney princess – Demi Lovato, grew up in the limelight and without a doubt, it has not been easy for her or anyone who became a star at a young age. Demi Lovato is always protecting herself from body shamers, from her early age, trolls always commented on her physical appearance.

Latterly, people had a mouthful after the singer appeared to have gained weight on her stay at rehab, they entertained a paparazzi photo that surfaced on the net illustrating her in a bad state, obviously with the attempt to destroy her self confidence. She has been known to shut down any negative comments directed at her with confidence. At least she knows how to defend herself against trolls.

Understand Your Body

The sooner one learns to study, read, get informed about his/her body, the better they will be equipped for defence. The Understanding of the fluctuation of your body weight, the reasons and how to prevent them if you wish to do so, might come in handy. This will prohibit those dreadful exercise regimes and eating plans that are introduced when matters have escalated.

Look, no one is perfect and there will always be someone in your mind who appears to be in great shape with an appealing face and a fat bank account. That should not stop you from loving the person that you are; love yourself with all your imperfections. Learn to love yourself inside out. Do not wait on someone else to validate you. Take charge of your life.

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Nomzamo Mbatha takes a picture with the wrong person.