To anyone "in hate" with their own body

A response to Maddi, who wrote this incredibly moving post about hating her body and the impact BED (Binge Eating Disorder) has had and is having on her life. And to anyone else who is “in hate” with their own bodies.

I can’t see you.

Our friendship is one that has blossomed on the internet; Twitter, specifically. It means that we both have total control over what the other person is seeing at any given point and, just like with any other digital relationship, that means we get to choose to hide parts of ourselves that we don’t feel as great about as the other bits.

It’s a shame in a way that parts of us are hidden. Sometimes for me I hide my body, sometimes my exhaustion, sometimes my sadness, sometimes my fears, sometimes my nose. Maybe that means we don’t get to know each other fully, you know. Which would be sad.

Even so, I think that the confidence that control can bring creates a purity. When you meet someone online, you don’t immediately get judged by your appearance (which, let’s face it, is something largely out of our control), you get judged by your words and how you treat other people online - and I actually think that’s beautiful.

The freedom to express ourselves without being physically seen it’s… well… it’s liberating.

Although I can’t physically see you… I CAN see you.

I’m lucky to have found you. I’m not really sure how it happened, but I do know that I am lucky. I have been given the opportunity to get to know someone kind, creative, funny, dedicated, hard working and supportive and that kind of thing doesn’t come around very often.

Self harming comes in so many forms and I have dabbled in many of them. Some of my self harming has been food related; I’ve both binged and deprived myself. I KNEW that it wasn’t OK for me to be mistreating my body, but my mind was sick enough that it didn’t help me stop. Contrary to you (and who the fuck are these strangers who think they can comment on your appearance?!), I was praised for my weight loss, because people really had no idea how underweight I was at the time and how many health risks I was exposed to by regularly purging.

I don’t need to be able to see your body to see who you are. Our bodies are just the shells that we exist in.

I know that not being happy in your body is painful, but I need you to also know that you are anything BUT gross. You are incredible. You will overcome the pain your feeling, and it will be reflected in your body - but it won’t make you any more you.

Maddi

I hope that one day, I can meet you in person and give you a giant hug. I hope that we can hang out and I can teach you what all the different British accents sound like and how important it is that you’re as gentle with yourself as you would be with anyone else.

ILY.

Anneli RobertsComment