After reading a very lengthy and well-articulated caption from someone I admire and respect it brought attention to points I never really thought about, and overlooked. I remember when I first started having a switch in my social media, I was going through a period where I was deciding not to compete and felt as if I were slipping into a depression all while I was learning to finally accept the way I looked. I saw my counsellor but also knew I needed to start working on myself. Normally I would put my head down and push my problems aside by doing a contest prep. But this year that wasn’t an option and I had to start to learn how to deal with my problems and accept who I was. While I was learning, I shared this, through my thoughts and feelings. The post I read opened my eyes to what the “BOPO” community really is and what is stands for and how to some “fitness people” promoting body image positivity would be considered an insult to these women who have worked so hard to create this community. As my intentions were never to make this community any less than it is, perhaps it did.
I can’t say I have ever suffered from the struggles many of these women face. I don’t think anyone knows what someone else is going through unless they walk in their shoes and really experience life as that person. But I can say I have had issues since I can remember and coming forward and vocalizing them was a huge barrier for me. I never intended to blur the lines of one community to another and I never thought about these things as having “rules.” I saw this as a period of my life where I needed to grow as a person while shedding light on these topics we all don’t talk about.
I can see now how me posting about my insecurities or things I have struggled with would be taken as an insult to some women who have had serious body weight issues, as from the outside I look like someone who should “be proud of what I look like.” Possibly posting the flexed and relaxed pictures aren’t ideal for those who would “kill to look like the relaxed.” I never posted these things with these thoughts, so yes I was misinformed, naive even.
However, I don’t think struggles should be compared, I don’t think you can compare them. There will always be people who are suffering more than you but when you are in a place of pain, you don’t think about the others who would kill for your form of “suffering” instead you only focus on the pain you feel. This is how we are wired. I wanted to open up, and try to become a much kinder person to myself and that is what started this for me.
I guess what I am trying to say is that just because you look a certain way or have a certain life even doesn’t mean you are happy. You can be the most beautiful person in the world by societal standards but if you hate yourself, you won’t be happy. Yet someone who is maybe “not considered” this could be extremely happy. It’s not really fair to assume that just because you “have a good body” you are happy. That is like saying someone who “doesn’t” is unhappy. I have a very good life but still struggle with depression, some would say it’s selfish and yes maybe to some it is but to me it is not something I can control. Things in my life can be going great and anxiety consumes me. I shouldn’t have problems because I have a good life, right? Unfortunately it doesn’t work that way. Everyone has their own struggles, which no one actually knows anything about.
I never meant to offend anyone that belong to that community as I truly do respect it. I am just trying to share problems a lot of us “fitness” women have but can’t talk about for this very reason.