A few years ago, I fell in love with the TV show “Huge.” It ran for only 1 season, but it left its mark. It was about a weight-loss camp for teens, focusing on certain campers and staff members. It beautifully depicted a lot of the difficulties people face when struggling with body image. In fact, the show was almost too real, particularly for someone like me who was struggling with my own self esteem issues. The show also introduced me to a concept I had never heard of before: thinspiration. One of the characters posted around her bed pictures of models and celebrities whose body types she admired. They were her “thinspiration,” or examples of the size she wanted to be. I didn’t realize was just how pervasive this concept was.
For a few years now, people have used this idea of “thinspiration” to encourage eating disorders and an overall negative body image. The term has taken over certain areas of the internet, and some sites are so dedicated to the idea that they call themselves “thinspo” blogs. A few of the blogs are about people’s experiences with eating disorders, but most pressure people to obsess about body sizes. Role models can be a fantastic source of inspiration for people who are challenging themselves or going through rough times. When I was struggling with the decision whether or not to get breast reduction surgery, I did a lot of research on celebrities who had, had the same surgery. Knowing these stories gave me so much comfort and inspiration – they helped me get through a really tough period of my life. But thinspiration role models can foster a very unhealthy obsession with body image, for people of all sizes.
So I think it’s time we took a stand – who says we need to rely on celebrities for inspiration? Who says we can’t find inspiration within ourselves? A few days ago, International Women’s Day celebrated the idea of “inspiring change” and making a difference in the world. This theme offers a lot of different interpretations, but as a body image blogger, I saw it as an awesome opportunity. I created Jug Report so that I could continue working on accepting my body. But I don’t want to stop there – I want to be proud of my body, to draw inspiration from it. I don’t want to just “accept” my body despite its flaws, I want those flaws to be the things that make me smile. I’m working on embracing my bust size with Jug Report, so I’m using my own body as my “titspiration.” We should all take this opportunity to appreciate aspects of ourselves that inspire us or simply make us smile. Let’s post our “titspiration.” It can be anything – a body part, a talent, or something you love. In other words, not all of you have to be inspired by your own boobs.
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