If you follow me on Facebook you may have seen that I recently got involved with a body positivity project called Operation Bopo – actually you may not have seen it thanks to Facebook’s ridiculous algorithms that only show popular posts (please like/comment/share! The more love I get, the more Facebook lets you see!) – but what is body positivity? I asked some of the people involved in Operation Bopo, including project founder Ly, and this is what they had to say…
“For me it’s the freedom to love yourself as you are, wear what you want, take charge of your sexuality & to stop apologising. I also think it’s so important that we pass this message into our children. They need to see us happy & in charge.” Ly from Something in the Way She Moves.
“For me, body positivity is the idea that every body is a good body. Not just the thin ones, not just the traditionally ‘pretty’ ones, not just the able or young or whatever. Every single body is inherently worthy of respect and care and love.” Hannah from I Think You’ll Find I Can.
“To give a different perspective, to me ‘body positivity’ also means the right to change your body if you want, to enhance those lips, change that nose, peel that face … To have control over your image and look even when everyone else condemns and shames it and assumes ownership of your body!
You have the power to define your body, it doesn’t have the right to define you.” Billy Ford
“Body positive to me can come in any shape, size, gender, colour, with scars, stretch marks, tattoos, or whatever, the list goes on… Basically everything about us that makes us who we are or tells the story of our lives.
For me, the first and most important step to being “body positive” is to have a positive attitude and putting to rest the notion that people who seemingly have the “perfect figure” are confident in themselves.
“Body positivity for me is trying new things, having my hair and make up done. Feeling good about my body. I have always struggled with my weight since having my kids. I am still the same person but my confidence has gone slightly. This event helped me realise I do have the confidence and not to care what others think. I just needed a little push.” Donna Elliot.
“Body positive to me means not feeling guilty about my baby belly, after all it gave life to three wonderful kids.” Sandra Lang.
I completely agree with Ly about educating our children on body positivity. A kid at Madeleine’s nursery told her she had a fat tummy. Luckily she is not really familiar with the word and it’s negative connotations so we easily brushed it off but it made me realise how young some kids are subjected to this ridiculous notion that thin is good, fat is bad.
In fact, body positivity wasn’t something I had even thought about before I had children, but now that I have Madeleine & Thomas it is incredibly important to me for a number of reasons.
Firstly, I want them to be happy & confident in their bodies. I remember the negative feelings I had towards my body as a teen and it can only be more difficult now that the media & internet bombard us with all this ‘size zero’ nonsense.
So whether it’s a dodgy tattoo, stretch marks or a scar, our bodies tell our story. They are unique and they are beautiful. We are beautiful.