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Have you ever played the ”body shame” game with friends?

A memorable from Sex and the City comes to mind where the girls sit around looking at magazines, comparing themselves to the images & models within.

Charlotte: “I hate my thighs. When I see pics like these, all I can think is thighs, thighs, thighs!”

Miranda:”Well, I’ll take your thighs, and raise you a chin”.

Carrie: “I see your chin, and raise you a (points to nose with a disgusted face),

Then silence…. as they all look at Samantha expectantly.

"What?" she says. "I happen to love the way I look”.

They roll their eyes and accuse her of plastic surgery.

End game.

For many women, this kind of interaction is normal. Person A complains about her body. Person B chimes in with a counter strike. Person C either chimes in OR tells Person A & B that they are gorgeous and shouldn’t feel that way. And the odd Person D who actually likes their body, gets nothing but odd stares & accusations of arrogance.

It’s time to stop. Talking about our bodies this way may seem like instant relief and bonding, but what we’re really doing is reinforcing negative stereotypes, our own insecurities and standards of beauty that lie outside of us. The more we talk about what we hate about our bodies, the more we end up hating our bodies.

Are you a ”fat” talker, or engage in it with your friends? Here are some useful tips to stop the cycle! (P.S - saying ”no, you’re not!” doesn’t actually help. It’s reinforcing and encourages more later on).

Six Ways to Stop a Friend From Fat Talking. Help your friends kick this beauty-busting habit.

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  8. ellaminnowpea said: thank you SO MUCH for focusing on body shaming while still being an advocate for health and exercise. My mother-in-law NEVER fails to comment on my weight, though I could care less, and she’s always sad because she’s “too fat.” You are my sanity.
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