What Happened When I Posted a Pic of Myself on Buzzfeed [PHOTO]
I knew what I was getting myself into, but I did it anyways.
I've made it no secret that I've struggled with an eating disorder since I was 15. Blah blah blah, been there, done that. Part of my "recovery" has been to put myself out there, more than I normally would, regardless of what people think.
This was one of those situations.
Buzzfeed posted an article about women who are size 16, and what they look like, why they're beautiful, etc. To be clear: I am not featured in the article. However, I decided to comment on it, fully knowing that the trolls would be out in force.
I posted the above picture with the caption, "I'm a size 16, and I'm healthy. It's possible. I just ran my second half-marathon." I'm anywhere between a 14 and an 18, depending on the dress designer. I've been a solid 12-14 since high school, so this really isn't a new revelation for me. The comments were surprising, to say the least.
The very first comment was from an older woman: "Cookie or button?" I must've left my sense of humor on the radio show this morning - was that an insult that was supposed to be funny to everybody but me? And who wouldn't run 13.1 miles for a cookie?
Another comment was from a man, who had no pictures of himself: "You're ignoring science if you think that running a half-marathon makes you healthy." Well, pal, I've run 340 miles since January 1st and my doctor says otherwise, but you're always free to comment.
A comment from another runner: "Good for you! Your life was in danger and you recognized that, now you might live to see your grandkids." I didn't realize that I was on death's door before this; nobody told me that? But thanks for the...backhanded compliment.
A comment from another woman, who looked to be my age or a bit younger: "Good for you, but I'm 5'11" and nowhere near a size 16 and my doctor says that I'm unhealthy." She could've left out the 'but' and it would've been a totally different tone. Maybe she should start running?
And the final comment was from a female doctor: "You're all missing the point. Stop watching TV and allowing the media to tell you what's healthy and unhealthy and go see your doctor." Common sense from a doctor? I'm shocked! *sarcasm*
Overall, there were 1.7k "likes" on the picture and over 300 comments, MOST OF WHICH WERE NICE, SUPPORTIVE AND UPLIFTING. The ones listed above were just the comments that I took note of.
Total honesty here: I deleted the picture, which in turn, deleted all the comments. I realized that I'm, in fact, NOT strong enough to deal with the online trolls. I couldn't let it sit there and fester any longer, and I caved. But - and this is huge, for me - I'm pleasantly surprised with how little the nasty comments affected me. Five years ago, I would've read those things, binged on ice cream and made myself throw up. Now, they sting a little, but they're easier to laugh off.
But it's still gone, deleted into the black hole of the internets. So unfortunately, you'll just have to take my word for it.
What DID surprise me, though, was how supportive most other women were. "Most" is the key word.
Do me a favor, though. You think somebody's fat in a picture? Fine. You can think whatever you want. But don't pretend to care about their health, just so you can type what you think.