Tag archives for Body Image
Growing up, Barbies were my go-to toy of choice. I could spend hours after school recreating different scenarios with them. Sometimes they were storylines from movies and series I watched as a child, and sometimes I rewrote personal experiences. Fights I had with my friends or making my play session an emotional preparation for a party that was making me feel nervous. The storylines were endless and Barbies were, for me, the perfect vehicle to concretize my feelings, fears, anxieties, and desires.
There's pressure to bounce back after you've had a baby. You're supposed to get back to your previous shape---to fit into your wedding dress, to fit into your old skinny jeans. You're supposed to be just as productive and energized as you were before. You're supposed to be in a similar place emotionally. You're supposed to be calm and content.
You don't love your body. Some days you barely like it. Some days you wish you had a different body. Maybe on many days you do. And when you do, the frustration starts climbing, twisting and turning, and it feels like you're just going to explode. Or it's a kind of simmer, a low frustration but a frustration that follows you regularly.
When we focus so much on our bodies---berating them, hating them, changing them, worrying about them---we naturally focus less on our lives. We naturally focus less on our relationships, on our interests and passions, on our ideas and our creative work. We naturally focus less on our values.
Many of us fear gaining weight. In fact, it is a fear that's hard to avoid, according to Kirsten Belzer, LCSW, a psychotherapist in private practice in Chicago. Because in our culture, the number on the scale is so much more than just a number. It is so much more than a representation of our weight.