Chances are, you know Lizzo, the wildly successful 31-year-old American singer-songwriter, rapper and flute player. She swept up eight Grammy nominations this year and was even named Time Magazine‘s Entertainer of the Year.
In her interview with Time Magazine, Lizzo talks about her booming career and body positivity. “I’ve been doing positive music for a long-a** time. Then the culture changed. There were a lot of things that weren’t popular but existed, like body positivity, which at first was a form of protest for fat bodies and black women and has now become a trendy, commercialized thing. Now I’ve seen it reach the mainstream. Suddenly I’m mainstream!”
Despite her success, time and time again Lizzo has been slandered online and in the media for her body.
On January 5th, Lizzo announced taking a Twitter break because of an influx of trolls on her posts.
Yeah I can’t do this Twitter shit no more.. too many trolls… ✌🏾
I’ll be back when I feel like it.
— Feelin Good As Hell (@lizzo) January 6, 2020
On Wednesday, Jillian Michaels, famous for her work as a trainer on The Biggest Loser, took to Buzzfeed‘s morning show in protest of “celebrating Lizzo’s body”.
.@JillianMichaels on Lizzo: "Why are we celebrating her body? Why does it matter? Why aren't we celebrating her music? 'Cause it isn't gonna be awesome if she gets diabetes." pic.twitter.com/FkKBd8J87b
— AM2DM by BuzzFeed News (@AM2DM) January 8, 2020
Fighting the body-positive battle against fat shamers and trolls is mentally exhausting, it’s no wonder Lizzo took a step back from social media for a while. What about the rest of us, how can we make sure we’re protecting ourselves while being bombarded by these comments?
No, They Aren’t Concerned With Our Health
What fat-shamers miss time and time again is the fact that fat people don’t come in a one size fits all cut out. Fat people can eat healthy, fat people can workout; above all, fat people can not do any of those things and it still isn’t anyone’s business.
Furthermore, fat people are well aware of the health consequences of being overweight, so why do fat-shamers continue to act like someone else’s health is any of their business? Do these health-concerned-warriors also troll pictures of people smoking cigarettes to tweet #You’reGoingtoGetLungCancer? No, they probably don’t.
You need to realize that while these comments might hurt, they are not a reflection of who you are. Your health is between you and whoever you decide to disclose that information with. You do not need to justify your health to strangers on the internet!
Don’t Engage if You Don’t Have Too
Engaging in debates online rarely leads to anything positive.
Online trolls crave anonymity and they hide behind it because they know they won’t face any repercussions. However, the people on the other end of their comments feel the brute force of their words.
If you know you will be negatively affected by seeing fat-shaming comments online, don’t stalk Twitter threads surrounding the matter. If you really need too, take a few days off social media to remind yourself who you are and what you stand for.
Do something that makes you feel good, dance in your room to some music or draw yourself a nice bath. Thank your body for what it allows you to do, look at yourself in the mirror and compliment yourself. What do you admire about yourself? What are your favorite features?
I am writing this article to express myself, I am writing to express my anger and my sadness. We are all human and we experience human emotions, it’s okay to feel angry or sad, but don’t let those thoughts consume you.
Talk to your friends about fat-shaming, write a controversial Facebook post. If you aren’t ready for any of that yet, pull out a piece of paper and vent, you can recycle it later if you really don’t want to keep it around.
Support Other Plus Size Figures
Through personal experience, I’ve found Instagram to be my favorite platform for the body positive community.
Here are a few of my favorite accounts.
View this post on Instagram
Throwback My most *viral* campaign of the decade. 2018. Had so much mixed feelings towards it earlier this year due to overthinking and i’m so glad i had a talk with this brand just last week over it. In reality, i have never seen myself like this before and was overwhelmed with all the pre-judgements on me and my body simply from photos. Im so blessed to have had this opportunity because i literally never would have had the confidence to do this nine years ago when i was an insecure 14 year old scene kid. Thank you so much @universalstandard
Besides Instagram, support and uplift people that you know in real life. Surround yourself with good energy and good intentions.
You deserve happiness in 2020, babes; Don’t limit yourself based on what you believe your body should/shouldn’t look like.
Featured Image Via @Lizzobeeating on Instagram