Why is it so much easier for one to internalize messages from society than to realize that one is good enough? Body hatred seems to be the go-to coping mechanism to distract many from their “truths” about who they think they are. Of course, there is a mutitude of underlying issues as we all know—I am not going to go into all of that in this post.
I’ve just been thinking a lot about the self-created narratives that often motivate one to starve, binge, purge, self-destruct, self-hate, etc., and how that translates to body image and self-hatred. What sparked my thoughts was a Lady Gaga article in the NY Daily News. The picture of Gaga’s ensemble immediately captured my attention because it appeared that she was giving a jab to the media about criticizing her weight. I became intrigued and wanted to see her thoughts on the issue. What I expected to read and what I read was completely different.
The title of the article states that Lady Gaga “fully embraces” gaining weight, seemingly suggesting that she is okay with herself at whatever size. Bravo! However, there are contradictions everywhere. Gaga spoke about “not feeling bad about the weight gain, not even for a second,” to saying she is on a strict diet. She discusses how she can no longer eat at her dad’s Italian restaurant anymore and has to stick to green tea. The article suggests she has moved on from her insecurities and Gaga states how grateful she is to have fans love her at any size. Enter my confusion.
I am wondering why someone who embraces her size and loves herself feels she needs to go on a “strict” diet? If one is truly okay with themselves, then why try to change for society or anything else? I guess that brings me back to the original question in this post. Society, media, messages, etc., have conditioned many (millions) to turn against their bodies and themselves if they don’t fit into the parameters of what society defines as ideal beauty. Even though Lady Gaga states that she is not subscribing to such ideals, her actions (i.e., dieting) may suggest otherwise.
The larger question in my mind is, when are we going to stop letting society define who we are? Even larger, how can we start addressing this TODAY? What is ONE action you can do today to embrace and enforce the message that YOU are okay just as you are???