Monday, 22 April 2013

Oh, Samantha Brick...

Once again, Samantha Brick is trending on Twitter after spouting what can only be described as ludicrous bull**** on my television screen this morning.

For those of you who haven't heard of Samantha Brick, she is a supposed 'writer', 'journalist' and Lord only knows what else, and also appears to have a perception that she is, in her words, 'the most beautiful woman in the world'.

Her recent Daily Mail article sparked outrage recently after she claimed that to stay as beautiful as she ever so clearly is, every woman has to diet for the rest of her life, bragging about having been on a diet for 30 years, that being overweight is not attractive, and that her very own husband would divorce her if she gained weight.

She 'debated' (and lost) this issue with BodyGossips very own Natasha Devon on 'This Morning', with Natasha essentially wiping the floor with her speech regarding being confident in our own skin, and it was honestly truly admirable (days like today I am extremely proud to be a part of BodyGossip and to be an ambassador for their charity!)

Every word that came out of Natasha's mouth was poignant and truthful. We are growing and developing into a society where we rely on our image and correlate it towards our self-worth. In Bricks situation, she claims that if she gains weight, her husband will divorce her. Surely, that says more about her husband than it does whether we gain or lose a few extra pounds? Relationships, for me are all about loving that personality you chose to dedicate your time/life to, I love Nathan because he makes me smile, he brightens my day, he is my rock, and keeps my head above water, not once have I ever looked at him and made a judgement on the way that he looks and would never once relate that to my love for him. It's disrespectful,  wrong, and goes against the ideal of true love completely.

I lived with an eating disorder from the age of 12 years old, which lasted throughout my teenage years until I finally began what you could call 'recovery' at the age of 17, being in and out of treatment since. To stand here today, as someone for the most part recovered, and be told that 'dieting will make me beautiful', it in a way makes me laugh.

Many peoples eating disorders begin as 'diets' - often diets which then deepen into something far more complex and psychological than just eating some more fruit and creating an exercise routine. It becomes controlling, dedicative, and possessive, it turns from eating 5 pieces of fruit and vegetables a day, to eating 2, to eating none, to eating nothing. It turns from running a mile, to 5, to 10 miles, to exhaustion. No circulation, no friends, no hair, energy, no life, essentially. Not ALL diets end like this, but a vast majority begin as some sort of means of controlling food intake as a method to lose weight. It can so quickly deepen into something so much worse, so much more damaging, and so much more deadly.

The reason why woman (and men, let's not forget) feel this pressure to diet in the first place is because of women like Samantha Brick. We can look back years and years and attempt to work out where this supposed NEED to be thin has come from, but it is unfortunately here and making more of an impact than ever. And one way that we, as a nation can unite against this is by stopping defining our self worth as not that 'bit of extra flab' or the 'love handles' we so often put ourselves down for, but that true beauty, that shines inside all of us, that ability to make others laugh, to be confident, kind and courteous, to be trustworthy and non-judgemental of others, that part of us that gets the promotion at work or raises money for charity, the part of us that set good examples for those around us, such as Natasha Devon.

Our bodies are designed to be the way that they are. For me, I see beauty in the above traits that I just mentioned. Our bodies are beautiful because we have 'flaws', because we have lumps and bumps in the wrong places, because of our supposed 'thunder thighs' or 'wobbly tummy' - who cares! Diversity and difference is what makes us the people that we are and what allows the inner beauty to shine through. We're wasting so much time, money and energy on achieving perfection that we'll never reach or conforming to ridiculous beauty ideals when we could be using that time to spend being confident within ourselves and quite simply, enjoying life.

I'm almost 21 years old now and never want to have to worry about whether or not I should eat this or work off that. I want to concentrate on what matters, friends, family, campaigning, Nathan, studying, and actually having a life. My life would be incredibly boring if I chose to focus on dieting for the rest of it. Needless to say I'd spend the rest of it one unhappy Amy.

Quite simply put, we need less Samantha Bricks telling us to be skinny morphed versions of humanity and more people like Natasha Devon and Body Gossip telling us to embrace the skin we were born in. After all, you only live once. Let's promote confidence in our bodies, no matter what shape or size, and let's celebrate our inner beauty, because there's a lot of it :)

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