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The truth about body-shaming in the queer community

03/02/2023

The truth about body-shaming in the queer communityBody shaming is an issue that has plagued the queer community for a long time, but we don't talk often enough about it.

by Luh Tsele

03-02-2023 16:29

in Health and Fitness

A hand written stop.Image: Teunie van Hernen/Flickr

It has become a tradition for people to try and reinvent themselves in the new year, and there is no problem with doing that, as long as you are doing it for yourself and not body-shaming others while doing it.

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Body shaming Body shaming is an issue that we don't talk about enough in the queer community, which is odd because it has become one of the strongest pillars that define us, especially men who seek men.

I call it a strong pillar because at every turn we are bombarded with no fats and no fems don't even take my word for it, open the gates of the dating app Grindr and read the gospel.

On this queer dating app, we are conditioned to believe that to be worthy of love, companionship, or a simple hookup, you have to look a certain way.

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Having to live in a world that puts us under so much scrutiny, you would think we would be kinder to one another but that isn't the case. Full-figured queer individuals are made to feel less than others because of their body shape.

ALSO READ: Sam Smith's new body-positive video celebrates queer sexuality

Masculine ripped looking men are glorified and put on the pedestal as the tokens of what an attractive man should look like.

--

I've had someone actually say, If you lost a little bit more weight, I think we could go on a date, Said Sam Coffie on the American morning tv show Good Morning America.

I didn't like being big, and in this gay industry you don't win when you are full figured said a friend of mine in a conversation about weight loss.

My friend and I were not even talking about body standards in the queer community, we were talking about weight loss in general, but at that moment he felt the need to emphasise that gay men do not appreciate full-figured men.

Body positivity Recently we have seen the body positivity movement rise to combat body shaming, simply put, body positivity focuses on promoting acceptance of all body types.

ALSO READ: Big Brother Titans' is here but queer representation is not

This movement has taught us that skinny is not a measure of beauty or health. Body positivity has taught us the simple act of being kinder to ourselves, and our bodies. It is important to note that body positivity is not advocating for obesity but rather holistic health that includes mind and body.

I implore the LGBTIQ community to cultivate being body positive not only to others but to ourselves as well. Learn to love and appreciate yourself, and do not let what you see on social media be a reason to hate your body.

Most of us are dealing with the same issues, so reach out to a trusted friend or family member and talk about your insecurities. Most importantly stop talking negatively about yourself and your body.

It's time to take a stance I'm not going to be able to please everyone with my outward appearance. Someone's always going to have a critique, and someone's always going to have some negativity to say about me.

So all that matters is what I think of it. I had to go deep inside myself and look in the mirror. Looking in the mirror and accepting what's in the mirror is very, very difficult. And right now, I love it every time I look in the mirror said American singer, rapper, and flutist Lizzo.

The LGBTIQ community already has to endure a lot from a highly heteronormative society, let's not add to our struggle. The consequences of body shaming include anxiety, depression, and other health-related issues such as body dysmorphia.

I believe that the queer community knows better than anyone how difficult it is to maintain a healthy state of mind, so it shouldn't be hard to be kind and help others take a step in the right direction with their mental health.

ALSO READ: The search for Miss Drag South Africa 2023 has begun

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