We all want to fit in. It is natural and normal. It is human. We need each other because we are social beings. Even if you are shy or have social anxiety, you need a tribe of people – a place you fit in.
In a society where thin is in and any other body type is not, it can be easy to feel like you don’t belong. Even if you are thin or can fit into society’s ideal, just obsessing and worrying about how you look can leave you feeling different than others.
Despite the fact that most women suffer with feeling bad about their body (because in this society how can you not feel that way) you might tend to think you are alone in your struggle.
Hanging out with friends and listening to them talk about what diet they are on and how big their thighs are or how unhealthy this food and that is can leave you feeling like an outsider, especially when you are trying really hard not to focus on this yourself.
This is one reason I think group work is so helpful. However, there are lots of ways to find the support you need. If you are in need of a community of people like you, find one! If you want help with body acceptance and believe a community of fat acceptance advocates can help, they are out there! If you are struggling in your relationship with food and want to talk to others who are working on it too, they are out there! If you are tired of dieting and are afraid you are going to scream at your friend the next time she orders a salad with no dressing, you might be in need of a community of other non-dieters. They are out there!
It is a good sign that you want to fit in somewhere – other than into skinny jeans. Everyone does. A community of “your people” can go a great distance in supporting you on your journey of healing your relationship with food.
This week, do some research to find your community. Try an internet search on topics such as “fat acceptance,” “health at every size,” “body acceptance,” or whatever key words fit for you. Check out local groups through meetup.com or other places. Consider creating your own group, start with friends who you like and trust. Be creative.
If you find or have a community that you love, please pass it on by posting it to the Food is Not the Enemy Facebook Page (see the link below).
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” -Margaret Mead