Ok, this post is kind of off the paddling subject but, not.

Your fat, you have stretch marks, nice man tit’s, there is no fucking way he can do that, and certainly won’t finish it, look at how many chins they have, saddle ass, tank ass, lard ass. The list goes on and on. And when some asshole sit’s behind their laptop screen and be-littles or bullies or body shames someone else there can only be two reasons this person is doing this, 1. They are just an asshole that likes to make people feel bad and becomes a recliner worrier that is dead set on conquering the world by making others feel bad because their world is so perfect. And then there is the 2nd. That asshole is Jealous and envious, plain and simple.

No one in this world is perfect, some people think they are but they would be lying if they told you so. Everyone comes with imperfections and flaws and this is what makes people unique and beautiful. To one person that 5’11” 120 blonde with tan skin may look perfect to them but, to another, she may to skinny and likes a person with a fuller figure. To a woman that clean-cut, fresh trendy haircut and cut body may be the hottest thing since the Carolina Reaper, to another woman the big burly bearded feller with a slight rum gut may be her ghost pepper. Any way you look at someone does not give another person the right to publicly call out someone else for what they think are imperfections just to make themselves feel better or have some kind of twisted power.

Body and Fat Shaming has become a huge problem lately and some people do not realize the real-life effects it has on the people who fall victim to it. Without finding the actual statistics on it I can say with pretty good certainty that 5 to 10 people take their lives every single day because one or more people thought it would be fun to pick on one person and point out their flaws. That person may not be as rich as the person shaming them, their car may be a shitty car and the person shaming them has something nicer, all this DOES NOT MATTER. I could sit here with a thesaurus and find all kinds of fancy words to create a fluent well-written blog post or I can just write how I feel and what comes out of my head. But, that’s how people will hopefully read this and maybe, just maybe one person will read this post and realize that maybe they said something to someone that was hurtful and had no thought about what those hurtful words could physically and mentally do to that person.

A couple quick stories:

I saw a post from a friend of mine, more like a rant but you could tell what happened to her really got to her head. Apparently, she was being body shamed by someone and telling her she had imperfections other flaws. To me, it was obvious whoever it was doing this to her was jealous and probably blind. This friend of mine happens to be one of the strongest people I have met and along with that strength comes the various forms of beauty she has. Beauty of being a single mom raising 2 children, running her own business and all the other day to day hurdles she has to jump over, she is the last person I would ever think would be bullied. But, it goes to show you there is some pretty shitty people out there.

Then there is my story. Going from a depressed, overweight person that loved to kayak every once in a while to a happy, overweight stand up paddleboarder. Luckily I have surrounded myself with some of the best people and friends you could ask for but, from time to time I get an occasional shaming or doubt. For example, after I started paddleboarding heavily a year and a half ago my good friend challenged me to do something I never in my life thought I could do. He challenged me to compete in the MR340 race. After I reluctantly said yes I thought to myself, HOLY SHIT what did I just agree to. A few months went by and I started telling people I was doing this race and I would say 90% of the people I told thought I was crazy but they fully supported the idea and in fact encouraged me. But, I had some doubters and it hurt since some of them were who I thought were my friends. Well, to me doubt is just another word for FIRE and doubt “Fire” burned hot under my ass and I told myself ” Damn it’s going to feel good to rub this in peoples faces” a form of rewarded shaming in a way, or karma or “I told you so”. Starting out paddleboarding I was 400lbs, by the time the 340 rolled around I was around 300lbs “fluffy”. When the day came to step on that paddleboard and start my way down the Missouri river I felt like an Olympic athlete, a very large athlete but none the less I felt great. For the next four days I paddled with four good friends, laughing, hurting, tired, cranky, hungry and the best part about it was, I never once wanted to quit. I will admit I was nowhere near the shape that everyone else was in on that board but I was still part of a team that worked together to accomplish something that most people would think we need our head examined for. When we got to the finish line I was in awe, I could not believe I finished a race that some top paddlers have never finished. But, I did it because I had something to prove. Since then I have put on about 50lbs and I feel pretty bad about it but because I had that drive and determination before, I know I will get it again and it is all fueled by people that doubt or body shame me.

These are just two stories one of which is my own, there are thousands more out there in the world. It is sometimes hard to see shaming and bullying because the person getting shamed may be hiding it. This built up negative talk can physically and mentally have life-threatening effects on these people. To others, they are strong and call out the people that are doing this to them. Either way you look at it you need to realize that the person or people putting you down are the people who have the issues, NOT YOU. They obviously have so much hate and anger in their heart it makes them feel good to take it out on people.

Some advice on how to handle this and turn it into a positive:

  1. No matter what someone is saying to you, it is not true, if it’s because of a physical feature or “FLAW” don’t believe what they are saying. They are doing it to make themselves feel good because they think they are more powerful than you.
  2. Roll with it. If you have the drive and you want to shut a bully down challenge yourself to do something that a bully wouldn’t do. There is a trait or activity in every person that they are good at. Find that trait and do something incredible with it. For me, I loved paddling and I decided to go off the sanity charts and do a 340 miles race on a paddleboard. Yours might be physical activity or something mentally. Focus on that and challenge yourself to do something over the top with it.
  3. Talk to other people who have been bullied and help each other by supporting them and you will find out that you may have met some life long friends on the way.

My advice is what I used to deal with this, it might be a little different for you. But, there will always be someone out there to lean on for support and while you lean they may lean back harder and you can both give each other the support you need to lift each other up and put Body Shaming and Bullying to the forefront and call these people out for who they are……. ASSHOLES.

 

This blog post aside, if you are dealing with Body Shaming and Cyber Bullying there is professional help you can reach out to.

For Kids and Schools:

For Anyone:

lastly, there is always a person that just can’t handle Body Shaming and Bullying and they think the only option is to take their life. I beg you, I plead with you, these people doing this to you are not worth it. Your life is worth far to much to let people bring you down to a point you feel the urge to take your life. However, a few words on a small blog may not be enough to help you cope with the pain you are going through so the link below is for you. Please Please, Please check them out, make a phone call and just talk to someone that can help you.

Life is precious and no matter if think you are flawed, your not. You are born into this world the way you are and it was for a reason. Never let someone put you down for who you are or what you look like.

 

Stand Up Against Body-Shaming and Cyber Bullying

For those of you that body shame or cyberbully:

STOP BEING AND ASSHOLE.