numberland: (Default)
So, let me preface this with saying that this is a personal take and I absolutely support people working towards body acceptance (especially women with our societies stupid beauty standards), this is just why generalising that can be quite problematic for some of us. This is something written fairly quickly, though after a fair bit forethought and discussion with various people, I will inevitably get some of this wrong/rather stream of consciousness, feel free to comment with anything you think is problematic/I might have miss spoken with.

So, I whole heartedly agree that it's important to be accepting of who you are and what space you take up, society has so many truly troublesome standards about bodies in general and women's bodies especially which are really, really problematic. However some of us have bodies that are actually wrong and, at least for me, it *hurts* to be told to love my body when it is broken and not matching my identity.

I entirely support and uphold the social model of disability - my impairments are not things that should be fixed physically to make me more normative but things to be adapted to to remove my disability as I experience when trying to access the world and our society. I *love* being a wheelchair user - getting my power assisted chair is one of the best thing to ever happen to me because suddenly I could access things I couldn't dream of before, I felt so very, very free, the movement felt part of me rather than a broken thing I had to put all my effort into and still not work right which is what walking and manual chairs were like.

Having said that, there are still things that are basically not functional about my body or work against my body, things that the facilities do not exist to remove as disability. The most obvious example is pain medication, some of the issues there are with the attitudes of doctors to long term pain relief but a big part is also that medication which will safely and without dangerous side effects treat my pain is certainly hard to find and probably does not exist. So, I cannot help but feel like my pain is a broken and wrong thing about my body and as long as that doesn't move into self hate I think this is not actually problematic.

So, when someone broadcasts suggestions to love or accept your body... this just hurts, it hurts because I know my body is wrong, that it hurts me every day and that I have to fight to just stay alive sometimes. I cannot put this into clearer words. I'm not going to go out and actively aim to feel angry at the world, my body or anything else about these facts but I do want the freedom to shout, if I want the fact that I *hate* these things about my body and therefore, sometimes, I hate my body.

On a different branch, the sex of my body does not match my gender or my identified sex. This is another reason why body love hurts... I have no innate malice against this shape of body, it just doesn't match me and been told to love or accept that is hard, what I'm doing is change my body such that (at least to some degree) I can do that, but I shouldn't be pushed to accept that which is wrong and broken at present.

So, please talk about you loving and accepting your body, but please don't tell me to do the same because it is not a body that is right and though I try for as much acceptance as I can being told this just brings home how much is wrong and broken.

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numberland

June 2013

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