People Will Always Have Something to Say - 6 Tips to Tackle Body Shamers

Written by: Shruthi Chacko – M Sc
(Psychology)

Last updated date : March 30, 2022

As we know, the society that we live in is deeply ingrained with unrealistic body standards. Don’t you think it is true that people will always have something to say, no matter how perfect your body is? People always want to prove themselves right/superior to you. But that does not mean you need to become a victim to their antics. You need to believe that you are unique, no matter what other people tell you. People have different bodies and we need to embrace our bodies with acceptance and self-love.

There are times when you may feel hurt when someone body shames you. You may feel insecure and wish not to live in your body. When this happens, you may often forget to be easy on yourself. Are you wondering how you can tackle when some people make you feel bad about yourself? If yes, this article is what you are looking for.

Let us explore 6 tips by which you can tackle these body shamers.

Chapter 1:
Body Shamers Who Are Strangers, Aquaintances

Call out on the body shamer

The first thing that can do is to directly call out on the body shamer. This can be very empowering to you as you are standing up for yourself. You feel that you are taking control of the incident. Somebody might pass a comment on you such as ” Why are you wearing that dress?” ” It does not suit your body”. You can respond by saying ” It is my body and it is my choice on how I should dress”. Responding in this manner does not make you arrogant. It makes you assertive as you are standing up for yourself.

Turn a deaf ear to the body shamer

You can simply ignore what they have to say. When you ignore such comments, the body shamer understands that you are not bothered by what they think. If you respond, they get the attention that they are seeking. You turn a deaf ear to them might give them a chance to rethink their actions. Hence, ignoring can be a harmless way in which you can tackle the body shamer.

Don't show that it hurt you

Don’t give them a chance to let them know that it hurt you. In fact, the body shamer may become powerless when they feel they cannot hurt you. With this in mind, try not to take in the negativity and detach yourself from their negative comments. Thus, people will always have something to say, you don’t have to listen to all they have to say.

Chapter-2-12-Epsychonline

Chapter 2:
Body Shamers Who Are Family, Friends

Have a conversation about it

The best thing that you can do is to have a conversation about it. This makes people realize that their comment hurt you and you do not appreciate it at all. Your family and friends mostly want the best for you. If you are close to a family member/friend, you can talk more freely about it as you know they care for you and your feelings. Doing so improves your relationship with them and you feel more comfortable being around them.

Simply ignore the comment

This can be a little hard because you care about what they think about you. However, in spite of talking to the family member/ friend, if people continue to be insensitive to your feelings, it is best to ignore and show that you do not care. In doing so, it may seem like you are being rude, but you always don’t have to give an explanation for your behavior to people. This might give them the chance to reassess their actions. The Friend/ Family member might say ” You should eat more, you are very skinny”. You can just ignore the comment and turn a deaf ear towards it.

Keep a distance from them for some time

Sometimes you should keep your distance from people who make you feel bad. It is not always necessary to spend time with people who drain your energy. It is difficult to keep your distance from your loved ones, but sometimes time and space can help you and them in understanding the situation better. When you spend less time with them, they can probably understand the reason why you are keeping your distance from them. This may enable them to understand that their actions were hurtful. Moreover, keeping a distance from these people will give you a space for healing.

Chapter-3-13-Epsychonline-Target

Chapter 3:
Have You Unknowingly Body-Shamed Your Friend or Family?

Below are some patterns that show you might have accidentally body-shamed your loved ones. Are you curious to know what these patterns are? You can read the list of patterns listed below so that you can be more empathetic and understanding while interacting with them in the future. Words can have an impact on how people view themselves. It is important to be sensitive to people’s feelings.

You tell them they have a poor diet or exercise

In a conversation, you might very casually mention that they have an unhealthy diet. Sometimes even a casual comment can turn into an unpleasant remark on how they view themselves. This makes people question their lifestyle and the poor choice of diet and exercise that they have been indulging in.

When you comment that they have lost weight

You might be not think this might come off as an insult, but this can make the person feel insecure about their body. You might think that they may feel happy hearing that they have lost weight. In reality, they might feel that you are more interested to know about their physical attributes and have previously judged them based on their body. This can further cause shame and embarrassment in them.

When you tell them an outfit does not suit them

You can see this happening often in every social circle. You might be saying that the other outfit looks better on your friend’s body type. On the contrary, people tend to feel judged when suggestions are given about clothes that suit them or clothes that don’t suit them. Everyone has the right to express themselves in whatever way they feel is appropriate. Clothing is a form of expression. Nobody deserves to feel like they can’t express themselves the way they truly want to.

Chapter-4-14-Epsychonline-Calm

Chapter 4:
You Are More than Just Your Body

All bodies are unique and perfect in their own way. Never let the people who body shame you get under your skin. You are worth much more than their frivolous words. You are more than just your body. Don’t let anyone make you feel like you are less than perfect. You mustn’t let them change the way you view yourself. Sometimes it is hard not to be bothered by these comments. We are all humans and sometimes it is all too much to deal with. Experts claim that practicing self-care can be very therapeutic. Taking time for oneself can be the start towards the journey of self-love.

Chapter-5-15-Epsychonline-Dream

Chapter 5:
You Can Always Reach Out for Help

Do you ever feel that you do not know how to cope and are feeling very helpless? If yes, don’t hesitate to reach out for professional help to talk about it. Body shaming may start affecting your daily life or your mental health, reaching out to mental health professionals can be very helpful. This can help you start your journey of healing and self-love. 

At Epsychonline we have a series of self-help courses including ” Body Image Concerns” that can help you improve your self-esteem and confidence. Please visit our Courses page to find more about it. You may want to read up a bit more on ” Stop body shaming- What needs to be done?” to get a better understanding of body shaming.