Dear Friends Who Diet And Share It On Social Media,
I love you. I do not judge you and your decisions. But I do not want to know about your diet on social media. I react to posts about dieting on social media by having negative feelings about myself. With love and compassion for myself, I refuse to judge myself for the ways my brain devises to hurt me.
I may have quietly unfollowed some of your accounts or muted some of your posts even though I genuinely like you as a person. What is part of your life — perhaps your healthy life — is unhealthy for me.
I understand you may not even see yourself as dieting. There are hashtags, words, and numbers out there suggesting “clean eating” or cleanses or being healthy or whatever. This, too, is dangerous stuff for me. With love and compassion for everyone, I refuse to judge myself for having a reaction to trendy ways of eating that are usually about restricting food groups and losing weight.
When I developed anorexia and nearly killed myself in the process, it was an accident. I truly thought I was being healthy and getting in shape when I started. For some of us, these behaviors become obsessions, and even years after they have passed, to see even a wisp of them in other people — in whatever degree — is not healthy.
In the event you ever noticed my absence, I hope you will understand I am not rejecting you. I am giving myself permission to be me — the me who takes up space in my own body and brain. I’ve been healthy for a long time, and when I see your dieting posts I have reactions that are a threat to my commitment to my health.
4 thoughts on “An Open Letter To Friends I’ve Unfollowed On Social Media Over Dieting Posts”
I love this post Erin…but I love all of your posts! You are one of my favorite writers! I will be reblogging this one.
Reblogged this on A Love For Women / A Blog by John Michael Antonio and commented:
A timely and powerful post from one of my favorite writers – Erin Matson.
My BFF texted me something about a diet, and I felt bad, but I ignored it. I’ve practiced the words for face-to-face conversations where I simply say, “I don’t do diet talk” if people ask me, but it can be awkward over text. I also hate that of all the commercials you can skip on YouTube, ones for a particular diet isn’t one of them. I completely understand where you’re coming from for a variety of reasons, and I have to say that you are absolutely right to do this for yourself. You deserve to have an existence where you don’t feel bad about yourself and your body or in danger that old wounds will be opened ♥
Your willingness to share your fabulous insights is no invitation for recipients to project their needs onto you.
Your post reminds me why I resist blogging.
I know you know: Your gifts via this blog are gifts enough. 🙂
Thank you for your continued, heroic acts–both in deeds and in language.
American English writing activist-educator, feminist, non-sexist language advocate