Before you read any further, I want to make it clear that I have absolutely no intentions of supporting anything pro eating disorder. The purpose of this post is actually the exact opposite. Yes, I would like to bring awareness to the issue, but not in a positive way. At all.
No matter what social media network I join, as of late, it seems like running into "thinspo," "fitspo" and "pro-ana/mia" websites is inevitable. For those of you who are unfamiliar with what this means, thinspo is short for thinspiration, fitspo for fitsporation and pro-ana/mia for pro-anorexia/bulimia. Yes, there are actually websites out there that promote eating disorders and even go as far as giving tips on how to become better at the disease. Pictures of emaciated women (and sometimes men) are everywhere; used as motivation.
This is clearly an unhealthy practice.
"Fitspo" on the other hand, might seem like a healthier option, but I have a hard time wrapping my head around that. It is extremely common for those in recovery to make the switch from thinspo to fitspo; with the belief that once they have a body like a fitness model, they will be happy. Fitspo is also popular among non-eating disordered people. But, again, I have to wonder what the motive behind their obsession is.
Is it really healthy to post pictures of unattainably muscular bodies all over your social media site of choice? To me, this is also unhealthy.
When I type "inspiration" in a search box, an overwhelming majority of the results are thinspo or fitspo. Since when did being sick become inspirational? I can't take it any longer.
Believe it or not, I have had not one, but multiple thinspo blogs follow this blog and other blogs I am a part of. Don't get me wrong, social media has been one of the biggest components to my recovery (welcome to the 21st century), but there is a downside to everything. In the beginning, seeing those pictures was a bit triggering, but now it just breaks my heart. When did this become such a normal thing to come across on the internet?
Something very important to think about is, no matter what the number on the scale says, will it ever make life better? No matter what the drug of choice might be- thinspo, fitspo or pro-ana/mia, will altering your body actually bring happiness or will it only create a deeper need for perfectionism?
Happy-spo? Lovemylife-spo? Mybodyisperfect-spo? Optimism-spo? Freedom-spo? What should I name my "spo" or inspiration? I think I like "freespo." I'm free from unattainable, eating disordered sources of inspiration. Freedom. My body is right where it supposed to be and for the first time in my life I'm not striving to be anything different.
Why can't we just be content with the way we look today, in this very moment? Somewhere along the way priorities have shifted and the number on the scale began to dictate not only eating disordered people, but our society in general.
If I have learned anything during my recovery journey, it is that there is so much more to life than my weight. Thinspo might always be out there, but it is not something I have to take part in. Today I am living a "freespo" lifestyle.