In an essay posted to the website Lenny Letter entitled "Shamed if I Do, Shamed if I Don't," plus size model Ashley Graham spoke candidly about the hate she receives for appearing "too fat" or "too skinny" by her followers. This time Graham, who says she is a size 14, received a lot of negative criticism for appearing "too thin" according to her fans after she posted the following picture to Instagram.
The negative reactions from fans prompted the self proclaimed body acceptance activist to pen a rebuke for Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner's website and online newsletter.
To some I'm too curvy. To others I'm too tall, too busty, too loud, and, now, too small — too much, but at the same time not enough. When I post a photo from a "good angle," I receive criticism for looking smaller and selling out. When I post photos showing my cellulite, stretch marks, and rolls, I'm accused of promoting obesity. The cycle of body-shaming needs to end. I'm over it.
Graham, who started a campaign called #BeautyBeyondSize, wants to make it clear that body shaming doesn't just apply to one body type, but that women of all kinds of diverse sizes are torn down by other women, and often.
With that in mind, she wants to promote an encouraging and open environment for all women and girls.
Body shaming isn't just telling the big girl to cover up. It's trying to shame me for working out. It's giving "skinny" a negative connotation. It's wanting me to be plus size, or assuming I'm pregnant because of some belly bulge. What type of example are we setting for young girls and their self-esteem if grown adults are on Instagram calling other women "cowards" for losing weight, or "ugly" for being overweight?
In regards to the photo in question, Graham says her weight has fluctuated, and she is heavier now than she was three years ago. But being a famous model and all, she knows how to work her angles—and that's why she appeared thinner in the now infamous picture. In short, chill out everyone.