The truth is I am guilty of body shaming.
The body I verbally attack is not my enemies. It’s not a person in the public eye. It’s the one I see in the mirror.

I say things like:

“I am soooooo fat.”
“I need to ______(eat less, exercise more, go on a diet).”
“I look like a box.”

Ohhh…I don’t stop there.
I don’t just body shame, I me shame.

“I am soooo dumb.”
“Why do I say such stupid things?”
“I am such an idiot.”

I would never talk to another human the way in which I speak to myself.

I don’t keep my self talk to myself. Yep, I verbalize it. I’m selective though. I only speak like this at home.

And my kids are all ears.

Shaming is contagious.


Do you do this too?

Shame can manifest itself in substance abuse, broken relationships, cutting, anxiety, and eating disorders.

We know we need to stop.

I don’t want to create an environment in my home that breeds shame. 

Our kids are bombarded with impossible to achieve body images all the time.

It’s time I set a guard over my mouth. (I was going to say big fat mouth but thought better of it.) 

In London, Sadiq Khan, a new mayor is planning on putting a ban on body shaming images in ads on public transportation.

In an interview Mr. Khan said: “As the father of two teenage girls, I am extremely concerned about this kind of advertising which can demean people, particularly women, and make them ashamed of their bodies. It is high time it came to an end. Nobody should feel pressurized, while they travel on the Tube or bus, into unrealistic expectations surrounding their bodies and I want to send a clear message to the advertising industry about this.” (New York Times 2016) 
Olympic gymnast, Alexa Moreno, was recently a victim of cruel body shaming on Twitter. Thankfully people came to her defense and overwhelmingly tweeted positive and inspirational messages.
But what is the deal?
What has happened to kindness?
Does kindness have to be legislated? 
Why are we so obsessed with the external things? 
God tells us we are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14a).
In  1 Samuel 16:7b the Lord says he “does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
So…what is my self talk focused on? What am I teaching my kids?
When I focus on my outward appearance, the message I send is that a person’s physical appearance is more important than character.
So do I look at the heart or am I concerned about other things?
Do my shaming comments spill over into the 4 P’s of power, prestige, position, and popularity? 
Do I speak in a way that stirs shame or envy in another? Do I care more about the “whats” than the “who” ?
I may not be a twitter troll but perhaps I have hurt people with my own shaming ways.  
Character qualities I value are kindness, generosity, humility, integrity, a strong work ethic, patience, gentleness, a sense of humor, a strong faith.
 Do I emphasize these characteristics in my interactions with my kids and others? 
I’m throwing down the gauntlet. I am going to challenge to myself  (and you if you dare) to  halt the shame game.
I am going to cease my negative self talk and instead speak God’s truth, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”
I am going to stop looking at the exterior (the 4 p’s) and start looking at the heart.
Instead I will compliment, encourage, and comment on the qualities I cherish rather than  how someone looks or other superficial things.
I want to see myself how God sees me.
I want to see my kids how the Lord sees them.
I want to see others with God’s eyes.
Are you with me? Let’s kick shame to the curb. 
Lori Wildenberg
Co-founder of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting, co-author of 3 parenting books. Click here to schedule Lori  for your next event. She is available for special engagements, retreats, and workshops. Stop by the 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting store for gift items, books, and faith wear. 

© LoriWildenberg. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator, parent coach, and co-founder of 1Corinthians13 She has written 6 books including Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home; The Messy Life of Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family Connections; and her most recent book, Messy Hope: Help Your Child Overcome Anxiety, Depression, or Suicidal Ideation. Contact Lori for your next event or for parent consulting or parent training courses. Lori can also be found mentoring over at the MOMS Together Group on Facebook.

2 Free Chapters!

Subscribe to Lori's  Eternal Moments blog and receive 2 free chapters from her most recent book, The Messy Life of Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family Connections. Thanks for the honor of joining you on your parenting journey.  ~Lori 

Thank you for subscribing!