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October 3, 2021

When will Social Media Embrace our Humanity & Stop Sexualising our Bodies?

 

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This article is inspired by a beautiful person I follow on social media.

Her account was suspended because of the above banner photo. It was deemed to be pornography, “content intended to cause sexual arousal.”

She is a non-fungible token (NFT) artist who relies on social media to get her art noticed. Having her Instagram and Twitter accounts suspended is a big setback for her livelihood—Twitter is the most important channel as the NFT community and collectors are there.

Honestly, it’s such a struggle with artistic nudity in the world of social media, which is run by large corporations.

I think it is time to start looking at the way social media is impacting us, and consider the hurt caused by algorithms stating what is appropriate or not.

Our bodies are natural, right?

Then why are we letting algorithms, which don’t see things correctly and are misappropriating humans, hurt people’s lives.

Social media is a great tool for us all to make money, build connections, and seek inspiration. However, it is also limiting us in the way that it makes us view, judge, and shame each other.

As Nude Yogagirl transitions into motherhood, I wanted to support her and her family to regain her Twitter account back, and also have social media stop automatically sexualising our bodies.

In the Olympics, we have women wearing bikinis playing volleyball, leotards doing gymnastics, and swimsuits when swimming, and we do not sexualise them, or misappropriate them—we hold respect—this is not sexual, it is sport.

It is time to start doing the same on social media. A bikini or swimsuit does not require an 18+ warning on YouTube, or censorship for sexualisation on Instagram. It validates respect and context, just like at the beach or in sport.

It is time to see that we as mothers have our children through our bodies and they will be forever there to nourish our children, but we are multifaceted. We are sensual, sexual beings, but not always like it is made to be on social media.

We need to be able to claim our being without these stigmas, or our poor children raised on social media will only believe that humans are decent when dressed a certain way, and that our bodies are only sexual. This causes self-love issues, body misappropriation, and a concerning lack of compassion and empathy for others, which can lead to judgment and shame.

We need to start seeing the unpolished multidimensional human with love and respect, and not just as good or bad.

 

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I would like to share a bit about my journey of sharing myself as a multidimensional human on social media.

I would like people to know that our children are not damaged by our bodies, they are damaged by the stigmas, untruths, judgements, conversations, and the way social media treats our bodies, and how others judge and shame them.

We must find a more harmonious way, so that people like Nude Yogagirl and her family can keep their income, whilst also being respected in life, and not have their businesses, lives, and humanity damaged just because social media is so imbalanced when it comes to the realities of life, bodies, and twisted truths, which warp so many of our perspectives.

You see, what we put in our mind becomes our reality. With social media being used so much, we need it to be better balanced with real stories, in reality.

It may seem pretty basic, but it is important to remember we are a million different things rolled into one. We are not just men, women, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers, daughters, and sons, we are also friends, colleagues, parents, lovers, and so much more. We can uncover our multifaceted layers. We have the capacity to be smart, sassy, sensual, silly, sad, and all other emotions.

Why then, does it often feel like attempts are being made to put us in boxes that do not allow much room to grow or change?

Please let us not try to squeeze all the world into one-size-fits-all boxes. Let us be joyous in the knowledge that we humans have the privilege of being all kinds of wonderful, all at once.

The full spectrum of life is important to understand, whether we share it on social media or not. My decision to present so much of myself online, to share many aspects of my character, is a part of my healing. On my pages I am fit, strong, flexible, friendly, a mom, woman, open, honest, vulnerable, sensual, and an ordinary girl struggling with the ebbs and flows of life—not the perfect view of what society wants to see.

I don’t want to choose just one part of me to share. I’m simply being human and showing many aspects, so my daughter can accept the light and dark, and all of her humanness. I’m showing what you would see in real life, if you lived with me, or were a friend or family member. You would all get some different aspects of me, however on social media, we do not see this, we get one dimension.

So many times I have received messages from people telling me that I am too much, an inappropriate woman, and even a bad mother—it truly hurts.

So many people see a picture and not my words or heart, and they attach their own judgements, based on their personal story—they miss my humanness.

What I’m learning is that we cannot control or place our self-worth on how social media or the world sees us. We have to see ourselves as ourselves, even in a world that often does not celebrate or support us the way we are. This helps others to do the same, our children to do the same, and hopefully, social media and the digital world will learn that there is more than meets the eye.

What happened to Nude Yogagirl could have been avoided if the algorithm was a human, with a heart and soul, who saw her—not just her body.

Embracing all that we are is important and helps others to embrace us, and themselves too. Even when what we see is different, it’s important to remember that we don’t have to like it, but we can still hold respect. To me, the kind of mean-spirited feedback we see from the world shows how sadly restricted and conditioned many of us are—from social media, the digital world, and life lessons—and how many people’s thinking has become limited. This is why there is a need for voices that are strong and loving, like Nude Yogagirl, to continue to embrace and celebrate our complexities as humans without limits.

In order to make a stand against the haters, we must love each other even harder in return.

In order to stand against the algorithms and create change, we need to hold conversations with open hearts, so we can discuss not wrong and right, but see both sides to find harmony.

If we reject people’s attempts to define us in narrow-minded ways and instead accept responsibility for all aspects of our authentic selves, we empower ourselves in the process.

We are each a rich part of this world’s tapestry.

 

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