In the online world, it’s hard to distinguish between what is just enough and what is too far. Terms like “thinspiration” may have been born from the innocent phrases like “bikini ready,” but now these words are tied to much darker subjects—like pro-ana sites. It is for that reason alone many health and fitness bloggers have caught flack for promoting their body images, although likely to be achieved through a positive and healthy lifestyle. Now, the images end up triggering as often as often as they inspire.
So where do we draw the line? For me, it was at the point of outside commenters. This year, I turned my back on a popular humor website because of it’s thigh gap campaign. A section of the website, which has a primarily male readership, was devoted to solely praising the elusive gap between a women’s thighs. This seem poisonous to me in a world where young women are often bombarded by “perfect” images of what our bodies should look like. How is it healthy to encourage a peanut gallery of critics who could never understand our fight? The inner struggle between what’s expected of us, what we expect from ourselves and the kind of weight that puts on any, naturally struggling, inner development. I mean, come on! We’re not just over here fighting our innate humanoid laziness but also the cookies in the break room and—to top it all off—GENETICS. Unfortunately, the websites popularity (coupled with the ease of flippant, anonymous comments) spread the term like wild fire. In fact, if you scroll through just about any photo of a thin girl on Instagram, you can find countless male admires and their best friend writing “#thighgap” in approval… until now.
Today, Instagram—the Wild West of nasty and degrading comments—took a positive step and blocked the hashtag, and for that, we’re sending an official “hell yes!” out to them.