I love my Windows Phone. I’ve loved it for years, and I’ve been faithful despite the many limitations of phones that are not iPhones or Androids.
But, next upgrade season (in two months…seven weeks…six weeks…and counting), I might be forced to finally make the ever-urged separation. No, it’s not that my brother or my friend Saucye finally convinced me iPhones are superior to everything. (I tried iPhone. I hated it. Sorry, iPhanatics). It’s not because that droid robot logo is cuter than the Windows windows, either.
It’s because I am a fat girl on Instagram.
You see, fat girls on Instagram regularly get shamed, harassed, and even threatened by total strangers. (Yes, I know this is not only true on Instagram. But it is especially true on Instragram. And, yes, I know this also happens to fat men on Instagram. But it is especially true for fat women on Instagram).
To some of you, this is not news. It’s happened to you. The more outspoken you are, the more it happens.
There are individual bullies who just happen to find you because you used a hashtag related to something they like (#Friendlyneighborhoodspiderman apparently led some of those jerks to me). They don’t wanna see your fat face liking the same thing they like, so they click your pic and post insults in the comment section. They sometimes @ their friends so the whole crew can join in on the harassment. It’s the internet equivalent of walking your fat ass past a bunch of bros and having them moo at you.
Then, there are also entire campaigns directed specifically at shutting up uppity fatties. Some are motivated by an alleged commitment to health. Others are just run by people who hate the way fat bitches look. They have followers. Subscribers. Soldiers standing at the ready to take their orders and take down the hippos wherever they may be.
And they have found me.
I cannot delete their ugly and hateful comments from what is intended to be a positive page. I cannot delete the weight loss spam, either. Android and iPhone users can delete comments on Instagram. Windows phone users cannot.
So, until IG improves their Windows app or until I can upgrade, I have three options–1) log into my IG account every time I am with someone who has a delete-capable phone, 2) make my page private (thereby undermining the entire intent of the page), or 3) leave every bit of anti-fat bully nonsense right there in the comments on my photos.
Understand. My skin is usually thick enough (or the fat under my skin is thick enough!) for me to ignore such jackassery. Usually. I am no longer the new kid on the size acceptance block. I’m one of the original participants in the Fat Flash Mob, and my videos of that event were part of an organized campaign by “whale watchers” who specialize in fat-hatred trolling on Youtube. I chose not to remove the comments because I wanted people to be able to see very clearly just how horrible people can be. I refused to engage with nonsense, but I didn’t prevent anyone else from engaging in it if they so chose. It’s all still there for anyone who wants to see it.
In that case, I had a choice. I didn’t leave meanness on the page because the technology prevented me from removing it. I felt strong; I felt feisty. I chose to let the hate stand as evidence of the way fatness brings out the 5th grade meanie in a lot of internet users. But sometimes in a size-positive space, the poison of the anti-fat movement simply should not be allowed to pollute the air. I created this blog, and the accompanying Instagram page, as a space for body positivity. I should get to control the trolls.
(BTW, this is also why comments are not allowed on this page. I know how these people work. They’re committed. They’ll e-mail me. But at least visitors to my page will not have to be subjected to that vitriol).
In the end, I suppose I do have one other option– just don’t use Instagram. But part of exposing more people to size acceptance and body love is meeting people where they are. And millions of people are on Instagram. So…so am I. No matter who calls me a fat bitch.