How I Rewrote the Story of My Heart Defect

Stefan Van der Straeten

By Camille DePutter I was born with a congenital heart defect called "complete heart block." It was not a tragic or even particularly dramatic condition. It was certainly not visible or noticeable to the rest of the world. In other words, it was easy to hide. In simplest terms, the condition meant that my heart beat … [Read more...]

29 Lessons I’ve Learned About My Body in 29 Years

Angélica Portales

By Jessica Roberts, Intern 2015 Oh, hello there, 29th birthday. Here come the wrinkles. Is that a gray hair? Are parts getting ... droopier? As a woman, I think I'm supposed to feel some kind of fear or anxiety about the approaching third decade of my life: the signs of aging, the mortgage, the sense that I'm supposed to … [Read more...]

Speak Up: Recalibrating the Relationship Between Body Image and Assertiveness | Anissa Thompson

Editor's note: Studies have shown that around age 10 girls begin to decrease their assertiveness in the classroom. It's important to note that this behavior does not occur in a vacuum. A lack of role models, gender bias exhibited by adults, media messages and the hypersexualization and pinkification of girlhood greatly impact a … [Read more...]

Transforming Negative Body Image Into Body Acceptance


By Camille Malecha, MA, LPC We have been conditioned to blame our bodies for any limitations or struggles we experience. We hear phrases such as "If only I were thinner, prettier, taller ..." and may believe that our bodies are what need to be fixed. What if, rather than trying to change our bodies, we try to change how … [Read more...]

5 Unexpected Truths About Aging No One Talks About

Photo by Ashley Rose via under a Creative Commons license

by Cyndi Springford   “Women may be the one group that grows more radical with age.” — Gloria Steinem My early impressions of aging were, of course, procured by watching my parents deal with it. Both of them have their fair share of hang-ups when it comes to appearance. Mom would spend almost two hours fussing … [Read more...]

The Empowerment Project: Meditations on Fear


By Vanessa Leigh for SweetLeigh, cross-posted with permission People everywhere are constantly telling us to love ourselves. Especially now that body positivity is a "trending" topic. I really dislike the word and concept behind the word "trend"... It often feels hard and challenging to love ourselves, and I've written a little … [Read more...]

My Mom Taught Me to Shave My Legs. My Dad Never Taught Me to Shave My Face.

Martin Melcher

By Christina Fisanick Greer I am up close to the mirror, straining to see the finer hairs near the left corner of my upper lip. It's near daylight, and I am trying to finish shaving before my husband gets up for work. He knows that I shave my face every day, but it is not something for which I welcome an audience. My awkward, … [Read more...]

This Summer, Can We Say No to the Body Police?

Martin Varsavsky

By Jess Frankovich Where I'm from, it gets cold. And it snows. A lot. So on the first day it gets above the freezing point, the locals naturally get excited. We dust off our shorts and tank tops. We head to the mall and splurge on bikinis. We pack a bag and head to the beach. As it gets warmer, less clothes are worn. Makes … [Read more...]

The Selfie Project: Staying in the Picture


By Jessica Roberts (Intern 2015) When I was still pregnant with my daughter, I made three goals for myself as a new parent. First, I would tell my girl that I loved her, out loud and unprompted, every single day. Second, I wanted to make play a priority — something that didn't come naturally to me but I was willing to practice. … [Read more...]

Does Make-up Make Mommy Beautiful?

Laura Tou

By Erin Brown from I Am Erin Brown, cross-posted with permission The first time I put on make-up in front of my daughter, she was just a few days old. She was lying there like a tiny lump of newborn human and I gave my first "you get to be who you are" speech. It went something like this: "Mommy likes to put on her eyebrows. You … [Read more...]