As her body re-calibrates after years of restrictive dieting - which can manifest as weight gain (temporary or permanent), her brain is shouting at her to restrict food, lose weight, start vigorous exercise - all the old coping mechanisms that got her into trouble in the first place.
Feeling a lot of self-loathing and disconnection from her body and its changing shape, she reached out to me.
It's really common for a woman I'm working with to tell me it’s easier to love her body when she’s “eating well,” exercising, or otherwise doing the things that society tells us are necessary to win the “thin is best” game.
This is totally understandable.
We live in a world that constantly reminds us that our worth is directly proportional to our body fat percentage. Where social privilege and resources are granted or withheld based on how well we adhere to society's narrow range of "ideal bodies". In such a world, it may feel easier to accept yourself when you’re conforming to the rules set by the over culture.
And it's all too automatic to hate ourselves when we do not happen to conform to these unjust standards.
This is where body image work becomes really important.