An Ode To "Dad Bod Girls"

An Ode To "Dad Bod Girls"

Appreciate girls that aren't just "curvy" or thin.
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Last year the “Dad Bod” became a fad and transformed all the lives of beer-bellied college men. It started to not just be socially acceptable to have the body of a 40-year-old golfer, but it was being seen as a sexually attractive feature. Rowdy Gentlemen even sold merchandise that proudly announced your Dad Bod.

Not everyone with a Dad Bod is a man though. There are blessed few women with the Dad Bod--affectionately, I have named them "Dad Bod Girls" for the purpose of this article. For whatever reasons--genetics, gymnastics, swimming from an early age, or all three--these girls do not have the “ideal” curves and are left with a small chest and hips the same width, with really no dip in between, or are stick thin. The Dad Bod Girl probably did a lot of sports in high school but wasn't as dedicated to staying active when she went to college, and taking up beer did not help the situation. The same luxury of acceptance we give men with these habits was not given to women, though.

Why was there never a Mom Bod movement? When we focus on Mom Bods, it is only to decide if they are a "MILF" or not or how long it took her to lose all the weight after having a child. Carrying a life inside of you isn't even an excuse anymore for having a less than "desirable" body.

Society is all about "body acceptance" right now, but still, the bodies of the models are either skinny or curvy. There is a serious lack of representation of beautiful Dad Bod Girls. Body appreciation is not just about being curvy or naturally rail thin, but if you saw any body appreciation post or advertisement for underwear for “everybody,” there are really only those two types of bodies represented.

These bodies aren't photoshopped but they are still pretty close to perfect, and there is very little variation in figures. The girl who is a little thicker than the rest is even turned to the side, emphasizing her curves, not a lack thereof.

Although I appreciate the leaps and bounds for plus-sized women have made in the past five years and the great campaigns, like Aerie's "Real," there still seems be no room for more than two body types that happen to look pretty good anyway. “Real women” are not just curvy or thin. With huge surge in "real women are curvy," all the Dad Bod Girls feel almost more left out of the body acceptance conversation. It was general knowledge that not all women are super thin and it was okay to be human beings and like, eat or something. Now you can be plus-sized, but only if you have curves with a nice a** and big boobs. If we are going to celebrate bodies and beauty then Dad Bod Girls need representation, too. We need more solidarity for the solid girls.

I am a Dad Bod Girl, and there is no way that I accept my body. Call me a hypocrite or whatever for calling others to accept my body when I can't even accept it, but when you grow up with media overrun by "perfect" women I would have never had a choice in the matter. I have struggled with my weight ever since I developed a thyroid issue and gained a lot of weight in middle school. I have done crash diets, like the ABC diet, and spent summers where I skipped more meals than ate. Like when a mother loses all evidence of bringing a life into this world, when a Dad Bod Girl loses 20 pounds in two weeks, we congratulate them-- no matter if they are healthy or not.

Cover Image Credit: youtube.com

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won’t see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won’t laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won’t go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They’ll miss you. They’ll cry.

You won’t fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won’t get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won’t be there to wipe away your mother’s tears when she finds out that you’re gone.

You won’t be able to hug the ones that love you while they’re waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won’t be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won’t find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won’t celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won’t turn another year older.

You will never see the places you’ve always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You’ll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it’s not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don’t let today be the end.

You don’t have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It’s not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I’m sure you’re no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won’t do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you’ll be fine.” Because when they aren’t, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

For help, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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An Open Letter To My Body

Thank you for the acne and flat chest.

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Your beauty marks and scars don't go unnoticed. You've done everything for me. You make everything possible. You are a spectacular work of art. From your cells, to your bones, to your nerves, to your skin, to your fingertips and toes, you embrace me. You let me cry, scream, laugh, dance, hug, kiss, love, and be. Not only are you so unique, you give me so much opportunity that I will forever be grateful for.

I will nourish you. I will take care of you. Sometimes people get so caught up in living, that they forget to pamper you. But I will. I have learned how valuable you are recently, so I will dote on you with the exercise, vitamins, and minerals necessary. From the peak of my head to the soles of my feet, I will love you.

Some people do not appreciate you. Some people want to change you. That is okay. You know what you need to do for yourself. I don't want to change you. You give me feelings, hope, joy, and movement.

How do you do it? You keep me going. Even though there are days of sadness or laziness, there are even better ones filled with singing and talking and living. I have never been so grateful for my light brown eyes, my slight dimples, the way my hair falls, my calm smile, the beauty mark on the back of my left thigh that matches my mother's.

You've been through a lot, and I thank you for keeping me okay. You've fallen but you've got up. You have taught me so much throughout the years. Some of that being confidence, but there have been insecurities as well. Parts of you have embarrassed me. But why should that matter when you allow me to do the things I love to do when I wake up every morning? You don't need to look perfect all of the time. What matters is that you function the way you are supposed to.

When I stand up straight, stretch my muscles from head to toe, suck in a huge breath of fresh air, and slowly exhale it all out, I think of how amazing you are. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for being able. Thank you for being you. The next time people go for a run, dance, hug, or do what they enjoy doing, I hope they take a step back and realize what they have been given.

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