Body shaming comments on social media can affect people more than you think.
Even someone like Anna Saccone, who has over one million subscribers on YouTube, is affected by body shamers. In fact, they got to her so much that she had to take a hiatus from vlogging to recover from the massive amount of negative comments on her workout videos.
Saccone, who is a mother of two, has been vlogging for the last few years, but she's dealt with bulimia and an unhealthy body image since she was a teenager. After many years of hard work and several slip-ups along the way, she's recovered and healthy.
Yesterday, she uploaded a 28-minute video explaining in full detail the progression of having bulimia from your teens through motherhood and why she had to take a break from YouTube.
It's long, but totally worth the watch because she gets so real about the relationship between mental health, body image and eating disorders. And she has a crucial message for her fans:
Don't let anyone ever tell you that your mental health doesn't matter.
After having a miscarriage, which is pretty tragic to go through, she hired a personal trainer to work out with her for six weeks and made videos for each workout to help guide her fans through her workouts.
The issue, though, was that she got hoards of hateful, body shaming comments. She had just lost a baby, and commenters were kicking her while she was down. At 3:35 in the video, she talks about what terrible comments she got. She says,
People said I was obese. They even made a hashtag, 'saveobeseanna'... I know it shouldn't matter, but it did.
Literally, anyone could take a look at Saccone and tell that this woman has never been obese in her life. And, as she says, she just wants to help people with her videos, but viewers react with so much hate.
She doesn't spare us from the realities of her eating disorder, either. She talks about it at 9:00, explaining,
It will steal your life from you... Food, calories and weight had a massive hold over me... I never felt happy or satisfied with my shape.
The fact that she even came back to YouTube to explain it all and take us through her pain is so brave. Even though she took a break, ultimately she's not letting body shamers keep her from doing what she loves and what makes her happy.
Pulling herself away from the negativity on YouTube was a strategic move to improve the state of her phsyical and mental health. And it obviously worked.
You can watch the video in full below: