Female bodybuilder Diana Andrews shared an image of a woman using a treadmill at the gym and shamed her for her body. Andrews posted the photo on Instagram Story and people are quick enough to criticize her for body shaming the woman, the Huffington Post UK reports.
Andrews, who lives in London, took a photo of the woman from behind and typed the words “love handles” as the caption. Love handles refer to the fat around the belly that gets collected when wearing tight waist pants.
Andrews also posted another image that’s blacked out but with a caption that says, “I bet she’s ordering *insert three hamburgers emoji* for delivery. People called her comments “tragic” and sort of not really in line with her work ethic and shaming people for wanting to make themselves feel better.
Andrews apologized for her comments to her followers. She wrote, “I realize I was wrong to make this silly joke. It wasn’t my intention to body shame, hurt, or disrespect anyone.”
Emmy Gilmour from the Recover Clinic told the Huffington Post, “It’s likely that the woman posting these pictures was being rewarded by her audience. This is a really tragic example of a how society has conditioned women to judge and compare one another.”
She continued, “We’re living in an era where it’s normal to tell women that they’re inadequate, and that they must apologize for how they look. The solidarity between women is breaking down, when really, we should be supporting one another no matter the shape, size or weight.”
Andrews wrote her formal apology and posted it on Facebook:
“I want to explain myself for what I have done Tuesday evening after my training session. I saw this girl walking on the treadmill talking on her phone and I made a video and added a comment that she’s probably ordering take away.
“The whole point of this video was that she’s using her phone while on the treadmill. The whole story was turned upside down by taking a screenshot and adding comments that I’m body shaming this woman. I would never do this it’s not who I am.
“I’m always encouraging people to do their best and push themselves. I’m here to motivate especially women to don’t be afraid and get that work done. People that know me knows I’m not a bully.”
Megan Crabbe, body positive blogger, told the Huffington Post, “I wish people like Diana would realize that tearing someone else down for how they look, won’t make you feel any better about yourself.”
She continued, “All it does is reinforce harmful beauty standards and continues to make women believe that we exist to be in competition with each other for the prize of ‘most beautiful’. We don’t. There’s room for us all and the shaming has to stop.”
According to a Dove report obtained by The Huffington Post UK, women in Britain scored really low in terms of body confidence in the world. Only twenty percent of British women feel confident or content with how they look.
Bisi Adewumi, who was featured in a This Girl Can ad, said, “When I first started going to the gym, I felt intimidated and out of place. I didn’t feel confident because I didn’t look like other women and wasn’t wearing the same clothes.”
Adewumi’s advice if one is feeling a little ashamed for going to the gym? “Focus on yourself and what you’re doing,” she said. “You belong there too. Your goal is you feeling better. That’s what really matters, not what other people think.”
Andrews’ little joke was definitely perpetrating standards of beauty that women and feminism had been trying to dismantle in order to live their lives without having to feel shamed about their bodies.
A couple of months ago, Playboy model Dani Mathers was charged with one count of invasion of privacy after she posted a photo of a naked woman while inside the women’s locker room at a gym. She took the photo last July.
Mathers wrote the caption, “If I can’t unsee this then you can’t either.” Then, she posted a photo of herself stifling her laughter with her hand. She was about to face six months in jail if formally convicted.