Can I please share how excited I am about the blog post today? Thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiis excited! I received an email from Jenna who blogs at The Awkward Indie Girl, asking if I was interested in an article about how secretive we can be when it comes to our body. Uh, YES! Honesty about the details of the skin I'm in is really difficult for me; I have things that I don't even discuss with my Him. I admire Jenna's fortitude and am happy to host her thoughts here on The Militant Baker.


Everyone has secrets about their body. Shared glances in locker rooms, hushed conversations at sleepovers, and cryptic questions at the doctor's office have revealed that the details of our bodies can be the hardest to share with others. We spend our entire lives intimately connected to our bodies, so it's only natural that we become acquainted with their subtle nuances. But with a sample size of exactly one, it can be difficult or impossible to gain a sense of perspective on your thoughts and feelings concerning your own body. What's reasonable, rational, or healthy? Keeping the secrets of your body wrapped up in a cocoon of shame causes those thoughts to fester. They gain power until they are able to exert their influence on you, warping your perception of others and, most importantly, yourself.

It's time to end the secrecy and shame. In the age of the Internet, men and women from all over the world can connect and support each other during this difficult process. As we've seen countries in recent months rise up in revolutions to overthrow dictators, it is time to overthrow the dictators of our mind and rule ourselves with reason and respect.

I'm starting my personal revolution in body acceptance by posting five of the secrets I've kept about my own body. My hope is that by reading these, you feel like you're not alone. We all have downright weird thoughts about our bodies, but that doesn't mean you're the only one who is having them. If you like, feel free to post your own body secrets, even anonymously.

I haven't been able to go into a changing room at a mall or department store without crying for almost two years.

This is why I primarily shop at thrift stores and consignment shops (that, and the more reasonable prices). For some reason, at a thrift store, if something doesn't fit me just right, I don't take it personally. I blame the clothes. But at a store in the mall, I blame myself when a pair of skinny jeans is just plain unflattering. Trying on clothes is a sure way to put me in an awful mood. When I feel the tug of the fabric against my thighs and butt, I am overwhelmed with the feeling that I am just too fat. I tell myself that a prettier, skinnier version of myself would slide into this size with ease. Struggling to do up the buttons, I curse myself and my appetite. I usually pull off the clothing in anger, and I leave the changing room ashamed and in tears. I feel like the fashionable clothes are made for the right kind of girl that is popular and gets complimented on her figure, that these stores are meant to dress the queen bee of high schools, not the misfits like me. Not fitting into the clothes makes me feel like I'm not wanted. I wonder if my curvy, hourglass figure is inferior to those of the the skinny, A-cup models laughing charismatically in the ads.

Putting on a bathing suit is one of the most embarrassing experiences I can think of.

I dread swimsuit season. I just don't like feeling so exposed! I don't romp around in my underwear, so why would I do it in a bathing suit? I've gotten much better at setting aside feelings of mortification in recent years, but it's still a struggle. My almost translucent skin mocks me as I watch the bronzed beach babes flutter across the sand. I try to cover up my thighs with a towel. Where models have a stylish gap, flesh touches flesh. Purplish-blue stretch marks from growth spurts have begun to fade, but they still taunt me. I'm slowly accepting that I don't have a child's body anymore. I'm eighteen years old, and my body belongs to a woman. I tell myself that these changes are natural and normal, and with time, I think I will believe it. In the mean time, I've found a couple great tankinis and one-pieces that make me more comfortable (even if I do end up looking like I feel out of Lands' End catalog) . For me, sufficient coverage is a sure way to boost my confidence. When I'm not worried about my breasts bouncing and my butt hanging out, I can have fun with my friends. The extra fabric frees me.

I have a tummy.

No washboard abs here. Not even a hint of definition. Today, I'm okay with that, but other days I'm not. Acceptance is a slow process, but it's an important one. Sure, I could get rid of my tummy if I exercised more frequently and cut back on calorie consumption, but having a flat stomach is not a priority right now. Currently, my priorities are getting into college, performing well in school, working on and expanding my blog, being a good friend, and leading my school's Improv Troupe as President. None of those goals require a defined stomach, so I've decided to leave that idea on the back-burner for now.

Sometimes I get caught up on the size of the clothing, not the fit.

I have left a great outfit at the store because I was ashamed of the size on the tags. Conversely, I've brought home clothing that is the size I want to be, not the size I actually am. It's a tough habit to break, especially when you're shopping in the women's department, not the juniors'. I'm trying harder to focus on how clothing looks on and makes me feel, while focusing less on the numbers. Every store has different sizing, anyway! It's a cruel game to play with yourself, and it's one I need to stop.

I love the freckle on my left shoulder.

Loving a part of our body shouldn't be a secret! But for some reason, when we take pride in one of features, we feel ashamed. We are so used to hearing everyone talk negatively about themselves that we think there is something unnatural or conceited about sharing something positive. It is a good thing to love yourself and appreciate your body. Your body is amazing! Think of all of the things you can do with it every day. It is with our bodies that we experience movement and sensations. Our bodies are capable of so much; we should love them (or aspects of them) in thanks. Loving something superficial about yourself does not make you superficial; it makes you human. It's not petty or self-obsessed to think there is something pretty about you, even if that thing is so small as a freckle.

So those are my secrets. Do you have any of the same secrets? What about different ones? You are more than welcome to share your own body secrets in the comments. I challenge you to share this exciting experience and take part in this first step in revolutionizing the way you think about yourself. Formulating my thoughts has helped me realize which thoughts are destructive, healthy, or normal. I hope you can enjoy the same process!


 I've been wanting to write about one of the things I've been embarrassed about for a while... my scars. I've compulsively scratched myself for the last few years and this turns bug bites into permanent marks. I know why this is, and I'll share another time... but for sooooooooooo long I was worried about what others thought. I talk about it openly now, and you'll hear all about it... another time. Wink wink.

If you are interested on contributing here on TMB, email me here, or check out the Contribute section! I would love it so much. And thanks again, Jenna... You're a pretty inspirational gal:)

So, what body secrets have you been waiting to let out?


  1. Great post. I enjoyed reading Jenna's thoughts. It came at a particularly good time too, as I was just bashing my tummy.
    My body secret? I can fool people into thinking I'm prego. For some reason I have a very rotund tummy. Despite jogging, HITT workouts, and bellydance my genetics are my genetics :)

  2. I scratch myself too. Not enough to leave a permanent mark, just enough to make me forget the tears for a while. No one can see the marks after a day, but whenever I look at the part that held the scratches, I can still see them as if I just put them there. It's awful... it's a horrible reminder of my imperfection. And that's why I can never love my appearance, it's either the fat on my stomach and thighs or the ghost-marks of my self harm wounds. And that's my secret.

    1. I admire your bravery and want to thank you for sharing...

      I've been wanting to make some sort of word image that has the message of "You don't have to start off loving your body... just try not hating it first."

      Sometimes, it's all I can do... and sometimes I can't even do that.

      It's helped me to talk about it to people around me. When people ask if their bug bites I just say (without shame or self judgments) "No, I just compulsively scratch myself:) Its a self harm thing!"

      It makes it better for me. Now I really want to write an article on the many faces of self harm...

      Sending love your way...

  3. I've scratched myself before, and I used to burn myself...I hate having those scars not so much because of how they look, but because I'm always caught off guard when someone ask about them. I'm a different person now but I'm still afraid people will judge me for the things I used to do :/

  4. Can I just say right away that I completely agree with you about the mall thing? I hate shopping. I hate it. My wonderful fiance has tried to get me to shopping (even saying that he'll buy) but I can't stand it. And it's all because nothing ever fits me right there. I have some pretty large hips compared to my waist size so when ever I try to find pants the waist won't fit 'cause the proportions are off. This is primarily why I buy a crap ton of shirts.

    However, I remember your sexy fatkini post and you looked amazing. I'm happy you shared that experience =D

    1. I have the exact same problem...the top of my body is thin and then I have a large butt and legs with lots of fat and muscle, so all of my pants are too big around the waist (even the pants that are supposed to be designed for women with large hip to waist ratios), it doesn't help that my calves are kind of big so skinny or boot cut genes are really tight and uncomfortable around my calves and none of the department stores seem to be selling flare genes anymore :(

  5. I have scars on my hip from 'my bad days' shall we say. And I'm just super self conscious that one day someone will see them and ask me what they are. EEsh.

  6. I absolutely hate my skin. It's super sensitive and I'm allergic to everything. I used to break out a lot too, but Accutane solved most of that just not the allergies. I still get hives on my face sometimes or random red blotches all over my chest and back just from being outside. I just feel like my skin always looks red and irritated and I hate it. Everyone tells me that no one notices but me but I'll never leave the house without tinted moisturizer. I really like everything else about how i look so it frustrates me to no end. Days I don't have a reaction I feel like a completely different person than the days I do. I find it so embarrassing.

  7. Ahh, I do the same thing at thrift stores! I always think 'DARN YOU DRESS FOR BEING TO SMALL!', and it's the exact same thing at the mall. I'm really glad I'm not the only one ;)
    -charlotte <3

  8. Absolutely we should share and support each other and our body foibles. For me, every woman I see if a game of comparison- is she at all similar to me in appearance? If so, do I fine her attractive? Does that mean my oddities aren't singular? It's damaging, but instinctive.

    I am lucky in that my best friend is model gorgeous and the ideal combo of skinny and curvy for both fashion and almost anything with a penis (and boy did she have body issues, growing up! The grass is ALWAYS greener). Once you see someone that beautiful be upset at the way fashionable clothes don't fit her, you gain a sharp perspective on the fact that they don't tend to fit and look flattering on the majority of people.


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