Stella Boonshoft, a college student from New York who recently posted a picture of herself in a bikini on Tumblr, is taking a stand against both bullies and the trend of fat-shaming, in which society views a woman who isn't stick-thin as less-than.
Boonshoft appeared on the Today Show yesterday and said that at first, she was "mortified" that the photo would be seen by so many people; it wasn't originally supposed to go public, but became a part of photographer Brandon Stanton's "Humans Of New York" project after he decided not to use the photo he'd taken of her fully clothed. Now, she's become a role model for girls and young women everywhere by sharing her story.
"I think people are cruel because they are uncomfortable seeing an image of people who are not thin," Boonshoft said. "I found that after years of struggling with my body image that really there was no way to justify the bullying as a child and as a teen."
Now that she's garnering national attention, however, Boonshoft says she will be changing the way her blog works. With the help of Stanton, she'll be revamping the way she approaches it now that she has a broader audience.
Hello followers, new and old,
Thank you for being so wonderful and supporting me through this crazy, incredible journey. It has been surreal.
I want to tell you that as far as a personal blog, this is endeavor is finished. I have a much broader audience, and I’m not so sure I’m comfortable sharing ALL of my life and thoughts with everyone! It’s a confusing, complex issue. I want to get the message of self love and acceptance out there, however, I don’t think chronicling every detail of my life is the way to go about that.
So, here’s to the new body love blog. Over the course of the next few weeks, me and my friend Brandon (who you all know from Humans of New York) are reinventing this blog.
I’m hoping it will turn the focus off of me, and onto a much larger issue. I want this blog to turn into something about YOU, not me.
It is all very exciting. I’m not going to reveal details yet, but trust me, this is going to be beautiful. I know that because you all are beautiful.