Proud2Bme | Love Your Lines

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Love Your Lines

By Claire Trainor--My sophomore year of high school, my friends and I sat around the table in our English class talking. Out of the blue, one of the boys I knew said, “I would never date a girl with stretch marks.”

My friend and I looked at each other, both embarrassed, knowing what hid under our clothes were the very lines this boy, and so many others, say they would never want to be with.

Since then, I’ve come to realize that stretch marks are not an indicator of health. They’re just lines on a body and (nearly) everyone has them. But they’re airbrushed out of almost every photo that we see in our daily lives. And because of that, stretch marks have become a sort of taboo. That is, until April 12, when American model Chrissy Teigen posted a picture of her stretch marks on Instagram.

In the past few weeks, over 9,000 pictures have been posted on Instagram under #loveyourlines. Many of the photos show stretch marks on stomachs as a result of having kids. Many of them are pictures of inner thighs, hips, and butts that are covered in “sick a** lightening tattoos. In very few of the photos can you see the poster’s face. In fact, you can’t see much of their body. Because the stretch marks take their rightful place, front and center.

Surprisingly, in following the hashtag, I didn’t find any negative comments. If people have been giving these women negative feedback, it’s been deleted. But I honestly think that no one is critiquing them because stretch marks are universal.

For many, they come during puberty, when our bodies are expanding and we are learning how to take up more space in the world. For some, they come from building muscle and making their bodies stronger. For others, they come from having children, creating a life within themselves. Stretch marks are marks of growth, and never in a bad way.

We need more movements like this one. We need more models like Chrissy Teigen to post pictures of the parts of their body that are normally airbrushed to encourage the rest of us that it’s okay to have them.

We need to embrace that no body looks like the bodies we see in magazines and on the TV screen. Young boys and girls need to be taught that features like stretch marks are in no way indicative of beauty or of worthiness. They’re lines. And they’re lines that deserve love. 

Photo courtesy of the Love Your Lines Instagram account

About this blogger: Claire Trainor is a freshman at DePaul University majoring in Creative Writing and Psychology. In steady recovery from an eating disorder, she wants to educate, support, and inspire those struggling in anyway. She likes her dogs, hot chocolate, and books.Claire currently runs a personal recovery blog.

Also by Claire: 

Choose Beautiful...Or Don't

Not Your 'After Photo': The Co-Option of Anorexic Bodies

For Lacey

Fashion Forward? France's Ban on Underweight Models

Sticks and Stones

Breaking the Skinny Mirror

A Recovery Post That Talks About Real Recovery

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Proud2Bme is an online community created by and for teens. We cover everything from fashion and beauty to news, culture, and entertainment—all with the goal of promoting positive body image and encouraging healthy attitudes about food and weight.

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