Body Image Distress

If your upbringing was anything like mine, you learned early in life that your appearance is important, if not vital, for living a life of success. 

We live in a society that bombards us with words and images of how we should look. You can’t even turn on the television or drive to work without being exposed to advertisements screaming at you to be thinner, stronger, and prettier. Growing up with these messages has ingrained a society-wide aversion to fatness, convincing us that our body size is what will determine our health, happiness and overall success in life. 

In your attempts to be thin, you might engage in behaviors like body checking, dieting or restricting, binge-eating, purging or overexercising. Maybe you use hurtful words or engage destructive behaviors to punish yourself when you eat more than you meant to or skip a day at the gym. This mentality and pattern of behaviors can make you feel imprisoned in your own body and mind. You may have noticed an increase in depression, anxiety and hopelessness as a result.

If you are tired of living life this way, seeking therapy is an excellent place to start. I help my clients get out of their obsessive thinking by practicing present moment awareness. This allows you to create distance from your thoughts, which likely have a habit of tormenting you with their rules and opinions. In the pursuit of a more rich and meaningful life, I will help you get connected to your core values. These are the things that if you look deep inside yourself, you know are what matter most to you. Together we will find ways to help you take action in your life so that you are moving toward these values instead of away from them. 

You deserve to find peace in your own skin and nourish your body without fear. I would be honored to guide you along the journey. 

As a Health At Every Size (HAES) therapist, I support people of all sizes in finding compassionate ways to take care of themselves. I am committed to celebrating body diversity and honoring differences in size, age, race, ethnicity, gender, dis/ability, sexual orientation, religion, class and other human attributes. I am committed to challenging scientific and cultural assumptions while valuing body knowledge and people’s lived experiences. I encourage my clients to find joy in moving their body and being physically active while eating in a flexible and attuned manner that values pleasure and honors internal cues of hunger, satiety, and appetite, while respecting the social conditions that frame eating options.

To learn more about the HAES pledge and search for HAES providers in your area, visit

Once you consider the extent of the magical thinking that tends to be tied in to the fantasy of thinness, you can understand how threatening it is to consider the idea that you may never get the thin body you crave. It means that you never get to become the person you want to be. Wow! No wonder it’s so painful to let go of the drive to lose weight! Accepting your body is not just about physicality, it’s about accepting who you are, not continuing to wait until you become the person you imagine being.
— Linda Bacon