As the music plays, participants share toxic concepts they were taught to believe when they were younger. Then, they're forced to recognize the danger in thinking that way when asked, "Who told you that?"
Recently, TikToker Phaith Montoya went mega-viral when she shared her own iteration of the trend, in which she challenged the way plus-size women's bodies are viewed:
In the video, which has been viewed over 10.7 million times, the 23-year-old mirrors her younger self, saying, "I can't wear tight/short dresses like this because my boobs and body being bigger makes everything look inappropriate." To complete the clip, Phaith is asked, "Who told you that?" and the discrimination against plus-size women is realized.
Soon after posting, plus-size women who have been taught to think of their bodies similarly began flooding the comment section. Many shared their own stories about self-censoring their clothing choices because of their shape...
... or dressing in looser clothes to avoid being labeled an "attention-seeker"...
... or simply wishing school dress codes held their bodies and those of their thinner peers to the same standards.
One user, though, wanted to make one thing blatantly clear:
When speaking to Phaith about her personal experience with being told her body was too curvy for certain clothes, she told BuzzFeed: "I’ll never forget – I was wearing one of those high-low skirts that were a big trend when I was in high school, and the back of the skirt was longer than the front, but apparently not long enough because an administrator pulled me aside. She was also plus-size, and she said, 'Women like 𝑢𝑠 can’t wear the same things as others because we have bigger behinds.' I was filled with frustration and confusion because I was dress coded for something I couldn’t help."
The comments weren't solely made at school, either. According to Phaith, other instances included: "An usher told me I wasn’t allowed in church because I filled out my clothes too much; and even my boss pulling me aside in college, and told me I was only allowed to wear jeans and a t-shirt to work since someone had complained about my outfit being too distracting. I ended up having a panic attack in his office that night."
Heartbreakingly, plus-size people in the comments don't only name school, administrators, or general adults as the source of their conditioning, either. Blunt replies to the posed "Who told you that?" include: "My dad," "Magazines," "All the women in my family," "Church leaders," "Friends," "Society," and more.
"[I'm] disgusted by the lens that people have been conditioned to see bigger bodies [through]," Phaith said. "Especially because that sexualization starts at such a young age. ... I don’t think women should have to worry about offending anyone with what we wear. Our clothes are not the problem, our 'bodies' are and we can’t change that. We can’t just leave the thighs and hips at home."
Phaith blames "a mixture of fatphobia, fetishization and beauty standards," for the criticism plus-size women face.
"I think we’ve all fallen victim to a society that has upheld fatphobia and these standards for so long, so [we just need to make] the conscious effort to unlearn how we see things," she concluded. "There’s times even I fall victim to it myself and have trouble not sexualizing my own body – even when I’m wearing regular clothes. It’s certainly not something that happens over night, but open conversations like this definitely help. "
If you'd like to keep up with Phaith and see more of her videos, you can follow her on TikTok and Instagram.
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