In a web-obsessed culture where body-shaming content creators and social media influencers is the norm, Christine Sydelko is attempting to alter the weight-loss narrative.
The 24-year-old Viner-turned-YouTuber initially captivated social media through the careless and, at times, reckless vibes she portrayed. Vlogs uploaded alongside her former sidekick Elijah Daniel typically depicted Sydelko as a wild character, with most of her appearances influenced by alcohol, drugs or an oddly intense passion for fast-food chains.
As a result, Sydelko soon became the butt of body-shaming jokes galore. For a while, it seemed as though she embraced the persona in a possible effort to deflect the negative comments. In 2016, she released a parody song called “Fat Girl.” She even made an appearance in Katy Perry’s “Swish Swish” video, with her presence being used as one big controversial fat joke.
Recently, though, Sydelko has parted creatively with Daniel and has been posting videos of her own interests. In turn, she’s become frankly honest about the harsh effects of online fat-shaming as well as her own effort to lose weight and get healthy. It’s a well-warranted venture, especially for those who have had some hand in body-shaming.
She Doesn’t Shy Away from the Seriousness of Fat-Shaming
Throughout her career on the internet, Sydelko has developed an especially honest reputation. It’s not for nothing, though; when it came down to her decision to start taking her health seriously, the former Viner got real in a series of tweets.
Perhaps the most jarring of the thread was her honesty toward being heavily impacted by online body-shaming:
Her integrity regarding the grit of body-shaming (or making comments about people’s bodies in general) is something that should be accounted for. Despite being overweight herself, Sydelko’s effort to articulate the hurtfulness behind fat-shaming is deeply important.
She brings up an extremely valid point: It doesn’t matter what you or your body is like. Body-shaming is, and always will be, upsetting. Regardless if you’re overweight or underweight, it’s rare for anyone to want unsolicited comments online about their body. There’s simply no excuse.
Beyond the technicalities of negative comments, Sydelko also brings attention to the fact that, no, body-shaming still isn’t OK even if the person is unhealthy or overweight. She eloquently explained her difficulties with receiving such hatred online:
It would be difficult to deny what she’s preaching.
And sure, maybe what Sydelko is saying isn’t exactly revolutionary, but it definitely introduces a fresher point of view. Not only has she experienced the detrimental effects of online body-shaming, but she’s also a victim that has come out the other side.
The Iranian-American comedian isn’t afraid to be bluntly honest about how hurtful body-shaming is. In result, she’s simultaneously bringing awareness to it while also letting other individuals know they’re not alone. As a person with a large media following, she has a powerful voice and an impact great enough to make a difference.
Even after dealing with harsh trolls online for years, Sydelko has entered a healthier stage of her life. She explained on Twitter that she had made the recent decision to start eating healthier and working out but not because anyone told her to. She is changing her life and getting fit for no other reason beyond her own personal desires.
Weight Loss Doesn’t Need to be a Group Journey
Because Sydelko is essentially a Twitter veteran, she has unfortunately been the victim of negativity for years on end. But instead of choosing to suffer, she has used her platform to speak out about how fat-shaming is never a motivator.
In May of 2018, Sydelko took to the web to explain that leaving rude comments doesn’t catapult immediate weight loss. A year prior, she was nonchalantly defending her size by tweeting, “people really cannot stand seeing a fat girl that doesn’t hate herself for being fat.”
Sure, call it character development, but through years of enduring constant body-shaming, she has made it clear that her weight loss journey is only for herself. For a long time, Sydelko was perfectly content with her body, and therefore didn’t see a need to lose any weight. In a case of complete body positivity, I can only commend her for upholding the confidence so many individuals lack.
If anything, Sydelko’s bluntness regarding her weight is actually pretty inspiring. Despite being on the receiving end of constant body-shaming, she stuck to what she believed in. She didn’t make the ultimate decision to begin her weight loss journey until she was 100 percent ready. She’s doing it for herself.
There’s a lot to take away from the YouTuber’s plethora of weight-centric Twitter threads. One: If you’re confident in your body, then that’s absolutely fantastic. Other people’s opinions should never matter.
Two: Body-shaming is wrong. It will always be wrong. Regardless if the person is healthy, overweight, underweight or average, there is never an instance where body-shaming is warranted. So Twitter trolls, stop doing it.
And finally: If you’re thinking about embarking on a weight loss journey, it should only be because you’re ready. Don’t let web onlookers or rude body-shaming gremlins have a say in your relationship with your body.
In the words of the always wise Christine Sydelko: