A Woman's Honest Post About Men 'Pointing And Laughing' At Her At The Beach Has Gone Viral
A body positivity blogger's message to people laughing at her at the beach has gone viral, sharing an important message of being kind to strangers.
Shelly Proebstel, 27, a New Zealand woman who blogs under the name Bald and Beautiful, recently posted about men at Mt Maunganui Beach near Tauranga who "pointed and laughed" when she took off her sarong, revealing a bikini underneath.
"It's because of dickheads like you that people are so incredibly insecure about their body image," she wrote on Facebook.
She said there was a "split-second" when she almost covered up, but "then I reminded myself of all I have learnt on this journey, and I held my head high and stuck my belly out and wore that bikini with pride."
Urging parents to teach their children that all bodies can be beautiful, she posted images of herself enjoying herself at the beach -- tummy and all.
"I urge you to teach them not to stare directly at a bigger stomach than they might be accustomed to seeing on TV or in society, but instead, to look at a persons face and into their eyes. I urge you to teach them to be kind to all types of people, regardless of their outer appearance.
"I urge you to teach your children to accept people for exactly who they are on the inside.
"And I urge you to teach your children to be role models to those around them who aren’t being taught this, and to be the positive change we need to see in the world, so that in five or 10 or 20 years time, no more people are pointed at and laughed at by the way they look when they wear a bikini on the beach."
Her message struck a chord with people, and at the time of writing has been shared more than 4,000 times.
While most of the 3,000 comments -- and counting -- were in support of Proebstel's message, some derided her for 'promoting obesity'.
She had a follow-up message for those people, too.
"While those opinions might have been sent to knock me down or change my mind or stop me spreading this message, I want each and every one of you to know that your comments only do the opposite! They inspire me to spread this message further," she wrote.
She explained her lifestyle is full of healthy food, intense workouts, yoga, swims and hikes.
"My weight has nothing to do with poor life choices but also, it’s none of your f**ken business why my weight is what it is!"
Her message is simple: stop judging a person based on their looks.
"I'll never change everyone’s opinion, but at least what I’m doing is making a difference for someone - and that makes it worth it," she said.