Weight stigma is so detrimental to a person’s self-worth and willingness to seek health care, that it has become a matter of “social injustice and a significant public health issue,” said Rebecca Puhl, the lead author of two new studies on the fat shaming topic.
Negative body image can completely destroy a person, but just like anything else, it starts with educating young minds to raise awareness.
A woman named Mahogany Geter from Knoxville, Tennessee, is struggling with lymphedema – which is swelling due to build-up of lymph fluid in the body. Lymph nodes act like a drain in your sink. If the drain is clogged, the fluid cannot drain. It usually happens in the arms or legs, but can occur in other parts of the body.
Trolls exist on internet and they didn’t make it any easier to the 23-year-old Texan with unique look. However, Geter posted a reaction video regarding the ignorant comments towards her.
In her caption, she exposed some of the nasty comments people say to her like: “Why don’t you amputate your leg, ‘it will look better.’”
Mahogany, who gets hurtful comments all the time says: “It has been so hard to rise above these mean people, but I have no other choice.”
Feeling guilt and shame because people’s nasty comments make her believe she doesn’t have the “standard” beauty, Mahogany finds support in the lymphedema community and, of course, from her family.
Timika Geter, her mother, sees the radiating beauty she has on the inside and outside as well.
“It means I can try my best to inspire other people to accept themselves and see how beautiful they are.”
When she feels down because of her outlook, Mahogany always speaks to her mother which helps her feel better.
“She’s like my therapist,” Mahogany comments about her mother.
Mahogany Geter is now stepping inside the modeling world.
The condition can turn into lymphangiosarcoma – a rare malignant tumor which occurs in long-standing cases of primary or secondary lymphedema. They still haven’t found a cure for it…
Diagnosed at birth, Mahogany has always struggled with the image of feeling beautiful.
“I used to think God had cursed me,” she said. “I felt ugly, like a freak of nature, and cried in private so many times. Then I decided that I was given this condition because I am emotionally strong and I can handle it.”
“Since then, I have been learning to accept and celebrate myself.”
Mahogany is using physiotherapy as a method of getting better. She also enjoys sharing content of her and raising awareness about lymphedema on TikTok and YouTube.
“It does get frustrating dealing with flare-ups because I just want to live my life more freely, and it feels like I can’t.”
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