I want to challenge the idea that other people having a harder life is supposed to make us feel better about ourselves and our pain. In fact, I think that when someone says, “think about all the people who have a more difficult life and be grateful for yours” that it’s incredibly wounding and invalidating. Hearing that doesn’t make anyone feel better or remedy their pain—it makes you feel worse and it’s induces a lot of shame.
The truth is that you can’t make comparisons when it comes to emotional struggle and pain. Everyone is different and everyone copes with life struggles differently. No one’s pain is more or less valid than anyone else’s—it’s just different. Your struggle is no exception.
No one else’s struggles—whether they are worse or less difficult than your own—have the ability to discount your experiences or invalidate your pain. Your feelings and struggles affect you and therefore they are significant and valid. Regardless of what is going on in anyone else’s life, your experiences deserve to be seen and heard.
So use your voice and speak your truth. Stand tall and refuse to let anyone keep you silent. Your feelings are important and they matter. Always.
- Daniell Koepke
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About The Movement:
My name is Daniell, and I am the creator of the Internal Acceptance Movement (I. A.M.)
Need support? Have a question?
The Internal Acceptance Movement is an online space that advocates self-acceptance, healthy body image, recovery from self-destructive behaviors and addictions, and the acceptance of all people, regardless of what they look like, who they identify as, what they have been through, and where they come from. I. A.M. is a space that offers support to those battling their inner demons and strength to continue fighting when all hope seems to be gone.
I. A.M. represents the idea that as human beings, we aren't defined by anything external, such as our weight, appearance, body shape, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, clothing choices, income, occupation, or background. But that instead, it's our internal qualities--our character and attitude, our passions and dreams, our soul and spirit, our heart and capacity to love, our goals and morals, and the way in which we treat others--that are truly self defining.
Whether you're battling an eating disorder, self-harm, alcoholism, drug addiction, depression, PTSD, low self-esteem, anxiety, self-hating thoughts, poor body image, or any other mental health condition or self-destructive behavior, I. A.M. exists to remind you that you are NOT alone in how you feel or what you're going through; that it's okay to not be okay, and that you don't have to face this pain alone; that things can and will get better; that healing and recovery are possible; that there is nothing wrong with who you are; the who you are is enough; and that you are deserving of happiness, love, and acceptance, always.
I'm here if you need me: whether it's support, someone to vent to, a question, or you just want to say hi--know that this is a safe place and that you aren't alone. If I don't respond immediately, know that I'm not ignoring you. I will message you back at my earliest convenience. If you have an emergency or feel that you want to hurt yourself, please, please call 911. I'm not a therapist or a mental health professional of any kind. If you're in danger, you need to ask for help from people who can adequately support you. Sending you love: Daniell