Cassie Young is a newly engaged Atlanta-based social media director for the radio show “The Bert Show.” Last week, she shared to Instagram an exchange with a male personal trainer who reached out to her “with a pitch” after her engagement, offering to get her “in shape” for her upcoming wedding.
What ensued, according to Young’s posts, was a heated exchange in which the trainer attempted to shame Young into working with someone, him or otherwise, to lose weight ahead of her wedding. (Scroll through the slides to read the whole conversation.)
Even after Young declined his offer to train her, explaining she’s happy with the way she looks and already knows she’ll look her best on her wedding day “because I’ll be so happy to get to marry the man I love,” the trainer was relentless ― and rude.
“You can accept how you look but you can’t be happy with the way you look,” he wrote back. “You can’t lie to yourself.”
Yes, he really said that.
Young went on to completely obliterate the trainer and his close-minded, presumptuous point of view, according to her screenshots, but it’s her caption that really addresses the way many of us are made to feel about our bodies ― ahead a wedding or otherwise.
“Your inner-value and self-worth comes from YOU, not what you look like. Who gives a f**k if you got a few extra pounds,” she wrote, “Or ten. Or twenty. Thirty. Whatever. If you are happy and healthy, that’s ALL that matters. Those pounds DO NOT DEFINE YOU OR YOUR WORTH. Don’t let people like this try to convince you otherwise, because they’ll try - but it’s because they don’t understand yet.”
Young told HuffPost the trainer, whom she did not identify in her posts, subsequently reached out to tell her he’s upset that he’s “being shamed,” which adds yet another layer of absurdity to the whole situation. But she added that although she has experienced some hateful responses to her post, the “amount of love pouring out from the internet has been surreal.”
“A group of trolls spewed some really nasty hate at me (because, anonymous on the internet, you know how that goes), and the [number] of people ― complete strangers ― who stood by my side just proves to me even more that 1) there is so much body acceptance hope and 2) that these conversations need to be had publicly, so that we can keep fighting the good fight toward acceptance,” she told HuffPost in an email.
Young and her fiancée Chad have yet to pick a date for their nuptials, but said they’re looking at October 2018 in the Atlanta area. Whatever date they end up going with, we agree with Young: She’s going to look great.
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.