Dear project Harpoon
Dear Project Harpoon,
First, what I really want to say is FUCK YOU….but I don’t want to start my letter off with even more hate. You’ve already put enough of that out into the world, so instead, I will say THANK YOU. Thank you for showing me that I have the drive and determination to fight bullies like you. Yes, you used my photo, yes, I read horrible, threatening, comments, yes, you even used my photo as your profile picture without my permission, but my fight isn’t for me. I am a strong, confident, plus model, who is PROUD of her body. It has gotten me through 31 years, of health, sickness, pain, freedom, love and adventure. My body and I have been through a lot together, and I will not let online bullies such as you make me feel bad about loving myself.
The reason I fight you is for the thousands of women out there who aren’t where I am yet. Who don’t love their bodies. Some of the girls you photoshopped weren’t models or celebrities, but just everyday girls. They might not have confidence, but they posted that photo on a day they felt good about themselves, and you BUTCHERED it with your atrocious photoshopping, and made them feel bad. What if she isn’t happy with her body, and had been trying to be healthy and more confident. What if that photo WAS her after she hit her goal weight (no, not everyone’s goal weight is a size 2), and you dragged her through the mud. How DARE you bring someone down, simply because she is not YOUR immature, close minded ideal! It’s ok to have preferences, but it is NOT ok to make people feel bad because they aren’t yours. Guess what, bullies and jerks are NEVER anyone’s preference.
Images of Tess Holiday and Rebel Wilson that were altered.
I suffer from anxiety and depression, and your page did not help me. It put me into a downward spiral from which I struggled to pull myself out. I didn’t do it alone. I did it with the help of my amazing boyfriend, friends, family, followers, and supporters. You did not and you will not get the best of me. Even when I have bad days, I remind myself of the things I love about myself, and my worth and potential does not depend on if I am a size 14 or a size 4. It is what’s inside is what counts. My heart, my laugh, my brain, the way I treat other people, the way I can make any baby laugh, the love I share, the way I will not quit when something is important to me. You did not win, and you will not. Not with me, not with anyone.
I don’t know if I was the first to share your horrible page….I hadn’t heard of it until a follower of mine alerted me to the fact you were using my image. I shared it to get help reporting my photo and your page. The support I received completely outweighed the hate you were spewing at me. However I also got messages from everyday girls who weren’t shared on your page. They had read the comments and were in TEARS over the hurtful things you called people who looked like them and whom they looked up to. You said “no shaming” on your page, but that is exactly what you were doing. You said you were “inspiring” people to lose weight and be healthy, but all you did was bring people down.
I haven’t always been plus size. In high school I was obsessed with my weight. I was a size 8 and thought I was huge. I wouldn’t eat, or when I did I would only eat salad or celery. I was NOT healthy, and I was NOT happy. I thought if I was a size 2 I would be happy…but ya know what, at a size 14, I am WAY happier and WAY healthier than I was at a size 8. I actually laughed out loud when I first saw your version, as I look completely unnatural. It is not YOUR job to “inspire” people to lose weight. ESPECIALLY not through bullying!!! Do you really think ANYTHING gets accomplished through bullying and making people feel bad about themselves? These are unrealistic idealistic forms of beauty you are promoting, and not everyone even WANTS or NEEDS to look like that to be healthy or happy. All you are doing with this is ADDING to the problem. Bottom line, the only person who can tell someone they need to lose weight, is their doctor, it is CERTAINLY not the business of an immature Facebook page of cyber bullies. It is just as wrong for slim girls to be told to "eat a cheeseburger" as it is for plus women to be told to "put down the cheeseburger". Our size, weight, what we eat, the amount we work out, or any other factor, is only the business of ourselves, and a select chosen few.
We are no less valuable at 200 lbs as we are at 120 lbs. We are no less valuable because you told us we weren’t. We have just as much potential as a size 14 as we do as a size 2. How dare you make anyone feel any differently? I may not be your ideal, but I don’t give a shit. I want to be the ideal of the wonderful people who support me, and for myself, not some childish small minded slime. Like one of MY idols, Lucille Ball says, “Not everyone is going to like me, but not everyone matters”, and guess what, you DON’T matter.
I will continue to fight your page. Facebook has shut down one, you shut down another…but I know you thrive off the attention and will continue to make pages. I will report them and have them taken down again. I will be the girl who has the back of all the girls your post, just like so many had my back when you posted my photo. I will not quit.
The world has enough hate in the world. Love ALWAYS wins. Spread love, be kind, save a life by NOT bullying someone or suggesting suicide or self-harm because they don’t fit your small minded ideal. Treat people the way you would want them to treat you, or your mother, or daughter, or girlfriend. Imagine what a wonderful world this would be if we all treated each other with a little bit more love and support every day.
I want to take this moment to reach out to anyone who you have upset. Please, if this page, or anyone, has made you feel bad, don’t do anything rash. We need you in this world. Reach out to someone, a friend, a parent, a councillor, or even me. I am here to help you and talk to you. You are NOT alone. You are loved. You are beautiful just the way you are. I was bullied in elementary and high school. I’ve been there. It hurts. It’s hard. But it gets better. Remind yourself of how many people love you, and all the things you love about yourselves. The people who thrive on making others feel bad are simply taking out their problems on you to make themselves feel better. It has NOTHING to do with you. It gets better. Surround yourself with people you love, and who love you. Let’s turn the negative into a positive. Take that sad, hurt, angry energy and turn it into something helpful. For every time someone has told you something that hurt you, tell someone something to make them feel better. For all the hate in the world, we need to spread just as much, if not MORE, love.
I’m here for you, I have your back, I will fight for you, and I love you.
8/22/2015 03:43:44 pm
They are like cockroaches. They will not die. But, you are correct. Love always wins. I am DONE ignoring the bullies. I am NOT going to worry about them any more. They say don't feed the trolls, but I am done with that business and I am taking a stand. Eff the haters. Glad you are speaking out, too. I have seen their new pages since they keep ANNOUNCING them on REDDIT and my friends keep telling me about them. They are clearly not a real smart bunch. So, they will continue to spew hate and I will continue to help FAT girls find sexy lingerie all day and all night!
8/31/2015 02:46:17 pm
Thick, not fat. I dated 5'-2'' max my whole life. Dated a thick girl.........its a wrap. Got a ring and all. Just waiting for the perfect moment to ask the honor of being her husband.
8/22/2015 05:04:41 pm
How about this inevitable despite what your size is. Go after them from a legal standpoint if they are using a photoshopped image of you without consent. Blogging about it feeds into the trolling that these people feed on. You like how you look. You have fans that like how you look etc. Celebrate that. Trolls will never stop. I, myself, prefer thicker girls. Just keeping doing what you do and move on. You may shut down one group but there will always be another to take their place. Just be you. It's a vicious cycle but it's the real world. You'll get eaten alive by the masses who don't think plus size girls should be models if you focus on each and every hate group. Succeed in your own way. But always know, haters will be there. How you choose to deal with them is on you. I know plenty of plus size models that let the detractors fall by the wayside without saying a word because their fans, loved ones, and family speak volumes.
8/22/2015 11:24:25 pm
Haters gotta hate. Why, I don't know, because their mindset totally escapes me. They think they are doing some kind of service through their bullying... Size is only a number, and happiness a state of mind. You are beautiful, and what they did looked so wrong, it's not even remotely funny... They do such a crappy job with their Photoshopping. On Tess's picture, they made it worse by not even trying to even out or smooth out her legs and buttocks... Unfortunately, Facebook makes it so difficult to get hate sites like this taken down... They say they don't violate the community standards?? Really??
8/24/2015 10:56:29 pm
WELL DONE! As a 45 year old woman who happens to be a size 10, I had to thank you for your badass response and hopefully DO something to really spin this into a positive thing for you, me and the world!
Ruby, I stumbled across this blog post in reading a news story about your response to the Project Harpoon assholes.
8/31/2015 02:51:33 pm
Thick can be incredibly sexy. I always preferred thinner girls until I had a 1 night stand in 1999. About to marry that SEXY PLUS SIZE girl. Sexy is a shape and attitude, not a weight or size.
9/1/2015 03:22:39 am
Ever the more sexy for your eloquence, and trust me, Ms. Roxx, you are hotter to look at than habanero eye drops.
9/2/2015 05:27:53 am
That first picture, the one with you wearing the black lingerie, did it come from a penningtons catalog or advertisement? Is it mblm? I think I regnoize the picture. In fact I think it was a picture I was staring at, in penningtons, and thinking, "wow somebody my size can look good", and then wondering "or can I? Maybe it's just the lighting, or cgi?"
9/2/2015 08:28:24 am
After reading the news story I had to read the blog....
9/2/2015 08:31:24 am
Thank you, Ruby.
9/2/2015 09:39:09 pm
Ruby, thanks for this. Your post reminded me of a video that I saw of a young woman who was a MMA fighter. She was walking with a friend when they were robbed by two men on a small motorcycle. She interrupted the robbery and one man ran off. She manager to subdue the other fellow in an effective and painful arm bar! He was obviously surprised! :-)
9/3/2015 05:31:27 am
Absolutely right on, Ruby!! We all have our own karma. Yours is strong, beautiful, giving and alive. I can't even imagine how squalid the karma must be for trolls and haters -- and I won't waste a precious moment trying. They aren't important. Your message is, because beauty has never had anything to do with size, shape, colour, creed or religion. I wish you strength as you continue to live deeply and joyously into your life. You are perfect just the way you are.
9/9/2015 04:18:47 pm
Ruby, I heard your interview on CBC this morning and just had to say hi and thanks. The point is not that it doesn't matter how we look on the outside-- we're all beautiful. It's the idea of beauty that's skewed in our culture. You might love this as much as I do: https://www.facebook.com/HLN/videos/989495071096560/?fref=nf
Ruby, you're a wonderful role model. Heard your segment on CBC today and had to come here to tell you are supported. I discovered one of the Project Harpoon reincarnations a couple weeks back and reported them -- Facebook disagreed at first but eventually took them down too. It will be like playing whack-a-mole no doubt but it's still worth the fight to ensure more impressionable young girls don't see this nonsense.
I heard your interview with Summer Innanen and was so impressed by your eloquence and passion. THANK YOU for sharing your journey - the highs and the lows - and for being yourself in a society that does so much to hinder that. Thank you for focusing on love when it's hard. You are a class act, and you are helping to change the world.
12/22/2020 02:15:59 am
I enjoyed readding this
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