"You weren't expected to look like an airbrushed supermodel."
We've all experienced that cringe-worthy moment: You log on to Facebook and come upon a post that features a not-so-flattering photo someone took of you. If your immediate reaction is to untag yourself so no one will see you looking so god-awful, you're not alone.
But body-positive blogger Megan Jayne Crabbe is making the case that we should all get out of this untagging habit. On Monday, Crabbe posted a before-and-after shot of herself. The first image was a selfie with good lighting shot at a flattering angle, the kind of attractive photo Crabbe would post on her own social pages. The second image, also of Crabbe, was taken from an unflattering angle; it was an example of the type of snap she might find herself tagged in on Facebook.
"I remember a time when seeing 'your friend has tagged you in a new photo' would make my stomach hit the floor," Crabbe wrote in her post. "I would drop everything and rush to untag it. The only version of myself I wanted people to see was the carefully selected, highly edited, what I believed to be the most 'flattering' (read: thin) version."
Crabbe now realizes that both images are perfectly fine representations of who she is, and that it's more important to value what the picture was supposed to capture, like a celebration with loved ones or a fun vacation.
"I want you to remember what that photo was for," Crabbe wrote. "It wasn't for the cover of a magazine. You weren't expected to look like an airbrushed supermodel. It was taken to capture a moment."
So next time you see yourself in a post and reflexively go to untag yourself because you're not happy with how you look, keep Crabbe's message in mind. Not only do those photos represent great memories, they demonstrate to others that social media isn't real life—and no one is expected to look picture perfect.
Plus, how many times have you gone back to look at a photo you used to hate and realized you were being too hard on yourself, and that you actually look not half-bad, or even pretty good? Thought so. Make that another reason to resist untagging.