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By Jessie Van Amburg
July 1, 2016

Author and New York Times contributor Jennifer Weiner has a 4th of July mission: She wants you to share your swimsuit pictures.

In advance of the long weekend, Weiner posted a photo on Instagram modeling her swimsuit. “I know we are inching—slowly! toward the idea that you don’t have to be a size zero, or a teenager, to look good/be allowed on the beach,” she wrote. Yet so many women dread putting on bathing suits, she says. The more “non-supermodel” bodies we see, the less likely we are to criticize our own looks, she added.

“We all need to be the change we want to see in the world,” Weiner wrote, “And so, this weekend, I hope you’ll consider being the woman that women and girls in YOUR life see in a swimsuit.”

Weiner took the message to Facebook Live. “I want this to be a smorgasbord of positivity!” she told viewers.

Women are already responding to her challenge. “Never in my wildest [dreams] did I think I would purposely post a bathing suit pic. But you’re right. My body is mine. It made a damn good attempt at a half marathon. It bore three children. My husband loves it. It could be sooooo much better, but it is real,” said one commenter.

“As a person who was teased for her size and weight as a child I want to teach my daughter that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes,” said another commenter.


Weiner has been outspoken in discussing the many issues women face. She published an op-ed in the New York Times in January dissecting harsh beauty standards for women. “The truth, as any woman can tell you, is that there’s no place, no profession, nowhere that a woman’s looks don’t matter,” she said, referencing the criticism Carrie Fisher faced about her weight in the latest Star Wars film.

This week she made a video for People Magazine urging moms everywhere to free themselves “from the critics who think it is our job to look forever 21,” in response to the New York Times piece criticizing “mom hair.”

And in “The Snobs and Me,” she wrote about the double standards of “literary” for male and female writers.

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