I have a friend who is unhappy with her body. Whenever our friend group gets together, she insists on reviewing any photos that will be posted online. If she doesn't like a photo, she'll ask that person to send her the photo so she can crop it or she'll veto it. If it's posted without her permission, she'll demand that it be deleted. We're all supportive of her but it's becoming frustrating. Many of us are the same or bigger than her and have accepted that the online world will see us as the real world does. We respect that she doesn't but the degree to which she wants to control our images is getting uncomfortable. My gentle attempts to steer her towards body-positivity were met with hostility. Asking her not to join the group for photos would be hurtful. What do we do?
—Sincerely, Plus-sized Problem
I HATE candid photography. I believe that people should be required to have a license to take photos. As a "big ol' boat-load of a woman," I empathize. Cameras are in the hands of the untrained masses. My suggestion: plan a photo party to learn how to pose for great pictures. Have food, cocktails and music. Dress up. There are tutorials on how to look your best in a photo including face positioning, how to pose to minimize your size, and even how to hold your tongue for the best smile. It could be a fabulous, body-positive group exercise where you all come away with more confidence. I also routinely tell the person taking the photo to change the height and angle of the camera. This teaches them how to take flattering photos and that haphazard snapping is a poor technique by any standard.