“When you’re with me, no judgement,
You can get that from anyone else,
You don’t have to prove nothing,
You can just be yourself.”
I took my daughter to the gym that she frequented as a teen. A client of mine was about to arrive, so I told her to work out on her own, and I would join her as soon as I was done.
She seemed hesitant. I was perplexed. She had been training for a few years and knew her way around the gym.
“What’s the matter?”
“I’m having an anxiety attack!”
“I think everyone is looking at me.”
Normally, I would have said something patronizing, in an attempt to trivialize the situation, and hopefully allay her fears. I was about to use that tact, when I saw the troubled look on her face. Recollections from previous conversations began to flash across my mind.
She had been telling me all along, but I chalked it up as unwarranted prattle from a teenage mind. Why had I been so blind not to see? She had been dissecting photographs of herself. She questioned every part of her anatomy.
I thought it was vanity. I realized now that it might be BDD (Body Dysmorphic Disorder).
A gym, where I believe is filled with selfish men and women only concern about themselves, to my daughter is filled with the same, the only difference, their focus is judgment of her.
How SAD (Social Anxiety Disorder). The overwhelming fear that she was being scrutinized, which rendered her powerless to feel at ease in any social situation.
It was beyond the scope of my role as a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) to offer diagnosis about a client’s mental health, but this was not a client. It was my own daughter.
If I had been truly listening all along, I would not have taken what she was saying for granted.
“You know your way around the gym,” I said, soothingly. “In fact, you can lift more weights than some of the boys in here.”
She smiled and went to exercise her lower body.
I kept an eye on her as I trained my client.
I had a few minutes to myself at the conclusion of my client’s session. I used that time to trim the chorus of the song “No Judgement” and unmercifully, repeatedly played it on the way home from the gym as my daughter slept in the backseat exhausted from her workout . . .
No Judgement Lyrics (N. Horan (3/13/2020)