Where is the love?

I agree that society’s standards of beauty are harmful and damaging and entirely generic. I agree that women with curves should be able to feel beautiful – because they are – and confident. But I do not agree with making women of a different body type feel bad about themselves in order to make that argument. That’s exactly the kind of judgement and intolerance we’re supposed to be advocating to squash in the first place. I keep seeing images splashed around the internet like the one above, and it really disappoints me. Why do we need to make each other feel inadequate in order to make ourselves feel better? When did it become okay to start shaming girls of small or underweight builds?

Some would argue that you can’t naturally be that thin (if you believe that you clearly know nothing about the “classic” MFS build), and that those girls deserve the shaming because they’re anorexic and/or should “eat something”. And those comments that I see everywhere getting behind that kind of attitude are so wrong that I can’t even really wrap my mind around them. You do not develop a legitimate eating disorder by choice or without cause and you sure as hell aren’t going to be cured of it by a bunch of a**holes on the internet and the television blabbing about how you’re too skinny and it’s unattractive and you should eat a burger. I’ve never had an eating disorder, so I don’t have personal experience with it and I don’t know how it feels. But, my point is whether you’re shaming an underweight girl who’s naturally that way or it’s someone who does have an ED, it’s wrong, immoral and absolutely not the message we should be trying to send. This isn’t part of the solution, it’s the definition of the problem. 

I believe these things all come from the same place to start with; being constantly bombarded day in and day out with unrealistic ideals of beauty, everywhere we look. We’re constantly having products pushed at us from every angle telling us how we could and should be more beautiful. We’re being shown women who’ve been photo-shopped and airbrushed, shot in the perfect light after having their makeup and hair tweaked to “perfection” and we believe that because we don’t look like that we aren’t good enough. But those girls don’t exist. They don’t. Those images have been manufactured and manipulated in order to make you feel like you’re not good enough so you’ll spend your money trying to change that. Eating disorders are on the rise for a reason and I have no doubt that all of the above heavily plays into that.  

Ranting aside; come on girls (boys too!), we have to stop spreading this kind of message everywhere. We’re taking steps in the wrong direction by doing this. We need to learn to build ourselves – and others – up without tearing everyone else down in order to do it. Maybe you prefer thin girls, maybe you prefer curvy girls, and that’s fine (beauty is in the eye of the beholder after all)! We should just be able to like what we like and appreciate how we look without hurting everyone else. If you see a picture of someone who doesn’t match you or your preference, then don’t comment! Simple as that is it not? We so often knowingly choose to say something that will hurt someone else. Why? As cliche as it sounds, instead of making ourselves feel better by shifting this negativity onto someone else in an equally as destructive way, we should really just learn to celebrate ourselves and each other.

11 thoughts on “Where is the love?

  1. Okay Ms.Katie now you have my attention. I agree that one ist should be social judged period especially bc of a body type mines changed drastically 90% because of my meds. I how ever a little unclear on your stance about anorexia, their are literally millions of “hits” on websites that totally endorses girls being way to skinny for their hieght and body type making it seem the norm and you know how the media works so millions of these girls are growinbuo thinking there to fat when in reality they are at a perfectly healthy body wieght and proportion for their age. Yes judgment is bad, yes mental and physical illness is bad and unfortunate. But because those girls are super skinny for whatever reason I’m still not going to buy into that there physically attractive. I’m not saying that they are bad people in any way though. I hope that made some sense, it’s been a really long day.
    Hugs.
    B.

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    • Those are really good points Ben! I wanted to include some of them in the post itself but was afraid of straying too far off my intended topic and too much into eating disorders and extreme dieting type things.

      The sites you’re referring to are called “Pro-Ana”, something I have very mixed feelings about. On the one hand one could argue that the majority of those girls aren’t legitimately sick with anorexia, but instead simply promote extreme dieting and the thin “waif” frames as desirable lifestyle choices, which is not the same thing. Anorexia is not only extreme food restriction, but an irrational, uncontrollable fear of gaining weight and a very distorted body image, to the point that they are unable to change their behavior even when it threatens their health and lives and is making them sick and miserable. Anorexia is also very much about control, it’s a health condition and most importantly not a choice.

      These Pro-Ana sites are just another form of crash dieting and food restriction. They promote the choice of wanting to look super thin, and utilizing unhealthy eating habits to do so. They however are extremely dangerous, immoral and unhealthy, especially when it comes to young impressionable people that are insecure about their bodies. They further distort an already twisted image of what we “should” look like. And we rely so much on media, social and otherwise that it’s got a lot of us brainwashed into forgetting that we can think for ourselves.

      Responding to “but because those girls are super skinny for whatever reason I’m still not going to buy into that there physically attractive” that’s one of the things that saddens me about this (and one of my reasons for writing this post), especially for girls who are naturally that thin and can’t gain weight (Marfan Syndrome can cause this), because then they too are made to feel like they aren’t attractive or good enough. It’s still all about body image and judging someone entirely based on their body type, small or big. I think we as a society need to stop generalizing attractiveness because we all have our own preferences, as they say “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. If you don’t have a preference for super thin women then of course that is okay and there’s nothing wrong with that, I just think that it’s damaging if we then go around projecting that skinny girls are gross or ugly (and vice-versa).

      My main point in all of this is that we should just stop making women (and men!) feel bad about themselves, whatever their body shape. We need to learn how to point out the positive in ourselves without simultaneously pointing out the negative in others. And, we need to realize that what we say does have an impact and we should choose a less harmful route and words.

      Hopefully I said this like I wanted to, it’s been a long day here too haha! :)
      Off to bed – finally – for me. Nighty night!

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  2. Eyes are not working well so I’ll re read shortly. But right I agree, those top girls, a little gross. Lower girls super fantastic. Hope your well.
    Best of everything to you.
    Benjamin

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