Photo by Brenda on flickr.com
What the ideal Body image is can start at a young age. It is important to recognize and encourage all body types to boost Womens confidence and happiness.
As a little girl, I never cared about my body image. I was the kid who came home everyday after school, ate a bag of chips and drank a cherry coke. It was not until middle school, when I started loosing weight through swim, that I started caring. I remember around that time was the first time I got “hit on”. I got obsessed with grabbing attention. I believed that the skinnier I was, the more attractive I was to the men. I saw drop dead gorgeous models on magazines and skinny girls on my instagram page. All I could think was how attractive they were and how I wanted to be just like that. I heard guys in the hallways commenting on the “pretty girls”, and they were always the skinny ones. Media made me feel that I had to be a skinny to be “pretty”.
That day finally came my freshman year. I was tiny, but I looked at myself in the mirror and did not see “beauty”. I looked fragile and my doctors told me I would not be healthy enough to run cross country if I didn’t gain the weight. I wanted to gain weight but, I was scared of getting fat again. I had this preconceived notion that the guys wouldn’t like me anymore because I believed they romanticized skinny girls in their bikini tops. It was all due to the fact that the media constantly rubbed this in my face. Eventually by sophomore year I decided to change my train of thought, gain the weight, and try to live a normal life again. Being skinny did not sound as good as being happy.
Through high school and college I have learned all about how technology manipulates bodies you see online and on magazines. I noticed people using filter/photoshop apps to make themselves look “better” on instagram. I also use apps like VSCO to change lighting and so fourth, however, I have learned to scroll through instagram and really appreciate those natural photos that girls post. I think those are some of the most admirable posts. I love how society has started romanticizing different sizes of women. I am glad people have started pointing out the downside tothe flaws with making everyone look skinny and blond. I believe it was getting really hazardous there for a while because that is all I ever saw but now I have been seeing more diverse women on magazines, commercials, etc.
I know a lot of us feel as if it was never a problem that magazines and instagram pages did not affect their views on “beauty”. However, As a vulnerable kid, I was one to fall deep into that trap and I do not want anyone else to have to go through what I and many others had to go through. I know I am not alone. I am so very happy that we have become a society who has been trying to show love for all body types. Everyones body was made different and are beautiful in their own ways. Everyone is loved no matter what shape or size. You will one day find your significant other. You one day will feel comfortable in your own skin, and you possibly may have a child some day and want to remind them how beautiful they are. Lets hope we continue down the path of hyping up body positivity.
An example of society trying to support all body types is seen in this CNN report linked below. This talks about how they started creating barbies in all different sizes and colors to go against unrealistic standards of looking like a barbie doll. As a girl who once loved to play with barbies, I believe this can make an impact on the kids today.