An Image Epidemic | Teen Ink

An Image Epidemic

January 13, 2008
By Anonymous

The pressures on women in today’s society are numerous, but the one that has the most affect is body image. Everywhere one looks, everywhere one turns, there pictures of women with perfect bodies. They have small hips, thin legs, and nearly non-existent mid-sections. They are perfectly sculpted in every area and they are the perfect example of what a woman should look like. Unfortunately women today can’t simply walk into a Photoshop dressing room looking like an average suburban woman, and walk out looking like the model on the cover of this month’s Vogue magazine.
Step back and take a look at yourself. It doesn’t matter who you are, just a glance in the mirror and you see everything that’s wrong with you. Every flaw on your body is staring back at you and laughing. Even if people tell you every day that you have the perfect body, there is something that can be fixed, something that makes you uncomfortable, that you have to cover up. You feel like less of a person because you don’t look like that smiling lump of perfection on the cover of the magazine.
One of the most highly influenced groups of people in today’s society are teenage girls. They are always surrounded by magazines, movies, and clothing ads that show off the perfect physique of women today. To go into a fitting room, and try on a nice dress, and see that little extra padding around the middle, could severely ruin ones’ self-esteem. Why? Because that dress looked better on Jessica Alba at the Golden Globe’s and no normal woman can’t even compare to that. But unfortunately, in order to be considered good looking, one has to compare to that. In order to be accepted one has to look like that.
Not only do teenagers have to worry about having the perfect body, so do women of any age. It’s harder to do as the aging process occurs, because one’s metabolism slows down, and the body doesn’t naturally expel those fries or that big Mac, instead it goes straight to the thighs. The only option is to not eat those things, to exercise daily and to try one’s best to juggle those things in with the possible husband, kids and job.
Women have the highest percentage of eating disorders today because they compare themselves to these perfect women who stare at them from the shelves of checkout lines, ads in newspapers, and signs in the mall. The only option, stop eating and start exercising. It gradually takes over one’s life without them even noticing. One day you see a beautiful girl whose a good one hundred and fifty pounds, and the next day she’s one-ten and her collarbone is popping out of her shirt, and there’s only a shadow left of her formal self.
Why do women do this to themselves? Because every woman wants to be looked at and thought of as beautiful. Every woman wants to be admired. And the only way to obtain perfection is to look and act like the women who portray it so well in the movies. The pressures today to have the perfect body are extremely high and the higher that this pressure gets, the less body mass we’ll see walking around in the mall, and the more teenage girls we’ll see purging just to fit in.

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This article has 1 comment.

Kimie28 said...
on Aug. 22 2008 at 12:59 pm
I think this article is so true! There are so many women and teens today that have very serious illnesses due to just this subject.