Okay, first things first. You need to read this post from the ever lovely Fae – You wanna know what’s sexy?
I don’t want to see you back until you’ve read it, had a chuckle and felt some serious empowerment going on. Once you’ve done that come back and read the rest of this post.Now, the topic at hand.
That post is not something that I think you would ever read in main-stream media. It’s not the sort of thing that would be accepted as being a reasonable view because it’s espousing rather than degrading the fact that all shapes are beautiful, especially when they’re carried with confidence.
And you know what?
Half the time I swear that is the defining difference between the girls that are described as hot and those thought of as not.
Is it really that simple?
I’m the first to admit that I am sorely lacking as far as self-confidence goes. There’s been a lot of different events and influences that have led to it but that’s a post (or series of posts) for another day. I’m not the sort of person that’s gone out of their way to doll themselves up or learn the sorts of thing that people apparently like in people but the one thing that got me, the biggest pressure I’ve given in to is the pressure to not be fat.
Picture books never feature fat girls. Magazines and newspapers don’t have photos of them.
My parents didn’t want a fat kid, going as far as to ration my food and alarm the storage places to stop me from getting into anything over and above what they’d given me.
Hell. One of my first memories is getting into fisticuffs with one of the boys at kindergarten and my Mum being told that I needed to be more feminine. So she asked me what I’d like to try, the only girly thing I could think was ballet. So we went along to sign me up.
We walked into the only ballet studio in town, it was full of older girls in yoga pants and tight singlets. She went up to the receptionist and said that she’d like to sign her daughter up for ballet lessons.
The lady came out from behind her desk, looked my tomboyish 4-year-old self up and down before declaring to my Mum that
“you’ve got to be fucking kidding me. She’s too fat to dance. Take your manatee home.”
At the tender age of 4 I came across my first fat phobic person. Unfortunately they weren’t the only one I’ve come across. Nor will I have yet experienced the last.
Do I feel that these events are factors in the eating disorders I developed?
Do I feel that media portrayal player a huge role in developing these people views?
Do I worry for the young (and not so young) people who are still being subjected to these sorts of ideals on a daily basis? Do I feel for the millions of people who will feel they must have control one way or another? Do I think that this had become one of the biggest issues that our ‘first world’ countries are currently facing?
Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.
Forget the oil crises. We’re slowly but surely heading straight for an international self-confidence crises.