I am amazed how self-conscious people are about their bodies and the way they physically look, but what is more surprising to me is that it seems young ladies are younger and younger with their age when it comes to the almost crippling everyday feeling of being unsatisfied with themselves.
On my recent USO tour visit to the Ramstein Air Base in Germany, I met a group of lovely young teen girls who are a part of a group called the SMART Girls group. The topic of the day when I was there was: Media influence on women and how they are portrayed.
These young ladies spoke of the very same insecurities that I spoke about when I was 14 and 15, issues that I still think about to this day. The conversation left me wondering to myself if there was really any one person or thing to blame. I do not remember when I was in high school or junior high ever really looking at people on TV and saying to myself I want to be skinny.
The days I would go by starving myself for fear of seeing the numbers on the scale go up. I knew something was wrong. I weighed myself everyday.
Shamefully, I still do, just without the freaking out part. I just don't remember why I thought a certain weight was fat or that I was fat. Being someone who has struggled with an eating disorder most of my life I now wonder if I will ever be secure with myself and be fully satisfied with who I am. Or are we as women never satisfied with our appearance?
Does that make it another disorder all together? At what age are we telling our young ladies what is appropriate and what is wrong with them, watch what we eat, your ears are huge, your thighs are huge, you’re too fat, you’re too skinny, too tall, too short... When do we ever just stop? Is the media to blame or is it our own household who make us insecure?
Where do the boundaries of what the media is responsible for and what or own household is responsible for stand? Would the new controversial Erykah Badu video "Window Seat" be seen as liberation and art of the ultimate security in oneself? How do young women see that or what do they get from it?