I’m terribly sorry I didn’t post this last week! I’d like to conclude last week’s National (or International) Eating Disorders Awareness Week theme with a campaign to change the body image, also known as “All Body Types Awareness“! 😀
I never understood why each decade or century, in different cultures, there would only be one ‘perfect’ body or standard of beauty. A woman ought to look like this and a man ought to look like that. If you did not fit into that category, too bad. Travel to another country, you just might go from Ugly Duckling to Beauty Queen. Average height to tall. Tall to short. Time travel to the past, you’re no longer fat but voluptuous. Skinny model becomes scullery maid. Well, that’s unfair, if one’s beauty is exclusively determined by society.
One day, I suppose, I am going to look back and wish I could appreciate my body type now while the society I live in still [somewhat] ‘envies’ it. Yet, as I’d already mentioned in my Beanpole Disorder post, there are times when I can’t stand how skinny I am. I’m not sure what will happen in the future, whether we’ll go from one extreme to the other (I’m noticing a change already) or if we’ll finally say, “We are all unique, so let’s appreciate that.”
First of all, I want to tell you that I’m not an expert on this. I don’t know psychology, economy, or science, though I know they each play a role in this. I’m not even eloquent so I pray you’ll be able to help me to voice my dream properly. I speak mainly from experience and from years of observation. I hope that everyone in this world, male or female, will be able to learn about:
- body shapes/types (e.g. hourglass, triangle, inverted triangle)
- bone structure (narrow and wide)
- eating disorders
- Magazines and clothing posters will feature people of different heights, sizes, and shapes.
- If possible, rather than have only one feature model, have more models on a page, each representing different body types.
- Designers will learn and/or create clothing that will flatter every person, regardless of shape, size, or height. For instance, the same dress or trousers will have to be altered rather than enlarged. One size fits all, unfortunately, isn’t always going to work. 😦
- More stores will include sections such as petite, tall, plus-size, etc.
- Media will properly present men and women – no misrepresentation!
- More education on health, disorders, etc. in schools, universities, colleges, and community centres.
- YMCA launches ‘body image’ exam (bbc.co.uk)
- Schools ‘to offer new qualification in body image’ (telegraph.co.uk)
- More encouraging ads and posters.
- Tabloids will stop focusing so much on appearance and weight.
- We will focus more on personality than appearances!
In the meantime, here are some daily reminders to keep my dream going:
- Don’t compare our bodies to someone else’s
- Avoid rubbish tabloids that focus on celebrities’ weight, looks, etc.
- Eat healthy and exercise
- Don’t poke fun at people’s weight or body type
- Stand up for someone who’s being made fun of
- Write or post encouraging messages in the bathroom or public lavatories (only if you’re allowed to!)
- Learn more about bodies and the science behind it all!
- Find out what your body type is and discover what clothing suits you best!
- Read about inspiring celebrities who don’t care about what the media has to say:
- Romola Garai: as a size 10 I’m too fat for Hollywood (Telegraph)
- Zooey Deschanel Talks Body Image (Huffington Post)
- Celebrity Body Talk: Women Who Defy Conventional Body Types in Hollywood (Huffington Post)
- Tina Fey tries to instill healthy body image in her daughters (examiner.com)
What do you think? Will you join in my campaign? 🙂
- Is Bad Body Image Contagious? [Body Blog] (collegecandy.com)
- The Truth About Body Image (managedifficultpeople.com)
- Five photos that sparked body image debates (bbc.co.uk)
- What influences body image? (healthybodyimageblog.wordpress.com)
- How do we see ourselves as women (offoxesandhedgehogs.wordpress.com)
- What Size Is Perfect ? (offoxesandhedgehogs.wordpress.com)
- The Correlation Between Media Exposure And Eating Disorders (dangerouslee.biz)
- The new face of eating disorders: Men starving themselves to look like the pictures in magazines (o.canada.com)
- Body image…for boys (ctworkingmoms.com)