Day 3 of Body Image Week:
Once I’d gotten mad about the media’s manipulation of body image, I started digging deeper. I found a wonderful community of self-love supporters who were saying the words that need to be heard… but they were also so zealous in their support of women considered “plus size” that they were throwing their smaller sisters under the bus. Ever heard the expression, “Real women have curves”? What about: “Men like meat; only dogs like bones”?
I’d counter with: ALL WOMEN ARE REAL WOMEN.
Also: In this post, I mention a UK-based clothing company called Debenham’s that is doing some amazing work to change the fashion industry. They’ve taken even more steps since I first wrote this piece: they now use size 16 mannequins in their stores to represent the average British woman, and they implemented a policy to never photo shop their lingerie models. Rock on!
The more I explore body image and society, the more rotten layers I find to peel away. Here’s my latest discovery: I hate hate hate that the phrase “real women” is being used to describe ladies who are larger or curvier. “Larger or curvier than whom?” you might ask. Exactly. (Bonus points for your good grammar.)
Phrases like this pit us against one another, even if their original intent was positive. I know the idea that “real women have curves” is affirming for lots of girls who could really use that positive imagery – myself included – and so this idea should be a total “hooray”… except it boils down to self-acceptance in the form of pointing fingers at other women and saying, “It’s your turn to feel bad! You’re so skinny you’re not even real.”
Let’s just stop playing this stupid game. Let’s call it what it is. It’s dumb.
This is dumb:
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