How does social media influence eating disorders?

"în De citit/International" "de POV21"

 


We all know girls are obsessed with the way they look. At some time in her life, a girl stands in front of her mirror and checks her body. She tries to evaluate whether she’s fat, has stretch marks and cellulite or if her arms are too big and her tummy and legs are not thin enough. At some time, a girl is told she’s too thin, too thick, too tall, or too short. And all these things get worse when social media comes with perfect bodies, perfect faces, and flawless appearance. So, the most obvious question is, how does social media influence eating disorders?

What is an eating disorder?

I’m more than sure you know what I’m talking about. All of us have seen at some point a girl who was throwing up in the bathroom because she ate too much and didn’t want to gain weight. An eating disorder is defined by abnormal eating habits that negatively affect a person’s physical and/ or mental health.

How does social media influence eating disorders?

Go on any platform. It doesn’t matter if it’s Tumblr, Instagram etc. just go, type and search `body goals`. I’m sure you’re going to find skinny girls. Many photos. If you go deeper and type `thigh gap` you’re going to see underweight girls with an eating disorder, in most cases anorexia, who are `fasting`.

Everything we see is perfection. The photo on Instagram, the poster on that skyscraper, the girls from runaway shows, everything seems effortlessly beautiful. And there you are: just a normal girl being herself in her natural beauty. But the media doesn’t care about natural. It cares about smooth, skinny, shinny.

 

Boys don’t seem to care that this kind of beauty doesn’t exist

Someone said `If you judge a girl’s appearance, you ruined everything, because appearance is one of the most important things for a girl.` And he was right. Boys let themselves be so attracted by things that are unnatural as a perfect face who has gone through a very long process in Photoshop. They want their girlfriends to be as models they see in Victoria’s Secret runaways. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against those women. They work very hard to be where they are, but it is their job. You can’t ask the same thing from a girl who has just turned 18 and has school, parents, and pressure on her head. You can’t ask the same thing from a mother who has two kids and a full-time job.

Let’s be realistic here.

 

Their perfection is not your perfection

Because I’ve mentioned this word almost in every paragraph, let’s dive into its meaning. Of course, if you just do a little research you’ll find a definition as `perfection is the state of being perfect`. Not very clear.

So, what is it?

Is it being skinny so you can wear those XS jeans? Is it having smooth skin without a pimple? Is it having the perfect length and color for your hair? Is it having a very, very small waist? You don’t know. You can’t know what perfection truly is because it’s relative.

We have different ways of judging what is and what is not beautiful. What is flawless for you, it’s ugly for me. What is awful for you, can be the most amazing thing I have ever seen. So, my dear, what I have wanted to say it’s just one simple message: you don’t have to throw up in the bathroom because you ate too many fries, you don’t have to skip meals so you can look like those girls on a runaway, you don’t have to put plastic and silicone in your body so you can have the perfect shape.

 

How does social media influence eating disorders?

It doesn’t. The only person capable to decide for your body, for your life, is you. And no one can change that. Do you want to be as slim as Cara Delavingne? Do it, but in a healthy way. Do you want to be a thick girl? Do it, but stay safe. Do you want something new for you and your body? OH MY GOD, my dear, you can do whatever you want, the sky is the limit, but don’t forget to stay healthy. The key to a happy life is to be satisfied with what you have, who you are and where you are. If not, change that. But remember, always remember to stay safe because no one will care about you.

She’s not anorexic and you don’t have to be just to look like her. 

THEIR STANDARDS ARE NOT YOUR STANDARDS, THEIR PERFECTION IS NOT YOUR PERFECTION.

 

 

Elevă a Liceului Teoretic „Ion Constantin Brătianu” din Hațeg iubește literatura. Cu dorința de a scrie cât mai mult, s-a alăturat echipei POV21 pe data de 30 aprilie 2019. Este îndrăgostită de sentimente, natură și umanitate, fire analitică și realistă continuă să scrie despre ceea ce vede în jur.

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