Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Pressure Of Being Thin

[As published on Emmagem.com HERE]

“In Hollywood, I’m actually considered obese.” 
– Jennifer Lawrence
It’s not easy being a celebrity, especially when you’re placed under close scrutiny by the people of the world. 23-year old Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence has a body that us mere mortals would never be able to attain, but in Hollywood, she’s considered overweight.
A pre-fame Lawrence was asked to lose weight for the first Hunger Games film, but she adamantly refused. “I don’t want little girls to be like, ‘Oh, I want to look like Katniss, so I’m going to skip dinner.’ ‘That’s something that I was really conscious of during training, when you’re trying to get your body to look exactly right. I was trying to get my body to look fit and strong, not thin and underfed,” she said during an interview.
However, confidence is one thing that not all celebrities have. Many female celebrities have struggled for years with weight issues, where the general idea of beauty is to be thin. The ‘bobblehead’ look is predominantly popular, where’s it’s cool to be paper-thin, ala Keira Knightley, Nicole Richie and Victoria Beckham. These women are no more than a US size 4 (XS), and yet still continue to lose weight with excessive amounts of exercise and supposedly ‘clean eating’ habits.
Women who are considered normal-sized like Scarlett Johansson, Adele and Nigella Lawson are labelled as ‘fat’. But the truth is, in real life, how many women actually look like a Victoria’s Secret angel?
None, unless you’re a model.
As women, we’re often hard on ourselves. We look at our reflection with a critical eye – ‘oh my thighs are dimply’, or ‘I can’t believe my arms are so flabby!’ We shy away from clothes that we think will make us look fat, and often fantasize about having that dream body we’ve always wanted.
The cycle doesn’t stop there. We’re equally judgemental about other women too. Questions along the lines of ‘what the %$#@ is she wearing?’ often run through our mental process. Being in the presence of a woman who’s slimmer/hotter than us makes us feel threatened. It makes us feel small and inferior. We suck in our bellies and sit up a bit straighter just so we can make ourselves feel better.
Many guys I know don’t care about body shape or size. Heck, they don’t even know what cellulite is! Given the choice, they’d spend time with the girl who has a wicked sense of humour and can chug a pint of beer/eat a burger with all the trimmings rather than a super-hot, model-figured girl who picks at her salad and demands to have her tiny clutch bag held for her.
Like us, guys suffer from self-esteem issues too. I recently watched this video, and I found it very inspiring.
If we stopped being a little less judgemental and a bit more supportive towards people, we would be able to develop our own confidence and help build others’ self-assurance.
It might be a long and difficult road towards total acceptance of the way our bodies are made, but it’s definitely worth the fight.

(Images: tuxboard.com, Marie Claire (Nathaniel Goldberg), aceshowbiz.com, lifestyle.yahoo.co.uk, telegraph.co.uk, capitalfm.com, blisstree.com, dailymail.co.uk)

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