Teaching our Daughters to be Healthy, Not Skinny!

If you watched any portion of the Academy Awards Sunday night, you must have noticed the number of women who looked unusually thin. And the media makes it worse by talking about how good these women look!

I love this post  by Christina Katz and am re-posting it with her permission. It’s a great reminder of how we, as parents, are responsible for what we’re teaching our young ladies about their size. Don’t leave it up to the media and expect your daughter to get a healthy message. Take responsbility for teaching your daughter/stepdaughter to be comfortable in her own skin, regardless of her size.

From Christina’s blog:

“In every household over dinner tonight, all over the world, I hope that the conversation will turn to a very serious subject:

Why are so many women in attendance at the Academy Awards last night starving themselves?

Are their families blind to this? Where are the people who love these women?

Because the camera is supposed to add ten-fifteen pounds. If that’s the case, then these women must look like Holocaust survivors in-person.

When my daughter was just seven years old and in second grade, she began noticing that her friends are thinner than she is. And so the conversation began in our house.

It goes something like this.

Mom, how come I’m not as thin as my friends? I’m fat. I don’t want to be fat. I want to be skinny like my friends!

Answer: Some women are lean and some women are curvy, but it’s never healthy to be too thin or to diet just for the sake of becoming skinny.

Answer: It’s never a good idea to try and change your appearance to please others. It doesn’t matter what your friends look like, it’s much more important to love and accept yourself for who you are.

Answer: You and your friends have different body types, and they are going to change even more over the next few years, and none of them are going to look exactly alike, nor do they look alike now.

It’s never a good idea to impress upon a young girl that she is not thin enough to be acceptable or to make her afraid of becoming fat.

The only sensible reason to try and change your body is for health reasons and then the only acceptable approach is to eat better and exercise more in a moderate, gradual way without shaming or pressure.

My daughter is curvy. I am curvy. Maybe you are curvy, too.

I am putting out a call tonight. We all need to have to have conversations with our daughters and tell them that they way those women looked at the Academy Awards is NOT a healthy choice. And we need to pressure the media and the industry authorities and actresses themselves to take responsibility for the horrifying examples that they are setting for the daughters of the world.

It’s up to us to help our daughters understand that the healthy choice is to be more tolerant and accepting of what our bodies want to look like and less tolerant of unacceptable — and unsustainable — images of women.

These women look like they are going to die from starving themselves. I sincerely hope that this does not turn out to be the case.

But those Academy-award nominated actresses are putting our daughters at risk. And it is inexcusable as an example, whether they are sick or not.

And anyone in the industry who is putting pressure on them to starve themselves for success is guilty of injuring the world’s daughters, period.

I hope every mother in America will talk to her daughter tonight. And tell her, you NEVER have to look like that to be loved.

And then hug her and love her exactly the way she is. And ask her to do the same with herself.

And if you have an eating disorder or weight obsession, I hope you will seek help for your sake and for all of our daughters’ sakes.

Please copy and paste this meme into your blog so long as you link here. Or blog a response and link back to this post. And then talk to your daughters and report about the results online. Enough is enough!

We can change our daughters’ futures by raising our own awareness about self-abuse among women and talking openly and honestly about how to love and accept ourselves instead of further dis-empowering and abusing our bodies.”

Do you agree? I would love to hear your comments.

Other Posts You Might Enjoy:

Nuggets of Wisdom from Laura Petherbridge, author of The Smart Stepmom

When Stepfamily Life Gets Messy

 

 

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