Pressure to Be Flawless
I am a typical 14 year old girl. In my life, I have lots of pressures like keeping good grades, maintaining friends, creating a good future and trying to have a good attitude towards life. I do not think I need to be worrying about my body image too. Why should I try to be changingwhat nature made me? Why do Ineed to change myself into someone different? I don’t think that I should look like a photoshopped girl on the cover of a magazine! The pressure on teens to have a ‘perfect’ bodytoday is horrific.In American society today boys and girls are expected to have the ‘perfect’ body. I believe there is way too much pressure on them. Women are expected to have the body of a photoshopped model and men are expected to have the body of a strong body builder. The pressure to have an unattainable body image is extremely high in our nation. This pressure is causing boys and girls to have anxiety issues, low self-esteem and eating disorders. I believe that this topic is very important because we should not have kids growing up with these kinds of standards. I believe that everybody should care about this topic and want to help change the way we see ourselves.
All around the world girls and women are put under extreme pressure to have a ‘perfect’ body. In all the magazines today, there is a beautiful women on the cover that most girls strive to be. She has a skinny waist, large breasts and flawless skin. Although most of these pictures are photoshopped, many girls still starve themselves trying to achieve this look.For example, more than 5 million girls suffer from eating disorders trying to have this ‘perfect body’, every year50% of girls who have eating disorders develop anorexia or start to abuse drugs and alcohol or both (Wulff et al.). These disorders can even lead to death.If you do not have this ‘perfect’ body and everyone around you does many girls develop self-doubt, depression and anxiety. Some girls even attempt to change their appearance by getting surgeries such as, breast implants, botox injections, eyelid surgery, lip injections and more. When the celebrity Mary-Kate Olsen announced she had a eating disorder and had to go in for treatment, most of her fans looked up to her. A 19 year old commented on the appearance of Mary-Kate and said “I admire her, I am striving to look like her,” (Wulff et al.). The world is filled with unrealistic body shapes and girls are expected to have them. Girls are not the only ones who are pressured into having ‘perfect’ bodies, boys are too.
Boys are also consumed by unrealistic body images that they see in magazines, on television, and on all the social media. They see big muscular men with abs and biceps and boys try their hardest to look like them and not have small skinny bodies. They spend an exaggerated time in the gym in hopes to gain muscle. 40% of boys in middle school and high school say that they exercise an excessive amount (Gonchar). This pressure on boys lead to low self-esteem, constant workouts, dieting and even can lead to taking steroids. Over 2000 boys admit that they are unconfident about their bodies and 7.5% ofboys start to take steroids when they do not see any results of bigger muscles (Gonchar). Steroids are illegal and can harm boys that who are still developing.An example of this isDavid Abusheikn, at age 15 he started to lift weights in a gym for two hours a day, six times a week. He started to add protein bars and shakes to his diet and cut out any type of fatty foods. He took extreme measures in the hope for bigger muscles (Gonchar).Boys are held to unattainable body image just as much as girls are.
Today there is a lot of pressure on boys and girls to have ‘perfect’ bodies. There is many things that teenagers should be worrying about andbody image should be the least of their problems.The way that nature makes us should not be seen as wrong. Giving boys and girls beauty standards is wrong and it should be stopped. Everyone should help to stop standards. People can help by not commenting on anybody’s body image. If you are a parent do not comment about your body image or anyone else’s in front of your kid. Try to tell your child that they are perfect just the way they are and always be a positive role model. If everyone helps out in stopping a specific body image we can stop these false standards.