Little Girls and Body Image

Friday, July 01, 2011

It's a great thing to realize you don't have to be embarrassed about your body. It doesn't actually make it all that much easier to overcome those society-ingrained fears of an imperfect appearance, but it at least makes you think more about where priorities should lie. What really makes me second-think my occasional body obsession is seeing little girls running around. While the age of first diets, eating disorders, etc. grows ever younger, there is still an innocence to young girls that delights me. There's a three-year-old I know who is unbearably cute, cheerful, fun, and just a joy. Do I want her to grow up like most of us, to start to criticize her own strong, energetic body for being different from the impossible ideal? That thought makes me awfully sad. Why then should any of us, who are probably not perfect, despise our bodies for being what they are? When we were little girls, someone wanted us to grow up happy. Maybe you were raised without a caring family, but I'm positive that someone saw you and wanted the best for you - I genuinely feel that way about plenty of people I only see in passing. Especially those happy, giggly little girls.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Much agreed! I am the mother of 2 girls and they are just getting to the age where body image may not necessarily be an 'issue' but is being thought about. I wish more of us would listen to ourselves when we comment on our own appearance and the appearances of others. We live in what can be such a small minded and cruel society. Thanks for the posting!
    1547 days ago
  • ANDREA409
    Loved this blog. I often experience the exact same feeling when I see young girls. Not yet ashamed of their bodies. Not yet having to experience the wanting to hide it when it becomes the possession of leering men. Not yet a source of anxiety. I miss being that carefree, before everything started centering around sexuality. I think it's a big part of the reason I gained weight; I couldn't handle the crude, aggressive intentions of some men. (Granted, many, many men do not behave this way, but the ones that do made me feel tremendous shame and fear.) With a few extra pounds, I don't get nearly as much attention as I used to.

    A pity.

    Thank you for this reminder. What a lovely thing to read.
    2486 days ago
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