On Little Girls & Body Image

Back in October, Emily L. Hauser wrote a blog for the Huffington Post that touched a nerve with many women; she started a conversation about little girls and their negative body image. Hauser was inspired to write about the subject after watching her ten year old daughter weep in the backseat of the car, afraid no one would ever love her because of the shape of her body. Many women felt a connection with this story because they had similar experiences with their own daughters, or because they may have been the one weeping in the backseat when they were little girls. Hauser argues that we are born with our natural body shapes, but advertising and social pressures make us feel inadequate if we are not the same shape or size as the “ideal” body type. In order to achieve this “ideal” body type, many women will inadvertently or unintentionally do real physical damage to their bodies. Hauser goes on to say that the words “skinny” and “fat” have become weapons people use to wound one another. Children have learned the implicit meanings associated with these loaded words, and, even at early ages, have begun using them to judge their own worth. According to the blog, children learn this way of thinking and valuing (or devaluing) themselves from the older women in their lives – their roll model mothers, teachers, aunts, older sisters, etc. – because many women participate in self-effacing behaviors. The truth is, even if we train our daughters to love themselves and to not judge their worth by the shape of their bodies, society will inevitably expose them to the idea that they are not good enough, never beautiful enough, and not thin enough, says Hauser. That is why it is important to spread the word, to teach as many daughters as we can to see themselves for their truth, to love the blessing that is their amazing bodies, and to value health over thinness. We need to stop cultivating a culture of self-hatred. We need to stop focusing on what we cannot have. It is Hauser’s hope that by all of us working together, our daughters can have a brighter, healthier, happier future. Read the full blog here.

Rosewood believes everyone – men, women, and children – has the right to feel good in their bodies. If you find yourself overcome with feelings of self-loathing or inadequacy, call us at 800-845-2211 and talk to one of are kind and caring intake specialists. Let us help you discover your truth and your beauty. Remember you are special, radiant, and full of potential. You do not have to suffer. It’s never too late to change your life.

This post is a summary of an article on HuffingtonPost.com and does not include the opinions of Rosewood Centers for Eating Disorders or its affiliates. You can read the full article here.