This Eid, I couldn’t stop myself from wondering about this new obsession with being skinny. Like all festivals, Eid is all about eating holiday food, dressing up and taking loads of happy looking pictures (to put up on social media ironically). As I filled up my plate with all the savory chaats and traditional seviyaan (vermicelli) , I was more than shocked to hear my teenage cousin lament over how fat those extra calories will make her , as she put a slice of cake on her plate.
Geez! When I was that young, I’d gobble up all the cake in the world without giving two hoots about my weight! More shockingly, it’s quite common for girls as young as ten to be self conscious about their bodies instead of celebrating childhood and health. But the fact is that this fascination with being model thin has taken over the minds over all women of all ages and it’s been going on for quite some time now.
Just like our media promotes the idea that white skin is beautiful, it also quite shamelessly promotes that the only people worthy of being considered pretty should be thin. Now I am by no means suggesting that one should be obese and unhealthy, but what I find highly objectionable are the standards of beauty that the media, both print media and TV have created for us. Being surrounded with anorexic models with huge breast implants, airbrushed makeup and photo shopped images, our minds subconsciously start to believe that is how a woman should look ideally, and let’s face it- that is how we also aspire to look.
The media has spent years and years drumming it into our minds, that skinny is sexy and everything else is downright hideous! The startling thing is that the skinniness they project is not only unachievable but more importantly it’s all fake! But since the general population has endorsed this twisted concept of beauty , as a result we always remain unsatisfied with our appearance no matter how good we look, because we cannot achieve the flawlessness that the media projects. We are always worrying about that little extra flab, or a fuller looking face or slightly heavier arms. Here’s time for a reality check-that is what REAL woman look like, and they ARE pretty despite the slight imperfections!
It’s astonishing to see the extent to which women go in order to achieve the look of the ‘perfect media woman’. Cosmetic surgery, liposuction, breast implants, harmful medication and eating disorders are becoming increasingly common. The situation is so bad that even teenage girls, who are in their growing stages and need proper nutrition, have started to exchange health with ‘beauty’ -the new name for being skinny!
What we need is courage - to refuse to be controlled by the media and instead set our own standards of attractiveness. If Kate Winslet can refuse to step on the skinny bandwagon and audaciously flaunt her curves on the same television which promotes skinniness , than that should be a big encouragement for us ‘ women of the world’ to be able to feel confident and pretty even if we are not thin. The focus should be on being healthy and most importantly happy!
So ladies, it’s time to sit back, relax, and have a great time without worrying too much about the weight. There are far better things in life to focus on.
……..And anyways , the only thing that looks good skinny is a pair of skinny jeans !