Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Miss Representation

Tonight my eyes were opened... wait, opened with magnifying glasses on! Jake read that an eating disorder awareness group at the University of Utah called SPEAK is hosting a campaign this week called "Love Your Body" to help women learn to be comfortable with who they are.. Many of you know me and know that I have struggled for too many years with this exact problem. It is the root of many of my hardships and pain. So we decided to randomly pick up and take the kids to my mom's house and go to tonight's event. They were playing a film that was played up at Sundance called Miss Representation. We got there and it was packed and they were turning people away. Somehow someway we were able to squeeze our way in the theater but ended up sitting on stairs! I was so grateful I was able to go, and I was even more grateful that Jake took me and supported me.
There is already so much pressure on ourselves to be thin and perfect, why do we support the media's perception of what beautiful is? I have a daughter that is watching me. How can I teach her to love who she is when her example of a women is someone who is never happy with herself? It seems impossible! Why are we so critical of other women? We should all be supportive of other women but instead what do we do? We criticize, we inflict pain, we are our own worst critic. We continue to watch our reality shows that dehumanize women, we buy gossip mags that only show unrealistic sizes of women- which then of course, we turn around and judge ourselves for not looking like that. It doesn't help what we do, because then it teaches men that women are objects- we should be proving we are more than an object. Women are beautiful in all different shapes and sizes. Why do I believe that means everyone but MYSELF? It's time to start somewhere and stop believing the myth that we can't do enough changing for all women but it starts somewhere and it starts in our own homes, with our daughter's and even our son's.
I want my daughter to always take pride in how she looks but most of all, I want her to take pride in how she treats herself and body, along with others and what knowledge she has.
I want Isaiah to treat women as they are and not as just objects, and for him to appreciate what women bring to his life and the world.
So today I pledge to stop finding fault in other women and how they live their life and how they might look. Instead I will support and appreciate what they bring. I also pledge to be more aware of my negative self talk, not just for myself but for my daughter to learn self respect. I also want to not support so much trash in the media. It might be small, but it's a start.

If anybody reading this has ever a chance to watch that film. Do it, find a way to watch it. It brings much needed awareness to not only eating disorders, but many other problems as well.

Healthy bodies are beautiful,

some are thin and some are short, yet many more are plentiful;

Healthy bodies are strong,

they work, they play, and endure many storms;

Healthy bodies move,

they run, they walk, and like to groove;

Healthy bodies are smart,

they know that thin does not mean squat!

Healthy bodies are kind,

they love, accept, and embrace all kinds;

Be a healthy body!

be kind, be loving, and accept everybody!


Kristine said...

Mandy thanks for blogging about this. I am going to try to buy the movie because i need it. I am still trying to get over my body dismorphia issues.

Peterson Family said...

Love this, beautiful advice Mandy.

Love you!