thefeminineheart

To Encourage the feminine heart along lifes journey

TRUE BEAUTY

16 Comments

TRUE BEAUTY……..What lies are our girls being fed ?

What is REAL beauty ? Who defines REAL beauty ? Where are our girls sourcing their perception of REAL beauty? Are they being misled by what society the media and those in positions of influence portray as REAL?
As a mum of 4 teenage girls I am more than aware of the pressures and influences our girls are bombarded with on a daily basis. I see and experience the doubt and stress, the wounding of self esteem, the questioning of their worth all tied to the way they look. Am I wearing the right clothes ? Does my hair look ok ? Do I have pimples ? My eyes are the wrong colour ! Am I thin enough ? I’m too fat ! The list is unbelievable and what’s worse is that the validation of these perceived flaws is given by their peers, friends who struggle daily with the same issues. In a desperate attempt to feel good about themselves they are resorting to pointing out one anothers flaws.
Eating disorders, anorexia and bulimia are on the rise and the girls ( and boys ) suffering are getting younger. What does this say about our society and what we deem as important ? Our children, like never before are exposed from an alarmingly young age through all forms of media and advertising, to an unrealistic standard of beauty, visual beauty. Our girls are sexualized from an alarmingly young age, just take a look at the underwear section at the shops for what they call “tweens”, a burgeoning market priming our girls to think “sexy”. What was once seen as inappropriate to screen at certain times on television no longer seems to be an issue, everywhere you look our kids are being inundated with lies and fantasy. They are being fed an unrealistic view of what beauty really is. They expect the FANTASY and are chasing after it.
What can we do to combat the negative influences our kids are exposed to ? We can’t lock them away from the world, it’s impossible to shelter them from everything undesirable and they need to learn to make positive and healthy choices on their own.
A healthy self esteem stems from knowing who you are, being comfortable in your own skin and understanding the meaning of TRUE beauty. Some are blessed with a visual beauty and that’s ok but we can all be RADIANT- vividly bright and shining expressing love, happiness and health. I believe this is the essence of TRUE beauty, lasting and genuine, evident in old age when time has altered our visual appearance.
As parents all we can really endeavor to do is to instill an understanding of what RADIANT BEAUTY is in our children every day. To positively reinforce attributes other than physical appearance and point them to the One who created them perfectly and wondrously.
We can also have a voice collectively by speaking out against the negative influences where and whenever we are presented with the opportunity to do so. It takes courage to be bold……..But what is at stake? I’d say its worth the effort !
Lxx

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Author: sistainarms

https://thefeminineheart.wordpress.com

16 thoughts on “TRUE BEAUTY

  1. A much needed message. There is a great video about this subject that I sent to all of my grand daughters. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ks3R2BwyO0

  2. I agree so much …I think it’s so hard now days for young people and girls especially because the media does seem to emphasize so much …hair, makeup, clothes and indeed ‘outer’ beauty. I also know that it is true that bulimia and anorexia are on the rise. While there are other emotional issues with these disorders I still believe that too much marketing is done at the expense of those who can’t cope with it…Diane

  3. Ah, but eating disorders rarely have to do with the media. I’ve had one since I was eight. Weight is a part of it, but really, it’s a method of self-destruction and an addiction. Read “Wasted” by Marya Hornbacher if you haven’t. She explains it perfectly…..perfectly. I was a neurotic perfectionist with severe anxiety and objectification consciousness, and chemical imalances already at this age. It was an escape. It gives you other things to obsess over, worry over, rather than your own problems. My life, I could have given a shit less about the media. I thought celebrities were pointless and not very pretty at all. I just wanted to sort of slowly murder myself.

    • I’m sorry to hear you’ve had such a tough road to travel, but thank you for explaining how you feel and the link – it adds another facet to her article. I’m thinking what sistainarms meant is that media is one of many influences on the younger generation today, and the struggles they go through. I hope and pray that you are triumphant in overcoming the disorder this day and time, and that you continue to persevere. 🙂

      • Awwwh, thank you hun! Just always gotta put my two cents in 😉 Mental disorders are often generalized too much.

      • You’re welcome! That’s such a shame, and I’m sorry to hear you feel that way. Hopefully with a whole lot of prayer, and people sharing how they feel – like you and sistainarms – then more awareness can be established and the more we can encourage and help one another.

    • I think I need to clarify where I write this article from. My experience……..a mother of 4 girls, one of which has spent months in hospital battling anorexia, nasal gastric tubing and a long stint in a adolescent psychiatric ward. I know all too well the battles of mental illness and by no means would I generalise on this subject. There are many and varied reasons leading to these issues however when it comes to self-esteem the media and how it portrays the feminine form play a huge role in the deteriorating state of teens self perception. Young women’s diversity needs to be celebrated rather than society trying to herd them all into the one box. I hope and pray that your recovery will continue and that your life will be as full and abundant as it was always intended to be. ❤

  4. This is so sad, but true… You make a lot of valid points here. I’m very concerned about the plight of the younger generation. It’s definitely prevelent across the media – as I see girls barely in their teens already trying to look like they’re 20 or older – in which I find that not only sad, but disturbing. I feel sorry for them that they feel they have to “grow” up a blink of an eye. In my opinion it comes from too many freedoms, throu the media and what have you, and “free will” being taken advantage of and misused. I notice that it not only affects kids, but also transcends to adults. As even as adults we question our “beauty” – and we all fall victim to that in some way at some time or another. I think we have to just keep praying for each other and reminding each other that God has made us the way we are for a reason – as were all unique in our own way, and to remind the younger generation of those very things.

    I think you sound like you’re a good Mom and a wonderful encourager, with good values and I’m sure your kids soak up every bit of them. You and they are truest blessed. 🙂

    • Thank you for the encouragement, I try my best, all I can do is instill values and pray that they make the right choices, be there for them when they choose wrongly and hope that they learn from their mistakes. This mothering job is hard going 🙂

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