I’m sad to say that we are living in a culture that praises appearance for determining the worth of a person to them. What is far worse is raising a teenage daughter who is constantly pressured to meet a standard that for most is unachievable.
First the girls
For generations, women have been treated like accessories of men. The ominous trophy wife. She better act like a lady, wear makeup 24/7 and always have model level hair qualities. In my head, I like to picture these same women as giving birth in heels, with a professional makeup artist on hand and a professional photographer.
Personal tastes for women have also changed over the years. Should you be skinny, deathly skinny, curvy, big breasts, little breasts, tall, short, big butt, or little butt.
So what magical god is running about gifting women with what will be the most desired at the perfect time when looking for a partner?
Or perhaps, we need to develop interchangeable body parts to meet the high standards that men think is important? Mr. Potatoe head was plastic surgery in the making.
Now onto the fellas
Welcome to 2019. Over the last 5-10 years, men are starting to feel the strain and pressure of attaining results that are most likely impossible.
The Rock(don’t pretend you don’t know who I’m talking about) is my Hollywood boyfriend. My husband is so amazing and in so many fantastic ways. But if I only valued him for his ability to become as large, talented and muscled, let’s say he would not make that cut. Nor would the majority of men. Let’s face it; the Rock is at a level that is not attainable by anyone.
These days there is more pressure than ever to have a twelve pack because a six-pack won’t do. They must have fantastically groomed hair in the trendiest of styles; they must be on fleek with their facial hair and some, more then anyone would ever admit, now have grooming regimens and makeup skills that are out of this world.
What the heck are we thinking?
Who is making these ‘rules’ for everyone to follow?
And worse why are we feeding our children the same regurgitated expectations. If you think that you aren’t contributing to this here are some things to think about:
- Did you buy those hottest new Nikes for your son? Did you purchase those two hundred dollar jeans for your daughter? Is your son or daughter demanding items because “that’s what all the other kids have”? Does your daughter want to put on gobs of makeup because the popular girl looks like she just walked out of a makeup studio? Does your child have the hottest new phone or apple watch?
I’m not sure at what point the world changed so drastically. First, it was women under intense pressure to meet men’s expectations and Hollywood, and now men are feeling the pressure too.
What can we do?
Stop allowing any outside forces to tell you who to be, what to be, and what kind of body you should have. Stop buying into the gimmicks. Learn to be comfortable with yourself before you try to adjust it to anyone’s standards but your own.
Parents, knock it off. Teach your child finances, and get four pairs of jeans for the price of that one pair. Tell them they look pretty without makeup because I bet they do. Do your kids need an iPhone in elementary school? Fellow parents, we too have the power to raise children with better self-esteem, so that they will be confident enough not follow the outside expectations.
Let us raise children to be adults free from labels or expectations that are unrealistic and perhaps we will finally know the value of a person by who they are and not what they look like.
Photo by svetikd