Social Media is HARMING body images

The first time I ever heard about thigh gaps was last year. I was scrolling through my twitter feed and one of the accounts I followed at the time called health tips, had posted a picture of a girl with a thigh gap. At first, I thought nothing of it. As that account continued to post pictures of thigh gaps and things that said, “work out so you can get one of these,”, I unfollowed that account. 

After hearing in the news more about thigh gaps, I learned that tumblr was notorious for it. Upon looking it up out of curiosity, I was shocked. The search brought up grotesque images of gaunt teenage girls with things that said, “I wish my thighs didn’t touch.” It was awful.

The whole idea of a thigh gap is so unrealistic, it’s almost funny. Except its not, when it causes young women to starve themselves. I find the idea of a thigh gap so absurd, but for others who maybe haven’t been raised like I have, then it might seem desirable. 

When I think about most of the girls I know, the majority don’t have thigh gaps because that’s NORMAL. It’s not natural for a person to look so emaciated as the girls on tumblr do. Thigh gaps are bullshit that make beautiful, perfect girls insecure about their bodies. 

I think that social media, specifically, is at fault for the thigh gap and what it has done to girls. In no way should an account that is supposed to be offering  healthy living tips be encouraging girls to have a thigh gap. That is not healthy. It’s one big lie. 

Social media is promoting these types of unhealthy body images. Girls are seeing these images and then they get the idea in their head that they should start dieting so they can look like that. 

In this new age, girls dread gaining weight. However, its healthy as a teenager to gain weight. Your body is developing and filling out, you need to gain weight in order to be healthy. 

Social media is not the only cause of negative body images. I also blame the modeling and magazine industry along with Hollywood in general. They are the ones responsible for photo shopping the women that appear in magazines. Even some of the beloved celebrities such as Jennifer Lawrence and Beyonce get photo shopped. 

How can we expect young girls to have a healthy body image if their role model are being portrayed in an unrealistic way?

It sickens me, what all the big industries have created. 

As an athlete, I have no interest in having a thigh gap. I desire to be muscular not thin. I like having an athletic body. To me, it’s empowering. I feel strong and like I can kick some ass. I think women that do have muscular builds have nothing to be ashamed of.

Now, I know that I have been mostly talking about how this affects women, but do not get me wrong, it does affect boys. However, as I am a female, I am writing this from my perception. 

It breaks my heart to see beautiful women and men think that there body isn’t good enough or that they need to lose weight to fit in societal expectations. 

So do me a favor, next time you see something on social media about losing weight to be skinny or having a thigh gap, ignore it. Scroll past it, don’t favorite it or retweet it. Instead, promote healthy body images. Compliment someone and make them feel beautiful. You have the power to change someone’s outlook, so do it.

Your body is a wonderland so treat it right. You only get one and it deserves to be nourished. 

 

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