Everywhere I look beauty is at the center of all thought. Even the news features catwalks, models, fashion, and celebrity. How is it we are so defined by our body image? Are we not interested in intellect, personality? How can our news be on something as trivial as beauty, something which is so fleeting?
As a woman, now in my thirties, I like many other women have fought the battle of image. I’m at the stage in my life now, where I am comfortable in who I am, not based on how I look. But I’m tired of the blatant sexualised images in society. Even as I write this, the TV news is featuring a ‘news’ story on one lady, saying ‘being pregnant is no excuse to get fat.’ How dare she make such a demoralizing and generalized statement. How can she judge everyone in one statement, we all live our own lives, everyone’s life and their battles are unique.
Just the other day, walking into the entrance of the local surf club, photographs of young teenage girls, adorned the walls, swimsuits, fresh faces, posing for their photographs, ‘summer surf girls,’ it read, now these girls were not surfing, swimming or doing anything remotely related to surf patrol. There were no images of men, on the walls, expect when you entered into the club, pictures of men surfing were on display.
It scares me, as a woman who has gone through a life of ideals and expectations, I am afraid for my daughter to grow up in a world of pressure and stereotype. Watching her play, messy face, track pants, muddy boots, having the best time in undaunted youth. It hurts me to think one day soon she’ll see what I see all around. I will do my best to instil her with a sense of pride, confidence and independence and the ability to look beyond the outside and look within.