Body shaming has affected humans all over the world for decades now, and its growing day by day. With social media factoring in towards such toxicity, it’s what our loved ones say, that matters most.
While some people face degrading comments and messages from strangers online, some people have faced this issue with their family members and friends.
Many a times, women experience body shaming. But this isn’t that shocking, is it? What’s shocking is the fact that girls are body shamed by other girls.
Women say things like: “I’m not like other girls,” or “she doesn’t look beautiful” or “what is she wearing that doesn’t suit her body type.” But what they don’t get is that every girl is amazing, in her own way.
Maybe, once in a while, you may point a person out and say you’re not like them. But there is no point differentiating between us girls. We have bigger issues at hand right now.
Such incidents, where women project sexist behavior and attitudes onto other women, is called internalised misogyny.
Society plays a major role in this as well. Who do you think, according to the society, is the “other girl”?
Roshini Jacintha from Bangalore thinks that the other girl , according to society is,”The girl who has too many male friends, who don’t dress up according to what they (the society) have in their head, or how they (the society) expect us too, girls who want to do every normal thing a boy would want to do. Basically, the moment you try to act equally, you become the other girl.”
While we’re on the subject of society and Jacintha, we should also talk about growing out of the society’s mindset of women. Some people, as they grow older and become more mature, eventually grow out of it. But for some people this isn’t the case.
Let’s see what Samiksha Rungta, a home baker, had to say about this.
When asked how she grew out society’s mindset for women, she said: “Honestly, I don’t know If I’m completely out if it because patriarchy is so embedded in our mindset that every day, I learn something new about how we have compromised, so it’s easier for men.
It was a learning process for me because I was willing, and I am still willing to change. I remember how I had slut shamed a senior in school when I was 13 and now that I think about it, I feel ashamed of my mindset and wish I could change it.
But the thing is, it started with small steps, there were always statements like: ‘women shouldn’t wear clothes which are revealing’ or ‘they should wear a bra’, but why?
The change started when I started questioning the society, like my parents, grandparents, and they never had a logical answer. That’s how I realised that I need to change in order to let the society change as well.”
Body shaming is also one of the toxic traits Rungta had to grow up with. For those, who are new to the concept, body shaming is the act of mocking a person’s physical appearance.
The society’s view of women on how they should be “thin and beautiful” is something we need to change. Fat shaming is not only a problem in our country, but also all around the world.
Each body is different, and beautiful in its own way. Fat shaming leads to stress, depression and other mental health concerns.
What hurts more is to see that its done more by girls to other girls. Degrading and demeaning other women on a regular basis, passing mean comments, calling them out, and so on, is just a part of what a woman has to suffer through each and every day.
Social media has escalated the situation instead of helping it’s audience. Models, actresses, influencers posting content on how women need to always look perfect and stylish and thin. Although, a lot of change has happened here.
After a lot of protests, emails, stories, articles; celebrities have started to post content from their daily lives and their regular looks. But the online community harassed them for this too, via unkind comments, death threats, rape threats, hence, bringing down their morale.
This is just one example, where a very plain, regular picture was posted, but people used it as an opportunity to pull an actress down.
The hatred, dirty looks, threats have not only affected girls, but older women too. Some get terminated on the basis of their looks, while other’s don’t get enough acknowledgment just because the company wants to maintain an image.
What they don’t get is that your qualities put you apart, not just your looks or beauty.
We should also address the rising problems of the LQBTQIA+ community while we are at it. For instance, when a trans person decides to go through gender affirmation surgery, and physically transition, they are still regarded as nothing.
They are also humans, and if they choose to become girls, we should be proud that we have created such a space where some people choose to be like us. The more, the merrier. They are part of our team, and we should have each other’s back rather than criticizing them.
It’s a pity that the younger generations will have to grow up in such a toxic environment, where people have started using simple adjectives like fat and thin in a negative voice.
It’s our duty to teach them how to embrace their scars. Everyone needs to understand that belittling someone is not good. Instead, we should appreciate one another and live happily ever after.
What kind of a world do you want to live in? One, where people judge you on the basis of your weight, color, sex, job, caste, religion, gender etc. or one, where you are accepted for just being yourself, nothing more and nothing less.