Selling Themselves ShortWednesday, March 10, 2010 By Zoe Altholz
Everything seems to be shorter and lower, at least when it concerns teenage clothing. Whether it is the media or magazines, poor celebrity role models or advertisements, it seems as though society has changed the role of females from being the nurturing mother and conservative lady into who can be the sexiest symbol. It is disgusting. It used to be that girls thought highly of themselves and treated their bodies with deserved respect. They did not strive to fit pre-conceived physical molds, mimicking the image that media portrays as the perfect female figure. Whatever happened to the belief that curves and robustness were the most beautiful things in the world? The pressures currently on the female population to be thinner and thinner year by year are ridiculous. In the long run, this leads to an increased number of eating disorder cases and girls constantly striving to fit the mold they think they should fit into. These disorders come with lifelong effects. In addition to being skinnier than ever before, girls are also becoming smuttier and more provocative, selling themselves short of their potential. So many are concerned with having a boyfriend and being popular, they lose sight of what is most important: their self-respect. There is more to life than being the loser at the game “Never Have I Ever.” There is more to life than fluttering your eyelashes at guys only to have them toy with your emotions and leave you crying all alone because you feel you were not worthy enough for him and that must be why he left you. Or maybe you feel that you are not “hot” enough or enticing enough to keep his sexual attention focused on you. Then, you start the game of putting yourself down, lowering your self esteem and changing who you are as a person to get back in the flirting game, only to have him leave you again. It is a vicious cycle, but it can be broken. A girl who is independent and strong, wholesome and confident ultimately leads a happier life. Her time will not be wasted with a different boy every week claiming he “loves” her only to see how quickly he can win her. Instead, she will be the one walking around school with her head held high, knowing that even though she may seem like a prude or a goody-goody, that is not the case at all. She has self-respect and makes sure that when she falls in love, it is not just a middle school crush that lasts a few days because the guy is the latest obsession of her physical fantasies. Rather she has a deeper connection with him that can start and end with a friendship. She does not need attention from guys. This is the type of girl who should be portrayed in the TV shows and magazines, unlike the examples from teen celebrities like Miley Cyrus who will pole dance on an ice cream cart in hot pants. Or shows like “Tough Love” where girls have sold themselves short all of their lives and are now looking for true love, only to know it is a joke because they will never grow up enough to demand that level of respect. What surprises me the most in recent years is not only how girls sell themselves short, but label themselves with degrading titles and are okay with it. They brag about being promiscuous. Humanity has truly gone down the drain when they are willing to give themselves such a negative and dirty image. It is time girls started treating themselves and their bodies with a little more respect. It all begins with focusing on yourself and what you really want instead of what you think you want. Focusing on what you desire instead of doing what someone tells you to want. It is time we stand up as a female population and claim our independence for what it truly is and be the strong moral young women I know we can be.