Notice anything wacky about the above image? The poor girl has been digitally hacked up! This ad was promptly removed after many observed the unnatural editing that appears to have been in an effort to create more of a gap between the young models thighs, not to mention, a huge percentage of her arm has been sliced off. What the? This latest news about Target Stores “Photoshop Fail” was quite disturbing as well. If you are unfamiliar, you can view it here.
Knowledge is power and being armed with it now, I’d never aim to have a thigh gap now that I understand what it would mean for my physique to attain it. Having a space between your legs has somehow become an aspiration for lots of young girls and women. Not aspiring for a healthy body, more lean muscle, lower body fat, but a thigh gap, is their ultimate goal. I was shocked, but had a bit of a flashback of my own youth all at the same time. I did a bit of research on the topic and turns out there are many websites that not only feature accounts that glorify this topic, but they have thousands upon thousands of followers. I feel they are glorifying body image disorders and eating disorders to those without the proper knowledge, understanding or confidence to think otherwise. Having been there, I was shocked at how easily accessible this is for anyone interested. There are blogs on “How to be Anorexic”. It makes me sick…anorexia is a damn disease and people are giving step by step instructions on how to starve yourself to death? I’d like to meet just one of these foolish a-holes face to face and try to understand this concept. I know I’m not always the brightest bulb in the box, but I just can’t wrap my head around this type of stupidity.
Out of curiosity, I asked my 11-year-old if she had ever heard the term and she immediately responded “yes”. I was somewhat shocked, but glad to know so that we could open up a line of communication regarding the matter. I explained to her that she should never aspire to have a thigh gap. I feel if I can hold her as a captive audience on the subject, I’m going to lay it all out on the line. I’ve even explained to her how body image can be distorted and how maintaining a positive view of oneself will aid in bringing you exactly what you want in life. Becoming fixated on wanting to lose weight typically caused someone to struggle with their weight their entire life. Instead, focusing your intentions on being healthy and strong will allow you to bring more of that into your world. I’m hopeful I’ve informed her and I am grateful to know the signs, having been a troubled teen myself. Please speak to your daughters (or sons) because they look up to us. Easing the roller coaster ride of being an adolescent is the best gift you can give. I wish I had a better understanding early on, but now is my time to protect my girls.
Having had anorexia as a young teen, I know now that striving for a thigh gap (though it didn’t seem to have a name at the time) was an unhealthy goal. What I am well aware of now that my younger, ignorant self was not, is that ridding myself of legs that touch in my case meant not only losing weight, but losing muscle. Having worked so hard to sculpt my physique and build a symmetrical shape to my frame, I can’t imagine fighting off hard earned muscle. I am STRONG, I am powerful, I am built upon the culmination of what goes on inside my mind. A body is exactly that. I am proud to wear my armor as I have worked damn hard to overcome fear, insecurity and weakness to get here. Here I stand with my thighs that I have worked hard to keep from touching and I could not be more proud of them.