This I Believe

Maddy - Bowling Green, Ohio
Entered on September 6, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I Believe Skinny, is not Always Beautiful

Imagine a very tall, thin girl looking in the mirror

and saying to her older sister “I’m so fat!” Imagine

my surprise when I heard this phrase come out of my

5’11, twig thin, beautiful, 7th grade sister. Hearing

this only made me angry at the media, her friends, and

society. Of course blaming her friends and society is

pointless because being skinny has been considered

what’s acceptable for hundreds of years. Girls today

are too obsessed with their self-image.

Girls today have been greatly influenced by the media

and what they see on movies and magazines. The over

emphasis on being extremely thin has lead to dealing

with anorexia, bulimia, and a lower self-confidence

among many young women. This has caused many to take

negative action against themselves in the hope of

becoming like the women they see in the media. Younger

and younger girls are being affected by the media

induced standards. Even “Barbie” can be said to have a

negative impact on little girls.

Celebrities are becoming thinner and thinner and the

excuses keep getting more and more unreasonable. When

celebrities claim that they have dropped 40 pounds

because of “stress,” teenage girls who want to be the

same size, believe them. Being thin has always been

“in,” and unfortunately always will be, but recently

being boney and underweight is the trend. More bones

then muscle are stylish and pretty, and the media

isn’t doing anything to stop the craze. I feel girls are starting

to forget that healthy means all different sizes. Not

everyone is meant to be a size one.

In addition to the media influence, another

surprising cause of distorted body image is the Barbie

doll. There have been thousands of studies done saying

that if a little girl could choose anyone to look

like, it would be their Barbie doll. Her blonde hair,

slender figure, blue eyes, and many accomplishments,

make her a desirable figure to look like in the eyes

of anyone! Barbie is saying to a child that being thin

and beautiful is the way to success in this world.

This doll, has only influenced girls that yes, having

an 18’ waist is what will get you a boyfriend, a

social life, a good career. Being “normal looking” is

in fact not normal, but ugly. Even though this doll

has given out many good messages about being a good

person, going to college, having a good career,

showing the world that women are capable of anything,

her blonde hair and impossibly small figure has said


I believe beauty and self-image are personal and all

how you, personally look at it. Being beautiful to me

means being yourself and knowing who you are. I think

people are slowly forgetting what’s important. The

media has definitely played a big hand in girls and

women starving themselves to look like the celebrities

with impossible waist sizes. I believe this is a

serious problem. I know that while the media can

continue to influence how we view “beauty,” we have to

recognize they sometimes set impossible or

inappropriate standards.