Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…

April 26, 2006

Despite the fact that it’s TV Turn Off Week, I have yet to turn off my television. Now, I’m not being defiant, but it’s kinda hard not watching television, once you’ve discovered the joys of TiVo.

So, I got home from work on Monday, and decided to see what the “All new Oprah” was about. The topic was about a 3 year old girl obsessed with her looks. Disturbing. Because I have an 11 year old daughter, I watched especially close…and I ain’t gonna lie, it scared me.

After watching this episode, I wondered how many times have my children heard me complain about my thighs? Hmmm….plenty. How many times have they heard me joke about wanting to get liposuction? More than I care to admit. Wow! I may be hurting my kids!!

It is grossly obvious everytime we turn on the radio, open a magazine, or turn on the television, that advertisers are reaching out to younger and younger audiences and sexualizing everything, including toys. As a result of this, children are becoming more and more obsessed with external beauty at a much younger age.

A recent study by the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty revealed that 9 out of every 10 girls wants to change at least one aspect of their appearance, and only 2 percent of women around the world would describe themselves as beautiful. The study also revealed that 57 percent of girls are dieting, fasting or smoking cigarettes to lose weight. Seventy-two percent of girls age 15 to 17 avoid certain activities because they feel badly about their looks.

That is why I applaud Dove. Have you seen their commercials? REAL women, with REAL curves are dancing around in the underwear, loving themselves and the way they look. The commercial that aired Super Bowl Sunday is really amazing and tugged at the heart strings of the little girl living inside us all. You can view it here.

I want my children to be healthy inside and out and that assignment starts with me.

The show ended with a question Oprah asked, and here it is: Knowing what you know NOW, what would you say to your younger self? Good question…