Family 2015

Family 2015

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Body Worship

I expect to get a million hits today just because of my title. 

Honestly, I'm probably not far off the mark on that prediction.  This topic seems to be on the forefront of people's minds these days and quite frankly, it drives me nuts.  I mean, I remember being a teenager and being obsessed about my body.  It was probably even worse for me than the average teenager because I was a dancer. I lived a large part of my life in front of full length mirrors wearing only tights and a leotard. 

But, I also seem to remember that all of that angst used to be the territory of young people.  I mean, I certainly don't remember my Grandma worrying about her figure.  It would have been ridiculous to me if she had, her figure had nothing to do with how important she was in my life.  I can understand young people, who are still figuring life out, placing a lot of value on how awesome they look in a mini-skirt; but, aren't we supposed to grow up?

It has occurred to me that all of this body worship probably has a lot to do with how little we value and respect our elders these days.  I'll be honest, it kind of scares me sometimes to realize that I'm raising my kids at a time in history where the younger generation is so quick to think of their elders like yesterday's news.  Not only is the disrespect ugly, really ugly, but it also is robbing them of a wealth of information that the older generation possesses that could really be helpful to them.

But, maybe it isn't all the young people's fault?  Maybe we send the wrong message as adults when we try to look like we're 16?  Maybe all the (married) Moms I hear talking about how cute this or that boy toy is, or starving themselves in front of their daughters so that they can still be bone thin, don't help?  Maybe? 


Well, I'm gonna do my part.  In this family, we talk about respect and we practice it.  My children do not call adults by their first names.  If there are 5 chairs, 5 adults and a bunch of kids; guess who sits on the floor?  There are times when I excuse my children from the room because there is adult conversation going on and their age has not yet earned them a place at the table.

I will also show my daughters, by my example, that growing old isn't awful or something to be feared.  I am not as thin as I was when I walked down the aisle 15 years ago.  But, in those 15 years, I have gained what feels like a whole lifetime of knowledge, plus 5 wonderful kids.  I wouldn't trade all of that in for a younger body - no way.


  1. I agree with this!
    I remember hearing someone talk about how in the 1940's-50's, the people kids were trying to emulate were older. They looked up to screen stars an musicians who were older. The shows that were popular when my mom was a girl (once tv became popular) were things like Lassie, Father Knows Best, and Ed Sullivan.
    Now take a look at what's popular. Jerseylicious. Family Guy.
    I watch a fair amount of tv. And what I DO know is that it is a MASSIVE cultural force. It reflects AND defines and shapes who we are-if we let it.
    I know there are a lot of factors behind the phenomena you're addressing, but I can't help wondering what our culture would look, act, and sound like if there were suddenly no tv. No ads. No Disney Channel tweener soap operas.
    It'd be an interesting social experiment. 100 years with no tv. You'd probably need to ax the glossy mags, too. Newspaper and radio only.
    Hahaha-maybe in heaven, God will be able to let us see how things like that would have played out.

  2. Great Post! Children learn by example. If a daughter constantly hears her mother talk about dieting, needing to be thinner, and watches her behavior in front of mirrors; what message is being sent to the child? A mother should not go to her teenage daughters closet to find an outfit to wear. As an adult, it is our job to be our children's PARENT, not their FRIEND. We are the adults. We need to act like adults and teach our children that distinction.

  3. You aren't kiddin about that. Disney Channel Tweener Soap operas - gag! Yes, I think we would be very differnt without tv, we wouldn't all be trying to keep up with the kind of life that tv makes everyone believe is normal. The reality is, it couldn't be more abnormal. I like your idea, I like it a lot!

  4. Katie, it is great to hear that coming from such a young Mom! Maybe there is hope for this generation... :)

  5. Maybe if we quoted the Scriptures to our daughters of God made us perfect, or that God created daughters to be beautiful pillars, or that we are wonderfully and fearfully made... we wouldn't have the issues of girls or women that desire to be thinner.

    I was once in the modeling world when I was a teenager and quit it early because I didn't like the pressure of having to stay within a certain "weight" frame -- and I was NEVER overweight, but they could so make you think you were.

    It's the main reason why I don't pay for cable TV - I am not paying for crap to enter my home and corrupt my child, myself or my husband! Will not do it!