I don’t know how many of you have celebrity news on your radar. Me - I definitely do. Some recent celebrity news that had me sick to my stomach was the media’s coverage of Lady Gaga gaining weight. I’m not going to go into details here. You can look it up if you’re not familiar already. But the things they were saying about her were just horrendous.
Whether you’re a fan of Lady Gaga or not (I am), it’s hard to deny the good work she does towards helping people (especially kids) comes to terms with and learn to love who they are. Her Born This Way Foundation is just one amazing example.
So, I was stunned and really moved when I came across these photos yesterday on Lady Gaga’s social media site - Little Monsters.
Body image is something that we all deal with. Back in April, I wrote about the pressure one is under to get thin for their wedding. But the truth is that a lot of us feel this sort of pressure on a regular basis. I know that I do.
For more than 60 percent of my life (yes, I did the math), there hasn’t been a day that’s gone by where I can’t remember not being critical of my physical appearance. And unfortunately, I know that’s how it’s been for a number of people I know too. While I’ve been lucky enough that I’ve never taken these feelings to some extreme (i.e. anorexia, bulimia), I know people who have and how hard it is to escape it.
As the big sister to wonderful 15-year-old twin girls and an aunt to a really amazing 8-year-old niece, I’m more aware and frightened than ever about how this pressure to be thin will affect them. Because in an ideal world, it wouldn’t.
Here’s what I’m asking of you and of myself. Please be kind. I know that sometimes we can all say things that are hurtful, whether they are about people we know or someone we don’t. What we say matters and influences those (especially the young ones) around us. If you feel like disparaging your body or eating habits around others, please don’t. You have no idea that the tween or teen sitting nearby will take those comments to heart and then adjust their eating habits or self perceptions based on what you say. I know that you may not have meant that to happen. So that’s why it’s extra important to really think before you say certain things and be aware of who your audience is. And if you do have negative thoughts about yourself, consider talking to someone who could really help - you know - a professional. Because as Gaga herself sings, You are beautiful.