The “ideal” weight is a fairy tale. Throw scales in the trash | Opinion

In recent decades, women have gained a lot of influence and power, but three out of four women are trying with all their might to make themselves “lighter”. Let’s throw the scales straight into the trash, Sarah Mollman argues.

This year, trend-watchers predict the ’90s will turn around Champion elegant look Like Kate Moss again. Kim Kardashian has already informed her plastic surgeons and daughter No mousse He walked the runway even skinnier than my mom. In the year 2023, we can reflect ourselves again to women, in the prettiest clothes, gaunt and sunken cheeks, seemingly bored and murderously angry. I look back in fear and horror.

number on the scale. clothing size. Fat roll more or less. How many women will not commit to losing weight in 2023? Sure, men also want to be skinny, but the truth is that body weight has a very different history, context, and social significance for men. Of course there are extreme cases: women with serious weight problems or skinny women who can do nothing for or against it. This is not what this article is about.

It’s about your neighbor, your employer, your sister, your best friend. About Susan Sontag, Virginia Woolf, Lady Gaga, Lady D. About how we as women are so different and caught up in the same lie. An obsession has become so normal in our Western society that it is considered harmless, self-evident, and even socially desirable.

The post-war Western ideal of the female body can be summed up in three words: Less is more . Less, thinner, thinner please. smooth return of chic hero betray that Positive body movement It was nothing but a coat of varnish in recent years.

Sin and reward

All studies of women’s eating behavior indicate the same thing: about three-quarters (three-quarters, yes) of all women care about their weight every day and therefore have a disturbed relationship with food. We think of meals in terms of “sin” and “reward.” thin women and overweight women; Damn it doesn’t matter. The mechanism finds something for every body type to be dissatisfied with. One worries about 10 kilograms, the other about 300 grams, but the result is the same: sluggish tension, fear, shame and guilt. Our body must change and something must be done turning off .

Imagine a table in a restaurant at which four women are sitting: three of them not only having fun, but also dubbing, fighting and counting. They allow their self-image and self-esteem to be defined by a number. Three out of four women engage in diets, pills, fasting, laxatives or vomiting.

Anyone who thinks that plump singers like Beyoncé have a positive influence on the new generation is wrong. During the pandemic, the number of girls with eating disorders has increased at an alarming rate. Girls in eighth grade are already on diets and when my daughter told me someone taught her how to put a finger down your throat, she went white hot. After that I felt helpless.

A successful life is a slim life for most women. Sounds sad, but it’s the inconvenient truth. Slim shine looks irresistible. It’s almost a religion. or, like heroin chic Mom Kate Moss once said: Nothing tastes as good as feeling skinny.

The opium of women

And we are back heroin . Karl Marx described religion as the opium of the people and an obstacle to revolution. Well, the dietary rules, the clothing sizes, the target weights: It’s the opium of today’s woman. Her addiction is fueled and maintained by an economic system in which she participates not only as a consumer, but also as a provider. Entire segments depend on their uncertainty about their weight. And it cost a little.

It is no longer an option. The doctrine of weight has penetrated the capillaries of Western society. Women everywhere whisper: Be thin, then you will do well. Underneath every fat woman lurks a skinny wench – another lie. Because you deserve it! But you are only really worth something if you live up to your ideal. And who succeeds?

An ideal may seem like something out of reach, but the tricky thing about the weighing principle is that the goal is totally achievable. The path to thinness seems to be paved with recipes, rules, numbers and calorie tables. In this way, Creed is similar to those old picks on the show. You see the watch, look at the clutch and before you know it you put another coin in it.

After so many years, we are not only addicted to the watch but also maybe to the game. addicted to addiction. And the (excessive) emphasis on weight provides us with comforting certainty. It provides purpose and a crystal clear distinction between good and bad. It offers something to hold on to, despite the fact that it’s compelling, even oppressive.

What is forbidden seduces

For the effect of weight doctrine can also be compared to opium: the narcotic. A disturbed relationship with food makes a woman weaker. In the literal sense of the word, food is energy. Women who eat less or undernourish themselves are depriving themselves of nutrients, building materials, and a healthy balance of vitamins and minerals. It will not function optimally during the diet period. Of course, I do not encourage unhealthy eating habits or unlimited eating. Ironically, the lure of fatty and sugary foods is just right Thanks to Weight nodule disproportionately large. What is forbidden seduces and stays in your head.

The principle of weight weakens women in this area as well: those who invest time thinking about weight (no matter how short or long, no matter how consciously or casually), who put their thoughts into counting calories and worrying about kilos, can’t handle it at that moment thinking Constructively, really meaningful stuff. Brain trash . Weight thoughts are the express ballast of any sane brain.

If we really dare to zoom out and look at the consequences of the weight principle on a societal scale, women are missing out. We ourselves ensure that we perform poorly not only as individuals, but also collectively. why? Do we not dare to succeed? There is something bitter about it: in recent decades women have gained so much influence, yet three out of four women are trying to make themselves ‘lighter’ with all their might. As if we had to compensate for space gains somewhere…

It’s hard to leave her

Precisely because the doctrine of weight permeates countless aspects of our daily lives, it is hard to let go. Perhaps unimaginable. Creed has become, as it were, one with our body, our self-image. Generations of women have been raised by mothers who followed and spread the faith. Because, do not be under any illusions, our girls understand that mom is worried about her figure. That mom is on a diet – the thousandth by number. In other words, without wanting to, we indoctrinate the next generation ourselves.

We may be afraid of the unknown. what if? What if the majority of those three-quarters of women decided to quit today? What if we refused to play the game anymore, threw our scales in the trash, and chose to spend our time doing more fun and meaningful things? Don’t we owe that to our daughters? Wouldn’t it be nice for them to grow up without the suffocating and narcotic effects of a dogma that makes us smaller than we can be?

After all, when we take stock, we can’t help but find that the costs of addiction far outweigh the benefits — whatever Mama Moose claimed. To hell with heroin chic . I wish 2023 an abundance of a hero I miscellaneous ; Heroines who believe with their heart, soul, and whole body that they should be nothing less. #amour

Sarah Moleman is a journalist and author, including the novel “See me like” (published by Lebowksi).

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