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#thighgap #skinnymini #thinspiration

I watched an interesting clip on CTV news regarding a new female body trend called the “thigh gap”.

Seriously? Are you wondering what I’m talking about? Check out the image below.

So women of all ages have yet another image to aspire to – to have a gap between their thighs. As if there isn’t already enough pressure to be thin, have the perfect breasts, reduce “cell” a.k.a cellulite, ensure smooth and blemish free skin, oh and to have the right colour vagina (that is a whole other can of worms that I’m not going to get into now, but if you’re intrigued I encourage you to investigate new dyeing cream for womanly parts).

I would like all women to turn to any man in your life – your partner, friend, father, uncle, brother and ask them what they think of the thigh gap. I bet they’ll have no clue what you’re talking about. And if they do, they’re not going to give two hoots if you have a thigh gap or not. And if they do (you know what’s coming), I encourage you to drop their sorry behinds (yes, I’m 80 and said behinds).

Why am I so unbelievably passionate about this particular issue? Because the young women (and all ages for that matter) of today are already under such extreme pressure to be “perfect” that they have lost sight of the truly important aspects of life and living. The access to information via the internet, social media, television, friend groups and the list goes on is astonishing. I look at images of younger generations (those currently in junior high and highschool) and notice a significant difference in dress, makeup level, hair relative to my experience as a “young’n”. While I may not be the best comparison as I wore butterfly shirts until the ripe age of 14, I do think access to information has changed body image expectations of youth today.

I encourage you to watch the 5-minute segment on CTV (inserted below). The psychotherapist interviewed during the clip makes an excellent and profound point, “instead of looking at your body as an achievement, look at your lifestyle as the achievement…what are you doing to make your body healthy”. I don’t think I have the quote exactly correct, but watch the video and you’ll get the real deal.

The Thigh Gap (video)

Do we judge our bodies because doing so is more objective than measuring our activity levels and food intake? I’m not trying to suggest that we start measuring either of those things because that too, can become unhealthy. Yet, it’s important to ask “why is our physical appearance more important than what our bodies are capable of?” Why are we (and sadly this includes me) are we so concerned with our fat percentage as opposed to being appreciative of our body and how it was able to sustain a 10 KM run or a 20 KM hike or a 200 KM bike ride? Why are we concerned about having a thigh gap as opposed to being appreciative of all that our amazing thighs do for us each and everyday?

These are important questions to ask. Questions that I must ask myself. Questions that all women AND men should ask themselves (because men are definitely not free from societal pressure when it comes to their bodies).

We are a society obsessed with thinness and often ignore the means utilized to accomplish this “perfect” end. I don’t often write rants, but this particular issue is deserving of a rant. In fact, it’s deserving of many. I encourage you to rant away in the comments section of this blog or perhaps get a petition going to ban such hashtags from the Twittersphere. No, that won’t stop the problem, it goes much deeper than Twitter, but it may help. It may stop trends such as #thighgap or #skinnymini from taking off. It may help to reduce the number of young and rather impressionable women from learning about another new and potentially harmful fashion / body trend. It may not, but it’s worth a try.

M

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