A Girl's Biggest Enemy Is Herself

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Beautiful is a dangerous word in today’s society. Parents can potentially ruin their daughters self-esteem by telling them how pretty they are and how much of a little princess or diva they are. When realistically they should be telling those girls how smart they can be, how imaginative they are, and how if they work hard they could be a doctor one day. These parents are unwittingly setting their daughters up to be obsessed with their image as toddlers, and this kind of pressure can have detrimental effects on a young woman’s psyche. These damaging impacts don’t affect just teens and young women either; women in their 30’s-40’s can often be even more infatuated with their appearance due to their aging bodies. Marge Piercy’s poem, “Barbie Doll,” shows readers how these unattainable views on beauty can have sociological effects, cause psychological damage, and even lead to suicide. These effects and damages are nothing new to women. They’ve just become more prevalent and noticeable in the twentieth century, and it may seem that women of this day and age are going to extremes to change their bodies but the past suggests that it’s been this way for centuries. The Chinese bound girl’s feet to keep them small because at that time having small feet was desirable. Early European and American women wore corsets that were so tight they would faint or miscarry a child, and it was even possible that women would have their lower ribs removed so as to have a more slender waist. At one point, women also wore white paint on their faces because being pale was more deemed more feminine, but it was also deemed that the face paint was toxic because it had lead in it (Chrisler & Saltzberg). It would seem that throughout history women were... ... middle of paper ... ...ork force is competitive, marriages become competitive, and they feel like they’re losing control of their lives; so managing their body becomes something they can control and change if they want to (Wingate). In summation, women always have and always will have it harder than men do. The generations keep passing down this derogatory semblance of a woman’s worth. It won’t change any time soon either, but hopefully, mother’s will remember the hardships they have suffered growing up and they will do their best to instill a better sense of value in their daughter’s minds and less value into their appearances. Obviously, wanting their child to be healthy is a facet every parent wants, but there needs to be a line drawn to show where it stops being healthy and starts becoming an obsession with beauty and thinness. The future of the world’s little girls depends on it.

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