The act of body shaming women has been prevalent in society for decades with the psychological effects – such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and even suicide – becoming increasingly grave for the victims. In fact, a study conducted by Yahoo! reveals that it takes women half their lives to achieve at least half the level of body self-esteem when compared to men.
Unfortunately, this habit of society has been around for a while, and with the inception of the digital age and its social media component, this practice has now crossed all possible moral and ethical lines as body shaming takes a global stage through comments and likes on the internet.
A detailed glance through the media stories reveals that although there exist several expert opinions on the causes and effects of body shaming, research articles on the issue, and encouraging body positivity habits – there are very few stories that go in depth on how to cope with the psychological issues that arise as a result.
Recent body shaming feuds faced by Former Disney star Selena Gomez’s (image 1) and Hollywood superstar Anne Hathaway’s (image 2) with the internet, has amplified this issue, and has thus compelled me to write a feature story on coping mechanisms which would have otherwise been hidden behind closed doors of years of therapy.
Is this really selena?? She looks fat and her nose looks weird… https://t.co/qGa905Fwt1
— Lailet ✨ (@pettyccine) March 19, 2018
The intent of this article is not to provide a generic therapy session on a large scale, but a self-help guide curated with the help of a certified psychologist.
As research suggests, the body shaming for women begins during their teenage years, and this form of bullying can result in long term physical and psychological effects, following and haunting the victim well into their early to mid-twenties. Keeping these statistics in mind, this story would be suitable for Cosmopolitan Magazine as more than 45% of the magazine’s readership are educated and tech-savvy female millennials. Additionally, as the publication has a digital audience reach of roughly 56,000 people, this story has great potential to reach the right people, and consequently make a much needed difference in society.
Taking advantage of a digital platform, this story will incorporate several multimedia tools (alongside traditional journalism) in order to ensure it makes an impact. The digital feature will include:
- An in-depth interview with the University of Sydney’s CAPS counsellors
- A short 30 second introductory video portraying the importance of self-help and coping mechanisms (particularly because many teenagers are reluctant to share their adversity with their families and often try to cope with the situation on their own)
- Infographics showcasing statistics on the subject matter
Being a victim (and now a survivor) of body shaming from the age of 13 until 22, I believe this story has great potential as I had always been worried about sharing my grief with those close to me, and would have been really grateful if I had easy access to coping mechanisms suggested by professionals to ease my anguish.