15 year olds’ mindset

After getting a little more in depth with the body shaming issue teenagers in Hong Kong are going through, I thought I should do a little summary of what I found out from the mindset of 15/16 year old Hong Kong students, or some common thoughts or problems they have. Although I know body shaming mostly happen with girls, boys feel somewhat the same too, so for the following answers and responses, those are not only from girls, some of them are from a boy’s point of view too.

Here are some questions I asked :

1)Have you ever body shamed yourself? If so, what’s your experience like? If no, Have you ever body shamed anyone?

2)Do you think it’s right to body shame?

3)Why do you think people body shame? 

And the responses I received are quite similar but it really powerful and meaningful.

Teenagers body shame themselves because it made them very insecure when they are around slimmer people, some kept telling themselves they don’t have curves and they’re too skinny. They got called names like ‘pig’ ‘fei mui’(Fat Girl)… Some used to think that they wasn’t pretty enough, or they didn’t look right, but I was told that they never body shamed anyone. When they see others such as celebrities’ posts of their body on social media, they would feel bad about their body and they make themselves think that they are not enough, tell themselves that they will never be. Some were okay with other people having bad opinions about them, but to say things like that about themselves felt really horrible because it was like even they didn’t accept themselves anymore, and it felt like they had no choice but to change themselves because they had no support anymore.

Hong Kong teenagers have a rough idea of what body shaming is and what causes people to body shame. “I believe that it is not right to body shame due to the insecurities and all the negative aspects that body shaming creates.” They also all agree that it is not right to body shame yourself/anyone, “because it makes people sad and feel uncomfortable”, “you shouldn’t judge or comment on what other people look like if you don’t want them to comment on you, everyone is their own person.” “Absolutely not.  I think everyone needs to learn to be body positive, including myself, to love their body, know they are enough and know their self-worth.” “I don’t think it’s right. I think it’s acceptable to have opinions about how others look, but if you think they might be hurtful/have any negative effect on someone then you should definitely keep them to yourself because you never know how other people feel about themselves and what effect your words could have on them. ” However, someone did say to me that they think it is okay as long as it is a joke and not offensive.

People body shame because they are insecure about themselves due to the impacts from societal pressure for the ideal body.

People body shame because they’re insecure about their own body and they want to insult someone to make themselves feel better.

People body shame because they think its funny and they are childish.

People body shame because they feel good when they body shame others to make others feel bad.

People body shame because they might be jealous or insecure about themselves.

People body shame because they are insecure, they feel like they need to bring others down so that they could feel better about themselves.

People body shame because they are so used to seeing a certain type of body in the media and that embeds into their brains that that is the ideal or perfect body type, and any other body is unacceptable or unattractive. Therefore, when they see something that does not fit the standards, they say negative things because it is not what society sees as ‘perfect’ and they think it is their place to tell others what is wrong with them. Another reason why they might body shame is that they may be insecure about their own bodies, and finding faults in other peoples’ bodies makes them feel better because they are not the only ones who are not ‘perfect’.

Last but not least, what they would say to a body shaming victim…

“Be yourself, you are beautiful just the way you are and yr body is just a cover, it’s not important. Beauty is from your inside”

“Ignore their comment, be yourself, You are beautiful”

“you don’t hate yourself to be yourself and you are already loveable person”

“You are who you are why care so much about how others think? You should be proud of who you are, and its nothing to be ashamed of.”

“not to listen to what others say about them, because others do not have the right to tell you how you should and shouldn’t look like, and the only person who should be able to determine how you feel about yourself is you”

“You still look good, but that’s not the most important thing ever, it’s more about who you are as a person.”

You might be body shaming someone as a joke, but to them, it will never be a joke. If 15 years olds understand it, you should too. 

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Tipsssssss

Before you say anything, no, I am not here to convince you to lose weight and I am strongly against losing weight only because you feel like you need to look like super models to feel body, and I am all about body positivity, but just incase you feel the need to actually detox a bit and clear up your body or maybe even just to feel happier, healthier, here are some great recipes I think actually works and are amazing and does not require you to literally eat salads for days and weeks (xD).

Detox drinks

Cucumber and Lemon

cucumber lemon water的圖片搜尋結果

The effects of cucumber and lemon on weight loss were tested and proven by experts, drink it two times a day to boost your metabolism.

I personally love citrus drinks and I love cucumbers so this is perfect to be, it is also a great way to spice up boring plain water.

Strawberries, watermelon, mint

strawberry watermelon mint的圖片搜尋結果

This might sound like a really weird mixture, but trust me it doesn’t taste bad at all. I personally love both watermelon and strawberries, Watermelon provides potassium and magnesium, which are important for detoxification and managing blood flow and hydration levels in the body ; strawberries contain anti-aging flavonoids that may lower the risk for chronic diseases.

From my own experience, I feel like going vegetarian is a great way to just cleanse up your body a bit, I was a vegetarian from about two months, and I felt extremely cleansed, I can clearly see myself getting a little skinnier, less bloated, but of course, if you do decide to cut out meat off your diet, make sure you remain a healthy diet and make sure you take in enough protein because taking in enough nutrient is also important to keeping fit. At the end of the day, to me, staying happy and positive is the key to body positivity you really do not have to do anything to your body because you are beautiful just the way you are 🙂

Lesson Learnt

Every girl has her own dream, and my dream was to be fit, be beautiful, be called ‘body goals’… but I sometimes ask myself, why do I feel this way, why do I even care? Am I not proud of my own body? I know I should be proud of my body and should not set a body standard on my mind, but I just can’t help it. 

Every time when I scroll down my Instagram feed, I feel ashamed as I see celebrities and models posting pictures of them in bikini. I was always afraid of people judging me, calling me names, talking about my flaws, but every since body shaming became a global issue, and people started to raise awareness, I started to feel empowered, I no longer feel the need to keep fit, to go on a diet, or to ever think about photoshopping myself so I’d look ‘thin’.  I stopped trying to be “perfect”,because no one will ever be perfect for everyone.

To be honest, I wouldn’t say I am the most confident about my own body, and in fact, I am probably one of the most self-conscious one among my friends, no matter how many times they tell me, ‘you’re not fat!’ ‘you don’t look bad’, I still think that I do. I never take people’s positive comments for granted, but I will definitely take negative comments really seriously, it might be a joke, telling me they can see my double chin, my tummy feels like a cushion… one negative comment, just one can change a lot about a person. Nowadays, we see a lot of posts on Facebook saying how 11 year olds nowadays put on makeup and being all grownup and stuff, and in fact, this IS what is happening to the world right now, and us as 15/16 year olds, feel ‘even older’. People around me started wearing makeup to school, wearing really revealing clothes,15303907_391189541222317_1311297382_o.jpg modelling, photoshoots… doing really grown up things in general, I feel the need to do it too, but then I realise, I am not as fit as them, I am not as proud of my body as them, what else can I do to fit in? And I think I finally found my answer ; I do not need to fit in to feel happy, I am happy just
the way I am right now, I love what I was born with, I love my skin tone, I love my body, I love me.

Dear Instagram,

Body Positivity has come a looooong way, to get to the point where everyone started to notice that body shaming is a huge issue that is bothering a lot of people that is not proud of their own body because of society’s body/beauty standards. Instagram has always been one of my most used apps and it allows me to feel globalised and know what’s happening all around the world. Instagram has a set of community guidelines to keep the platform safe and free of graphic, hateful, or pornographic content. “We don’t allow nudity on Instagram.” If you feel that the guidelines are being violated, you have the ability to report the photo. – runway riot , but recently, people are misusing this function. @mzznaki on instagram is one of a great example of people on the internet body shaming strangers they do not know. She posted this really cute photo of her and her fScreen Shot 2016-11-25 at 11.43.40 am.pngiancé announcing their marriage on Instagram, instead of receiving congratulations, she received lots and lots of hate comments. Comments like “RIP that man’s spine,” and, “undoubtedly the guy is struggling (look at his face),” are all over this photo, and this shows what the disgusting part about the social media is all about. She didn’t do anything to deserve this and she is happy and proud of her own body, so why are people here to spread the negativity around when this is supposed to be a joyful and memorable thing? She, is grateful for what she have and what she is right now and this is exactly what the social media or young women in general need more of.

A ‘Fat Body Positive Warrior’ posted a photo of her body captioning it

Screen-Shot-2016-09-01-at-12.06.05-PM.png

‘Women’s bodies can be naked for profit sure, naked for men’s eyes sure, naked & posted by themselves – DISGUSTING. Sexualised by men sure, taunted by society fine, fallen in love with by the soul within – ABSURD. Women who understand my need to control my own sharing & promoting of body image get it.They understand to create change we need to see diversity, diversity in bodies and people.Nakedness is nothing to be ashamed of but we women are told automatically that is our goal in life.

To turn men on Even if we don’t mean it Even if it is not sexual Even if we did not consent

The simple act of empowering ourselves is twisted – because we are always to blame, men always are “just being boys”’

has been body shamed like crazy, and the comments are totally unacceptable. Screen-Shot-2016-09-01-at-12.09.20-PM-768x736.png

Who are they to judge anyone, everyone is born different and it is okay to not be the ‘typical’, there is nothing wrong with loving your own body no matter what. To all the people who body shames someone else, YOUR comment to them might mean a lot, yes there might be tons and countless amount of positive comments, but your ONE negative comment is enough for that person to feel hurt, self conscious and lower their self esteem that they tried to build up maybe for years… Next time before you comment on someone else’s photo, think about how YOU would feel if someone said that to you.

Don’t hate yourself

          Recently, I saw quite a few body shaming related videos on YouTube, and the two videos that really got to me was rclbeauty101 and MyPaleSkin’s video. It was really heartbreaking to know that there’s actually people in this society who comments negatively on other’s posts intentionally just to make that person feel bad. No one should be judging anyone, no one has the rights to tell others ‘they look ugly’ or ‘they are not beautiful enough’ and everyone has the right to feel beautiful. The world is filled with different people with different opinions and comments, but is it necessary to tell someone that they ‘don’t look beautiful’ just to make them feel bad?

          In Rachel’s video, she kept calling herself ‘ugly’. Ifelt sympathy while watching her video, I would always tell myself I look ugly, I am fat, I will never be skinny, I need to stop Screen Shot 2016-11-12 at 9.04.54 am.pngeating… and these are always influenced by our surroundings, but what exactly is a beauty standard? Who gets to decide what beautiful is and what is not beautiful? You! You are the one who sets your own beauty standard. Celebrities and models nowadays are always slim and beautiful and flawless and getting a lot of attention and this is exactly what we are surrounded in. Celebrities and models are beautiful, we are ugly, we are too ugly to be a model, we are always too ‘fat’ and only skinny people can be qualified as beautiful but is this really true? If society keeps thinking this way no one will ever feel beautiful anymore. People must start loving themselves and stop body shaming themselvScreen Shot 2016-11-12 at 9.07.53 am.pnges, or someone else. To me, beautiful is something you find on the inside, it doesn’t matter if you look beautiful or ugly, it doesn’t matter if your hair is messy, it doesn’t matter if you have no makeup on your face, it doesn’t matter if you don’t fit in the clothes you were able to a year ago, you are beautiful inside and that’s all that matters, what you look like does not say anything about the type of person you are. A lot of powerful comments were also left under their videos, people saying that they cried, very touching, powerful, people telling them they look beautiful, reflecting on society…

          Body shaming someone else is pointless, it makes you ‘feel happy’, but would you feel great if someone else does the exact same thing but to you? No matter what you do, people will always have negative comments and things to say about you. People judges no matter what, and there’s really nothing youcan do to stop them from commenting about you, but there’s one thing, and it is, to be confident about your own body and don’t let anyone bring you down and always remember that they, do not have the power to so.