When you look in the mirror, what do you see? If you are like most women, you do not see what is reflected in it. Your brain processes what you see, you look at your body critically; what you see is a complex, constantly changing collage of past and present experience, forgotten compliments and unforgotten offenses. If fashionable slim women with straight hair, short or with narrow hips, you will seem to yourself too thick, too curly, too tall or wide-hip. Fashion models on the covers of chic magazines and sleek movie actresses remain an unattainable ideal for you. At times, you will be overwhelmed by despair that no one will love such an ordinary, unremarkable woman like you, because your appearance does not meet the requirements of Madison Avenue.
“Of all the things that people think about themselves, how they evaluate themselves, nothing plays such a big role as assessing one’s own appearance,” says April Fallon, Ph.D., senior lecturer in the Department of Psychiatry at the Medical Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. How we evaluate our appearance depends on our self-confidence. On the assessment of their own appearance may affect the distorted view of themselves, and this in turn affects the way we see ourselves.
Girls and women are generally less satisfied with their appearance, especially in assessing their weight than boys and men, continues Dr. Fallon, who conducted a long-term study on the human perception of their appearance. Even thin girls found in their figure what seemed to them too big hips in particular. ” Studies conducted by Dr. Fallon showed that, in general, women consider themselves more complete in comparison with how they are assessed by others, while men in the assessment of their bodies are closer to reality. Moreover, women’s perceptions about which figures men like more are usually incorrect; men prefer not so thin women.
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Forming a negative image of one’s appearance is rooted in childhood, adds Mary Froning, a psychology doctor and clinical psychologist practicing in Washington. Our society pays too much attention to the physical appearance. Everywhere, wherever girls and women rotate, the ideals of beauty from television and magazines to the winners of the Miss America title conquer them.
Little girls, who in childhood were very far from the “ideal” and often heard this from other children and insensitive adults, survived, in fact, a type of emotional violence that traumatized their psyche. “The scars invisible to the outside world remain forever in the soul,” she says.
“I grew up thinking I was a monstrous monster, a freak,” admits Darlene Balin, a prosperous female businessman of 1941. I was full, tall, and in the period of ripening I was killed by the fact that my body was covered with hairs. One day, when I was standing at the supermarket, waiting for my father, who was supposed to drive up behind me, a little boy of about five looked at me and said: “How ugly you are!” Wherever I went, I felt as though I was going through . If you had to go somewhere in a group with teenage boys, it was generally a nightmare. ”