Feminism | Posted by Alexa S on 06/8/2011
Breaking My Rules
For over a year not very long ago, I had a plethora of very strange rules for myself to follow. I could only eat certain things at certain times. I had numbers that dictated my actions, numbers of calories and daily intake percentages and pounds. It was a suffocating process; luckily, I never followed my regulations enough for it to impact my health. Still, it affected my mind quite a bit.
Perhaps more damaging to my self-esteem was my body image. Unlike the majority of the population, especially teenagers, I really don’t enjoy food very much. This made any disordered eating-type behaviors extremely easy for me.
Most of my friends are exceptionally thin, as in magazine-ad thin. Most of them are athletic and/or naturally thin; as far as I know, …
Feminism | Posted by Fiona L on 06/2/2011
Running In Heels: Why Should Women Leaders Have To Look Like Barbies?
After recently attending an awards ceremony for a women’s political organization in Washington DC, and experiencing what some have coined a wardrobe malfunction, I’ve realized to an even further extent the lengths women are forced to go to appear effortlessly put together. Women politicians are constantly being picked apart for what they wear, whether it’s Michelle Obama’s election-night dress or Hillary Clinton’s “cleavage.” Women in general are expected to come off like they’ve somehow woken up in the morning looking like Barbie, but women in leadership have to seem like they floated out of bed looking like Senator Barbie—and I can tell you from the experience I had last week, that looking like Senator Barbie can take a whole lot of effort.
As an alumna of the Running …
Awareness | Posted by Julie Z on 05/30/2011
Feminism and Education: The Truth About Student Loans
I would argue that the most difficult thing about the entire process of higher level, collegiate education is not getting in, though that is what the public conversation at large is about. The most difficult, troubling part of higher education is paying for it once you do get in. Even with financial aid, even with other scholarships, so many people end up with crippling debt by the end of their college years.
These past few months, I’ve watched my class celebrate getting into college. Then I’ve watched everybody have an “Oh, shit” moment trying to figure out where the money is going to come from to fund the next four years of their life. I’ve watched brilliant people decide to go to schools they are beyond over-qualified for because they …
Feminism | Posted by Alexa S on 05/26/2011
The Girls At The Table
I am not easily affected by other people’s opinions. Maybe I was at some point, but I rarely value my worth by how others perceive me. So I don’t understand how I can still feel so awfully judged by someone else without her saying a word.
If asked if I were ever explicitly bullied I would probably say no. But when I recently sat at a table among eight of my peers, all girls within a year of my age, many of whom I’ve been acquainted with for years, I positively felt like crap. One of the other girls at this table, one of my close friends, visibly hunched over as we sat down.
My friend and I are intellectual. We have truckloads of aspirations and are not afraid to …
Feminism | Posted by Chelsea B on 05/25/2011
Fat Is Not A Personality Trait
It sickens me that one of the most common issues plaguing young females today is that of body image distortion.
I say this as a person who once hated her body so much she welcomed the idea of going to extremes to obtain perfection. Whether it was by starving, purging, or over-exercising, if it “guaranteed” perfection, I would do it. It never occurred to me that the perfection I had in mind would never be obtainable. Nor did I realize that recovery would be a life-long struggle to relearn what it felt like to be full.
A year ago, I decided it was time that self-loathing relinquished its firm grip on my life. I did not consult a psychologist because I thought of my recovery as a journey I would …
A Little F'd Up | Posted by Julie Z on 05/23/2011
I’m Writing A Book. And You’re Going To Help Me.
When I was a freshman in high school, I read Jessica Valenti’s book Full Frontal Feminism and it changed my life. It’s what sent me to Feministing, which introduced me to the feminist blogosphere, which in turn inspired me to start a blog for teenage feminists. Because just like Feministing, Full Frontal Feminism can be applicable to the lives of teenagers in many ways, and has been passed around plenty amongst teen feminists, but ultimately Full Frontal is geared towards women in their 20’s and 30’s.
And as absolutely fabulous as Full Frontal is, I think we can all agree that it’s about time that teenage feminists have a book that is really ours – about and relevant to our lives and written from a teenage perspective. We’ve proven …
Feminism | Posted by B.P. on 05/19/2011
Magazines, T.V. and Disney: The Negative Portrayal of Beauty in the Media
From a young age, I recognized a pattern in the movies I frequently watched. Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White – their major goal is to find Prince Charming. Being young and impressionable, I too started dreaming of my prince charming I would one day come to meet.
As I got older, around my pre-teen years, I developed a collection of magazines due to my interest in style and fashion. I’d flip through so many each day, and without even noticing how and why, I began to feel less and less confident in myself. And more and more self-conscious about the way I looked. Pretty soon I felt as though no guy would ever want me because of the way I looked. I began to think I’d …
Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 05/17/2011
Looking Back: Advice For Teenage Feminists
Technically, I am done with high school. My classes are over. My AP tests have been taken (just barely…I pity the person grading my Stats AP). I am just a few weeks and random final presentations away from the day I actually graduate. My high school experience was less than ideal (and, really, whose isn’t?) but a funny thing happens when you reach this point in time (or, at least, a funny thing is happening to me). You start to feel nostalgic and sentimental anyway.
Maybe it’s the constant stream of slide shows consisting of childhood pictures that are presented. Maybe it was the bonding our senior class experience while planning senior pranks. Maybe it was the realization, every time I talked with somebody, that, “Huh, I didn’t realize …