Essay for my Psychology of Women Class on Body Image – 2008

For most women loosing weight is their main issue. However, being thin is my issue. Being fat or too thin, in my culture, is not something seen as good. If you are overweight in means that you do not love yourself enough and being skinny is a sign of illness or poorness. I am not sick and I do have food at home, but my body does not gain weight easily; that is my problem.

I am short and skinny and that always made me feel inferior to my classmates or sisters. During Middle and High School, body image was always the problem, and we girls never cared if we were smart or talented, we just cared about the looks. While they cared about loosing it, I tried to eat to fulfill my parent’s expectations of a normal girl. Being 18 and not having a voluptuous body as most of my friends brought me many tears and insecurities, because I felt abnormal. When I moved to the United States I began to see how everything is so superficial too, but I knew that there is more tolerance if you are “different” just for the fact that everyone of us is different and unique. I am almost transferring to the University, I do not want my insecurities affect my goals in life anymore.

Now in my early twenties, I have understood the importance of believing in you and reach goals. I want to be a journalist, and shine in the Media. Unfortunately, the way someone looks is something that matters for some people. I do not want that to interfere in my career, I want to shine for who I am, I want to fight for what I believe in, meet different people, and become a helpful member in my community. I do not know if I have talent nor if I am in this world for that, but I want to have the strength and courage to find out.

This term I want to work with my major goal. I want to believe in me more, without letting my height or weight stop me. Now that I have read about all those women that fought to make their voice heard, it inspired me to let go all the weight that I have in my brain that tell me that is important what others think about me. I feel it deep inside, but I need learn how to externalize it, and accept and love my body no matter which shape it has. I want to unlock my potential and I need to start today.

Key Terms

Achievement Self-Confidence, 289.
It is the degree in which someone sees its capacity to perform any task in which others might have an opinion about its performance. It is when we subordinate our intelligence by comparing it to others. Once the self-confidence it is achieved, then the person is capable of showing others the hidden brightness and capacity (pg. 289-290).

I believe I am in the middle of the way of achieving it. I just need to take risks and trust my capacities that block my development. I do feel less confident when there are only males that participate in class debates. Even sometimes I know the answers, I remain silent for the fear that what I am saying might not be relevant.

Advocate, 330.
A woman that at any age can fight and support causes that benefits her role in society. A believer, visionary that promotes ideals that might benefit her or other people (330).
This term applies to my goal because I believe that supporting other causes that might help other people might help me see my problem less important.

Maternal wall, 303.
Refers to the shorter capacity that certain people see in a woman after she has had a baby. They tend to believe that after having children, the women cuts off her opportunities to grow in a company (pg. 303).

I do not have any children yet, but eventually I do not want that to stop me. Yes, children do demand time and attention, but that does not make a woman less intelligent. I know that a superwoman’s does not exist; I believe we are born with a multitasking capacity and I do not want to think that “maternal wall” is going to limit my opportunities one day. Believing in the maternal wall just will distract me from my goals.

Self-efficacy, 290.
“I can do it” is the best definition for self-efficacy. Its primarily entering in the male workforce just by the fact that a women truly believe in her capacity without caring about gender stereotypes (pg 290).

The term applies in my problem because I admire those women who try to break stereotypes. I want to join their team. According to my self-efficacy it how I am choosing my profession.

Siblings, 260.
Siblings are not only your blood family, they are the ones that no matter how different is each of them; they will always be there to support each other. They are the ones that can see what you do not about yourself. The ones that accept each other with their faults and virtues. Siblings create an emotional bond hard to break (pg. 260).

I have been often compared with my five sisters. As I grew up, those comments affected my self-esteem. However, now I can now see their beauty too without affecting me as it used to. The emotional bond that we have is special because after arguing our differences, there is always support and zero resentments.

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