What A Shame

Sad times.

Today is International Women’s Day, a day that is marked each year to celebrate and appreciate women for all that they are and have achieved. Women have had to fight long and hard to have equal rights throughout history and they have come a long way from the days when they were shackled to the kitchen sink.

I feel sad however because of the lack of respect some women have for themselves. And I don’t say this lightly. Everywhere I look I see women propagating themselves by posing, pouting, stripping and generally marketing their bodies. Why? I don’t get it. Don’t get me wrong, I have taken many a ‘selfie’ and sent it to my other half (well definitely when we first got together) or to close friends but I have never felt the need to show the world and its dog what I look like, what I’m wearing or basically telling the world how beautiful I might think I am… on a daily basis.

In this day and age ‘shamelessness’ is a laudable trait. Erm why? When someone is shameless, they basically have no limits and when they can’t stop themselves, they will do anything and everything regardless of right and wrong, who they may be hurting and what message they may be sending.

The online Collins English Dictionary defines the word shameless as:

“adjective

  1. having no sense of shame; brazen
  2. done without shame; without decency or modesty

Synonyms include: brazenaudaciousflagrantabandonedcorrupthardenedindecentbrashimproperdepravedwanton,unabashedprofligateunashamedincorrigibleinsolentunprincipledimpudentdissolutereprobate,immodest, barefaced, unblushing

  • British English: shameless If you describe someone as shameless, you mean that they should be ashamed of their behaviour, which is unacceptable to other people. ADJECTIVE…a shameless attempt to stifle the debate.”

However, the ironic thing is now you see this very word attributed to ‘shameless selfies’ and also other acts such as recording intimate videos, violent beatings, torture etc that people basically have no issue with sharing. Therefore you could say that shamelessness is now the norm.

Always camera ready

Always camera ready

It has been said that where there is no modesty or shame, there are no limits and where there are no limits there is destruction.

Gloomy post? Yeah, I guess it is. But that’s how I feel when I see photo after photo after photo of women not empowering themselves but objectifying themselves. You can be successful, intelligent, beautiful and make a difference to the world without allowing the world to view you as an object.
Women have fought long and hard for their rights to work, to vote, to be protected from domestic violence and sexual assault. They have strived to be seen as a gender that is indeed powerful and can make the world go round. Although much progress has been made in women being seen as equals in the level of work etc, women themselves are now dragging any progress backwards by essentially not allowing themselves to be seen as equals to men.
Men expose themselves and take ‘selfies’ etc too and they of course are also shameless at times. But, if we took an overall picture, we would observe more women putting themselves ‘out there’ willingly than men. Take for example films, how many scenes have you seen in a movie where you see a woman in all her glory? And how many times have you seen a man expose himself except for his buttocks?… It seems that in order to get further, women feel the need to go further and further until nothing is left to the imagination. Men don’t have this need for some reason. Mostly.

Of course there is no issue per se with taking a selfie, or sharing the odd photo which has been taken where you are having fun or working or whatever. What I don’t understand is the constant need to put narcissistic photos of yourself including ‘selfies’ up. If you type the word ‘selfie’ into google, you will see mainly women, pouting, showing off their backsides or cleavage.
Why do women want such validation? A woman can be beautiful and know it and the people she meets will tell her so, but why does she need the universe to tell her so and almost daily for that matter? Just the fact that she shares her body and beauty without much effort with everyone shows that she believes she is beautiful – so why the need for constant gratification?
Interestingly, I read an article recently that stated that studies have shown women tend to take less selfies and share them after the age of 40 than men.. hmmm I wonder why that is? Not so happy with the ol’ looks after that maybe?

Metamorphosis of Narcissus Salvador Dali 1936-37

Metamorphosis of Narcissus Salvador Dali 1936-37

Beauty is truly skin deep. Looks fade and when they do a woman may look back and wish all those photos she took weren’t out there for people to compare her with.
I’m sure we all have at least one cringe worthy photo and are thankful it isn’t out there on the public domain – I know I am!

I realise this post will not be taken well by most, because of course it is now the norm to show off your assets and attract attention to yourself and also I have mainly talked about women as opposed to men. But of course both are deeply involved in this, the women that shamelessly propagate themselves and the men that shamelessly gawp at them.

It’s International Women’s Day; go out and celebrate women for their intelligence, their strength, their love, their courage, their passion, their vision.
Women, go out there and make a difference to the world with ALL that you are and have been given from within. Be amazing. Be YOU.

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34 thoughts on “What A Shame

  1. Extremely sad and very true. A constant worry on my mind as a mother and teacher, its so important that women set the right example for todays youth. Embedding strong principles and encouraging inner strengths is definitely needed otherwise we will end up (or are already on our way) to raising a generation that is obsessed with the “physical” and nothing else matters.

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    • Yes I agree – you hit the nail on the head. The next generation are growing up around social media, where this narcissistic behaviour is deemed normal and praiseworthy. Our children will struggle to find positive role models. I worry too 😦

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  2. Well done! Sometimes we need someone else to say the controversial, so we can then say “this is exactly what I think/how I feel…!” I feel the same way about selfies, and generally social media taking over our life…. I fear for the future and the legacy we are leaving behind for the next generation.
    Very well written. Controversial? Yes. Reflective? Definitely!!

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  3. Thank you so much for your comment H. We are living in difficult times, where it’s so easy to go along with what everyone else is doing without really thinking about the message it is projecting. I fear what’s to come too…

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