“I stand in front of the mirror and say to [my daughter] Mia, ‘We are so lucky we have a shape. We’re so lucky we’re curvy. We’re so lucky that we’ve got good bums.’ And she’ll say, ‘Mummy, I know, thank God.’ It’s paying off.’
This was a quote from Kate Winslet (pictured below) and I have seen this quote before, but I saw it again today on the website Marieclaire.co.uk
Image credit popsugar.com.au
Ok so there is no denying Kate has a hot body, she does, she is gorgeous and curvy and amazingly talented too. I am glad that she is working hard at giving her daughter the body confidence that she never had growing up. Kate has spoken openly about how growing up she never heard women like her mother or sister talk positively about their bodies and how this affected her. I understand that I really do! My mother was negative about her body and her appearance in front of me all her life and she still is. I have blogged previously about the negative way my mother always spoke about herself and it did affect me and my opinions of my own body.
Last month at the talk I went to hosted by Steve Biddulph author and speaker (who wrote both Raising Boys and Raising Girls), he asked us to put up our hands if we were unhappy with something about our appearance. All, but 2 put up their hands, he then asked how we could ever expect our daughters to have a positive self image if we don’t model it? I couldn’t agree more!
I think it is great that Kate is being a positive role model for her daughter, and now here comes my but . . . . . and my issue isn’t actually with Kate, I am not naive enough to take one quote from someone I have never met and start criticising her. My issue is with the assumption that any particular body type is better than another. I am all for embracing health, fitness and looking after yourself, but it frustrates me when people say things like models are anorexic, or plus size models are fat. What gives anyone the right to ever comment on someone else’s body?? Unless you are being asked for your opinion or you are a doctor advising a patient, then I say keep your opinion to yourself. But now I am going off my topic!
What annoys me is that I often hear people say it is not OK to criticise larger people, yet it seems if you are thinner, people think it is OK to make comments on your body. I just feel that there is a double standard. Some people are naturally curvy and some people put on excess weight very easily, others are naturally thinner and some are naturally very thin and could not put on weight if they tried. I believe we should all try to eat a healthy amount of food, enjoy fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables and eat meals that nourish us. I believe we should all get at least a little exercise each day whether that is running, swimming, hiking or vacuuming, it is all good for us. I also believe we should have a treat when we crave it, if it is in moderation then why not have that piece of chocolate? That’s just my thoughts, but each to their own as it is really not my place to comment and I am certainly not a dietician or a doctor.
I have 3 children, each with a unique body type. I can understand Kate trying to install a positive body image within her daughter Mia as I wish to with my daughters also. I have 2 daughters, one 9 and one 11. My daughters are both healthy. They start the day with a healthy low sugar, low sodium breakfast cereal. They both take the same food as each other to school. Fresh seasonal fruit and veg cut up. They only drink water at school and at home unless it is a birthday or the occasional hot Milo on a cold winters weekend day. They also take a sandwich to school, this will be either wholemeal, grain, rye, white, or seed bread. For dinner it is always home cooked (again unless a special occasion). We have mainly a vegan, or vegetarian dinner, but sometimes they have some fish or other meats. Both my girls are also as active as each other, they often come home and grab their scooters and ride with their brother. They enjoy walks, especially bush walking and love to swim. My two girls have completely different body types.
Both girls are tall, not overly tall, but tall. However where Aspen has curves, hips and a rounded bottom, April is straight up and down. Now admittedly Aspen is on the cusp of becoming a teen, but she has always had a more shape than April. So I can not stand in the mirror like Kate and tell my daughters that curves are great without making April feel like her body isn’t healthy. And I can’t say to April how lucky she is to be thin and eat whatever she wants because that would be saying Aspen isn’t lucky! But even if both my girls had the same shape I still don’t think I should give them this message. Why? Because everyone is unique and even if both my daughters were curvy and I said what Kate said wouldn’t I be sending them a negative message about girls who are thin? Wouldn’t I be teaching them that girls with curves are superior and that it is unhealthy to be thin?
April is healthy, she is naturally thin, but she is healthy, active and vibrant. She has friends all different shapes and sizes, some are taller than her, some a shorter and she has a mother with curves and a sister with curves. I want her to feel confident about her body shape! I want her to look in the mirror and say “I am healthy, I am just the way I am meant to be“, and I also want her to say “my sister is healthy and just the way she is meant to be!” I want both my girls to be proud and to take care of their health and to embrace their bodies, I want them to be proud of each other, and proud of their friends. I don’t want them thinking they have to be bigger, thinner, taller, shorter, curvier or have a different colour hair! I want them to celebrate how unique everyone is and know that beauty is in everyone!
Love to hear what you think on this topic, share your thoughts with me in the comments section, or tweet me @macglanville.
Thanks for joining me, love Mackenzie xx
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