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    Người gửi: Minh Giang
    Ngày gửi: 20h:29' 18-06-2017
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    Số lượt tải: 1
    Số lượt thích: 0 người
    Why thinking you are ugly is bad for you
    This is my niece, Stella. She`s just turned one and started to walk. And she`s walking in that really cool way that one-year-olds do, a kind of teetering, my-body`s-moving- too-fast-for-my-legs kind of way. It is absolutely gorgeous. And one of her favorite things to do at the moment is to stare at herself in the mirror. She absolutely loves her reflection. She giggles and squeals, and gives herself these big, wet kisses. It is beautiful. Apparently, all of her friends do this and my mom tells me that I used to do this, and it got me thinking: When did I stop doing this? When is it suddenly not okay to love the way that we look? Because apparently we don`t.
    Ten thousand people every month google, "Am I ugly?" This is Faye. Faye is 13 and she lives in Denver. And like any teenager, she just wants to be liked and to fit in. It`s Sunday night. She`s getting ready for the week ahead at school. And she`s slightly dreading it, and she`s a bit confused because despite her mom telling her all the time that she`s beautiful, every day at school, someone tells her that she`s ugly. Because of the difference between what her mom tells her and what her friends at school, or her peers at school are telling her, she doesn`t know who to believe. So, she takes a video of herself. She posts it to YouTube and she asks people to please leave a comment: "Am I pretty or am I ugly?" Well, so far, Faye has received over 13,000 comments. Some of them are so nasty, they don`t bear thinking about. This is an average, healthy-looking teenage girl receiving this feedback at one of the most emotionally vulnerable times in her life. Thousands of people are posting videos like this, mostly teenage girls, reaching out in this way. But what`s leading them to do this?
    Well, today`s teenagers are rarely alone. They`re under pressure to be online and available at all times, talking, messaging, liking, commenting, sharing, posting — it never ends. Never before have we been so connected, so continuously, so instantaneously, so young. And as one mom told me, it`s like there`s a party in their bedroom every night. There`s simply no privacy. And the social pressures that go along with that are relentless. This always-on environment is training our kids to value themselves based on the number of likes they get and the types of comments that they receive. There`s no separation between online and offline life. What`s real or what isn`t is really hard to tell the difference between. And it`s also really hard to tell the difference between what`s authentic and what`s digitally manipulated. What`s a highlight in someone`s life versus what`s normal in the context of everyday.
    And where are they looking to for inspiration? Well, you can see the kinds of images that are covering the newsfeeds of girls today. Size zero models still dominate our catwalks. Airbrushing is now routine. And trends like #thinspiration, #thighgap, #bikinibridge and #proana. For those who don`t know, #proana means pro-anorexia. These trends are teamed with the stereotyping and flagrant objectification of women in today`s popular culture. It is not hard to see what girls are benchmarking themselves against. But boys are not immune to this either. Aspiring to the chiseled jaw lines and ripped six packs of superhero-like sports stars and playboy music artists.But, what`s the problem with all of this? Well, surely we want our kids to grow up as healthy, well balanced individuals. But in an image-obsessed culture, we are training our kids to spend more time and mental effort on their appearance at the expense of all of the other aspects of their identities. So, things like their relationships, the development of their physical abilities, and their studies and so on begin to suffer. Six out of 10 girls are now choosing not to do something because they don`t think they look good enough. These are not trivial activities. These are fundamental activities to their development as humans and as contributors to society and to the workforce. Thirty-one percent, nearly one in three teenagers, are withdrawing from classroom debate. They`re failing to engage in classroom debate because they don`t want to draw attention to the way that they look. One in five are not showing up to class at all on days when they don`t feel good about it. And when it comes to exams, if you don`t think you look good enough, specifically if you don`t think you are thin enough, you will score a lower grade point average than your peers who are not concerned with this. And this is consistent across Finland, the U.S. and China, and is true regardless of how much you actually weigh. So to be super clear, we`re talking about the way you think you look, not how you actually look. Low body confidence is undermining academic achievement.
    But
     
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