Color Me Rosy

give your attitude a high-five

Beauty Is In the Eye of the Beholder

I’m a high school counselor.  I love my job.  But there are days when I wonder just what in the hell kids are thinking nowadays.  Boys are treating girls with less respect than ever before and young girls rarely demand something better.  This kind of behavior just confuses me.  If I had behaved that way 15 years ago, my dad would not have tolerated it.  But I can’t say much to these kids beyond a sliver of advice. And that’s only to the ones who come to me.  It’s just not my place.

There is a trend that’s becoming increasingly popular among teenage girls: the thigh gap.  This isn’t news.  I would wager that this isn’t the first time something like this has come up.  We as a society place the physical appearance of women in such high regard that it’s difficult to focus much on the beauty within.  We shouldn’t have to dig so far to see it but because of our own hang ups, we do.  In my opinion, the biggest issue with this is how it is reflected in the behavior of your youth.  Young women have lower self confidence and their self images aren’t considered beautiful.  Young men know this vulnerability exists and often take advantage or make it worse than it is.  NOTE:  I’m sure not everyone falls victim to this, but in reality it’s difficult not to.

I have three daughters.  I hate knowing that this could be them in a few short years.  To me, they are beautiful but society will tell them that every blemish is horrific and that single ounce of fat needs to be dissolved.  So many young women are obsessed with achieving the impossible and obtaining that “perfect” image.  You can imagine how refreshing it was to overhear a young man sincerely and intently tell young women how this obsession is crap.

Men are shallow, it’s true, but there are a few of us who keep our gender above water.  This young man fell into an elite group of gentlemen, and I was proud to know him.  We have weeks left of school.  Everyone is restless and aching to hit the pool or beach.  A young woman said, jokingly, that she “probably got her body a little too ready for summer.”  You had to have been there.  But then another young girl, I’m guessing a friend of hers, commented that there is no such thing.  I rolled my eyes like the teenage girls engaged in conversation.  But, in a moment of triumph, their male counterpart inserted himself into the conversation and promptly told them off.  Hear me out.

Never before had I witnessed such an awesome act by a young man.  He ranted on and on about how it’s nice to stay fit and care about your appearance, but if the hottest girl wore sweats to school she would still be the hottest girl.  He said that confidence is more attractive than a perfectly made up face, and that no matter how skinny or not someone is, their attitude determines how appealing they are.  *Silently fist pumps, alone, because finally someone got it right.

I know we’ve all read and heard of things like this happening.  Dove‘s beauty campaigns make me want to purchase a lifetime supply of their product just because they paint a more accurate picture than anyone else.  But this kid was amazing.  Seriously amazing.  He was bold and not the least bit shy in his delivery.  It was easy to see that he really believed what he was saying.  He made my day, and I hope the day of those teenage girls, and for that he gets this post.  The Upbeat Seat is a little more upbeat because of him.