For The Sh** Talker In All Of Us
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For The Sh** Talker In All Of Us

How social media is fueling girl-on-girl hate.

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For The Sh** Talker In All Of Us
Ben White

Why do we compare ourselves to girls we don’t even know? It is so enticing to click on your ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend’s Instagram- mindlessly scrolling through her photos and taking in every outfit, every pose, and every flaw. You’ve never met her, sure, and from your mutual friends she seems like a friendly, normal girl. So why is it so invigorating to pick her apart? Maybe this could be justified: he was once yours so it only makes sense to take this loss as a personal blow to your ego. But, what about when it’s a complete stranger, or a girl you merely pass in the halls? Someone you don’t even follow on social media. The girls who show up as private when you search for their name. The girls who you study through their VSCO urls.

“Well, she may be thinner but her nose is huge.” “Her boobs are bigger than mine but she her stomach looks weird in this pic.” “Don’t worry about her, you’re way hotter.” “He had sex with her a long time ago, you’re definitely an upgrade.” “She’s sticking her ass out so far in this. She looks ridiculous.”

Why do these ugly thoughts so easily come to the surface and why does it feel like a fun game night activity to hangout with your girlfriends and bash those far outside your social proximity? Could we feel less attractive due to the endless faces and bodies broadcasted on our cellphones: portable reminders that we’ll never be perfect. Despite this bombardment of images, I feel perfectly secure beyond the screen, in real life, but so tempted to compete with others online. If you’re reading this and becoming frighteningly aware that these same thoughts of cruelness plague you, you are not alone.

You don’t have to be Regina George to feel better about yourself after talking sh*t.

According to one study of teen girls, “35 percent are worried about people tagging them in unattractive photos. 27 percent feel stressed about how they look in posted photos. 22 percent felt bad about themselves if their photos were ignored.” If we are this stressed about ourselves, it is evident why we take it out on others. But, if such large percentages of girls are sharing these mutual feelings, why can’t we recognize and relish in our own self doubt and even extend some empathy?

Although there are many negative truths surrounding social media, it may just be the most effective platform to fight thoughts of perfection and self-loathing. If girls took an active effort to showcase their lives at less picturesque moments. It may take a shift in perspective, but Instagram, Snapchat, and VSCO could be treated as photo albums and collections of memories to share with friends, not outlets for judgment and criticism. Happiness and self-worth should never be measured in units of likes or reposts but rather genuine moments of joy caught by a camera and displayed in an effort to encourage and lift others. I am not however naive enough to claim that comparison is completely avoidable, but when these thoughts fill our heads they must be recognized and redirected. Remember that saying you’ve heard a thousand times, “calling her ugly will not make you any prettier.”

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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