Skinny Arm Pose

Have you noticed that young women pose on Facebook almost exclusively with the skinny arm pose? You know what I’m talking about. You, like me, may even be guilty of it…

I am linking that conversation and pose self-mockery with friends to the paper I am writing today on anorexia.

I always thought SELF IMAGE = BODY IMAGE until I read in the Oxford Textbook of Psychopathology, “Not surprisingly, social values assigned to body image are believed to contribute to higher prevalences of dieting and greater risk of ED’s (eating disorders) in females– women surely being the more strongly socialized to link self-image with body image in our culture” (p436).

What do you mean link self-image with body image? Aren’t the 2 equivalent?


Oh, they’re not. My self image isn’t actually intended to be wrapped up in my body image.


Then what is my self image wrapped up in?

Previously, the same book had said, “Western social values to some extent equate slimness with cultural ideals of ‘success,’ ‘beauty,’ ‘power,’ and ‘self-control,’ and this likely underlies the tendency for people in the West– and especially young females– to experience themselves as overweight and in need of dieting” (p436).

What are we teaching our daughters?! our friends? our nieces? our small group girls and women? Are we trying to say with our skinny pose– I am beautiful and self-controlled? I got my Jillian shred workout in this week?

I am struck that I have been so “socialized” to the lie that my self image is equivalent to my body image that I read it as truth today.

Just a brief thought– unfiltered and undigested and unedited– as I write a paper on anorexia and the church’s response. Anything you want to add?


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