Friday, February 4, 2011

Mirror, Mirror, On The Wall

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, almost 10 million cosmetic surgical and nonsurgical procedures were performed in 2009. A whopping 91 percent of those procedures went to the female gender.

Women, women, women. Why are we such malcontents when examining ourselves in the mirror?

Of course, we like to blame our body consciousness on outside forces – Hollywood, advertisers, men, etc. But for the most part, our image fastidiousness can't be blamed on others.

My sister told me about whining over her aging body one day. While she moaned and threw rocks at the mirror, her husband breezed by, looked at her source of agony and replied, "It looks mighty good to me."

Perhaps it's far-fetched, but I believe that women's dissatisfaction with their bodies comes not from without, but from within. There is an inane sense of discontentment within the female psyche, handed down from our discontented mother, Eve. Whether it is our bodies that need reshaping or our furniture that needs rearranging, we're never completely satisfied. In Eve's case, even paradise wasn't enough.

For the most part, men don't share our discontentment gene. For every nine females undergoing transformation in 2009, there was one lone male.

Men – as women like to say – "don't have to worry" about aging. They have wrinkles and gray hair, and nobody cares. They look dignified, distinguished and downright hot. Oh, boo, hoo, hoo. Poor pitiful us.

Well, it isn't that men don't "have" to worry about wrinkles and gray hair. Men just aren't worried.

They couldn't care less what color their hair is, and you won’t find them huddled around cosmetic counters buying eye cream, thigh cream and Oil of Olay. Their fingernails are real, their eyelashes are real, and no body part was purchased from doctors of medicine.

Sure, there are exceptions to every rule (Michael Jackson comes to mind), but as a whole, men are content with their looks; women aren't.

Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against women looking good, and if some nipping and tucking is in order, I'm not opposed. However, when our quest to look good results in "chemical peels," "lower body lifts," "thigh lifts" and "buttock lifts," things are out of control.

But, alas, out of control or not, until a cure is found for the mutant female discontentment gene, nothing is going to change. Women will continue scrutinizing themselves and complaining about every tiny flaw. And if they have to blame their discontentment on the devil – as their mother, Eve, did – they will. ♦


  1. This is true!
    When we attended a Ball a couple of weeks ago, I spent a couple of weeks trying to whittle down a little. Mister just bought a bigger vest for his tux since he had put on some weight. And he looked terrific! Can you believe it????

  2. "But, alas, out of control or not, until a cure is found for the mutant female discontentment gene, nothing is going to change."

    THIS was my favorite line. I agree completely. "We" are so quick to blame outside sources for what is an internal struggle.

    And I'm not pointing a boney finger either. (Mainly because I have fat fingers, but I digress...) I am as guilty as many others. It's a big beef with my husband.

  3. I too agree - but, Gayle so true, the answer lies in discontentment (are we happy on the inside)? That is the big question. Hope you have a wonderful Sunday.

  4. How this post escaped me I have no clue. I feel the desire to share: As you know, I have long since hated my hair, being white, and never hesitate to tell everyone, anyone, that compliments it, just how much I hate it. Until about 3 weeks ago! A quilting buddy, shared with me that her daughters face was disfigured (because of something that happened in the womb) and she wanted her senior class pictures taken anyway because, in the child's words 'this is the face God gave me"! Made me feel so ashamed and small to be discontented over something like the color of my hair. I made a vow to just say "thank you." from that moment on. It's hard but I'm getting there! :)