The Paw Print

Thigh Gaps are UNHEALTHY

Marjorie Nguyen, Photo Editor

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The idea of a “thigh gap” in the modeling industry has been around for several years, but recently, social media has brought light to it. Now, the idea is trending among teenagers and young adults; whether it’s a Twitter page, or a perfect Instagram picture with a #thighgap, social media users are envying the triangle shape between thighs. Thigh gaps are seen as attractive and popular, but did gawkers behind a screen realize thighs gaps are starting to be considered unhealthy?

Andrew Zundel (10) thinks, “The thigh gap is very attractive, but it can be unhealthy for some girls. I mean, a small thigh gap is fine, but not like Spongebob’s thigh gap.”

Achieving the thigh gap is difficult, and once it’s achieved, it’s hard to maintain. Jim Salter, a reporter from USA Today says, “Experts in eating disorders are concerned about an Internet-fueled trend in which teenage girls and young women pursue an elusive and possibly dangerous weight-loss goal: to become so slender that their thighs don’t touch even when their feet are together.”

Model Robyn Lawley, who has appeared on the cover of Vogue, was recently condemned on social media for not having a ‘thigh gap.’ Written in the Guardian, a British national daily newspaper, by Rosie Swash, “The model, who has her own swimwear line and has won numerous awards for her work, responded vehemently below the line: ‘You sit behind a computer screen objectifying my body, judging it and insulting it, without even knowing it.’” People on social media began calling her “pig”, “hefty”, and “too fat” when she posted a picture of her in a corset. This is atrocious behavior from people who judge a successful model without the “thigh gap.”

Demi Lovato will not stand for it either. She posted a picture of her in a swimsuit from the waist down and wrote, “You don’t have to have a thigh gap to be beautiful. It is possible to love your body the way it is.”

Mackenna Goodrich (11) feels the same, “You don’t need a thigh gap to determine who you are, it’s ridiculous.”

Henry Campbell (11) shares his opinion, too. “The thigh gap is dumb; girls don’t need it. I think they can be beautiful without them.”
The trend has gotten to where there are pages on “how to” achieve thigh gaps. Medical studies have shown thigh gaps are nearly impossible for some body structures and can be potentially dangerous.

Young, insecure teenagers on Twitter or Facebook post statuses such as, “Thanks, but I still can’t seem to get a thigh gap. No matter what I do, my legs still touch. I’m so depressed about it…” and “Can’t wait for my legs to look like THIS!” and “Starving myself until I get a thigh gap LOL!” Yes, considering starving yourself seems so much fun to please the public and to satisfy your egotistical moralities.

This is a wake-up call for Hamilton. Don’t let the thigh gap determine who you are because you can be beautiful any way you want.

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Thigh Gaps are UNHEALTHY”

  1. Kaitlyn on August 21st, 2016 5:20 pm

    I am really glad you brought up the fact that thigh gaps are unhealthy, because most of them are. However, some body types are naturally predisposed to having a thigh gap. Some are genetic and cannot be avoided, but this is a very small percent of our population. Every body is different and all should be accepted no matter what shape or form it comes in. There are people like Andrew that find thigh gaps attractive and that is fine, I will not view him negatively, but it is very unrealistic and quite hard to come by if the person is of a healthy body weight. The true “wake-up call” for Hamilton should be the fact that eating disorders are a serious illness and is not based on the morals of pleasing society or putting their vanity above all else. I might be wasting my time because no one will read this, but i am only replying because I find most of this article incorrect. I would advise that you do more research on a subject before you write about it. Granted the world is not informed on what a true eating disorder is and the psychological illness causing it, but it is our job as citizens to change how the world views things. Starving yourself is NOT fun and in no way “satisf[ies] your egotistical moralities”. Eating disorders are not a choice and are the most lethal mental illnesses there is. It should never be glorified for the way it damages people. The fact that society shames those with the illness is why most of them do not seek help for it because they are embarrassed and feel like they deserve it. Telling someone with a mental illness that they are starving themselves to “please the public and to satisfy your egotistical moralities” is shaming and truly wrong. Someone with an eating disorder lives with guilt and shame every minute of every day. Their brain won’t stop beating them up for everything they have done wrong and their way to cope is to take it out on food. It is a distraction and a way to harm themselves because in their life they have only learned that they deserve that kind of treatment. When you tell someone that they are “choosing” this illness to fit in, or please boys, etc. you are only reinforcing that shame and guilt in them, letting them know that they truly are a horrible person and that no matter what they do, even in their eating disorder, they will never be good enough. Something is always wrong with them that they will need to fix. These are the lies that play non-stop in their mind and it is the only thing they hear day in and day out. Instead of just sitting in this shame, they do something about it. They take it out on themselves because they have a low opinion of themselves. All eating disorders are different and are caused from different things, but the core value of an eating disorder is to tear you down and leave you isolated because your belief about yourself is that you deserve it. Never think that one wants thigh gap so that they can be popular or perfect, because the reality is there is so much behind it. It is a way to distract and avoid their real problems or hatred for themselves. I don’t know why I felt the need to take my time to write this because I know none of you will actually understand unless you have the disease, but i felt like it was my job to at least speak for us who do have eating disorders. This stuff is very serious and is not to be made fun of. Some have developed an eating disorder from trauma in their life and that is not something to be shamed. Please educate yourself before you make assumptions. All bodies are good bodies and there is no such thing as good or bad food. Please take care of your bodies because it is the only one you have to live in.

  2. Leia Dyste on August 24th, 2016 9:50 am

    Thank you Kaitlyn for your response to Marjorie Nguyen’s story from over two years ago. The Paw Print is currently under new management, and I agree with you that some aspects of the article are problematic; however the article will not be taken down, but we will take your criticism into consideration for our future stories. I applaud you for standing up for your beliefs and your argument was incredibly eloquent and persuasive… Of course, until you said, “I don’t know why I felt the need to take my time to write this because I know none of you will actually understand unless you have the disease…” which is both a generalization of our diverse staff here at the Paw Print and incredibly rude –something you want to stay away from when attempting to argue, as it undermines your entire thesis.
    I hope you continue to read the articles here at the Paw Print, Leia Dyste, Managing Editor.




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