Fat shaming teenagers is getting out of hand and it’s really starting to irk my nerves. I know you’re probably thinking, “people fat shame adults also.” Although that’s true, we have tougher skin and I think I speak for many of us when I say we can handle it, but to fat shame a teenager as they’re trying to adjust to their shape in a society that constantly tells them that something is wrong with them is one of the most heinous, counterproductive crimes against our youth that one can commit.
Lately, adults have been behaving badly when it comes to interacting with teenagers. We’ve witnessed everything from school administrators singling out plus size teenagers during prom because they’re a little curvier than their peers and now today’s news, a Pennsylvania school’s dress code telling teenagers “we don’t want to be looking at sausage rolls.” Their words, not mine.
You read that correctly. Biglerville High School in Pennsylvania issued a dress code notice entitled “Proper Attire & Etiquette for Awards Program and Graduation” and in the notice, the school gave young men and women tips on what to wear (or what not to wear) to graduation. In addition to telling the girls to hide their sausage rolls, the school went on to tell the ladies (not the men) that you can’t put 10 pounds of mud in a five-pound sack.
The letter got attention after it was posted online by student Brianna Burtop. The student posted the letter with the following quote: “You’re supposed to feel safe and comfortable here. For a letter like that to come from the administration is really appalling.”
I agree with Brianna. Talk about tacky.
Apparently this school doesn’t care about the issues that teenagers face related to their self-esteem. Perhaps they are unaware that over 70% of of girls age 15 to 17 avoid normal daily activities, such as attending school, when they feel bad about their looks. Well, I care. I care that 75% of girls with low self-esteem reported engaging in negative activities like cutting, bullying, smoking, drinking, or disordered eating. And because I’m sure others care about this issue on the rise, something needs to be done.
When you’re a teenager, you should be uplifted by adults, not torn to shreds. After all, they are the adults, right? I’m of the belief that “keeping it real, often goes wrong,” and if Biglerville High School was trying to keep it real, then they completely dropped the ball.
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