Are You a Modern Woman? Body Image

Obsessed about Their Bodies
A recent study by Glamour magazine reveals that 40 percent of women are unhappy with their bodies.
 
To illustrate the scrutiny that many women face in the media, Dr. Phil examines an incident with Mad Men actress Christina Hendricks. He shows a picture of her and the dress she wore at this year's Golden Globes. A New York Times fashion critic was taken to task for quoting a stylist as saying of Christina, "You don't put a big girl in a big dress."
 
"What do you guys think about this?" Dr. Phil asks his panel.
 
"I think you can't put a big woman in a little dress!" Ron quips.
 
"In the last 40 years, eating disorders and body image issues have really grown exponentially. All of these media messages tell you that you're not good enough," Dr. Thema says. "I appreciated this quote by Eve Ensler, the playwright for The Vagina Monologues: ‘In this society, it's revolutionary to be able to love your body and love yourself.'" [AD]
 
"It's no secret in this society, if you're not a size 0 as a woman, there's a lot of pressure to be really, really thin," Areva comments. "Every ad on television is a diet."
 
"I'm raising a daughter, and to raise daughters who feel good about themselves that aren't judging themselves by the size of their thighs or the size of their arms, it's a real challenge," Dr. Thema says.
 
The panel has a lively discussion about the American standard of beauty.
Dr. Phil turns to Kathleen. "Do you feel this pressure? Do you cave to it?" he asks.
 
"No. If you really just want to be kind of chubby, move to Wisconsin. I think they got voted fattest state," she jokes. "I like Wisconsin. I like cheese, and I like beer. Right now, I'd probably be pretty hot in Milwaukee. In Beverly Hills, no."
 
Dr. Phil turns to his male panelists. "Do you guys look for stereotypical beauty?" he asks.
 
"Hell yes," Jon jokes.
 
Dr. Phil shows a photograph of 23-year-old reality TV star Heidi Montag, who admitted to undergoing 10 plastic surgery procedures in one day. "What message does this send to the young women?" he asks.
 
[AD]"It's a scary message, Dr. Phil," Areva says. "I have a tween and a teenage daughter. It's a mother's worst nightmare, I think any parent's worst nightmare, is that your daughter wants to get a boob job for the prom, or she wants to remake her nose or her lips to look good because she sees some girl like that on a reality television show. ‘Daughter, they're not a celebrity. It's a reality TV show. You're beautiful with what you have.' Sending that message is very important to young girls."
 
"Those people don't really look like that. That's all makeup, and hair, and lighting and Photoshop," Dr. Phil observes.
 
Read Dr. Phil's blog about women obsessed with cosmetic surgery.