In a few panels, this comic brings to light the way women see themselves.
Objectification of women has been dragged out from the shadows and beaten to death, and feminism has had crosshairs on objectification for a long time. It was one of the first blatant displays of misogyny that was ignited with the rage of feminists. But self-objectification, it seems, has been flying under the radar.
I didn’t realize until I saw this comic, actually, the flaw in this way of thinking. As in while everyone should dress up to feel hot, or cute, or sexy, we have been mistaking it for looking hot, or cute, or sexy. And they are not the same.
When did pleasing someone else become the equivalent of pleasing yourself?
In the comic, the woman, having sex with her partner, realizes that her position must make her look less-than-pleasing to her partner, and asks to change positions. With the change, when her partner asks if she likes it better that way, she pauses and contemplates whether she is prioritizing her pleasure or his.
Self-objectification is what leads to the disfigurement of normally pleasurable activities into an insurmountable obstacle: going to the beach isn’t, and has not been for a long time, about just enjoying yourself with the sun on your skin and your toes in the water. It’s about getting a beach body, dieting for the spring months so your figure slims out, picking a bathing suit that draws attention to your assets and away from your flaws, never mind how uncomfortable it is you have to look sexy on that beach or you’ve failed.
We objectify ourselves so much that nobody else has to do it for us anymore.
The ropes we bind ourselves with are what lead to the issues little girls grow into. So many teenage girls would never have started counting calories if they didn’t look around and think why don’t I look like that? Anyone can run their mouth about how she seems to be putting on some weight and doesn’t she think she should watch what she eats but it has no effect if she doesn’t start thinking it too. If she doesn’t start viewing herself as an object to sculpt, fix until it’s no longer undesirable. And that’s the poison. That’s what kills you.
I can’t sit here and write a list on how to stop self-objectifying yourself because I only found this comic today and to be honest I’ve never thought about it before in my life but I looked into the topic and it hurt me in the space between my ribs hard enough that I needed to write about it.
Because you can’t fix anything if you don’t know that it’s a problem, so I hope that you realize it too. And we can start with baby steps.