HuffPo Photographs 19 Topless Men to Combat Men’s Body Insecurity
Guided by similar themes as our own project here at m.bodiment
, Huffington Post recently photographed 19 men of various size, shape, race, and age with their shirts off in the name of combatting men’s body insecurity. “The fruitless quest for ‘perfect’ body isn’t unique to women,” begins the article that accompanies the series. “Rather than obsess over attaining thinness, however, men are more likely than women to consider themselves underweight, and focus on getting more muscle tone, studies suggest.”
Much of what we’ve covered in this blog supports this claim, with a more narrow focus on unique issues experienced by GBTQ men. GBTQ men are more likely to over-exercise, deprive themselves of food, purge,
or use tanning beds to a dangerous degree
than their straight neighbours, all in the name of attaining this physical perfection. In fact, experts agree that these GBTQ body issues have reached epidemic proportions
, and the overall issue requires action.
As John Paul Brammer writes
, change starts with tackling societal pressures from peers and the media that idealize unrealistic body types. Normalizing mental illness, and validating each other are also key components of change. By recognizing body difference as a norm and not something to be eradicated, we as a society can take steps to addressing these unhealthy perceptions of body. Empathy is key.
Like in our photo series, each photograph in HuffPo’s is supported by insight lent by the photo subject. Sentiments vary, from “I hated my body for a lot of my life,” to “I’m OK with my body now,” to “I’ve always been very comfortable with my body.” Take a moment to go through the different viewpoints offered by the subjects, and know that body insecurity is a struggle shared by many.