The advertising world has targeted women by taking advantage of our lack of self-esteem in order to get us buy their products. The bottom line for most ads is, “You are not good enough… and you can only fix yourself if you buy our product.”
We have allowed advertisers to target us only because we believe that there is something wrong with us that needs to be fixed. We must stop buying into their attempts to make us feel inferior.
A favourite area of attack by advertisers is our bodies. Due to the negative beliefs about our bodies that we have accepted from society and through the heavy barrage of “you’re not good enough” advertising aimed women, it is no wonder that most of the time we do not love our bodies.
I wonder at what age we learn to equate our self-worth with our bodies. Babies never feel that they are not good enough because of the size of their hips!
As vulnerable teenage girls, we are bombarded with advertising that tries to bring down our self-esteem and to get us to feel that we need this certain product in order to be attractive or accepted by others. That is why teenage girls in our society, as a group, have the lowest self-esteem.
This diminished sense of self-esteem then continues on into our adult years, in many cases. The tobacco companies love to target girls with their advertising because these companies know that if you take people with low self-worth and make them addicts, then you have a good chance of creating costumers for life.
I heard a three-year-old girl say the other day. “I don’t want to wear this dress; it makes me look fat.” Ten-year-old girls are dieting. We have anorexia and bulimia running rampant in our schools. What are we doing to our children?
If you are a parent, do show your children how the advertisements are exploiting them. Dissect ads together. Let your children show you what is manipulative in the ads. Teach them early, and give them the power to live their lives through intelligent choices, to act rather than react.