The iPhone App That is Killing Our Daughters

via hannah davis on flickr

via hannah davis on flickr

I would have wanted it as a kid in the eighties if we’d had iPhones then.

It’s the App which promises everything I longed for as a nine-year-old pastor’s kid in a mushroom cut and huge plastic rims: to make me popular. “It’s our little secret,” the slogan whispers.

But it’s the secret that would have killed me.

And it’s killing our daughters.

The SkinneePix App offers one click to weight loss. With one click you shave off 15 pounds, and I wouldn’t have known when to quit clicking. I would have clicked until I didn’t exist, just like I starved myself until I was hypothermic and dying, and this is what the SkinneePix app does: it promises to whiten your teeth and zap your skin and straighten your hair and to get rid of your ‘selfie’ altogether.

There’s no room for real anymore, for frizzy hair or freckles; for crooked teeth or overweight, or anything in between. There’s only room for skinny, white-teethed women and men with smooth skin and who among us wouldn’t, deep down, want this?

I mean, for a second?

Because I still fall for it.

I still believe I am a better person if I am skinny.

via hannah davis on flickr

via hannah davis on flickr

Rooted somewhere in the dark crevices of my bedroom as a nine-year-old girl where I would sit measuring my wrists and counting my ribs, I began to worship “thin.”

For me, thin was not only in—it was right.

The truth is? Deep down, we all have a belief like this. A prejudice.

We all believe people are better, or more human, when they act or look a certain way.

When did anything about our looks start constituting a moral stance?

We wish we could fix so much more than our “selfie.” The selfie is just the beginning of what we don’t like about ourselves. But rather than admit this, we judge other people instead.

Maybe it’s the person who’s not wearing brand name clothing. Maybe it’s the woman who always smells or the man who talks too loud or the person who stands too close or … and we all do it. We all judge, especially come Sunday, when we go to church. That’s when we’re pretending to pray and actually sizing one another up in the pews.

But here’s the facts.

To believe a certain size, or a certain “look” is right–is in fact, very wrong. It’s a sin.

Because when it comes down to it, this is what started World War II.  That certain looks were right, and others were wrong.

And it’s killing our daughters.

It’s about the spirit. God’s spirit speaking to your spirit, saying–Honey, it’s time to address this now. Because if you want to become more like Jesus, you’ve got to stop seeing the world this way.

not this way

I don’t know about you but I’ve got to stop believing I need to be thin. I’ve got to stop judging people based on appearance. I’ve got to fall on my face before a Creator who made all of us equal, and all of us loved, and all of us sinful, and who died for every single one of us, no matter our looks, no matter our size, no matter our smell, because we, church? We are all the same.

So let’s not let an iPhone App control our kids’ destiny. Let’s “out” the app’s little secret and declare it a lie, and tell our daughters who they are.

Loved.









20 Comments

  1. yes, this!
    and how very deep the desire for thin lives
    in each of us, I believe
    for the approval of society is a hunger than runs even deeper
    and I want to rise and shout
    ENOUGH! hard as it is ENOUGH!

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  2. Excellent!! Thank you for speaking out!

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  3. I don’t have an iphone,so I don’t know about this App. It sounds creepy and dangerous. Excellent essay.

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  4. Wow, my daughter has an iPod and we didn’t even know this app existed. How disgusting! This hurts my heart. Thank you for bringing attention to this.

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  5. oh my gosh… I had no idea… what a horrible app… and wow… i am so glad I did not grow up with all these ways to change who we are on the outside and still be dying on the inside… it was hard enough to find freedom without all this media stuff. thanks Em… I will be checking on my youngest daughter.

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  6. I think I heard radio DJs talking about this app a week or so ago, but I didn’t think much about it. (You know, driving, kinda listening, thinking about other things…) Thank you for bringing awareness.

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  7. Emily, I have 2 girls with minimal (and heavily supervised) access to these devices and I had not heard of this app until now. Thank you for sharing about it. I join you in praying for our daughters to know their value is not in how they appear, but in WHOSE they are. God, fill us.

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  8. What the WHAT??? But I wonder how many grown women are latching on to this veil of smoke & mirrors? :(

    (thank you for sharing this app; first time I’ve heard of it….)

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  9. Thank you for this post! I recently had pics done and the photographer slimmed my butt down. I told her to undo her editing. #junkinthetrunk

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  10. LOVE this! Burst the bubble– out the lie, show the mirage for what it really is. Yes, Emily, let’s!

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  11. Oh wow….this is crazy…sad…beautifully true. Thank you for always being so honest and uplifting. Your story resonates with my heart!

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  12. Hey Em! Thank you for being SO honest! Honestly, I struggle with this a lot! Almost every day when I look in the mirror I want to be “better”.. because thinner is “better”… Of course it’s NOT, but it truly IS very difficult to resolve. Luckily, I have resolved it… at least for the time being… How do I do this? By looking at myself and saying “I love you” “You are a good person” My body, “it is what it is” “I did the best I could today” (eating HEALTHILY (focus on health and nutrition here)), and just having the faith to know that because I have sowed good seeds and am doing my best to take care of them, God will honor that!
    That’s my hope. That God honors when we honor him and put him first. and, let’s face it, God wants us to take care of our bodies! That’s my story, and for now, I’m sticking to it! :-)

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  13. Ugh! WHO created this app?!! I would have wanted it too…and sometimes still would. We mamas have to rise up against “the norm” and teach our daughters this very message ~ they are loved beyond measure and accepted in the beloved, no matter what they “look” like on the outside. But in order to rise up and teach this to our girls, we’ve GOT to believe it ourselves…100% of the time. Because our girls see, and know when we’re not being genuine.
    Thanks for this Emily. I echo your battle cry!

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  14. I do not have a smart phone so I did not know about this app or do I understand anything about apps but your words are beautiful. We are enough because of Jesus! Amen :)

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  15. I’m around these girls everyday. Thanks for equipping me Emily. God Bless.

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  16. I wonder at the fallout of all this in the end, when this first generation of “smart” phone holders come into their adult years? I have trouble managing it all with prudence at fifty. I can’t imagine the impact on the still developing brains of young people. Thanks for the heads up!

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  17. Not only killing our daughters but killing a lot of joy in mothers too! Thanks for this, em! It’s soooo hard to make the mental shift and stop hating what I see in the mirror and wishing for something that is unhealthy and against the love of God for me.

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  18. The blog content i am reading now, it is very different and excellent content writing.

    Reply

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