Why I Avoid Taking My Daughters to the Grocery Store

fullsizerender I could post this image and shut up, but I’m a writer, so I’ll comment briefly.

I actually L’dOL when I saw that Real Simple magazine in the mix – PEACEFUL SEASON?! As long as you don’t stand in grocery store lines contemplating just how far your body is from what it evidently is supposed to be.

I have 2 beautiful girls, 14 & 11, at the time I’m writing this. Short of starving themselves, living in a gym, and possibly undergoing plastic surgery, they will never look like the women on the covers of the magazines.

I had the delicious thought of taking a can of spray paint and skipping down the aisles covering every last bare butt, perfect breast, and veneered smile just to make a point. I’m tired of it. Aren’t most of us tired of it? I wish I knew how to stop it.

I would like to start a petition among all the women in our nation – sign it and agree that you will not ever again spend a pretty penny on a magazine with an airbrushed cover promoting a false sense of beauty, creating shame, or identifying women by their body parts. Because you know what? If people weren’t buying these magazines, they would no longer be staring at us every time we buy our eggs and milk.

Anybody with me?

5 thoughts on “Why I Avoid Taking My Daughters to the Grocery Store

  1. Preach Alyson! As a teenager, I had a body complex that ran deep. When I was in high school, I ran cross country, was on our swim team and played water polo competitively. Daily doubles and fad diets were my middle name. I used to routinely buy Shape, Self and Glamour Magazines…and try to adhere to the picture of beauty they shoved in my face. Rather than finding it offensive, I found it inspiring. …it was an addiction of sorts, to always chase the dream of self-improvement and the deep desire to be acceptable to other people. What is life without hope right? This was clearly not the most self-aware phase of my life, and I didn’t realize the profound affect this garbage was having on my heart and mind.

    I moved to Greece for 6 months the year after i graduated high school and worked for one of the Capernwray Bible Schools. I didn’t go there with the intention of study or even community. It was actually and opportunity for me to work at the school on staff in exchange for room and board, so that I could have an excuse to travel. But during that time, I was given what I can only call a great, unexpected gift. I fell in with an incredible group of wise, intelligent, nurturing and deeply kind people. We ate our meals together. We took long walks on the beach and talked for hours about truth and hope and friendship. We hiked Mount Olympus during the winter and built snow forts (which we slept in!). We dug into each other’s lives and held each other accountable. In short, we experienced real friendship and valued each other as people, not as pretty props to accessorize our lives or compete against.

    When I came back to the States, I popped into the grocery store one day and was waiting at the check out. I saw another Shape magazine and purchased it (old habits). At home as i was flipping through it, I realized i was already formulating my new diet plan, new work out plan, new fashion plan, new hair plan, my new plan to make lots of money to pay for said plans…you get the idea. It was at that precise moment of reflection that I realized the deep, cyclic destructiveness of what these god-awful magazines were spoon feeding me. This exhausting drive to perfection would never end…and neither would the sense of self-loathing that i felt due to never being able to attain the dream placed in front of me.

    That day, I threw all of my magazines away. Boxes and boxes of them. It was liberating and satisfying. I didn’t know it then, but God was gently working on my heart in regard to my self-worth and worship of all things other than Him. It took many years for me to see that there is nothing in this world that I can love and not lose. Nothing that I can put my ultimate hope in that isn’t fickle or fragile. Fortunately for us, God knew that and broke into our world to reveal Himself to us in the most mind-blowing and unconventional way possible.

    I will pray for you in this and for your incredible girls to be able to understand earlier than I did, that the weight of their worth and beauty is so precious, not because of their pant size or perfect skin or lack of cellulite, but because they were made and are loved by a good, loving and kind God who is in the business of redeeming the brokenness within each of us as well as our world. I will also pray that they find (if they do not already have), a handful of individuals who are dear friends in the true meaning of the word. I hope that our paths cross again sooner rather than later Alyson! They are so lucky to have you as their mom. 😉


      • I saw the reply! Love the work that is going on in your life @msmcknight, and in the lives of my nieces, Aly. I’ve been dealing with so many college students who perceptions of the female are tainted by a lot of *$(^#%)@. I was contemplating it this morning, as a matter of fact, allowing a righteous (I hope) anger toward the lies that lead people to pursue production of these types of magazines. I’m very tired of it, but pray for them and those who will see them that they will see themselves as God sees them – beautiful and wonderful and meant for eternal worship of Him who is ultimate beauty and wonder.

        Love you all, and I would also sign the petition (even though I’m not a girl… 😏).


      • You may sign it.:) I know Pinterest and FB have a similar effect as we only see the best of the best of other people’s photos. Lots of pressure on these precious young women. Thankful my girls’ favorite shows are Myth Busters and Top Gear.


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