# 124 (2013) Small Minds And Olympic Golds
Those of you who have been watching ‘I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here!’ will have seen Rebecca Adlington’s emotional outburst on Thursday night when the two camps were united and the subject turned to Amy Willerton’s career choice as model and pageant queen. It was met with mixed emotions – Amy doing her best to come across as a level headed, savvy woman when others saw ‘model’, and the likes of Lucy Pargeter asking if she didn’t feel as if she was being treated like a ‘piece of meat’.
Whilst Ms Adlington’s outburst might come across as an over reaction, the reality is that the psychological damage done by such unobtainable images of perfection in the media (in this case personified by Amy Willerton) is doing women and girls a lot of damage.
That at 24 years of age Rebecca is one of our country’s most successful athletes, a double gold medal Olympic winner no less should, many would think, be retribution enough for any imperfections she may or may not have. None of us are perfect and she has achieved in her few short years more success than most models or social media trolls can hope for in their entire lifetime.
But that she was reduced to tears when the conversation about body image started, is a telling sign of our general attitude and how it really affects those who don’t fit in to the ridiculous notions of the ‘ideal’. In a society where very few are blessed with Ms Willerton’s assets I find it quite remarkably but sadly not surprising. And despite her profound abilities Rebecca admitted on tv that she receives insulting and abusive messages from mindless idiots telling her that she isn’t pretty enough or thin enough.
It should be like water off an Olympic swimmers back. I doubt the people making such criticisms are anywhere near up to the ‘standard’ they have criticised her for apparently falling short of. But you don’t have to look very far to see the ridiculous pressure we are all under. It’s in every music video, magazine, advertising hoarding, high street and shop you come across. You have to learn to switch off to it. Otherwise you’ll go mad.
I hope that at some point Rebecca is able to be less affected by such hurtful remarks and remember that she is far better than most of these people will ever be. I appreciate that she moves in the celebrity world and that must it a difficult thing to switch off from.
If you are one of the shallow, mindless individuals that likes to send messages like this to people no doubt far better than you will ever be, shame on you. It’s time you got some help for your over inflated sense of self worth or for the towering sense of inferiority you clearly feel.