In Denmark, there is something called Børnetelefonen, which basically is a child helpline where children can call with all their problems. In 2014 there was a huge rise in calls regarding body and sexuality. I think it’s a worrying trend and that it simultaneously shows the pressure is on body ideals in society.
Most of the questions that the children were asking were still about love, unfriendly people and stuff like that. But new questions have entered the top 10 question, and that is what is worrying.
A change in the questions
Bente Boserup, Head of Child Helpline says
– We are seeing a larger body fright than previously among the children and young people who contact us. They see silicone breasts on the buses, and the boys see big penises on the net and think that their own is too small.
– There has been a general pornification of the body, and the kids are confused about the worship of the constructed body, while generally being talked less about the body and sexuality in society because no one will be accused of paedophilia, she says.
Professor Christian Graugaard isn’t surprised
Christian Graugaard, professor of sexology at Aalborg University, is not surprised that the children’s helpline is getting more questions about the body and sexuality:
– It probably reflects the fact that children and young people today are living in a public space that is filled with ideals of the good body, good sex and good sexuality, he says to the paper Kristlig Dagblad.
– If the coils a few generations back, it was not the same massive bombardment of the ideals that we see in popular culture today, he says.
A backlash is needed
We live in a society where people post picture perfect bodies on Instagram and Facebook, where medias tries to make nudity equal to sex, photoshopped pictures are the norm and porn is easily accessible. This is how it is. I am not advocating that you should make laws and restrictions because I don’t think it will have any good effects.
What I am advocating about is that if we loosen up a bit, and start showing the world that nudity is not equal sex and that a human body actually is very different from person to person.
I think that naturism, nudism or just people who love to be nude can be a part of that backlash. When you bring your child to a nude beach or at a naturist resort, your child will learn that we are all equal and different at the same time. Some are high, some is low, some has a little more on the side bones and others is skinny, some have a large penis and some has a small one. It is all natural and it is actually ok that we are different, so why don’t we praise it.