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Girls & Women

Jennifer Aniston Issues Scathing Critique of Body-Shaming Magazines

Jennifer Aniston is not pregnant — but she she is fed up.

After another rash of tabloids reports that the 47-year-old actress is expecting, she has finally had it and is speaking up for women everywhere.

In a blog post she published on the Huffington Post, Aniston addressed and denied rumors of her pregnancy, saying that the objectification women are put through is “absurd and disturbing.”

“I’m fed up with the sport-like scrutiny and body shaming that occurs daily under the guise of ‘journalism,’ the ‘First Amendment,’ and ‘celebrity news,’” she wrote.

She points out that paparazzi will go to any length to get photos of her and her husband, Justin Theroux, sometimes threatening public safety. She then discusses the bigger picture that tabloids paint for the readers.

Aniston is not the first woman to be put through scrutiny like this, and she said she wants to take part in a much larger conversation that has already begun.

“The way I am portrayed by the media is simply a reflection of how we see and portray women in general, measured against some warped standard of beauty,” said Aniston. “Sometimes cultural standards just need a different perspective so we can see the for what they really are — a collective acceptance.”

But accepting these standards is not OK. It’s offensive to women and teaches young girls to accept this harsh scrutinies.

Aniston said she used to relate tabloids to comic books, not to be taken seriously. But the harsh reality is that the objectification of women is reflective of a woman’s worth in society.

“This past month in particular has illuminated for me how much we define a woman’s value based on her marital and maternal status,” she said. “The sheer amount of resources being spent right now by the press trying to simply uncover whether or not I am pregnant points to the perpetuation of this notion that women are somehow incomplete, unsuccessful, or unhappy if they’re not married with children.”

This is simply untrue. Jennifer Aniston has had a wildly successful career, even without children. Oprah Winfrey, Coco Chanel, and others have also paved the way for single, childless women to be successful in their fields.

“Here’s where I come out on this topic: we are complete with or without a mate, with or without a child,” she said. “We get to decide for ourselves what is beautiful when it comes to our bodies. That decision is ours and ours alone. Let’s make that decision for ourselves and for the young women in this world who look to us as examples. Let’s make that decision consciously, outside of the tabloid noise. We don’t need to be married or mothers to be complete. We get to determine our own ‘happily ever after’ for ourselves.”

Aniston’s ultimate message is that women don’t, and shouldn’t, have to accept these standards placed on us by society. Women are beautiful — regardless of their shape, size, color, or belief. The sooner the rest of society realizes this, the sooner women and girls will have equal opportunities to education, employment and, most importantly, happiness and self-acceptance.


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