The men from our Bible study sat in my living room with confused looks on their faces as I handed out copies of the first chapter of Michelle Graham’s book, Wanting to Be Her. “Um, Nick? I don’t want to be her,” Steve joked. “I like me.” It was a humorous start to our serious discussion ahead. We were about to discuss body image.
Our Bible study at UT–Pan American had a scheduling conflict. One of the resident assistants of Unity Hall was putting on a body image program for all the women in the dorm the same night as our small-group Bible study. All of the girls in the Bible study went to the program, so I took the guys over to my apartment nearby.
The women’s discussion in the dorm was planned to talk about body image issues they struggle with. I thought it was important for the guys to begin to understand some of the issues that our sisters in Christ deal with on a regular basis. Together we read and discussed the first chapter of Wanting to Be Her: Body Image Secrets Victoria Won’t Tell You. We took a closer look at how society pushes certain values on women in all cultures. We also talked about some of the ways men’s language and actions perpetuate some of the lies that society says to women about beauty.
“I’m glad we’re talking about these things,” said Juan. “It’s just something that’s so taboo and I want to know how girls are feeling and what they think.”
Find out what happened next, after the men and women met together to continue the discussion. This story is on InterVarsity’s website for students, StudentSoul.org.