It has been some time since the need to pop in and rant has struck, but every now and then something worth addressing comes up and here we are. Sit, let’s have a Lemonade chat.
Recently there has been yet another photo circulating of Lil Kim, and more of her extreme surgery ans bleaching before and after photos. Admittedly, most of the people who saw the photo needed to do a double take, or read the comments before they even know who they were looking at.
Of course once the people of the Internet had a moment to adjust their eyes, the judgements flew like vultures.
“Sad”, “what happened to her?”, “thought that was a white woman”, “she’s crazy”, “that’s not Kim” (insert shifty eyes emoji)
It isn’t a shock that people are having a hard time processing Kim’s transformation, hell, some people are still trying to get over Aaliyah’s passing. The shocker is that so many people are missing the big issue with these changes, and are more comfortable labeling anyone who is against them as a shamer and accusing them of hating black women and being a part of the problem.
While there are some people that are totally against any form of surgery in terms of enhancement (not around these parts) there actually are some people that are fine with cosmetic surgery as a personal choice but are looking at Lil Kim’s surgery and understanding that it is clearly an issue of self esteem and self love.
Getting cosmetic surgery will always boost someone’s confidence, even a new pair of jeans or bra can make your day, but the issue is how much a person expects to get when they go under the knife. A lot of the issues Kim is trying to fix are much deeper than any surgeon can go… or wants to.
There have been countless discussions about why Kim felt the need to morph into another person, and one very common response is ‘society’ or the lack of appreciation from black men. Kim herself admitted in an interview that her low self esteem is a result of people telling her she isn’t good enough and men picking lighter women over her or women with a finer grade of hair.
The amount of understanding from black women on this topic is heartbreaking, of course women can understand and relate to Kim’s struggles, but there should be an understanding that this mental breakdown still needs to be addressed and not sympathized with.
One thing that is not acceptable is the belief that the best fix, or understandable option for low self esteem is to get surgery, and that anyone that does not agree doesn’t understand the struggle.
We need to stop the pity party, and sympathizing with this lack of self love and begin the internal change in the way our young girls and women view themselves, so that they are equipt to face a word that is going to tell them that they aren’t good enough, and mislead them into believeing that their beauty can be defined by society or the approval of men.
Trends change, once upon a time flat asses and thigh gaps were a standard of beauty. Now curvy women are making a comeback, and being featured on magazines and even included in the design of dolls for girls, yet women are still struggling with self esteem because it comes from a place that can’t be seen, nipped or tucked.
The difference between a person doing some “upgrades” and getting some cosmetic surgery for themselves and what Lil Kim and other celebrities have done, is that the constant need to change something, and enhance or bleach away their existence is not about doing something for themselves, it’s about doing something for other people.
Lil Kim has said that even her own father bashed her for her looks, and as soon as she could do something about it she did, and has obviously never stopped.
In many instances during a consultation with a plastic surgeon a candidate is asked what their reasons for getting surgery are, if the patient seems on the fence or says they are doing it for a boyfriend or even mentions someone other than themselves the doctor will tell them to reconsider and schedule another consultation. This is how a good doctor ensures that he is doing what is best for the patient and avoids a situation where you have someone coming back every other month trying to fix their internal issues with superficial changes.
Just like drugs and alcohol, plastic surgery and cosmetic enhancements can become a person’s way of covering up deeper issues and in Kim’s case she is still suffering. Simply brushing off her transformation as a “personal decision”, and dragging anyone who has a broader understanding of what is happening is the bigger part of the problem, not “policing” women’s rights to get cosmetic surgery. If you are right within and still want to get surged down, go for it!
More importantly, it is our responsibility to build our young girls up, and instill in them an unwavering confidence in themselves that can stand the test of the world around them, so they don’t feel pressure to change. You can not blame society and men for ruining our women’s self esteem forever, because we should be making it impossible for them to look anywhere but within for reassurance. We can’t change the world’s opinions of us or what is beautiful, but we can change the way we define what beautiful is and the way we feel about ourselves.