Sunday 5 July 2015


Reader Sophia writes about the pressures facing young teens to be perfect…

Sophia says:
I used to strive to be like those people on the covers of the latest magazine, or in the latest movies; I thought I could show the best of me if only I could manage to look or act that way. I had unrealistic goals, and deep down I knew it. You know when everyone tells you that you should just be yourself, and you get that feeling for just a millisecond that maybe, just maybe, you are not so bad after all? But then of course our society shuts it all down with yet another advert for expensive make-up or designer-label clothes to make you look better than ever… and the stress starts up all over again.

Well, I finally worked it out. The best of me does not look like the model on the cover of a bestselling magazine, or the actress on a movie screen. The best of me is never going to happen when I have unrealistic ideas of what I should be. No, I am at my best when I am at peace with my flaws and imperfections. The best of me is not how I look, it's how I act. Any picture can be photoshopped, but who I really am cannot.

So today, I strive to be the best person I can in the way I do things in my life and for the people around me. Even though I know our world's perspective will never change no matter how hard I try or how much I need it to, I will pick up the broken pieces of our world in order to show people that the best of someone is NOT on the outside.

Cathy says:
Wow… I love Sophia's post. It's so heartfelt and so full of good sense… I totally agree that true beauty - the 'best of you' - is on the inside. Do YOU ever feel pressured by TV, magazines and movies to be impossibly perfect? COMMENT BELOW to have your say...


  1. I sometimes feel like that too, but I'm mainly annoyed when it comes to perfect spotless skin - and I've finally found the secret to it! You're probably going to think that she's gone bonkers when you hear it, but it's true! The secret to perfect, less acne-fied skin is to BE HAPPY! I was feeling happy for a few days and now my acne has heavily reduced from before; my trick has works like magic! Try it!

    If you're looking for a scientific and more logical reasoning behind this theory, then here it is. If you're feeling stressful in your life, probably due to mood swings and that kind of stuff, your hormones release a chemical called sebum which gets clogged up in with your skin's natural oils, causing the dreaded spot! But if you are happy, your hormones will not need to release any sebum, therefore you can bid farewell to you spots! Easy peasy lemon squeezy, and with no cost whatsoever!

  2. This is such a good message and I am sure so many people can relate to this!
    I like to write and I have a blog of my own I was wondering how you ask to write on this blog. Thanks

    1. Em, email me via the link over on or message me via the Cathy Cassidy Facebook fanpage - would love to have you writing for the blog! xxx

  3. I agree. I've always considered people to be who they ARE, not what they look like. The body is just a vessel for the mind, really. Maybe that's a hippie-dippie sort of viewpoint but it makes sense to me! I've never felt pressured to be like models or actresses or anyone else. They're them and I'm me, totally different people. When my friends used to make me up to look like them, I'd look in the mirror and despite the fact that they said I looked way better like that, I didn't think it matched the way I felt. I didn't feel confident, I just felt kind of out of place and fake. Yes, I may have been physically pretty in my friends' eyes but I was far prettier as a "weirdo" because in my choice of clothes, I'm confident and thoughtful and comfortable with myself. And that's way more important than looking like some photoshopped model. Why strive for the unobtainable? I think I'd be pretty happy if I could be a cat but I know it's impossible so I've learnt to be happy with who I am (minus the acne - I'm not perfect, you know!) rather than wishing to be something that no one can ever be. Better to be happy and healthy than make yourself miserable by trying to be something impossible. That's how I see it anyway. Like, we're bowls of fruit. The fruit is our mind and that's what's important, that's what people are interested in. The bowl is our body. We can decorate it how we like, we can make it representative of our fruit/mind, people will think your bowl is ugly or pretty...but in the end, it's still the fruit that is important. It's still the fruit that is meaningful. People can admire and judge the bowl but they cannot ignore the fruit because it is a huge part of the whole bowl of fruit/person. The bowl is just there to carry the fruit. Am I making sense or am I just rambling?

  4. Hi Cathy, I drew a picture of one of your characters on my blog...
    Please check it out and comment what you think. It would be great if you could follow me too! xxx

    1. If you send me a blog link I will have a look… can't see a link here, sorry? Apologies if you have sent one before but get ten or so blog links sent daily of late… hard to keep up! xxx


    3. Have found the blog but cannot see the pictures? When were they posted? xxx

  5. I hate all of the pressures on young teens to have to live up to crazy standards that have been set by the media. It's all so unrealistic, and quite scary the lengths that some people will go to to achieve what they believe to be 'perfect'. It's just wrong. Society lives to unachievable and damaging ideals, and it causes far more damage than can be seen on the outside.

    I'm a 4 Peer Educator for Girlguiding Midlands, and I did my basic training a few months ago on a project entitled Free Being Me, which was jointly developed by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) and Dove. I was trained to deliver sessions to girls at Brownie age (7-10) and Guide age (10-14) all about body confidence, and how it's completely natural to be yourself and do what you want without having to pay attention to the pressure applied tenfold by the media. I've delivered sessions to Brownies so far, and it's really surprising at how at their young age, the media already seems to have hooks into their minds about how their bodies should look...and they are seven!

    From a personal point of view, I look at these photoshopped pictures of models and it just makes me feel sad, because it's almost like the magazines are saying that no one is perfectly flawless at all, when in reality there is no such thing as a flawless person. Our flaws make us unique. Without our flaws and out differences, the world would be full of clones of the same person.

    In my mind, I'm just glad I have knees, because as I found out when I was doing my basic training, they are the first things to be photoshopped out of magazine photographs! Imagine having no knees...

  6. I feel a bit small here, because you have all written such long answers! From my point of view, whenever I see Taylor Swift, or Beyonce, I feel bad. But then I remind myself, 'nobody can look like them, because that is them! Look like you, act like you, and you will feel as good as they look'

    Hoped this helped,
    Miri Ellerman



Reader Emily, aged ten, explains how a Cathy Cassidy book inspired her to raise money for a refugee charity... Emily says: The Cathy Cassidy...