Tonight's much-anticipated "Hills" premiere was a bit of a bummer. Not because it didn't deliver the drama or hold our attention -- it did that 10-fold -- but because it was actually painful to hear Heidi Pratt confess to having little confidence prior to her plastic surgeries.
Doesn't just about every late-bloomer stuff her bra when she's younger? (Maybe not with "water balloons," but still...) Don't many women feel fat/fug once in a while, even to the point of obsessing over diet and exercise? But at what point does this type of body-consciousness cross the line from normal female behavior into something that greatly affects your self-esteem, as well as your relationships with loved ones?
For "Hills" fans who don't get a chance to watch MTV's "True Life" series, a few weeks ago we aired an episode entitled "True Life: I Hate My Face." It featured two young women with Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), a condition described by the Mayo Clinic as "a type of chronic mental illness in which you can't stop thinking about a flaw with your appearance -- a flaw either that is minor or that you imagine." At the end of the doc, neither girl was "cured" of her BDD (or even became more comfortable in her own skin) despite undergoing plastic surgery.
By no means are we diagnosing Heidi with BDD -- we're not doctors. Plus, as she said in tonight's show, she's never been happier. Unfortunately, it's probable that many viewers who watched the episode or have been following Heidi's transformation do in fact suffer from BDD, so we thought it was important to help raise awareness and point out resources.
Our outsides matter very much in America -- we're not approving or condemning it, rather simply acknowledging it. The closest thing we have to royalty are Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, two of the most attractive people you could ever lay eyes upon, but the vast majority of us don't look like glamorous celebrities. By now, we've put superstars like "Brangelina" on such a pedestal and on the covers of so many magazines that they've ceased to be real people. So here we are, getting real and suggesting you do some research, talk to a friend and/or seek professional help if you suspect you may have BDD.
+ Have you ever considered getting plastic surgery? Take the poll and see where you stand amongst your peers.