Em Ford, a Youtuber, broadcasted to the world a three-minute video in response to the hateful comments she received about her acne. This emotional three-minute video illustrates how our self-worth can be so easily shaken by the careless words of strangers. It starts with a beautiful woman that comes out barefaced and vulnerable. Her backdrop is the ongoing monologue of viscous comments in reply to her photo. After several shots, she begins to apply makeup to her face and soon she’s bathing in the compliments of strangers. She is radiant, lips curved upwards but then the seams begin to unravel and the vile comments come flooding back.
The back-story to this video is that Em Ford bared to the world her face stripped down to its bare form, a very brave action rewarded only by negative comments like, “Do you even wash your face?” and “You look disgusting.”
It startles me how cruel some people can be, how easily available they are to destroy someone’s confidence and judge them through their appearance. After she applies on her make up, she starts to receive compliment on her physical appearance and how “gorgeous, cute and totally beautiful” she is. She is called a goddess, worshipped by the pliant people persuaded by beauty. And then she is attacked.
As an adolescent struggling still to accept her physical self, I cried during my first viewing of this video. Reading the attacks on this beautiful woman made me think of not only how cruel some people can be but how words can cause someone to collapse within themselves. And this thought had me struggling because if we can’t even accept others…How are we to accept ourselves? I’ve fought and am still fighting with my insecurities. I hate my nose, the fact I’m not taller, the shape of my face and my voice. It’s scary to think that when I choose to begin to accept myself, that other people will tear me down. It scares me to think that in the future my children will have to grow up in a world that’s so insistent on picking at the flaws of someone instead of celebrating their true values as a person.
It seems our society is obsessed with deliberate cruelty and that as subjects, we can never win. A woman embraces herself and is shamed for her natural form. A woman wears makeup for whatever reason, to appease the public or to feel confident about herself, she is shamed for misleading people. It seems in a society that is so unaccepting, we should learn to do what pleases us and not let the comments of others, be it positive or negative, affect us to such a crippling extent.
Em Ford has done every self-conscious person a huge favor, she has taught us that leaving our self-worth to be dictated by the comments of others will always lead to our ￼downfall. We should learn to slowly accept ourselves and find confidence in what we see in the mirror and the qualities we hold as a person. Only occasionally getting support from the comments of others, clothes, makeup or by whatever that helps. A person is nothing but their intelligence, confidence and kindness. Don’t let the words of others change who you are or cause you hurt.
Towards the end of the video, Em Ford broke down into tears, but no sooner than she had did she wipe off all the comments and embraced herself. She stated herself to be beautiful and she is, and you know what? So are we. We as humans have to learned to ignore the imposing voice of society and learn to call ourselves beautiful. Because we are beautiful and anyone that disagrees isn’t worth the time of the day.