The power of online marginal communities over our self-image

The power of online marginal communities over our self-image

The internet and discussion groups can be a very valuable element when deciding on a surgical treatment. There are some groups that are very educational for their users, where in addition to opinions and well-informed explanations, experiences are shared in the first person. But at the other extreme, there are also groups where negative criticisms of the image of others are the currency of change.

In these forums, of which the best known is Lookism, users upload photos of themselves to receive criticism from other users, criticisms in most cases unfounded, and that can increase the anguish of the person about their appearance and generate a false urge to undergo radical changes.

Users of this type of forums can have many reasons to participate, from simple boredom, low self-esteem, desire to feel identified with other people, or even TDC (Body Dysmorphic Disorder), but even those who enter the forum with apparently no problem with their appearance,  can be vulnerable to their insecurities growing in an environment where negative criticism pour day in day out. When those people start to feel they are hopeless, they may befar more susceptible to group pressure, making decisions that they would not otherwise make or beginning to scrutinize their body from a very destructive point of view.

Rebuilding our face, or any other part of our body only with the hope that other people find us more attractive is never a good idea, besides being costly and physically dangerous, such procedures also carry enormous psychological risks. Experiencing them with very high expectations of the results, will only make us feel disappointed by the result, and it can be devastating for our mental health. Therefore, it is important to stay away from destructive criticism and this type of forums, as they can be very dangerous to our physical and mental health.

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