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Girls of 11 call Childline over 'body shame' Celebs' perfect online images blamed.

Byline: JILLY BEATTIE

NEGATIVE body image issues are driving young girls in Northern Ireland to call Childline seeking help, advice and support.

Last year at least 40 girls in Northern Ireland aged 11 to 15 received counselling for worries about their body image while three sessions were delivered to boys.

It means girls here are up to 13 times more likely than boys to receive support from the charity helpline.

One 12-year-old girl told them: "I'm feeling really sad and I don't like myself. I keep comparing myself to pictures of people in magazines and people on TV and I wish I looked like them.

"I don't want to talk to people about this because I don't want to worry them."

A 17-year-old girl said: "I hate my body, when I'm with my friends I always feel like the fat one. I can't dress like my friends because it makes me feel fat and ugly. I'm too embarrassed to tell anybody how I'm feeling and it's making me really lonely."

More than 2,500 counselling sessions about negative body image issues were delivered to young people across the UK last year.

The Northern Ireland figures form part of a total of 2,609 counselling sessions, with 980 of these received by girls aged 12 to 15. A further 120 counselling sessions were delivered to girls aged 11 and younger.

Loose Women star Stacey Solomon refuses to let her children use social media and posted images of herself with and without make-up to show the realities behind the images, when she got a black eye by accident.

Childline founder Dame Esther Rantzen said: "It's sad and extremely worrying girls in particular are so unhappy with the way they look. Without the right support and change in attitude there's a danger these issues could continue into adulthood."

Adults concerned about a youngster can call the NSPCC helpline free, 24/7, on 0808 800 5000. Children can call Childline at any time on 0800 1111, visit www.childline.org.uk or download the For Me app

laura.connor@mirror.co.uk

CAPTION(S):

WORRIED Esther Rantzen

No black eye, flawless skin and groomed hair after make-up

Stacey reveals her black eye, poor skin and hair before make-up

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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Oct 5, 2017
Words:374
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