Insecurities: Human Height and Garry Trudeau

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Insecurities never seem to go away. Evidence of people continuously trying to overcome their insecurities is in every aspect of the world. People who have acne might use facial remedies to rid their skin of it. People who dislike their hair might try to hide it under a series of fake hair. There are even plastic surgeons that have the resources to completely alter the look of a person. Insecurity exerts a feeling of helplessness, causing an urgency to try to adapt or change the way one is.

In Garry Trudeau’s, My Inner Shrimp, he narrates an experience he had which led him to revisit his adolescence insecurity of being short. Being the third-smallest in a high school of one hundred boys, Trudeau was constantly ridiculed and made to feel like an outsider. He was dubbed to a group called the Midgets, accusing his height for his “lack of athletic success” and the “absence of a social life” (Trudeau 257). He felt so helpless about the situation that he hit a low point one night and started “sobbing in [his] father’s arms” (Trudeau 257). Though he is now an old man and has grown to a height of something over six feet, he still feels the pain of his humiliating and embarrassing adolescence years. He sometimes pondered going to a high-school reunion to surprise his classmates, but the insecurity that he never truly left behind cautions him.

During his era of self-pity, Trudeau tested several theories on how to grow tall. He tried to change his genetic coding by enforcing things, some people might have considered strange, and incorporated it into his daily routine. Things like “hanging from door frames, sleeping on [his] back, [and] doing assorted floor exercises” (Trudeau 257). His shame lowered his self-esteem causing him to feel inadequate and forcing him to want to change what he feels is inadequate about himself. Though, finally, his height issue was solved, he explains that it was “only to give way to a new [issue]” (Trudeau 257). That new issue or insecurity...
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