Tween Girls Share Their Body Image Impressions With Model Ashley Graham

The girls were interviewed by "GMA" four years ago and again this month.

ByABC News
November 10, 2015, 9:45 AM

— -- Many girls and women wage a daily battle over their body image.

Several year ago, “Good Morning America” gathered a group of young girls between ages 5 and 8 and asked for their opinions on body images.

“GMA” showed the girls stock images of other young girls and got their first impressions of them.

One of their criticisms was that the girl in one image was “really chubby wubby” and had “chubby arms” that made the model look “weird.”

“GMA” brought the girls – now 10 to 12 years old – together again with curvy model and body activist Ashley Graham. Graham asked them for their reaction to the same images they had seen when they were younger.

The girls – Sasha, Sophia, Natalie, Helena, Lorelei and Serena -- reacted very differently. Many of their opinions had softened over the years, and they showed compassion.

Tune into "Good Morning America" all week for Graham's special “‘GMA’ Body Proud” series featuring real conversations about body image with women of all ages.

“Do you still think she’s chubby wubby?” Graham asked.

“No,” said Sophia.

When Graham asked what “chubby wubby” meant, Sophia replied: “I don’t know. I guess she’s bigger and not as healthy as all of them. But I don’t really think that as much anymore.”

Graham asked the girls whether they thought overweight people were ugly.

“No,” they all replied.

Added Natalie: “You could have a really overweight body but that doesn't mean they're not really pretty.”

Some of the girls were even embarrassed by the answers they gave when they were younger.

“We were so weird back then … There's really no such thing as a perfect size,” said Sasha.

“What does looking good mean to you guys?” Graham asked.

“It's kind of like looking good as a role model for other people and staying healthy,” Helena replied.

The girls all agreed that the most important thing was not to judge a book by its cover.

“You need to get to know a person before you judge them,” Lorelei said.

Graham said the biggest thing she learned from the new interview with the girls was that “their vocabulary was so different.”

“They were so aware of what they were saying,” she explained on “Good Morning America” today. “Five years ago they were using the words fat, chubby wubby, whatever that means, and now they’re using words like diabetes, obesity, cholesterol and they’re saying ‘fit’ all the time. They’re having a better understand of what healthy actually means. I don’t know if I understood exactly what that meant when I was their age and it’s a really good thing.”

She also noted that “You can tell they’re being educated now.”

“They’re being educated to understand obesity can lead to all of these diseases that they were naming off,” she said.

After Graham showed the girls an unretouched photo of herself in lingerie, the girls were making comments such as, “I think you look really sexy but why are you in your lingerie?” rather than noticing her cellulite or stretch marks. Graham believes those observations could possibly change once the girls reach high school, however.

“I think in about five more years we’ll get a whole new interview with them and we’re going to really understand what they’re thinking then because they’ll be in high school,” she said.

Tune into "Good Morning America" all week for Graham's special “‘GMA’ Body Proud” series featuring real conversations about body image with women of all ages.