I’ve always paid attention to portrayals of masculinity in the media—and how I absorbed those messages. As a hyper self-conscious teen, the idolization of the athletic male form in the health-crazed 80s was that much… louder. And it wasn’t just the body worship photography. Headlines, interviews, and pull quotes all suggested that these men had reached a higher level of humanity. If you achieve an ideal body, everything else falls into place. Very irrational and unhealthy thinking. Yet, these forms are still very compelling to look at, which complicated how I viewed myself and my male peers for many years to come.