Post # 1
I have been finding the other thread about whether or not you think you’re comparatively prettier than others to be very interesting. It has made me wonder a few things:
For those of you with high self-esteem (regarding physical appearance), have you always been this way? If so, what do you think influenced the development of your good self-esteem? Was it just because people always told you that you were pretty, so you developed a self-image around that? Was it because of the way your parents raised you? Something else? Or if you didn’t always have high self- esteem, what changed?
For those of you with low self-esteem (regarding physical appearance), why do you think this is? Does the cause feel 100% internal or a result of the way people have acted towards you over time? Were you just raised to be “too” humble and therefore raised to feel that acting confident was bad? Something else?
Post # 2
I feel like I have pretty high self-esteem. While I have my bad days I would say 95% of the time I’m happy with how I look.
I actually feel that my self esteem is probably high despite my mother who in the past has been in credibly cruel regarding my weight. She’s said (and screamed) awful things at me and put me in tears many times. I still feel a lot of anxiety being around her and especially eating around her.
My dad on the other hand is amazing. He’s always been such a positive person in my life and is always lifting me up. I definitely credit at least some of myself self-esteem to him.
People have commented on my looks before but honestly not very often. So I don’t think it comes from people always telling me I’m pretty because that’s just not the case.
If I’m completely honest, I don’t really know where my confidence comes from. It’s just something I’ve always had. Even when I was little I was a very confident, independent person. It kind of feels like I was just born that way, I guess.
Post # 3
I think I have decent self esteem currently as an adult, but it has not always been that way. I have never been the girl in the group that guys are paying attention to and I don’t think I ever will be, and in high school and college I formed my self-image around what other people thought (or didn’t think) about me. In my twenties I gained a lot more independence and that made a world of difference.
That being said, I have a fabulous husband who loves me and tells me I’m beautiful, I am good at my profession and have a lot of confidence in relation to those abilities, and I have grown comfortable and proud in who I am and what I have to offer.
Post # 4
hikingbride : Aww, your dad sounds awesome! The end of your post just reminded me of how confident I was as a kid. I remember running for this event in elementary school in is super weird outfit, all sweaty with messy hair, and just thinking I was awesome as I ran around the track even though looking back in photos I was being super dorky. My confidence isn’t so low that it is problematic, but I really miss that feeling of being awesome and not giving a sh**. I felt so free!
Post # 5
I have a decent self-esteem. However, I do have certain things that bother me more than most. I think it stems from the horrifying bullying I went through as a kid and into highschool. I didn’t turn into the kid that shoots up the school, but the girl who can’t manage to pick a darn sweater to wear because she’s worried about what people will think.
I do have to admit over the last year I had a high self-esteem. Then with a few changes its dropped back to normality. Although, I think I became somewhat concited. So I’m glad to have a decent self esteem.
Post # 6
You don’t have to think you’re pretty to have good self- esteem. That seems odd to me. I have good self esteem because I’m A-ok with how I look and who I am. That is irrespective of whether I think I’m good looking. It definitely doesn’t matter to me what others think.
But. I do think I’m good looking. I just look in the mirror & decide for myself that I’m pretty.
Post # 7
I’ve always had low self esteem. My wider (not immediate) family always told me I was fat, wouldn’t amount to anything, had silly hair etc. My mum and dad always tried to bolster my self esteem but it stuck in my head. I decided that if I couldn’t do much about my looks I’d work on my brain. I worked ridiculously hard and did well at school and was the first of my family to go to university and now I’m a teacher myself. It made me work harder in that way but in the back of my mind I still see myself as fat and ugly. I’m not hugely overweight but will never be skinny and while not horrific to look at am nothing special. I have had a major problem with food all my life. Now I make sure I always tell my kids they’re gorgeous amazing and how proud I am of them and I encourage healthy food choices while not being focussed on it as I never want them to experience the self hatred I often felt growing up.
Post # 8
I have great self esteem but its not because I think im good looking. I am confident because I have accepted myself for who I am and how I look. Objectively, I have a decently pretty face but my body lets me down (especially lately). I could be better looking, I could be much worse but I dont focus on comparing myself to others. You have to work with what you have and if you cant accept yourself, no one else will. I think insecurity shows more than physical attributes when it comes to attractiveness. Be confident in who you are and learn to embrace what you have.
As for parents and friends, for every ‘your face is beautiful’ ive had a ‘you could lose some weight’. I dont think anything of it really. Ive always been the girl that was told ‘you could be a model if you lost weight’ but honestly ive never wanted to be a model and if im going to lose weight it will be for me not for anyone else. My mother has terrible self esteem and used to take it out on me and the way I look. I feel sorry for her than she still cant accept the way she looks at her age and im grateful that I never suffered poor self esteem like she did.
Post # 9
I have pretty high self esteem. Currently, my face is full of acne (thanks baby). I just looked at myself in the mirror and thought “woah.” And then I though, “oh well.” And went on with my day. While I don’t see myself as better looking than most, I still think I have self confidence. But my husband thinks I’m beautiful, and I don’t disagree with him:)
Post # 10
jannigirl : that is true, of course. I just chose to focus on the physical side because that is what the other thread focused on. I personally have very high esteem with regards to my career, morals, and other aspects of my life. I think what separates esteem about physical versus non-physical factors is that the physical cannot be changed in a lot of cases (unless you hide features with lots of make up, get surgery, or whatever) where as other non-physics things that build esteem can be worked on more easily. I know I can work my way to the top of my career, but I can’t “work my way” to being tall, for example.
Post # 11
- Wedding: June 2008 - County courthouse
Ive always had low self esteem…even when I was a size 2 when I was 19. Now I’m 30 and my self esteem has gotten better. It’s funny too cuz I’m a size 14-16 now. I’m 5’8 and considered obese. I think I’m over weight and thick…but I’ve always had curves..even when I was skinny. When I turned 30 last yr, I decided to learn to love my body as is. Why am I going to spend the rest of my life hating the body I live in. Sometimes I feel beautiful…other times I feel like a hippo. But most of the time I feel ok about my appearance. I don’t consider myself hot anymore…but who really cares??? There is much more to me than my outward appearance.
Post # 12
lightningbumble : I get what you are saying, still i don’t think that you have to think of yourself as pretty to feel good about your looks. Pretty isn’t the only adjective that garners self esteem. Words like “strong” “interesting” even “serviceable” work.
Post # 13
lightningbumble : Growing up, when I fell into the “awkward” stage (11-13 years old) I got teased A LOT!!! Boys, and girls for that matter, were so cruel! So by the time I grew out of that stage I still always saw all those imperfections I once had. The Summer after my 8th grade year I completely transformed and grew into myself so much so that my teachers didn’t even recognize me when I came back in 9th grade, but I still had in my head that I was that ugly duckling. I’m almost 30 now and I do find myself attractive, mostly my body and not so much my face. Society is no help either. I think we are sooooo hard on ourselves and constantly thinking about what we would change instead of embracing our looks. And I am totally guilty of that. I have been trying to make a concious effort in loving my body and my face! After all, I am marrying a man that loves me with or without makeup and even with the few extra pounds I’ve put on in the last couple of years!
Apart from my looks though, I feel like I have incredible self-esteem that developed in just the last few years after my heart was crushed into a million pieces and I picked myself back up and learned to love myself. It was so empowering.
Post # 14
I have very high self esteem because I chose to – seriously. I believe what God thinks of me and have always been this way (although I was relentlessly teased for being too skinny when I was really young.
Also, I must admit that I do get lots of compliments about my physical appearance since I’ve taken serious care of my body and started learning how to apply makeup, hair, etc. so that has helped on the superficial tip. But also as a mother now and even with the things I have accomplished academically with (almost) no other support, I revel in what my body and my mind has accomplished so far. There is ONE me and I only have one shot at this – I refuse to allow anyone else to make me feel bad about myself. I feel strong because I am. It’s all about me believing that I can accomplish darn near anything if I put my mind to it.
Post # 15
Up until recently, I’ve had pretty high self esteem. I think it’s because I was an athlete and did sports up until college, so I was physically always in great shape. I have always been curvy but still thin. However, these last 2-3 years I am become less thin and more curvy. I’ve got a small figure so the extra 10-15 pounds just doesn’t sit well for me. I’m working to lose these extra pounds and get back to feeling better about myself, but I think my biggest struggle has been going from the girl who’s got it going on, to this awkward post-college phase I’m in now.