Self-esteem/ body image spin-off

posted 2 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 16
Member
511 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

I didn’t comment on the other thread, but I would consider my self esteem high. I didn’t have good self esteem when I was younger. I had horrific acne, people made fun of me for being so pale and too skinny, I hated my nose and other features like my small chest. Now I love myself. There are things I would change but I don’t focus on them or fixate on “what if I changed it” because honestly, why bother. I gained weight (finally) in college and I LOVE it. I love having some curves and I am not toned by any means but oh well.

I guess I basically just stopped giving a shit about what other people thought. Like, who cares? I could point out all your flaws but the reason you’re picking on me is because you are insecure. I don’t “flaunt” it but I am almost always feeling good about myself. Above looks, I also think I am very intelligent compared to my peers and that helps too. I stopped caring about outside opinions and the rest just came naturally!

Post # 17
Member
713 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

I think I have moderately high self esteem – not through the roof, but I recognize my value and am usually comfortable with my body physically.  Sure, there are things I wouldn’t mind changing, but like PP said, I kind of stopped giving a shit about what other people may think because the only validation I need is from my Fiance (which I receive); I’m sure that’s helped boost my confidence.

I am definitely still self conscious at times and was very much so as a younger teenager (though I don’t know who wasn’t at that age), but I just remind myself that people are most likely not watching and analyzing my every move, and to get over myself 😉

Post # 18
Member
2510 posts
Sugar bee

I’ve had phases of lower self esteem (e.g. awkward middle school years and high school years where I needed a lot of validation to feel good about myself), but overall I’d say I’ve felt good about myself for most of my life. I think part of it is probably just my natural personality, and part of it is probably based on feeling really loved as a kid. I (usually) got the message from my family that I was enough, and I was told that I was loved and beautiful and smart. No one in my family ever put me down for my looks. I am of course flawed, but I’ve pretty much always liked myself, and loved myself, as a whole. 

In terms of being happy with how I looked? I think it’s partly that I like what I see in the mirror (and it matches closely enough with modern standards of beauty) and partly that I have been told that I’m attractive throughout my life enough for me to believe it. That’s not to say there aren’t things that I would like to change if I could – smoother skin, get rid of my undereye circles, have washboard abs – but overall I like what I see. I’m really petite, and for a long time I wished I was taller and felt insecure about it… but I’ve come to accept it and realize that “petite” is actually attractive to a lot of people. I’ve tended to date guys a foot taller than me, so if it doesn’t bother them, it doesn’t bother me. If someone is into tall blondes or voluptuous curves I’m definitley the wrong girl for them, but luckily there’s more than one type of pretty. 

Post # 19
Member
718 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I find it interesting that everyone relates self-esteem to appearance and no one relates self-esteem to how good you are at things mentally or physically. It’s quite sad. self worth is not based solely on appearance and I think it’s important to remember that. 

Post # 20
Member
2510 posts
Sugar bee

thesoontobemrsv :  She asked specifically about body image/appearance self esteem, so that’s why the answers here are skewed to that. 

ETA: I think my self esteem overall is more tied to my other traits/accomplishments, but that’s not what she asked. For example, I took time off before college and was working dead end retail jobs, and in that time I felt pretty down about myself. Then I worked my butt off to get into college, graduate at the top of my class with highest honors, and get a job in my field. And then I worked really hard to get into a fully-funded ivy league grad program. I volunteer in my free time and I’m a kind and loyal partner and friend. I am far more proud of those things than how I look, but I’m glad that I’m comfortable with myself physically. It doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive. 

Post # 21
Member
375 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2019

I am generally pretty insecure about my appearance (and that unfortunately makes me have lower self-worth than I should), but I am confident about my career and education and ambition and morals and intelligence and kindness. I’ve always been insecure to some extent though, and I really can’t figure out why. 

Post # 22
Member
2676 posts
Sugar bee

I think I have made the best of what I have and am confident of myself when I leave the house.  I take care of my body, dress in flattering clothes and keepup nails and hair. I do it for ME, no one else {ok, my husband too but he tells me Im beautiful when I’ve just rolled out of bed and can’t find the hairbrush}. I enjoy the girly manis, pedis and hair appointments.  I’ve gotten more confident as I get older.

If I chose not to fix myself up befoer I go out so be it.  Anyone who has a problem with that can kiss my ass.

 

Post # 23
Member
1056 posts
Bumble bee

I’m going to be completely honest here.  Because why not?  I wish I was like you all and had an inherent sense of worth and high self esteem.  Not so the case despite being highly educated (law degree and other nonphysical positive attributes) and have been called beautiful (I really don’t see it at all).  

But I grew up as a dancer/ballerina, so my self-esteem has always been directly tied to my body/weight.  Absolutely disgusting, but absolutely true.  I’m now almost 50 years old and look like I’m late 30s because I’m obsessive about how I look and won’t miss my workouts.  But if I gain even 5 lbs, it triggers the insecurities and self loathing so much so that I won’t go out in public because I feel gross.  I lost 35 lbs about a year ago and have kept it off and I am so much happier.  But as I said, it is fleeting and a constant focus (like I think about it throughout the day, everyday).  Btw, for reference, I am 5’6″ and now 118 lbs.  It’s a horrible way to go through life and I wish I wasn’t like this.  I’ve been through therapy so many times and I’m still the way I am.  It makes me so sad at times.  I tear myself up about how I look constantly.  Ugh. 

Post # 25
Member
413 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

I had debilitatingly low self esteem up until a few years ago. I do not have conventionally attractive features: a super wide, square jaw, butt chin, big nose, small eyes, big forehead, acne, a gap in my teeth, flat chested, perpetually fluffy/frizzy hair.. I could go on. I have been called ugly so many times, I couldn’t even tell you. By “friends.” By teachers. By bullies. Even my family has made digs at me.

I developed an eating disorder at the age of 10. I would spend hours applying makeup and straightening my hair. But no matter how much weight I lost, no matter how many hours I put into my appearance, I never felt any prettier.

But you know what? As an adult, I figured it out. The secret. My purpose in life is not, and will never be, to look pretty. My life got so much fucking better once I changed my mindset and stopped caring about whether or not other people thought I was attractive.

I no longer need to put on five layers of makeup to leave the house. I still wear makeup, but I wear it because I like it, not because I’m terrified that somebody will say something rude. I no longer starve myself or exercise excessively. My body is healthy, it is strong, and anybody who has a problem with it can kiss the cellulite on my ass.

I am a wonderful wife and an even better mother. I am smart and funny and kind. And I don’t have time to worry about looking “pretty” for anybody except myself (and, to an extent, my husband). I take care of myself. I am healthy, and I am happy. And I’m a total fucking babe just the way I am.

Post # 26
Member
413 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

ETA: I’m not suggesting that everybody can just decide to have high self esteem, and all of their insecurities will magically vanish. I know that it’s much more complex than that, and every person is different. But I was exhausted from spending my entire life trying to be “pretty.” And for me, changing my mindset worked. Having a supportive husband didn’t hurt, either.

Post # 27
Member
3294 posts
Sugar bee

My self esteem got better after I left high school after being bullied by my so-called friends about my looks. I was struggling with depression already AND anorexia while this was happening- So having my (very overweight) ‘friends’ call me ugly and ‘Annie’ god knows what else because they were jealous (only worked that out later) was terrible for my self-esteem. ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE.

After all that I realised I was a much better person than they were, and that looks aren’t everything. After that I just decided to ditch anyone whow as negative and that didn’t add anything positive to my life, it did me the world of good. I AM attractive, but these days I find it’s more important to focus on actually being a good person, rather than looking like a knockout 24/7. It just doesn’t matter that much to me.

 

Post # 29
Member
7905 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Self esteem and body image aren’t necessarily one and the same. I think I’m pretty great because of my intelligence and productivity, but I realize I’m not a typical beauty. I don’t even wear make-up. Looks aren’t everything, nor are looks longlasting. Beauty wasn’t a characteristic that was cultivated by my parents when I was growing up, and for that I am thankful. 

Post # 30
Member
1128 posts
Bumble bee

lightningbumble :  I go from one extreme to the other.  I’m EXTREMELY into my appearance- I spend a ton of time taking care of myself and about 1/3 of that time feeling good about myself.  The other 2/3 I spend hating my crooked nose and noticing fine lines on my face.

 

Both of my parents are really attractive and my whole life they were VERY vocal about their own appearances while also being extremely critical of others.  Most other women were “fat” or “gross” according to my mom.  My dad usually will describe how people look before saying anything about their character.  When I was 13 my parents sat me down to tell me that “I wasn’t fat yet but I have big bone structure so I should be careful.”

I’ve had several eating disorder phases since high school..

 

 

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