Urgent Advice Needed. Please help?
I'm sorry about the length of this question, in advance.Just by asking this question, I feel really nervous and anxious. I've never felt confident with my appearance... well... ever. I can remember hating myself as early as Grade 4 and it's gotten worse since then. I turned 15 a few days ago and despite having a really good few days, I've done nothing but cry for the past 2 hours.
I absoloutely hate myself. I don't want to look in the mirror anymore and everytime I do, I just burst into tears because of the monster that reflects back at me. I've made a physical list of all my imperfections but I'm not going to write them all down here. Though, they do include: my puffy eyes, fair skin, freckles on arms, ocassional acne, bad hair, braces, squinty eyes when I smile, my body not being proportioned nicely and a chubby face. I could go on forever.
Going out with friends has become a chore and I force myself to school everyday. I can't stand seeing the other attractive girls and comparing myself to them. Tonight alone, I have pulled out my ID card from my purse over 10 times just to scrutinize my every feature and I dread the day in a few weeks when it's published in the year book.
I would die to look like anyone else. It's hard feeling the way I do constantly and I wouldn't wish these feelings on ANYONE else. I feel like I'm in a dark and lonely place. I've reached out and tried to explain my feelings to only a couple of people but I don't think they truly understand the desperation and anger that I feel within myself. Counselling probably isn't even an option for me right now.
This is not an "Am I pretty?" question and I beg you not to rate me, but I am including link of my photo at the bottom of this question. I am so hesitant to post this link because I don't want any hateful comments. Though, I am expecting them.
Is there anything I can do to get out of this mess? How can I reverse years of self-hate and feel better about myself? Any advice will do. I can't cope with this anymore.
I wait anxiously for your answers... Thanks in advance..
I forgot to add that I know this is the age where a lot of people become critical of the appearance but I think my problems are severe compared with the body image that my peers have.
I can't believe I've posted a picture of myself.
I feel the tears coming back... Oh gosh.
That photo isn't the best one of me.. the lighting isn't even good. I took it last night because i had no pictures on this computer. I regret posting it... I still feel slightly panicky.
AH! Oh my gosh. Thankyou all for such brilliant answers. I don't know how on earth I'm going to choose a best one. The help I've recieved is incredible, amazing and brilliant. I will most definately take all of your advice to heart. Even the past few days, I've been feeling a lot better about myself, thanks to you all.
I'm going to try and choose a best answer tonight but I have no idea how I'm going to choose it. It's a good problem to have.
- 1 decade agoFavorite Answer
Aw, Kirsty ... I know how these kind of feelings hurt to the core, of believing that you're somehow not pretty or worthy enough, but you can't let them take captive of you or tamper with the way you view yourself. If, from Yahoo! Answers, I've discovered what a kind, thoughtful, and beautiful girl you are (and believe me, not just on the inside), I'm 100% certain that so many feel the same way. Through your questions, I know how you are dealing with a lot, but simultaneously, you seem so put together, and your answers are guaranteed to put a smile on my face, every time! I really, truly encourage that you put everything into perspective ... think about it. Maybe when you look in the mirror, you're basing your *entire* view of yourself (encompassing all your characteristics and morals) purely on your looks, which is totally not the right way to go about it. Have you ever contemplated for a moment that this "monster" that reflects back at you also has a heart of gold, an awesome sense of humor, and an endless supply of love for Jason Mraz, among other things and people?
Although I've stressed about my looks in the past, now I don't bother, because not only is it degrading, and gnaws continually at my self esteem, but the fact of the matter is that these thoughts are tiresome and useless. They suck up all the energy you have and drain it out until you have just about as much juice as a dried up lemon. The analogy isn't the greatest, but do you get what I mean? I used to fret over my awkward and gangling height because I had a tendency to slump over in order to keep a conversation with people. I thought my hair was too wild, and my skin, like yours, was too sensitive and blemished easily. I thought of myself as some sort of deformed hunchback with unruly bedhead hair and acne. But believe me, this is NOT what others see. Something that bothers you, like puffy eyes, can instantly be cured by placing a cold spoon over your lids, while someone else out there is bound to love your smile, or your rosy cheeks (believe me, I can relate to having some baby fat on my face and it's not terrible at all!).
Going out with friends should be something you enjoy. Knowing the kind of busy bee you are, a break like this should be rewarding, not destructive of your confidence. When it comes to school, remind yourself constantly that it isn't the place for Runway castings, rather, it's where students learn and make the best out of their talents. Something that has worked for me perfectly is this tactic: Set intellectual goals for yourself to distract your mind from focusing on the less important and trivial matters, such as minor physical imperfections. Do something worthy of your achievement and pride. Work your way up to the top of your class, become the leader of a club, take a risk and join a club, sport, or endeavor you've never tried before, or learn how to express your talents in some other creative way. And when you achieve these goals that you've worked hard to accomplish, you will feel a sense of pride that no set of nice clothing or good hair day could.
Equally, when it comes to doing things with friends, do something fun and fully immerse yourself in the quality time you're spending together. Go to an amusement park, bake some cookies, or volunteer together in your local nursing home, hospital, or a school for underpriveleged children. Sure, the last suggestion might not be in your comfort zone, or a typical thing you might do with a friend, but giving back to your community has the same effect as achieving a goal: It makes you feel good about yourself, and bring happiness and peace to your mind and heart.
It sounds that you are definitely stressing too much, especially with the overdoing of the ID card. Come on, the whole purpose of publishing a yearbook is not just to reenact old thoughts and memories when you flip it open years later. It also serves its purpose wonderfully by publicly embarrassing each person in it. I recently saw mine a few days ago. I think I'm just used to viewing my continual bad yearbook photos, year after year, because for this one, I just glanced at and laughed. Needless to say, I think my most recent one has got the record for most ridiculous of them all: My blouse will kind of lopsided (although the photographer kindly did not point that out), my tigress hair completely mussed up, and my smile was toothy. I don't think you can beat mine, Kirst. But I have decided to look at this whole thing with some humor. Stick a smiley face on the side of your purse, or cover the card with an inspirational quote or saying. It works!
You say you wouldn't wish these feelings on anyone else, but believe me, there are many people who are able to relate to you. I previously was. I didn't feel understood at all. Partly, I think your emotions are a result of what's happening in your life right now, beyond just your looks. You've got a lot on your plate; I know. Being a teen girl, it can often feel like too much to handle. Counseling can be beneficial, but if you don't quite want to open yourself up to that degree yet, that's understandable. It's completely up to you. I feel lonely oftentimes, and find that it's most cathartic to express my feelings in a journal, or read a truly good book, or listen to a hopeful song, or just get a hug.
It takes courage to ask a question like this, and I'm proud of that you take initiative to do so. But I'm going to give you my opinion on your picture, and regardless of whether you believe me, I honestly think I could not imagine a person who would look more like "Kirstienne". : ) You've got beautiful eyes, and it would do you magic if you smiled.
So dry those tears. Remember that self faith will come eventually; it's a long and tumultuous road that we all have to pass. Focus on bettering yourself and your personality, while believing that you are capable of *whatever* you set your sights on. Take initiative; be proactive; and most importantly, have hope. : )
Keep that 15th spirit, and I'll send you some more links. : )
- 1 decade ago
You should stop focusing on what you dont like about yourself, think about the positive things, for example, you have really nice eyes, a clear, sharp blue, and as a bonus, when the braces come out you will have nice straight teeth =)
I think you are genuinely pretty, you dont need make up to look nice.
I have braces, and I recently posted a question almost exactly the same as yours.
You are slim and pretty and im not going to rant about anxiety disorders and conselling, just go out a bit more, make some new friends and make an effort to have fun.
Maybe find a hobby or something that is new and you will enjoy, you only see the bad things about yourself because you are scrutinizing, other people probably wont even notice.
I dont believe that anyone is trult ugly, least of all you, I think you are very pretty, and you should realise that about yourself too.
Hope this has helped a bit
- 1 decade ago
You're cute :o)
I wanted to also mention body dismorphic syndrome and I see another mentioned it, that sounds like a good start.
You said counselling isn't an option now, why?
Therapy is great if you can really open up and tell your therapist everything so they can help you understand how your brain works in letting you think so negatively. Theraoy can help you learn to see the real, beautiful you inside and out and help you keep those wrong, negative thoughts away.
You should know that many kids you go to school with may feel the same as you do about themselves and they probably hide it to, you're right to suggest age as a factor in increasing your anxiety about the issue.
I'm glad you posted this question to get helpful responses, I hate knowing people let themselves sink into depression rather than talking.
Since you aren't keen on counselling as an opiton now, I hope you find the support and understanding you need in theses forums.
- Anonymous1 decade ago
wow - i was so stunned to see the photo of the person that wrote that post. You're cute. Really, if this was one of those hook-up kind of things I'd go after you.
But that's not why you should feel attractive and comfortable with yourself. Besides your mental-game being unnecessary, I've watched lots of the 'gangly' high school girls become some of the most stunning attractive women as they get older. In fact, few of the 'attractive' girls in high school remain attractive for very long in life. I hate to say it, for their sakes, but it's what I've seen.
I could extoll what I think are your virtues, but my praise is irrelevant to your own sense of self. It doesn't help you at all to put yourself in the negative. What single good thing has any of this thinking (you've posted) done for you? I know you won't find anything, because it's only quicksand. Maybe read the book Spiritual Rules of Engagement if you want a book that reinforces your sense of the light within you.
I can see all the anger in your eyes - which are a delicious shade of blue, btw. Put that passion to things you like doing. Go become a superstar - you won't have any question about how attractive you can be.
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- Anonymous1 decade ago
oh kirsty, this question made me cry!
i had no idea you felt like that.
okay. i know you're not going to believe me because i've told you this before but you're so pretty!
i'd kill to have your hair and eyes, they're beautiful!
i totally know what you're going through because i've always struggled with the way i look. i've always been tall, lanky and don't even get me started on my teeth! ><
i really do think you've got body dysmorphic disorder, have you googled it?
don't fret if you do have the symptoms because if you do, you can just get some help.
at school, i always felt like the ugliest out of my friends, that i'd never get a boyfriend, that i was basically worthless.
now i've finished school and i'm in college, i've gained a lot more confidence in the way i look and the way i am.
although there are days when i look in the mirror and think, "i look ugly", i have found a more positive attitude into the way i think about myself.
we're unfortunately in the type of world where appearance seems to be the be all and end all of just about everything.
we all have flaws, and even the most beautiful of girls have body hangups.
however, it does seem to be seriously affecting you so i suggest you talk it through with an adult, maybe your nan or your dad?
they can refer you to someone to get it sorted out.
i could reel off a list of things i hate about myself, but at the end of the day worrying about it and crying about it isn't going to change your appearance.
why don't you try getting a new style or haircut?
maybe you could give yourself a makeover and try out different makeup looks, or simply buy yourself the jeans you admired a while ago.
nobody's perfect, and we all feel like that sometimes.
if you ever need to talk, i'm always just an email away.
and throughout all of this i'll stick by you.
peace and love, always
- stefLv 51 decade ago
Francesca, Maddie and Damienne have already given such great answers, but as I've just so happened to wander across this question, here's a big HUUUUUUUUUG for you :)
I know how it feels to look in the mirror and think you are the most hideous thing alive. I've struggled with self image problems for as long as I can remember. If it wasn't my smile, it was my hair. If it wasn't my hair, it was my skin. I was the fattest 102 lb. girl you'd ever meet. There were honestly days on end when I couldn't force myself out of the house and then, on top of my appearance, more emotional problems started to build up and I just wanted to curl up in a ball and die. And then one day I got sick and tired of always hating and fighting with myself. It's hard enough being a teenage girl and having to deal with boys, friends and family, but I learned that if I didn't love myself, nobody else would be able to either. I am a lot happier now. Sure, there are still some mornings where I'll look in the mirror and sigh, but it doesn't mean much to me now. I am too busy loving and experiencing life and all the beauty it has to offer to see the ugliness. I can honestly tell you that you are a very beautiful girl. Puffy eyes are probably from a lack of sleep and excessive crying. Fair skin is beautiful and so are freckles. Everybody gets occasional acne, everybody goes through bad hair days. Sure braces are a pain, but so many people have them and it will be worth it when you are left with a beautiful smile in the end. You will find that if you just smile and let confidence radiate through you that you will automatically feel and look prettier. I don't know you personally, but I've seen some of your answers and you seem to be an extremely thoughtful, interesting and intelligent person. I know that you are friends with lots of my contacts too :)
I'm sorry that you are going through such a difficult period right now. I find that time heals everything. When you find yourself feeling nervous or anxious BREATHE.
and know that there is never anything to be afraid of for your biggest fear is probably the root of fear itself.
Hang in there, you ARE beautiful.
- we_are_legion99Lv 51 decade ago
Well girl, the first thing we have to discover is just what is it you want to hear? I don't say that to be mean but it's obvious that you have come to some wrong decisions about yourself and you probably won't listen to those who tell you you are wrong.....but I'll try.
One....you believe you are ugly....you are wrong. The problem is...you "Feel" ugly. I'm a guy and I know when a girl is good looking versus ugly.
With that said.....the symtoms you project are very common with people in their teens because the body changes its hormone levels which can really mess a person up. One major problem is the chemical imbalance causes depression, which is one major reason why suicide levels are so high among teens,
The sad part is, if the teen had hung on, the hormone levels would have balanced as he/she got older and life would have looked much brighter. In your case your hormones are WAY off balance and your depression is dangerously strong.
I don't lie so.....I'll tell you true....
You are pretty.....you are obviously Intelligent......so stop using your emotions and use your head. Research what I have told you and you will find out it's true.
As far as your so called "peers".....they probably won't admit it but they have the same insecurities as you, unless of course they are an extrovert which is some cases is caused by the same hormones. In other cases they may just be jerks. Kids are cruel and will try to make themselves look/feel better by making you feel worse....don't play that game.
I wish you well.
- Anonymous1 decade ago
There's nothing wrong with the way you look!
Everyone has impurities, but instead of focusing on them, focus on what is good about your appearance. Instead of writing a list about what's bad about you, write one about what's good about you.
You have really pretty, striking blue eyes, not puffy at all nor are they squinty. They're actually very wide.
People stick botox needles into their lips to get them like yours.
Your hair is a really pretty colour & it's straight! How I'd love to have straight hair! I have curly hair, which I never brush because when I do it just puffs up and goes insane, but I've learnt to deal with it, even though it takes a lot of time to tame it. I used to straighten my hair all the time because I hated it, but I've learnt to accept it the way it is, and I've worked really hard to get it how I want it to be. I have officially embraced by crazy hair, and learnt all the different ways to deal with it.
Also, I'd love to get braces! Just imagine how white and straight your teeth will be after it. People think I'm insane when I tell them I wish I had braces, but I think about the long-term, and how great my teeth would be afterwards.
Your face is not at all chubby, and your skin looks healthy. I can't even see any acne! Also, there is absolutely nothing wrong with fair skin. Fair skin is nice.
If your appearance seems to be bothering you (although, I can't imagine why, you're pretty) change it. Get a new hairstyle or something simple like that. It can make all the difference in the world to how you feel about yourself - I would know.
But you should learn to embrace yourself. It's hard to do, but I learnt how and I'm so much better for it.
- kagmiLv 71 decade ago
I agree with the other answerers. You have Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Clearly your disgust with your own appearance is not in any way rational. None of the rest of us see the ugly person you see in the mirror, not even close.
You need professional help for this. Body Dysmorphic Disorder of the severity you're describing is not something that's just going to go away by positive thinking, changing your appearance, whatever. It's like in those with severe anorexia; no matter how skinny they get, they still think they're fat. Their perception of themselves has nothing to do with the way they actually look.
You need to see a counselor who can help you get to the root of why you feel so terrible about your appearance. Very often, these feelings actually come from anger or anxiety about something else and are projected onto your appearance. The more anxious you get, the more terrible you think you look.
The bottom line is, get help. Your problem will not go away if you ignore it, and it may get worse to the point of becoming dangerous. Please get help before that happens.
Your perception of yourself really has nothing whatsoever to do with your actual appearance. You look quite a bit like me, actually. :)
- 1 decade ago
Oh my beautiful, beautiful Kirsty. It sounds like you are having a dreadful day, and I implore you to e-mail me and allow me to offer whatever comfort I can through that.
However, allow me to also answer your question directly as I have given many a self esteem talk and wish any other girl reading your question to benefit in whatever way possible.
We're teenagers, love. I know and completely understand how you feel your view is more severe than most teens, and possibly you are right. But you must consider that, no matter how they come across, every teenager doubts their appearance, feels like crap, and wants to cry at some point in their teenage lives. On some level, it's completely normal. I, myself, spent a few years crying for my appearance. I struggled with body image. I'm 5'3", 135 pounds, and not thin by any means, and for many years that meant me considering myself ugly. Not anymore. You HAVE to come to terms with the fact that you are who you are, and I know that's easier said than done. But keep this is mind; the most attractive thing on a girl is her confidence. By this I mean, and careful to avoid the thousands of girl's with incredible OVERconfidence, that you know who you are, and you're comfortable in your own skin. Do you have flaws? Yes, and I say that only because everyone does. But do you also have beautiful aspects? 100% yes, and believe me, they overshadow the flaws, my love.
You cannot hate yourself, gorgeous. No way, no how. If you don't believe in yourself, no one else will either. What you need to do right now is fake it. Maybe you don't feel so great about yourself, but is writing down a list of all your negative traits going to help? Why not just TRY writing down a list of your positive traits? See where it gets you.
I would tell you how beautiful I think you are, and how wonderfully pretty your Australian features are, but I have a hunch it wouldn't do much for you right now. What you need is not for someone to tell you how pretty you are, but for you, yourself, to find something, just one thing, that you like about your face or body. Eyes? Lips? Feet? Anything. And remember, my love, that in our Holden to Nathan/Rei/Jake contest, you scored the guy first, didn't you? That's got to tell you something, okay?
Alrighty, lovely. I hope your day get's better and I'll talk to you on IM later. In the mean time, put on some India, do some Wolfman yoga, and try to let this all slip away.
- LeslieLv 44 years ago
It's unrealistic to loose 5 lbs in 7 days. The most you should be shooting for is 1% of your current weight so somewhere between 1-2 lbs per week. Some people can loose more weight then that when they first start but that depends on their metabolism and how much water weight they are carrying.