There has been an extended period of time where I look in the mirror and I see myself from all of the wrong angles. I suppose every girl goes through times in her life where she feel so extremely inadequate. It is the curse of being a girl, really, and perhaps even worse than the curse of a period. No matter how many people tell you how many times that you are attractive or pretty or beautiful or whatever, you still won’t believe it. I don’t, any way.
When I was single a few months back, I had two years of practice in the art of ignoring my body in reflections. I wasn’t dating anyone and I sure as hell wasn’t looking to date anyone, so why care? I didn’t let myself gain tons of weight or anything, I just stopped being self-conscious about my body and managed to ignore everything I wanted to change about it. Then the boyfriend came along, and it was like suddenly someone had ripped away the sheet I had put over the mirror and there I stood infant of that mirror, my imperfections glaring out at me as if someone highlighted them with a sharpie. I’ve never been able to take compliments, and I’ve become a master at deflecting them, but I went to a whole new level with the boyfriend.
“You have the prettiest eyes.”
No, they are brown and boring and look like mud. You’re only saying that because you know that I know they are brown and boring and look like mud.
“Your breasts are the perfect size.”
No, they are nonexistent. You’re only saying that to make me feel better about my lack-of-boobs.
“If I didn’t find you attractive, I wouldn’t be with you.”
OR you are with me because you don’t want to be lonely so you put up with my unattractiveness.
See? Master of compliment twisting and deflection. I take a compliment and I distort it. I hate compliments because they immediately draw attention to whatever body part I try to avoid, and my mind floods with hundreds of ways I want to change that part. But after years of my mother pointing out my imperfections, telling me what needs to be changed, how I’m never going to be pretty enough… can you blame me?
I’m needy. Like very needy. And I’m twisted and backwards. I can’t take compliments, but if I don’t hear compliments then I assume people don’t see me as even remotely attractive. It upsets me when compliments are given and when they are not given. I never think the compliments are genuine, but I want them anyway.
The boyfriend, being British and whatnot, is very blunt and speaks his mind. This can be good, but it can also be terrible. For example:
“Your ass jiggles every time you move. You should fix that.”
“You do have a bit of pudge.”
“Is your face asymmetrical? One sides looks good… but the other…”
“You would look so hot if your stomach was flat.”
“There are three types of girls: beautiful, cute, and ugly. You’re cute.”
He doesn’t mean to be rude or blunt, that’s just how he is. We’ve talked about it before, and he has told me that he can be a superficial person and that he thinks everyone can improve their looks, so he points it out to them to help them out. Unfortunately, it isn’t helping me. With every critique I feel less and less pretty. When I was little, I envisioned that the person who loved me would be so blinded by love that he would like I am the most beautiful creature ever. That isn’t how it is, and that is never how it is going to be. I would love for boyfriend to truly think that I am beautiful, but he doesn’t, and that isn’t his fault. I don’t want him to lie to me and tell me that I am, either. I just want him to actually think I am beautiful.