Ok, so here is the deal, I amongst other crap have a bit of body dysmorphia. I never see the good. I only ever see flaws. From the hair on my head which is worse there thanks to my trichotillomania, to my mum Tum and legs, and arms. I don’t look at the mirror and think” damn I am a fine ass bitch. Carried two babies and all that” no my brain goes “ew look at your stomach, your double chin, the bald spots, the thighs.ugh your arms. Diet? Starve? Exercise till you puke?” Yes, and believe me it is hard to admit the self abuse . I have a love and hate relationship with all the damn mirrors in the house. I tend to look at me when the kids are not around. I don’t want them to hear it. And I’m sure they pick up on it anyways.
Where does this all come from? Well since childhood, really. I was made fun of a lot for being different already personality wise. I was bullied for being “weird” the weird turns out is autism. But we didn’t know and people still don’t want to acknowledge that I am different. Masking is hard as shit and exhausting! Anyways, I was also thin thin thin. And was called toothpick, pencil, Barbie, bean pole. My personal fave “careful not to step on a crack step on me, because you’ll fall right through!” Kids can be cruel. Tweens can be cruel, teens can be cruel. Adults especially can be cruel. My body was something to be made fun of and I accepted it. And started to do so myself . Hated being as skinny as I was. Told constantly I was ugly. That would later turn into an eating disorder and become the the foundation for more body issues. Positive thoughts none.
As an adult I would still get comments on how my figure should be and then got the “wait until your old” and then “you’ll be like us one day!” Saying that to someone with body dysmorphia and an eating disorder is not a wise thing to do. But then, they didn’t know. I never still looked at myself as a beautiful person. Only ever flawed, even on my wedding day picked out so many faults silently. Sickening isn’t it? I suffer alone a lot because I am afraid of not being taken seriously or ignored or things like that. My therapist took it seriously. And I am supposed to look at myself in the mirror Eve day and say something kind to myself. And I just can not.
Once I got my eating disorder under control a bit more I was better. But then got pregnant and was called fat by a family member because I was not a got pregnant person like someone else in the fam. Ouch and that messed me up. I was on bed rest at that time. I lost all the weight and then some after . Then got pregnant again and started all over only to have issues with loosing after getting on Depo! And then the self abuse started back up. Yikes. It was harsh. I started to hate on myself. And then I started going to therapy. And that is when I am supposed to be talking kinder to myself and fail at that.
Social media…doesn’t help, when you see these beautiful ladies all perfectly perfect. And you see women with self esteem that I just wish for a trickle of. Just a bit of it. And you realize that social media isn’t real all the time. Nothing is what it seems. And with therapy I started to get better about me. I started to dress for me now because with the meds I am on I don’t know if I will ever get back to that. I don’t want to be unhealthy I want to be healthy and happy.
The example I want to set is to love yourself and it is easier to say it than it is to actually do it. Especially when dealing with this mental disorder for so long. I will have good days and bad days. And writing this made me realize today is a bad day. Being on bed rest from a nasty kidney and bladder infection that will not go away isn’t helping the mind. And being stuck at home because of covid isn’t helping me either.
I want you to know you are not alone. And bad days are ok! Mental health is nothing to be ashamed of. And really should be discussed more. Body Dysmorphia cases range about 200,000 a year. 1 in 50 people have body dysmorphia which means it is 5to 10 million people in the USA alone have BdD or body dysmorphia disorder. It is even said the Kim Kardashian has a form of body dysmorphia. It is more common than schizophrenia or anorexia .
So what can you do for someone with this disorder? Listen is a big one. Let them know you are there for them . Let them know they are loved as they are. And tell them you are there to hear them if they need to talk. If they need to vent about how they look let them. Don’t shut them down and don’t dismiss them. Understand many of us were bullied and have a result of this and feel unheard and dismissed or down played. Let them know they matter. Understand this is so hard for us! No matter our size it is hard as hell to come out of the fray and we are doing our best!