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Insecurity

User Thread
 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Insecurity
I just feel like I need to get some things off of my chest and vent my frustration and anger. So here it goes.

When I was as young as 6 years old, I cared a lot about my body and had developed feelings of being ugly and fat. I grew up watching Disney films, with princesses who suffered and were beautiful and who had wonderfully caring personas. I loved the films and looked up to these princesses who had gone through adversity and still come out on top. I wanted to be like them, and I wanted to have adventures like them and I wanted to be as pretty and as graceful as they were.

I am not sure if Disney films by themselves contributed to my lack of self esteem at such a young age. It's not like my parents were at all volatile toward me at that age, but I do think they did too much for me (being overprotective) and I did not develop a sense of autonomy for quite a long time. So that probably had a lot to do with it also.

So at 6 years of age I was very self concious. I loathed going to swimming lessons because I thought I was "fat" and when I was 8, I refused to take them at all because I truly felt like I was a monster. I cared so much about what other people thought of me - if they thought I was pretty or cool. I cared SO much in fact, that at school, I hardly ever spoke to people in classrooms because I didn't want to sound stupid and never thought I had anything good to say. The fact that I was always singled out for being half asian by other kids and teased, was probably a big factor also, but this only started when I was about 10. From then on and up until I graduated highschool, I said very little and avoided talking as much as I possibly could, which I generally succeeded at. All the while I did have 1 close friend. At one stage I had none, but most of the time I did have at least one person that would actually know that I could speak normally, so I wasn't totally alone.


When I was about 14 years old, I started reading girls magazines. I think I started because all of the other girls at school were doing this and I wanted to fit in.

Even though these magazines geared toward younger girls, say that they promoted self confidence and beauty from the inside, I always felt that they were doing the opposit of that anyway. It seemed to be that they'd only ever feature beautiful people who had talent or were doing something meaningful with their lives, and there would be these awful competitions where girls submitted photos of themselves and then "won" a makeover, where they'd have some makeup put on them, have their hair dyed, etc.

When I turned 15, I admitted to myself that all these magazines did was make me feel bad about myself and as if I wasn't pretty enough, so I stopped reading them, but I still retained that sense of needing to be pretty, so I started wearing makeup like they told me to.

I wore makeup to "make" myself pretty up until I was 19. All the while I had terrible self esteem and body image. All of the other females around me seemed to be beautiful and perfect, just not me. I got to the point where I would break down in tears if I caught my reflection in a bus window, because I never liked what I saw. In the end (still 19 yrs old) I decided that enough was enough - I was going to stop wearing makeup.

So I got angry and I stopped wearing makeup altogether. I think makeup is a terrible idea (excpet in things like perfomances, where you need makeup to portray a character). But in day to day life, I do not think it is at all appropriate - even for going to work or special occasions, wearing it for reasons to enhance your looks. Females should not have to feel like putting on makeup will give them that "extra something special".

And I must say, I feel immensely better about myself just from not wearing it. I am still pretty insecure when it comes to my looks, but I don't feel ugly or berate myself as much as I used to, so feel that I am making progress.

At this point in time however, I feel great anger, specifically toward women who are in the beauty industry and work at producing fashion and beauty magazines, who enforce this ideal for women and promote unnatural expectations, being women themselves.

It is my view that women at least, should be looking out for one another and not making beauty this competitive arena. I meet aggressive females often, especially when I enter shopping centers. I always get the sneering look that says "I'm so much better looking than you", you know, when people look down their nose at you. I definitley don't think I'm imagining it. It doesn't make me feel bad about myself, it just makes me feel really angry.

And yeah that's it. I feel really angry when females try to put other females down, especially mature aged ladies. It's just not right, where is our empathy and compassion for each other? We all seem to go through the same bullshit of trying to be essentially perfect, and somewhere inside of us we all know that the magazines and glorifying an ideal of what beauty is, only hurts us. So why is this still happening? why are female editors and women who are in charge of what goes into magazines, still prioritizing these harmful perceptions?

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
A parental curse by Decius

quote:
A person like this will look into every crevice and moment in a relationship and dissect it in order to exploit any possible weaknesses on the other person's part. These weaknesses are used as "feed" for your insecurities about people's love and support of you.

Generally, people in this state of mind actually feel dis-comfort in healthy relationships where there is nothing to complain about. The insecurities from within almost paint a surreal picture of falseness, and it is almost impossible to accept a loving, accepting individual as the real thing.


You know, I just found this article, and I feel in such strong agreement with it. It also makes me feel less alone in my worries, the thought that someone can understand where they stem from and what they end up doing, instead of just feeling crazy by myself. It is so true that I pick apart my relationships when there is really no problem, because of my insecurity.

I have a boyfriend whom I am not secure with fully, even though he has given me absolutely no reason to doubt his loyalty and is such a great person, very understanding. I get inappropriately angry at him for no logical reason. I try to send him on guilt trips if he is physically attracted to another female. I know the reason I do this is because I believe that I can be replaced easily, since I have this feeling that my looks matter more than my personality, even though I know that this isn't true, I still act on that insecurity. I feel like I have been appologizing for that constantly, but I still end up doing it. The feeling doesn't go away.

I can't even bare the thought of him interacting with another female. It just makes me so uncomfortable and insecure, I keep thinking he'll meet someone better than me. I know that it is completely unreasonable of me to angry at him for things that he hasn't done yet or has shown no sign of doing, and I am most angry at myself for reacting on such emotions. And though I have been aware that it is just my insecurity, it has been happening for the 2 years we have been together, although less and less frequently as time goes on.

I just wish I could let these feelings go completely, right now.

Also, I think I am on the path to letting them go, it's just not happening as quickly as I would like. But I believe that once I start to gain a lot more confidence in myself (which I feel that I am achieving, bit by bit), confidence that doesn't come from anyone else telling me that I am pretty or great, I will be able to move past this once and for all.

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 33yrs • M •
At a CTL of 2, Chained Wings is a full member of Captain Cynic and is a consistent participant in discussions.
Um, vigil, have you seen yourself in that recent picture in Pictures of Ourselves?

Girlfriend, I think you badly need to go back to wearing makeup.

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
 33yrs • M •
At a CTL of 2, Chained Wings is a full member of Captain Cynic and is a consistent participant in discussions.
Really though, this is something I have had a problem with for a long time. The West's obsession with youth and beauty.

I guess because the need to procreate is our second strongest desire after survival, and we in the West have pretty much conquered the whole survival thing, we now tend toward focusing on the whole procreation bit.

And sadly, we haven't evolved past the idea that being good breeding stock somehow makes us a worth-wile human being.

Then you add Capitalism into the equation and you get the industry that you have just described.


quote:
We all seem to go through the same bullshit of trying to be essentially perfect, and somewhere inside of us we all know that the magazines and glorifying an ideal of what beauty is, only hurts us. So why is this still happening? why are female editors and women who are in charge of what goes into magazines, still prioritizing these harmful perceptions?


And what you ask here is due to the fact that we all want to be accepted and we all want to be loved and feel worthwhile.... while still stupidly equating attractiveness with some kind of worth above all others things.

The result being: millions of young (and old) people going through the pain and the self loathing of a negative self image.

Which means you have a ready made market. People will buy something without a second thought if they think it will make them more attarctive. The whole thing, the fashion shows, the supermodels, the celebrities, the movies, the adds on TV, the gossip magazines, the beauty magazines, the makeup and fashion industry, the weight loss industry, etc etc etc. ALL get rich off the insecurity and self loathing they promote in people.

And the ones who do this who you ask why do they do it? Id say two reasons. First they are not intelligent like you, and have never wondered about this like you have. Therefore they have never reliased that half the time they feel bad is because of the very industry they are part of.

And second. They make a bucket load of money. You will find that morals and ethics become rather rare commodities around large amounts of money.

So here we are idolizing the young and beautiful. Putting the vain and vacuous on pedestals and hanging on their every deed, action and word.

And young girls are crying when they look at themselves in the mirror.

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
Um, vigil, have you seen yourself in that recent picture in Pictures of Ourselves? Girlfriend, I think you badly need to go back to wearing makeup



Lol, Chained. I hate you!

But both of you, thank you for reading my post. It means something to me, it really does.

When I say that I am insecure about my looks, I do not mean that I am constantly fearing what others think about my appearance. It seems I only do that these days, when I am feeling particularly unnattractive.



I have never been told that I am ugly or unnattractive and when I have recieved attention for my looks, it has only ever been positive. The problem is that if I ever get positive attention or compliments, I can never bring myself to accept them because I think people are either being sarcastically mean, when they are people that I don't know, or when they are people I do know, I think they are trying to protect me. I don't know how to move out of that mindframe just yet.


[edit]

In relation to what I fear most concerning my looks, now that I think about it, I constantly am in fear of the person that I love, telling me one day that they find someone more attractive physically, than they do me. I have this apparrent "need" to be everything to this person, and it disgusts me. I think if they ever told me that they found someone more attractive, I would feel immediately inadequate about myself and not good enough for them. I do not know how to get past this, except the idea that I need to build more confidence in myself somehow.



I honestly think that I am my own worst enemy. It all comes from within and at the end of the day, I am the only person who controls how i feel. Somedays are good, some are bad, it's like a rollercoaster. These days, I feel like I am currently having more good days than bad. But even on the good days, I can't bring myself to recieve compliments, even if earlier that day I actually thought to myself "I am pretty today".

I think one thing that scares me a lot is voicing my opinion and being told that I am stupid or unintelligent. It scares me in real life and it scares me here on CC, because I respect people here and think they are intelligent.

I am terrified of giving oral presentations and I actually stopped going to University this year because the thought of having class discussions is more than I can bare. I am scared of not being intelligent enough and seen as simply "dumb", as I have a lot of trouble expressing my thoughts orally. Thoughts don't flow as well as they do when I am writing. I had to give an oral presentation last year and I broke down in tears, which was highly embarrassing. What made it worse is that afterwards, everyone treated me like I was this time bomb and spoke very softly around me and were *too* nice to me, which annoyed the hell out of me and made me feel extremely weak.

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 33yrs • M •
At a CTL of 2, Chained Wings is a full member of Captain Cynic and is a consistent participant in discussions.
I sometimes feel insecure when I post because of some of the memebers on CC, but only a couple. The same reason as you, that I'll be seen as stupid. I know im not stupid and often get ppl tell me Im intelligent.

But I think its all to do with our own self image. No matter how much we achieve, no matter how powerful we are, we still have that need to be accepted.

And that need can make us insecure.

I'm wondering why you broke down and cried when you had to give the speech? Was it nerves, or was there more to it?

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
I'm wondering why you broke down and cried when you had to give the speech? Was it nerves, or was there more to it?


Well, I was giving a speech about selective mutism, and rushing through the whole thing, tripping over my words. That added to the nerves and feelings stupid. Also the topic itself was close to my heart, as i felt a huge connection to the condition myself, even though I'd never been diagnosed with it. I was always known in class, all through school, as "the girl who never speaks" and I felt so relieved when I found out that there were people who felt the same as me - who just felt like the words wouldn't come out even when they wanted to speak. Which I felt was near enough the same as me. I find that even when I want to voice an opinion and have one, when I find myself surrounded by intelligent, well spoken people in real life, my opinons flee me and I feel stupid.

So yes, I started crying because I felt stupid, but I was also crying because I felt like I was there baring my soul to people, letting them in on a shameful secret, through these stories of other selectively mute people.

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 33yrs • M •
At a CTL of 2, Chained Wings is a full member of Captain Cynic and is a consistent participant in discussions.
Its interesting how you have talked about a negative self image when it comes to looks and how you have also mentioned that when youre around intelligent people in real life you feel your opinions flee and you cant talk.

But here on CC, where you yourself mentioned there were many intelligent ppl, you don't feel any problems voicing your opinions.

I wonder if there is a link between your view of yourself physically and your self confidence when it comes to communication?

This is just an observation for you that I hope will help you in putting all these pieces together, as I can see your really trying to break some barriers down and overcome some issues about self esteem.

And thanks for starting the topic and being brave enough to share your feelings, since the very nature of them may have made it hard to do so. It also makes me feel easier in talking about my own insecurities.

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
But here on CC, where you yourself mentioned there were many intelligent ppl, you don't feel any problems voicing your opinions.

I wonder if there is a link between your view of yourself physically and your self confidence when it comes to communication?


Oh, but I do have problems participating in discussions, which is why I am starting to try to do that a bit more. I do feel scared about what people will think of what I say, everytime I do it. And being ignored, feeling like what I said is completely redundant and silly. Even now I fear that I have not answered Decius properly, that what I post isn't coherent enough or that I am missing something.


Come to think of it, I have said that I am not insecure in the way that I worry constantly what people think of me when I go out. But that is not true. I think I only feel that right now, because I believe no one looks at me, therefore I need not worry. When I am talking and all eyes are on me, then I do care about how I look and if people think I am ugly, and I care about what people think of what I am saying.

Wow, you know if you hadn't said that Chained, I think it would've been a while until I made that connection. Thank you!

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Alright, after all that blathering, I am going to try to answer this question very succinctly.

quote:
What do you fear people here will think about you physically the worst?

What makes you scared?



I fear that people will simply think that I am ugly or unnattractive and have in their minds, all of the negative things that I think about myself. Somehow, this makes me feel less interesting as a person and as if my opinions will somehow matter less, as silly as that sounds.

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Well,definitley the nude thing, haha. I don't think anyone could ever convince me that that would be a good idea.

Taking Chained's lead and putting up a picture of myself as my avatar, is also something that I do not feel permitted to do because of fear. Just thinking about doing that, I feel like it would make me not want to post anywhere, it would make me feel exceedingly uncomfortable, especially since 99% of the people here are hidden behind avatars in all their posts, so I'd feel very singled out. I do not feel that I can do that to myself.

That sounds really stupid.

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Okay, crappy picture siz, quality and everything, but my heart is still beating a million miles per second and I sat forever in front of the computer trying to talk myself into just changing it. Man, I feel crap about myself. As soon as I started looking for pictures to post, I started shredding myself apart. This is a good start I think, but I think I need upload a clearer picture because part of me thinks I am chickening out a bit here?

Also, you don't have to change your avatar. That would make me feel better if everyone did, but that's not the point now, is it?

I really want to change it back right now.

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Sorry, I did make an edit, I just didn't think you'd reply so fast.

I'm making myself respond here. I was going to pm you what I just said, because I want to avoid having my picture at the top of the page of who was last to post. So I hope someone posts something else right after this. This is very uncomfortable, it's embarrassing and everything, but still not as bad as being in a room full of people giving a speech. I'm all a-jitter.

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 26yrs • F
A CTL of 1 means that vigil is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Thank you, Decius.

You know something? I am really goddamn proud of myself right now. I feel that I like mysef more. I did something that I didn't want to do, that I found intimidating.

There is only so much self-loathing you can put yourself through until you force yourself to really look at the person inside of you and actually see what they are trying to accomplish. I can't help but feel so proud of myself when I register the fact that I am challenging myself to reach for the things that will really make me happy in life, because it is a frightening thing for me to do. And though I may have fallen down a number of times in trying to find and reach for these things, I have still persisted and I am still gaining my confidence bit by bit. And that is my strength. And I am proud of it.

I was taught to hate myself by everyone around me, from when I was just a child. All of these messages that were sent to me, to brainwash me into believing that I am simply not good enough as I was, from as young as 6 years old! And what did I know of the world at this age? How could I protect myself against everyone elses insecurities? I am not to blame for being whatever I have been, for the poison that was injected into me. I mightn't know a lot about the world, but I'm not stupid and worthless like they made me think I was, and I feel like I have to keep realizing that over and over, through facing the things that scare me, until it becomes an engrained belief.

And I feel like all my life, I have been trying to wake up from all of these different nightmares. And only now am I finding that waking up isn't enough, I have to purge myself of the poisons that they've left behind. All of these false beliefs about beauty and its importance, about what intelligence is, about what I am supposed to strive for in life.

My parents were so full of insecurity themselves. They projected all of their fears onto me, as was done to them as children, and still is being done to this day by the world around them.

My father who started beating me when I was 9 and naming me horrid, horrid names. My mother telling me I was the devil's child, that she wished she killed me in the womb. How could I love myself if the people who were supposed to love me and see the beauty inside of me, could not show me that to begin with?

I love my parents, I love them for all that they have tried to do for me and i accept their failures, because they too have had to deal with all of the expectations and ideals that the world has been driving into them ruthlessly, since before I was born.

But I cry for the child that was, and now I am trying to patch up her wounds because I see that she deserves the love and acceptance that should've been given to her in the first place, because she is worth it and always has been, just like everyone else in the universe.

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 33yrs • M •
At a CTL of 2, Chained Wings is a full member of Captain Cynic and is a consistent participant in discussions.
So many people in the world try to get through life by being big, macho, tough guys, totally uncaring and unhurtable. Especialy on the internet.

But I don't think Ive ever been as impressed by someone's courage in the last 48 hours, as I have been by you Vigil.

You are living proof that the cycle of pain can stop. You have a right to be proud of yourself. And I'm proud of you too.

You are an example of the sort of people I want to meet and communicate with when I come here to CC to better myself.

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
Insecurity
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