SUBMISSION FROM THE CREATOR OF SHYB
Trigger Warning for mentions of abuse, past-tense negative self image, mentions of obsession with being thin, temporary unhealthy amounts eating/exercise
Many of my insecurities and self-esteem issues stemmed from my father being abusive in the home towards both my mother and I, he was the biggest bully I’ll ever know. My mom found escape in her work, so I became dad’s main target. He would make me feel as though I was much larger than I actually was, and make me feel as though it made me ugly. He would make fun of my nose, my fat, and just degrade me.
Without realizing, my very best friend turned out to be an emotional manipulator. She was obsessed with becoming thin, she filled my head with ideas such as “no one is ever going to respect you if you’re not skinny, no one’s ever going to like you if you’re not skinny, you will never get work as an actor if you’re not skinny.”
I’d fallen for it, I felt ashamed of my body. I secretly started taking diet pills and tried to eat as little as I could, and worked out in dangerous amounts in accordance to my practically non-existent calorie intake. This was all SO ridiculous, because not only did it NOT work, but it made the depression worse. I lost it for a bit. I had no food in my system; I became depressed, I hallucinated, I couldn’t get out of bed. It was awful.
I moved back in with my mom, mid-semester. Just before Christmas break a professor asked me, “Annie, can you even look yourself in the mirror and say you’re worth it?” we tried… I couldn’t. She made me stay in her office, until I was sobbing, looked myself in the eye and said, “I’m worth it.”
I decided it was time to make a change. I took a year off from school to focus on myself. I practiced thinking positive thoughts, every day, if I had a poisonous thought, I would replace it with a positive and somewhere along the line, I found clarity. The darkness started melting away. I was becoming me again. I ran (as a hobby) only if and when I wanted to. I ate delicious foods, bought clothes that made me feel good; I stopped caring about what I looked like. I started realizing, “Wow… I’m not ugly! Why did I think I was!?!”
I realized, I can celebrate EVERY DAY! I can do something that makes me happy, I can allow myself to be wowed, I can smile EVERY DAY! And it doesn’t matter what I look like! WHO CARES WHAT PEOPLE THINK? I can be happy! I DESERVE to be happy!
- I have thrown away my scale. I am beautiful no matter what! As long as I am happy, that’s all that matters to me.
- I removed poisonous people from my life, I took time to myself, and rediscovered my beauty.
- I allowed myself to fall in love with myself, to love every nook and cranny my body has to offer, I allowed myself to fall in love with LIFE! Love life and life will love you back.
You just have to try and stay positive, be kind to others, not care what people think, and enjoy your life, no matter what cards you’ve been dealt.
BE BRAVE! JOIN THE REVOLUTION!
Edit: Please do not feel the need to say negative things about my dad as he has recently passed, and him and I have reconciled.