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Dear Dish-It: Advice on Insecurities, Self and Body Image

March 21, 2017

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They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, which means that there is beauty in everyone even if some people fail to see it, other people will. This week’s, “Let’s Talk About it Tuesday” discussion is surrounding self-image, body image, insecurities, and questions associated with appearance. Everyone goes through different stages in their life, and this time is particularly hard as your body is changing, developing and growing constantly. You will grow into yourself, give it time, and you should come to love yourself because the more attractive you think you are, the more others will too. Confidence is a deadly weapon and when I’ve seen it used properly, it is highly effective.

Look at pictures of your family at your age and see how they have blossomed into their looks. Most importantly, appearance might seem so important now, but in the long run your looks don’t really matter. True love is based on chemistry—a meeting of the minds and spirits. Think about older couples, who are still so happy together. it’s not about the perfection of their physical attraction, they are in love with each other. The person who is born to love you for the rest of your life is going to love you for exactly who you are. You don’t need to change. Change if you want to (not for somebody else), but don’t think that you have to change in order to get the attention you crave. You are loveable, remember that. You are beautiful, in spite of what anyone says or how anyone reacts. You have something special to offer, and someone will see this one day so don’t get too caught up in the mirror, and never lose faith in yourself. Our problems need to be addressed from the inside out not the inside in. There is this quote that says, “if your ugly inside, your ugly outside.” It doesn’t matter how attractive you are on the outside. If you are not a good, fun-loving person, no one is going to value you long term. 

Let’s take a look at this week’s questions

Question by don'tappreciate:

“Dear Dish-It,  I don't know why but I [can’t accept] myself. I think I’m ugly I don't know how to dress right. I want long hair but [it's] never gonna happen. I don’t think. I just wish I wasn’t me I always wanted to be that other person I just wish I knew I would look like this! Please help what do i do?!”:(

Insight/Advice: It’s really important that you try to accept yourself the way that you are. Everyone has things about them that they wish to change, but no one is perfect, and the right people (and the right guy) will think you are wonderful just the way that you are. Never say that you are ugly because if you think that how can anyone else appreciate your beauty?  Love yourself and be proud of who you are. Try not to let others bring you down and don’t compare yourself to other people. If you think you are a certain way, that is how everyone is going to see you. If you demonstrate self-worth and show confidence, people are going to recognize that you have something to offer. You shouldn’t care what they think because you are living your life for your own benefit. You say you want long hair, well, when you get older you can always get extensions—there is always a solution when it comes to making your hair longer. Or you can learn to embrace the hair you have now or try to grow it out. You have to find a style that you feel good about. Regardless, never wish to be anyone else, always be proud to be you. People aren’t gong to recognize you if you don’t recognize yourself. Instead, of dwelling on the things you don’t have or wished you had, focus on the things you do have, and the things you do like. Changing the channels of our mind and keeping it on the right station is key. Think about things, which will serve you and not bring you down.  It is really important that you try to accept yourself the way that you are. Everyone has things about them that they wish to change, but no one is perfect, and the right people and the right guy will think you are wonderful just the way that you are. Never say that you are ugly. Love yourself and be proud of who you are. Try not to let others bring you down and don’t compare yourself to other people. If you think you are a certain way, that is how everyone is going to see you. If you demonstrate self-worth and show confidence, people are going to recognize that you have something to offer. You shouldn’t care what they think because you are living your life for your own benefit. You say you want long hair, well, when you get older you can always get extensions—there is always a solution when it comes to making your hair longer. Or you can learn to embrace the hair you have now or try to grow it out. You have to find a style that you feel good about. Regardless, never wish to be anyone else, always be proud to be you. People aren’t going to recognize you if you don’t recognize yourself. Instead, of dwelling on the things you don’t have or wished you had, focus on the things you do have, and the things you do like. Changing the channels of our mind and keeping it on the right station is key. Think about things, which will serve you and not bring you down.  

Question by gokluik:

"I have huge pimples on my face and I've been popping them and now I have scars. I feel like I'm ugly and I hate my face!!!"

Advice/Insight: As we mentioned in our Dos and Don’ts for Dear Dish-It, we are not medically trained to give the proper advice, but like the common knowledge of not scratching your Mosquito bites, or picking your scabs, you should probably should stop popping your pimples because they will scare. Have you tried any forms of treatment? What is your face care plan? If you’ve used a lot of drugstore products on your face and found that nothing worked, go visit your GP. This is a very common matter that a lot of teens and young adults face, they will know what to do. They can prescribe medicated cream for your face, refer you to a dermatologist or find a useful drug that could decrease breakouts. Acne is a very common thing at this age and you shouldn’t feel bad about it—it will go away. All you can do it find ways to treat it and take care of yourself. You might have to try a few products before you find the right fix, but there are tons of working treatments out there (some of which are very affordable), which have been proven to work. Acne can make you feel like you are unattractive or unworthy, but only a shallow person would grudge you friendship because of your skin—quality people see beneath the surface and don’t stress about a physical flaws. You want to surround yourself with people who see beneath it because the right friends and the right love interest certainly will. When you love someone, you love them for exactly who they are.

Question by Blue in Braces:

 "Dear Dish-it,  I just got my braces, and I feel weird, I have to start hygiene and I don't like it, so what do I do?" 

Advice/Insight: Unfortunately, life is all about having to do things that we don’t want to, but sometimes we have to do them in order to better ourselves. It’s like brushing your teeth. Most kids/people do not enjoy doing this, but they know that if they don’t, they are going to get cavities. They know it is a priority to keep their teeth clean. It’s the same thing with hygiene for your braces. If you don’t clean them properly, your dentist is going to give you bad cleaning grades, you will probably affect your teeth negatively and you will keep your braces on for longer. I know of several people who got their braces off early for good hygiene so let that be an incentive. It’s annoying torture for the time being, but before you know it, those braces will come off and you will have beautiful, straight teeth that compliment your smile. The work you put in to get the result might be difficult, but the end result is worth it. Maybe put on your favorite song while you clean your teeth, or brainstorm ways that will help you do the cleaning and get it done on the regular. Change is hard to adjust to, but once you do and once you get into a routine it won’t feel so much like work, it will start to feel natural, and you will enjoy all the positive praise you receive for your good teeth cleaning efforts.

Question by Lil Ladies Cupcakes:

Dear Dish-it, Why don't boys pay any attention to me? I had this crush last year and he and I kind of got lost in the friend zone. He called me bro once and wrote in my yearbook "keep doing you fam" which pissed me off. Smh but I feel like no one like finds me attractive. I know I'm not ugly people tell me Im pretty all the time all my friends tell me I am. (Even tho I don't believe them.) but I do have big boobs and they still don't care! I caught my crush staring at me once tho. Please tell me why this is happening to me!

Advice/Insight: Firstly, I don’t think there isn’t anyone who hasn’t experienced liking someone and not having them like you back. It doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you, but probably means you and that person aren’t meant to be. The right guy for you isn’t going to call you “bro” and he will acknowledge all of the things that you have to offer. Believe in yourself because guy’s can sense insecurity in girls and most people are attracted to confidence. Instead of doubting yourself, never question yourself, be you, and be happy to be you, and the right guy will notice you and find you attractive. Remember, dating isn’t all about looks, even if at this age, it can seem to be. It’s about forming a connection with someone so try to see beyond what the mirror shows you, promote your natural, inner beauty, and seek this type of attraction out in a mate. It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks of you, or who call you pretty. You have to believe in your own beauty, and not use your body to get male attention. Be yourself, and let someone fall for who you are. 

Question by Overweight:

"I am 46.5 kg and I feel really fat!! I look skinny in the mirror but I feel too fat for a 12 year old girl who loves herself very much. I can't stick to a diet.What do I do?"

Advice/Insight: Firstly, it is fantastic to hear that you love yourself very much. Never lose sight of this and channel this notion when you start to feel down on yourself. You mention that you “feel really fat” but “look skinny in the mirror”, do you think that maybe you are putting this pressure upon yourself? You need to try and accept yourself for who you are. If you want to make changes you need to do that for yourself. Dieting can be difficult especially when there is so much unhealthy food around you. Why not try a small workout regime? You don’t necessarily have to start squatting and planking all day, but even starting out with a walk, which could eventually lead to a run. Joining an active sports team could also be a benefit to you. As I said earlier, it will feel like work at first, but once you start doing it regularly and get into a routine, it will feel natural. So natural to the point that you will feel weird if you go without it. Keep loving yourself, and in loving yourself take care of your body. I promise you will feel so much better if you put in the efforts (that work for you), and this worry you are expressing will go away because you know that you are doing something about the situation.

Question by to peirce or not to peirce:

"I'm twelve years old going into middle school every since I ten I wanted to get a second piercing in my ear. Should I wait till I'm thirteen as my [older] friends do or should ask now"

Advice/Insight: I think it’s great you know what you want for yourself, but you do have to keep in mind how old you are and that things could change down the road. Asking for permission is key, don’t do it behind your parents back. Get their consent and I promise you that you will feel a lot better about doing it. Also, it seems you yourself are mixed up about what you want and what’s the right timeframe for it. Think it over. Make a choice that you feel good about that is best for you and stick with it. The good thing is, if you do go through with it and are unhappy, you can always take the piercings out.

Afterthoughts

Self-acceptance is one of the hardest things to achieve, especially at this age because you are still figuring out who you are and what you want for your future. Try to remain true to yourself, your desires and embrace your looks—compare yourself to no one. Be confident about who you, forget about what you don’t have, remind yourself of what you do have and concentrate on that. Build your self-esteem up to the point where you never have to question your worth. Or get down on yourself because of your looks, but your vanity is the least valuable part of who you are. You are a person with an identity who has so much to offer and this is where your true beauty lies. Inner beauty always prevails in the end, so remember that, and remember what really counts. Don’t let the appearances of others get to you or make you feel inferior, do you at all costs and make no apologies. 

Have Your Say

Have a question for Dear Dish-It, write her deardish@kidzworld.com and you could be featured on our "Let's Talk about it Tuesday."