You Can Only Hate Yourself.
We live in a society where it’s ok to hate yourself but not to love yourself – especially if you are a woman.
When you are a kid, your parents and family tell you you are beautiful, but the boys at school call you monster. If you say you are beautiful, they all laugh and think you are either joking or a self-important little girl, while the other girls will talk behind your back. If you say you are ugly, you parents will repeat you are gorgeous, your girlfriends will argue “I’m uglier.” Female characters on your favourite cartoon have thin extra-long legs, yours look like sausages. “But I’ll grow up” you repeat yourself. All the teenage girls on the TV have breasts and none of them is ugly, so you trust are going to get better, too.
Years pass, but boys are still not falling at your feet and you still don’t like your body. The butt of that woman on the magazine is higher than yours, and it doesn’t have holes. Her legs don’t touch in the middle. You wish you could cut some of that meat off your body, like bacon. Your breast is not as round as it should be. Your skin is covered in pimples, and maybe you are even wearing braces. And how is it that the hair on your legs grows back so fast?
Or maybe you are thin. People think only calling you fat is mean, so they openly define you disgustingly thin without reserve. You try to tell them you do eat, that it’s your metabolism, but it’s no use. You wish you could gain some weight, but you are as curvy as a toothpick. They can’t see you suffer as much as the plumpy girl they are always laughing at. They don’t know that “thin” is as much of a compliment as “fat” is, especially with all the repulsion they spit with each syllable.
And then there is that girl who likes herself. How vain she is! She likes her own body! Look with what confidence she moves. What a bitch. She believes everyone likes her. How can she believe she is beautiful? You can list at least five flaws on her.
She is imperfect, just as you are, but she still loves herself. You hate yourself, and that’s normal and it’s fine, and your friends don’t like themselves and only talk about their flaws, but the fact she likes herself is bad. Everybody should hate themselves, just like you do. People who hate themselves are ok, people who like themselves are superficial and self-centered.
And yet, when your friend feels ugly and complains about her flaws, you list her all the good things about her and you tell her that these things are much more important than her flaws. You can’t understand how she can dislike herself so deeply – is she blind? If you look closer, her belly is not so flat, just like yours, and yet that’s not the first – or the second – thing you see when you look at her. You see through her flaws, and honestly find her gorgeous and worthy of love and respect.
You know she would say the same about you, but you wouldn’t listen. I would tell you the same, too, but you’d argue I can’t see you, I don’t know. Then do it because you believe in love, in peace, in a society that sees through your body and into your soul. Do it because deep inside you know you have some very good sides, and you wish you could display those first instead of your low self-esteem. Do it because “smart is sexier” is not just a slogan, it’s a truth. Do it because you have to be the change you want to see in this sick world. Love youself.
What would you say if I tried to insult you now? If I told you you are a bitch, you are superficial, you are stupid and you are ugly? I want to believe you’d tell me to go fuck myself and that I’m wrong. So don’t wait for someone to hit you to believe in yourself. Don’t let rules you know to be wrong bring you down.
(No, I haven’t succeeded at this yet, but not for lack of coeherence. I swear I’m trying super hard, so I hope you’ll join me <3 )