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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » Very low self-esteem, has anyone else conquered this problem?

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Author Topic: Very low self-esteem, has anyone else conquered this problem?
martinafranklyn
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I'm a 19 yr old, and a bit overweight. Enough that I know I should lose it but not enough that it unduly affects my health.

However, my body image and self esteem is VERY low. When me an my boyfriend first got together, the one thing that would stop me relaxing around him was my size.
Although I'm not huge (although i feel it sometimes) I'm bigger than him so it would make me very uptight about getting relaxed etc.

He, however appeared not to care whatsoever and he slowly has worked his magic to the point where we can now have sex.

It's fantastic that we've moved onto this section of our relationship, but I still get 'panic attacks' when he tries to touch my body.

I cannot for the life of me, understand WHY anyone would want to be with me. I convinced myself that he only wanted me for a quick bit of 'easy' sex (I read somewhere that some guys will deliberately target 'chubby' women because they are 'grateful' to be paid attention to [Frown] )
However we've been together quite a while now and he doesn't seem to be getting tired of me.

He now says how he loves me and wishes I would relax about my body because he loves it...

Has anyone else battled with the same self esteem issues?
It can completely ruin the mood when we're getting hot and heavy and he will start feeling my body and all I can think is 'don't touch me I'm disgusting'.

Its as if there is a part of me that thinks he will touch a lumpy bumpy tummy and suddenly think 'why am I with her??'

I only want to have sex in the dark, although we have done it in half-light and it is a lot less enjoyable for me as all I can think is '...don't look at me don't look at me'.
He loves me being on top but I can't relax on top cause he'll see my saggy breasts [Frown]

Oh god, I know I'm moaning on.... but it really gets me down. Expecially when it upsets him, cause he thinks I don't want him touching some parts of me because of something he did.
I've tried explaining and he's very sweet and loving but I cannot beleive that anyone could love me for me....when my body is the way it is...I can't have him doing oral cause I worry everything might be weird down there but he thinks I don't want him!


Ugh, any personal experiences will be gratefully appreciated!

Posts: 14 | From: Scotland uk | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Can we start by separating issues of body image and self-esteem? or self-image and self-esteem? For sure, they are often interrelated, but they are also separate.

To be clear, self-esteem is about how much someone values themselves as a whole person. Self-image is about how someone sees themselves. Body image is about how someone sees and feels about their body and appearance.

What I'm hearing sounds like you're talking about body image, not self-esteem, but saying that your self-esteem may be lower than you'd like because of your poor body image. Does that sound about right?

If so, do you feel like separate from your body and body image, you have high value of yourself as a whole person? And not just in this relationship, which is only one part of your life. I'm asking about your whole life and the whole of who you are.

Can I also ask if you'd maybe talk about if you really feel ready to be sexually intimate with someone? Because if you never feel comfy about it when the lights are on, are having panic attacks with touching, and -- it sounds like -- sex is mostly about HIS enjoyment, that strongly suggests to me you're not there yet and that this kind of intimacy is happening too soon for you.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
martinafranklyn
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Hi, yes I understand your differentiation between the two, but I do believe I have problems with both.

As for self-esteem, I do not feel worthy of 'love' I don't feel particularly like I deserve to be loved, and I don't understand why someone would love me when they could choose someone else.

My point about my body image is linked to this, as I mentioned, I convinced myself he was only interested in my body.
Which in itself was an issue as I felt even my body was not worth love.
So I felt as though it was only a matter of time before he found out that even THAT was not worth love and realise his massive mistake....Does that make sense?

As for sexual intimacy you have hit the nail on the head with it really....I spent 40 odd minutes massaging and giving him pleasure last night and it never one crossed my mind that I wanted it in return. I was quite happy with 20 minutes of orgasm-less intercourse afterwards.

Its not that he doesn't try to give me pleasure but I won't let him. I don't know why....
I enjoy sex, I enjoy (some) foreplay, I even crave sex and intimacy with him....just some aspects of it clam me up.

I'm trying hard to let go of these hang ups but it might take me a while. Its taken him two months of gentle persistence to relax me enough to finger me [Eek!]


I have the same issues with receiving gifts. I physically hate it when people offer me assistance, money, gifts...I would rather injure myself carrying a ridiculously heavy box than have someone see I'm in need and help me with it.
It's only in the last couple of years I've taught myself to just push through and try to accept gifts and help.

Hmph....maybe I need therapy [Razz]

Posts: 14 | From: Scotland uk | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Being loved or being in a romantic relationship still isn't all that we are, though. That's only one part of life and our life experience.

Maybe we can talk some more about you as a WHOLE person, not just how you look, or you in relationship to someone else sexually or romantically?

Sex-wise, it does sound to me like you might need some more time to work on your body image and your own esteem before sex really feels right for you. Trying to do so with someone else being persistent, like you say, actually can be pretty problematic. Why is he being so persistent? How about letting you come to any sex at your own pace without any pushes from him, which make consent a real issue?

Therapy can always be a good thing for any of us at any time, for sure, but it sounds to me like some of what you also may just need here is more time and space AWAY from any pushing on anyone else's part to get to where THEY want you to be rather than allowing you to be exactly where you are and come to all of this at your own pace.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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gleestar
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You sound deprest.
Your guy sounda nice and I'm shure if you have been together for a while, it won't just be for gratfull sex - I think that is for more one night stands =)

a way to get over feeling fat or un confdent is to talk about it.
If i were you I would go to a guidence councler at a school or univirsty or if you can afford it go to a therpist.

It realy helps - trust me.

and I'm shure that you'll be fine soon.

Don't let your weight get you down [Smile]

Posts: 24 | From: uk | Registered: Feb 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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