An Open Letter To All Teenage And Twenty Something Women, Stop Judging Yourselves

I have finally learned to love my body just as it is. No it is not perfect. I had what you might call a “perfect” body by society’s standards in my teens and twenties, again for a while in my thirties and again in my late  forties. I was thin, petite. I maintained it for about a year and a half.

In my late forties, I was getting whistled at by construction workers and looks from teenage boys.. I didn’t like it, but it happened. I gave a few the finger because that is who I am. I have attitude and I don’t LIKE being judged by my body, thin or fat.

I have been yo-yo dieting since I was in my thirties, so I can thank my parents for telling me I was fat when I wasn’t and all the other crazy shit they did to make me feel like I was worthless, like  ACTUALLY telling me I was worthless. This has  happened to many girls and women, or at least it was implied.

For me, it was often implied that being pretty or using sex to get what I wanted was the only way I would get it because I was stupid. They came right out and said I was stupid, of course. Yeah, that was offensive to me. I was smart, and I was getting A’s or at least B’s in all of my classes as required by my parents in order to avoid being grounded and spending all of my time with them. Ironic, I know. Irony has  played a major role in my damn life. Now we are pretty good friends.

When I was eighteen and newly graduated from high school, I worked for a very rude attorney as his legal secretary (that is what it was called then) for eight of the longest weeks of my life. My father said, “If he chases you around the desk, you should let him catch you.” Implying, in case you didn’t get it, that I should have sex with the seventy year old man. Also implying I would never earn anything on my own without using my sexuality.

I told my father he should not talk to me that way. He ACTUALLY asked why? He was an ass and an idiot. Obviously.

He also had control issues and I think he and my mother wanted to keep me dependent so that I would stay in that same small town where they lived. It did not work. I had to leave for so many reason. For one,  I think my head would have exploded if I had stayed there.  I needed to leave so that I could think clearly and become who I wanted to be, free of them and the negative things they told me I was. I didn’t fully understand that then. I did know I wanted to leave that town.

It took me over fifty years to accept my body as it was. I was fifty-two and I went to a lake in a bathing suit with a family member that I loved and still do, very much. I decided to stop worrying about what other people thought because I wanted to go swimming and spend the day with this teenager. That was most important. Finally, I just decided to live, to just do what I wanted to and screw what people thought.

Once I did it, I was really sorry I had waited so long. I love to swim. I have loved to swim since I was a child, yet I had denied myself this because someone might look at my overweight body. Oh no, it would have been the end of the world! Well, it wasn’t. It was just my body in a bathing suit.

Later on, I even went to a beach. I swam in the ocean and that was amazing and beautiful. No one cared that my body was not tiny and perfect. No one cared. Seriously. They were busy living their lives.

So young women everywhere, please enjoy your healthy young bodies. Please love yourself and your body and just enjoy being healthy. Enjoy what your body can do, run and walk, breath, just enjoy being alive.

 Please try not to judge yourself for your bodies or anything about yourselves because you are damn near perfect right now, and that is all of you, not just your body. You are right where you need to be. Remember that you are more than your body. You are your brain and your sense of humor, your kindness, and your intelligence. You are your ability to learn and have new experiences, to help others and get to know other people, to accept help, to grieve, to communicate honestly, form friendships and love others

The twenties are not easy.I do remember. It’s all complicated enough without critixising the body you live in. Realize that you have a beautiful, strong body and you can and should appreciate it. You are young, beautiful and strong. Yes, you are dealing with a shitload of emotions and trying to figure out your entire life. So appreciate what you do have. You will never have that body again. Appreiciate it. And don’t tell yourself the lie that you are not beautiful, because you are. Screw anyone that does not think you are. Don’t get conceited and be a bitch about it. I don’t mean that. Don’t screw up your values.

I just mean, appreciate the reality and develop your inner self because soon this outer beauty will not be there. It won’t matter to you as much if you have developed any personality and intelligence. And I hope you do. You are more important than what you look like. The people who only like you because you are beautiful can’t be trusted. Shit happens, Pretty One. You want people who love you because you are smart and funny or whatever you are, not because they like to look at you. You want people you can count on. Become one of those people. .

When you are fifty, and I know it seems like forever away, but it will happen if you are lucky and make it there, you will have everything you have experienced and learned. It will be amazing and good. Yes, there will have been heartache if you actually lived your life and didn’t hide away somewhere. There will have been pain and loss and sadness. Hopefully there will have also been love and joy and lessons learned. Maybe it will happen sooner than fifty for you. I don’t know. Just go out and live.

If you have done it right, you will genuinely like yourself and be comfortable in your own skin. Even if that skin is in a larger or smaller size than you expected it to be. Even if it is a larger size than society or anyone tells you is “normal”. Maybe you will be really thin, skinny, or what people consider overweight. What the hell is normal?

I don’t want to be normal. That sounds so boring. I have never been normal. We are all different. There is no normal.

I am saying, all women, all young women and women of any age, let’s just support each other. No more judgment, please. Stop judging yourself. Stop judging other women.  Our sexuality is beautiful. Our intelligence and everything else about us is beautiful. Be yourself and grow into whoever you want or need to be. No pun intended.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About jambiethoughts

My name is Jamie W. Bryant,. Sometimes I drop the W. I am a currently a 55 year old woman with a serious sense of whimsy. I was having a hard time describing myself but when a friend said everyone wanted to be a princess, men and women, I said to call me a Queen, Warrior Queen. I think Whimsical Happy sometimes Silly Warrior Queen Who Takes No Shit But Is Really Kind and loves to have fun but is really responsible might do it. It is long, however I have never been good at editing myself, in SO MANY WAYS, so there is that. If you still have no idea who I am, well, read my blog and try to figure it out. I can be serious. I can be silly. I love to make myself and others laugh. I speak real shit. I believe everyone should be treated with respect, and I will if you will. I calls them as I sees them. I sometimes swear. Gasp! I do not swear when I am in the presence of children, but this blog is for grown ups. You have been warned.
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2 Responses to An Open Letter To All Teenage And Twenty Something Women, Stop Judging Yourselves

  1. I neglected to explain that I meant that I think women of any age are beautiful. I simply meant that that beauty changes. At fifty, you don’t look like you did in your twenties. Things change. So yes, enjoy the way you look and feel in your teens and twenties and keep enjoying how you look and feel as you get older. My opinion. 🙂

  2. thehouseai says:

    I have always had body image issues. When I was in junior high, I got to 110 lbs, which on my body at that time, I decided was too much, so I went down to eating very little at each meal, a slice of toast, an apple, and dropped down to 95, and stayed at that weight through college and into my 20s. By my mid twenties to early 30s, I went from that gradually up to 107 at 31. By 36, after my 2nd child, I was 116 (I’m 5’3″ with a small frame). My ex always told me I had potato legs, so for all those years I hated the way I looked in a bathing suit (actually smashing!), and hardly ever wore shorts. I thought I had short stubby fat legs, because he also told me I needed two more inches in my calves, as if I could miraculously stretch them out. In later years, after our divorce, he told me potato legs meant skinny, like toothpicks stuck into the body. Wow. So many wasted years on a misunderstanding. But how was I to guess that since all the comments were so negative. I wasn’t toned enough in my arms, etc. So during the years when I should have been satisfied with a really great body, I wasn’t. By my 40s I started putting on weight – I had stopped working, stayed home and baked, grew depressed, and got hammered more and more by my ex for my body. So now, on my own, at 56, I have less fear of what people think than I did when I had a body to be proud of by any standards. I have learned to love me. I am not satisfied. Clothes don’t look that great, but I am okay. I will lose weight, or I won’t, but it will happen on my own terms. Great blog post Jamie.

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