Quiet as it's kept, your girl Nik still has MANY issues to work out. One of them is believing what I see about myself.
So...I do the online dating thing (don't ask me why...it's mostly a demoralizing exercise in frustration that slowly chips away your belief in human interaction). And like anyone else who dates online I have pictures on profiles. And me being me (an undercover provocateur) the pictures are kinda vampy.
And that's me. Most of the pictures are fairly recent.
So why is it, then, when I meet someone and they ask me out I feel inauthentic? Like I was lying in the picture or telling a half-truth? Some of the talk I say to myself is that the lighting was good or I know how to pose. Why can't I let myself believe I am the girl in the picture? That I am who I say i am? That I am who the pictures say I am?
No deep wisdom in this post, just musing. Self image stuff is a ***** to work through but I'm working on it. Many times I feel duplicitous. On the one hand, I am an extrovert. I don't have a problem talking to people, flirting or asserting my worth verbally. On the other hand, I have this guilt about the girl in the picture, don't believe she's me and feel like I am duping someone for representing myself as her.
Yes, people. I am effed up. LOL.
Ok, enough randomness. Can anybody else relate???
I think you look great. I don't relate to your question because I have an over inflated sense of self lol. What I do want to tell you is that online dating can work. I met my husband online 5 years ago this month and in July we will celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary. I have never felt so comfortable or so loved by anyone in my life. He met me at my biggest and has supported me through my weight loss journey. Now don't get me wrong, online dating did shake my faith in humanity also. I never knew that the male species was compromised of so many pigs lol...but I did eventually meet my prince :)
Come keep it real in R&R 3.0 Want an invite? PM me here.
I met my husband online. It wasn't a dating site, but it was a message board for a common interest. We celebrated our 3 year wedding anniversary this past January.
Nik, I relate. It isn't anything recently. But back when I used to be thin in my early teens, I used to think I knew how to suck in or some other crap. I always thought I was way fatter than I was. That mental image carried with me through the years, causing depression and social anxiety, until it led me to use food as a comfort and friend which in turn truly did make me fat. So as I lose weight now, I will be curious to see how I feel about myself and how I look in pictures.
OH MY Nik! I can completely relate to this post. Not the online dating thing but definately the beleiving what I see in the mirror and in pictures.
I gain the majority of my weight after having my thyroid removed in 1978. Lots of therapy later I accepted who I was and did not let my size define me. I liked who I was and did not "hide" from society. I dated, finished college, got married, changed professions at 30
Fastforward to RNY in April of 2012. Today 1 year out, I am down from a size 22/24 to a size 6, I am down from 253 to 140. I do not know how to respond to the compliments and definately do not recognize the person in the mirror or in pictures.
It comforts me to know that I am not alone in these feelings. Thanks for sharing.
I suppose you could ask all the females that wear tons of makeup the same thing. Not that I don't love to make myself up, I do. When I was young I wore the false eyelashes, wigs, hair pieces, and the whole shebang. I never felt that I wasn't worthy of it. It never occurred to me. Dating online would scare the s*** out of me though.
I totally get it Nik!!! Although I myself am a big flirt I find I am never comfortable that a man will really care about Me for being Just ME. No matter how much weight I have lost. Now that I have lost weight I find I am stressing over the fact that because of my loose skin and deflated boobs that no man will get past that and consider me sexy again.
At my highest weight many men still considered me sexy and would tell me so. But I have this thought that the new deflated person is far from Sexy naked. In my mind the pictures hide the wrinkly skin and I fear that men may think that underneath all the clothes is a normal body when I know it is a less than perfect body that will disappoint any who might have the chance to view it.
YES! You hit the nail on the head.
It takes a good deal of work to arrive at what's in the picture. But when I'm around the house..."kickin' it"...it's a different story. And I see a totally different person in the mirror during those times. Sigh. It's such a mind game!
I think I understand where you are coming from at least a little. I am having a great deal of trouble seeing myself as others do. Mainly because for years I did not look in a mirror at all...I saw my face when I was washing it but never saw anything else. It is something that I am working hard on now. Compliments are hard for me to hear because somehow I think I fooled those people and they will find out soon! I personally think you are awesome...but I know that doesn't really help just had to say it to you!
I can relate. You are concerned you are selling someone a bill of goods. A picture is tricky. It only captures one moment in time. It cannot encompass every facet of your personality. One picture or even a profile doesn't reflect the whole of your personality: your humor, your introspection (because you do think deeply about things), your zest for life, your caring for people, and your love of family.
I think self image is fluid and it changes over time. We all go through cycles or phases when some things are more important while other things recede. You aren't selling anyone a bill of goods. You are giving them a snapshot of who you are the moment the picture is taken. When you meet, you are giving them a further opportunity to learn more about you.
I don't have any answers about how to overcome this vague doubtful feeling, but know that you are a jewel, inside and out.
I fight badgers with spoons.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255