Our partner

My Life With BDD

Body Dysmorphic Disorder message board, open discussion, and online support group.

Moderator: Bilbo Baggins

My Life With BDD

Postby katalina » Mon Jul 06, 2009 8:25 pm

So, here’s my backstory, I figure this probably sums up where I’m coming from. Sorry about how long it is, but I thought I’d include everything. I've come here hoping to find people with similar experiences, and maybe some ideas on how I can start to become a real, normal person again. (wouldn't that be great! :) )

Long ago, I was a very happy child, and have always had a big smile on my face, which persists today despite how bad I feel on the inside. Back then, I was a genius – at age 6, I was tested to read at an adult level, and my IQ was tested by a psychologist to be 165 a few years later. I could do anything I set my mind to , and all adults loved me. Of course, my peers were an entirely different story. I vividly remember their caustic, vicious remarks, even as I was a tiny little girl with no one to defend me. The other kids all derived such joy from my tears, and after a while, I gave up on the whole making friends thing. I just did not fit in, no matter how hard I tried. My parents were always very supportive, assuring me that everyone else was simply jealous, and that before long, I’d find people like me and friends who adored me. Meekly, I hid with my books and dreamed of a place where I could fit in and be normal. I had no friends for most of elementary school, and when I did, they only lasted until they found someone better to hang out with. While this broke my heart, I figured that there was nothing I could do about it.

Middle school was more of the same, but high school brought changes. Even though I always felt fat and like the ugliest girl at school, guys started to notice me all the time, even told me I was gorgeous. While this confused me and I was certain they were lying, I was thrilled to finally have companionship. I soon ended up with a boyfriend who was in college, and quickly integrated into his group of friends. I cannot tell you how happy I was to finally be with a group of friends who seemed to like me and care about me and do stuff with me. However, the relationship, though it started innocently enough, eventually turned to sexual abuse, even though I didn’t label it that way at the time because I was so blindly loyal to him. After enduring it for months in silence, he dumped me, basically telling me I was too boring and stupid to be worth more than sex to him (sex which I didn’t even want and felt horribly uncomfortable and scared about). His group of friends, my support and source of happiness of over a year, abandoned me when he did. I had no friends at high school, and was still being bullied relentlessly. I felt so ugly, so devoid of any positive characteristics, and so badly used. I became afraid of even leaving the house, knowing that yet again, people would hurt me because I’m just not as good as them. This is when I got my diagnosis of body dysmorphic disorder, although I was too poor to get therapy or it. I almost killed myself that year, and would have succeeded if my mom hadn’t intervened. The fact that my parents loved me was enough to keep me going, no matter how miserable I was. Besides, they assured me, things would change in college – they assured me, only real losers can’t make friends in college!

Well, basically, it turns out that I’m a real loser. I do have an amazing boyfriend now, who is my favorite person in the world and my best friend, but I just can’t seem to make other friends. My roommates were terrible people my freshman year, who bullied me relentlessly because I wasn’t up to their standards. They quickly gossiped about me to the entire dorm with brutal and vicious lies and made sure I could not make friends with anyone. Since then, it has seemed all but impossible to make friends: everyone already has established groups from the dorms or from high school, and even though I talk to lots of people during class, they never ask to hang out, and I’m too scared to ask them to hang out with me (especially since I don’t have a group to join us, it’d sound pretty pathetic!). I eventually give up again, knowing that I’ll get abandoned by them just like everyone else does. I know in the end, I just lack something everyone else has, and so I'll never fit in.

Frankly, I still feel like a worthless mess on the inside. I feel stupid, even though I’m about to graduate magna cum laude in one of the hardest physiology and biophysics programs in the country, and am going to med school in a year. I feel hideously ugly, even though I’ve been asked many times before if I model and have been asked to model too (I’m still pretty certain those people were just making fun of me, though). I want to lose weight, even though my doctor tells me that it’d be ridiculous at my weight to want to be any thinner – why can’t they see the disgusting bulges of fat where I can? I feel too scared to leave the house, even though I know it’s completely irrational. And worst of all, I feel like it’s never going to change. I've spent so long trying to tough this out on my own, but I think at this point, I'm going to finally reach out and ask for the help that I so badly need. Please tell me, what can I do? I want to feel okay about myself and make friends, is it possible?
katalina
Consumer 0
Consumer 0
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 8:17 pm
Local time: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:47 am
Blog: View Blog (0)


ADVERTISEMENT

Re: My Life With BDD

Postby Chucky » Mon Jul 06, 2009 8:53 pm

You are nowhere near worthless my dear, and you are a wonderful person in the eyes of those around you I'm sure. Your boyfriend sounds lovely too, and I think that you should recognise how happy you and he are together (and will be for a long time). Anyway - yes - you are nowhere near worthless. If anything, you may act as a role model for some people without even knowing it. You have been through so much and have battled (and won), and people look up to ones like you with awe.

Is it possible for you to make friends and enjoy life again? - Most certainly. You must start on this journey right now by realising one thing: People like you and I think too much and we remember wvery nasty comment that has ever been made about us. You can think of this as a defence mechanism - i.e. we remember the bad things so that we can avoid them in the future. However, when it's taking to the extreme as it is for you, problems occur. You must counter act this thinking though, because it's killing you inside. You must learn to let the comments from others (and the comments from yourself in your own mind) pass over you, and view them as completely silly and stupid.

I used to think that I was an alien. i'm serious - I thought that my facial bones were out of place and that I was from another planet. i thought that I was the ugliest boy in the world. As it turns out, I'm a regular human being, as are you. We all are.

Kevin
Chucky
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 28158
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 8:04 pm
Local time: Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:47 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: My Life With BDD

Postby katalina » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:17 pm

Thank you, Kevin! I still want to figure out how to really get over this and really realize and believe that all my negative thoughts are irrational. I can think to myself, say aloud, that this self-hatred is completely ridiculous and a crazy defense mechanism to keep myself from getting hurt again, but I still don't believe it -- they're all hollow words, no matter how many times I say them or think them. I still believe on the inside that every bit of it is true, since it seems like the most logical conclusion as to why people are always so mean to me.

On one hand, I am happy that I have made it this far without collapsing and giving up, but I want to take it a step further. I don't think most people want to be friends with someone who doesn't even like herself, so I need to change that. It has to be a huge burden to deal with that, so I need to take care of it before I can really reach out and make a true effort. I'm still not sure that people like me; you see, I have problems with interpreting people's actions (I often assume they're disgusted with me or think I'm weird, when in fact, they're worried or anxious about something in their own lives). Eventually, hopefully I can make that stop! The boyfriend is an amazing source of help for me, we've been together for almost 3 years and he has been supportive and strong when I've been weak. More than anything else, I want to be strong and recover for him (and my family too), because I know it'd make them happy to know I was finally happy.

Anyway, thank you for the kind words, and I'm sure you don't look like an alien, dear! :)
katalina
Consumer 0
Consumer 0
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 8:17 pm
Local time: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:47 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: My Life With BDD

Postby Chucky » Mon Jul 06, 2009 10:46 pm

Hi,

I know that I'm not looking like an alien now. I am 26 and have accepted that I am just like everyone else. It was actually the words of an old lecturer that have stuck in my head to this extent. I went to him when I was depressed and he told me that I was no better than anyone else in the world; and that I was just the same. It's a nice though, when you think about it. Anyway, you have already looked logically at your 'friends' situation by recognising that they (other people) probably have their own worries/problems to deal with too; and it's true - they do - which is why people can sometimes appear cold towards you. If you sense that someone is feeling this way, why don't you aask them if anything's wrong? What can you lose by doing something like this? This would be a form of reaching out by you, which is what friends do.

Ultimately, never do anything you aren't comfortable with, but be aware that you might have to take small 'risks' from your current position in order to get to a higher level of social contact. Also, never ever try to be someone you simply aren't and cannot be.

Kevin
Chucky
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 28158
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 8:04 pm
Local time: Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:47 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: My Life With BDD

Postby wanderlust » Sat Jul 11, 2009 6:59 pm

A lot of what you said struck a chord with me because I've been through a lot of the same things. I've always been 'the smart one,' instead of playing with other kids and watching TV, I would be doing an experiment with bugs or microscopes or reading, or something like that. I genuinely found it interesting, much more so than the stupid TV programs that would be on or out running around doing pointless things that little kids do all day. This continued through middle and high school - I found things that required thought and analysis FUN to consider, and (unsurprisingly) was completely rejected and/or made a target by my peers. It wasn't because they were jealous, it was because I didn't act how I was 'expected' to and because of that, I wasn't as good as them, in their minds. People don't like people who are different, and unfortunately I think that remains the same to some extent no matter how old people are. The simple-minded people will never like you (or me, or anyone else like us), and since I do think we are few and far between and generally keep to ourselves more, we really need to work to connect with other people and find people who appreciate us for exactly who we are.

Because of all of that, I felt very unloved, and was so desperate to feel wanted by someone, ANYONE, that I put myself through a lot of hard times with people who really didn't give a crap about me and just wanted something (usually sex) from me. I ended up feeling like nobody anywhere would ever want me, and it would have stayed that way if I'd never found anyone who appreciated me. Thankfully, I've found a guy who loves who I am, loves how I look, and really DOES want me and has shown it over and over again, and it's helped me to see that I'm a worthwhile person, and just as good or bad as anyone else.

I'm still having problems socially because it's hard for me to break habits, but here are the conclusions I've come to: The people who will make you the happiest (and vice versa) are those who know who you are, and love you for it. What that means is, unless you want to be loved for someone you're not, you need to BE exactly who you are, with no apologies to anyone. You need to show who you are proudly to the world, so that everyone can see, INCLUDING those who will love you for it, or else nobody will ever know! And you need to show that you value yourself - this means taking care of yourself and presenting yourself in a way that makes you look good and is true to who you are. And you need to be open to other people. I don't mean being the life of the party or talking to everyone you see if you're not outgoing, but not being afraid to approach and talk openly with people who intrigue you or who you feel some kind of connection with. Like if you're sitting near a group of people who are discussing something you're interested in and you can contribute to the conversation, you need to be able to talk to those people. Or say you're studying something that greatly interests you, and you see someone else studying the same thing, you need to be able to say 'hi, I'm studying *whatever you two are studying* too! What's your major/ what are you taking the class for/ do you want to study together? Or...I find *something about the subject you find really interesting* really interesting' Friendships just kinda sprout from things like that. And! don't take $#%^ from anybody! NOBODY is better than you. And you are no better than anyone else.

Sorry about the verry long post...hopefully you like to read :) I just feel very much the same way as you, and wanted to give my input incase it might help!

ETA: I didn't mean to make it sound like it's "us" vs. "them." If you get on their good side, everyone can be a wonderful person, and most everyone will be nice unless you give them a reason not to be. I just mean, for the purpose of freindships, make an effort to find who you fit in with best.
wanderlust
Consumer 1
Consumer 1
 
Posts: 23
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:01 pm
Local time: Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:47 am
Blog: View Blog (0)


Return to Body Dysmorphic Disorder Forum




  • Related articles
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 43 guests

cron