I have always had what I called chicken legs. I think they are gross. Then one day I was shopping with my best friends and they all confessed how they hated me because I have a thigh gap. Seriously. I told them that I never tried to have a thigh gap, it just came naturally. I would give anything to have full muscular legs that don’t make make me look sickly. Can the thigh gap obsession please just go away?
– Chicken Legs McGee
I am transgender. I have hated my body for almost my entire life because I felt like it betrayed who I am on the inside. I am struggling now with the decision to go through with a full transition or not. I don’t if I’ll be happy with my body until it matches what’s inside.
This is a struggle for me every day. I have gained 45 pounds since college. I used to love my body. Now my body disgusts me. I am now learning that I used to love my body because it looked a lot like so many beautiful women in the media. Damn, I had great legs. And my boobs. . . Gaining weight is not healthy, and I am working to become healthy again, but being 45 pounds heavier has certainly challenged my perception of what beauty really is.
I still feel comfortable rocking a bikini, but for different reasons than when I was in my 20s. When I was younger, I flaunted my body just to get positive attention. Now I have learned that I have so much more to offer than just my body. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my body, but it took me years to realize that there is so much more to me. I am 38 now, with two kids. I want my kids to see that their Mom, with saggy boobs and dimply thighs, can be beautiful and comfortable with herself. I try to set an example that it is OK to show your body if you want to AND that it is really important to show your smarts and wit too.
-Sam in Florida
I have always been overweight, since I was a child, but I never let it affect the way I carried myself or acted. I was awesome and the way I looked or how much I weighed wasn’t going to change that fact.
When I was in college, I lost over 100lbs. Crazy, I know?! I was in a long distance relationship, and was getting a lot of attention from local guys and I wasn’t sure what to do with the new found “hottie” status. After the relationship ended, I went buck wild…like lost my mind, going out, reveling in the attention shown to me. Those 18+ months sent me down a slippery slope. Having been overweight my entire life, this attention was like cocaine and the high I got was
out of this world. Until, the attention I received caused me to put my guards down and get myself into trouble. Then I got sick, and wasn’t able to walk without the assistance of cane for 6 months. Watching my friends living that life helped me come back down to reality. But also, the sedentary life style had me gaining all of the weight back.
The ironic thing…my body image/self respect is stronger now that I am heavier than it was when I was thin. People have to like me for me, not just what I look like. Don’t get me wrong, for health reasons, I would like to be a little slimmer, but not for vanity’s sake. I am thankful for that tumultuous time in my life, as I am more grounded and ok with my awesome self than I was back then.
-Whassy Bailey, Life as Whassy