Addendum my most recent post. (I hadn't intended to stay on this subject, but your response makes me think one or two more posts would be appropriate. More soon.)

I want to clarify that you are not at fault for feeling the effects of a sexist and oppressive beauty culture.

I could not blame you if you feel terrible about yourself. No, no, friends. It is all too understandable

But it is your responsibility to take hold of what tools and help are available to you — so that you can push back against these unfair standards, so that you can claim your right to do what you want in life regardless of what you do or don't do in regards to your appearance.

Responsibility? Do I really mean that? Yes. This is where we come back to the idea that your choices in this area affect all the rest of us.

So do what you need to do to be good and fair to yourself, and in doing that, you will be good and fair to your fellow females. Retrain your thoughts. Don't indulge in self-loathing. Give yourself what you need to be strong, because as we have agreed, it is not an easy fight. Ask for support from people who love you (What does that mean? It means ask them for what you need but can't give yourself.) Give support to them when they need it. Find people who love you and themselves. Reach out for support from a therapist or counselor. Affirm your intrinsic worth and your unique gifts, and affirm the people around you in the same way.

And MOST OF ALL: do not beat yourself up for not having enough self-confidence/love/esteem.
I do this on occasion, and I know I'm not the only one. It's hilariously ironic, but also pretty counterproductive.

Though there are better places ahead for you, where you are now is okay. You are doing your best. The important thing is that you keep moving forward to claim peace and self-confidence. It's what you deserve. It's what we all deserve.


geekspawn 4/08/2010 9:40 PM  

Oh, and I'm going to make my friend read THIS, too...
you amaze me.

Girl in the Black Beret 4/08/2010 10:00 PM  

I went through the other comments. I didn't read your last post as angry, you know. It was almost this knowledgable pleading. There was a desperation in your words for us to understand what you had discovered.

With this new post. You are correct. Once more.


cuileann 4/08/2010 10:23 PM  

geekspawn - Okay, that makes me glad because it means I am saying something USEFUL!

Girl in the Black Beret - Yes? That's good. I call it that because I was very angry when I wrote it, but I did try to keep it reasonable. Since that usually goes over better and all.

Georgie K. Buttons 4/08/2010 11:00 PM  

Still trying.

spider 4/08/2010 11:01 PM  

Thank you. Especially for the second-to-last paragraph. It was exactly what I needed to hear.

cuileann 4/08/2010 11:04 PM  

Georgie - Keep it up, chica. We're proud of you. *hugs*

spider - Oh, I am glad. You're very welcome.

Erin 4/09/2010 10:03 AM  

amen amen amen!

Cassandra 4/09/2010 3:20 PM  

Once again, my dear, you are spot-on. A great follow-up and just as empowering and self-affirming as the last. There need to be more of you in this world.

cuileann 4/09/2010 6:32 PM  

Erin - And all God's people said!

Cassandra - Thank you, chica.

Danielle 4/22/2010 9:27 PM  

amen to this indeed. i've been sharing it with my friends who need it...

Holly 4/22/2010 10:08 PM  

Danielle - Oh, that really gladdens me. Thank you.

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