Body Issues


Been having a lot of body-hate today.

It's very difficult to unpack -- in part, because it relies on a bunch of double standards about appearance that I hold, all cutting my way. Body fat? On other people, it's actually kinda sexy -- I don't dislike skinny physiques at all, but definitely seem to prefer a larger build. On me, it just feels hideous and lumpen and a mark of my own weakness. I don't find trans women's bodies in transition to be squicky at any stage -- if anything the whole range of possible configurations is kind of fascinating to me, and potentially attractive. I'll tend to be careful about stating that when I know I appreciate something the other person doesn't like about themselves, but the point is there's not much in the way of outwardly-directed "internalized transphobia". Inwardly-directed, on the other hand...

I hate my height. I hate my face. I hate my build and my bits and pretty much everything about my body. And I don't understand on any intuitive, emotional level why some people find me attractive. It simply does not compute. And I'm constantly comparing myself to others -- breast size, how fit, surgical status, facial structure, height...and it tends to get worse around cis people.

 It's exhausting. It's painful and draining and it makes my loved ones worry about me a lot. It pushes some of Tess's triggers around setting people off (even though not a single bit is her fault, and I don't take it out on her, just knowing I might be looking at her and hating myself more for failing to be like her makes her feel awful).

 I'm...trying to find coping mechanisms. It's hard. I exercise (itself a series of triggers), I eat pretty well these days. I got some nice hair brushes so I could pamper the one part of my body that I occasionally appreciate. I have a tattoo now (yay), and I've taken up body art to try and give myself something to like. But it's still there, and I don't know if it's ever going to go away. Social conditioning on top of general damage on top of trans-specific body dysphoria (which just doesn't translate for cis people), and I'm not able to just address the offending physical properties outright.