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SpiderGal
06-22-2007, 08:43 PM
I am writing a pitch for a national pub, and wanted to include some quotes from real women into it. If that is not inconvenient to you, please include your name, town and profession at the bottom of your reply.

Body Image, the little sistah of Self Image, is the one's perception of her physical appearance. Put another way, it is one's answesr to questions like these:

1. Am I beautiful?

2. Am I too fat/thin?

3.Am I too tall/short?

As you may have known, your body image is influenced by several factors - comments from family members, media etc.

So, what do you think of yourself in terms of physical appearance? How do you think others perceive you? Do Anna Kournikova and Scarlett Johansson put you to shame? Do you constantly nag about your looks? Any thoughts you have about yourself.

Thanks!

Sassee
06-22-2007, 10:08 PM
Honestly, I worry more about my hair than my body. I managed to inherit frizzy hair that sometimes won't even calm down for moose or anti-frizz products.

As far as my body goes, I tend to worry about my midsection more than anything. I don't like having to suck in my stomach, I don't like it when my pants get too tight. The fat on my thighs is especially annoying and my knees have never been cute. I already know my arm fat will turn into granny wings one day.

But at the same time I don't let it get to me too much. I have a lot of body fat for my size sure, but I'm not horribly overweight... I still have a lot of shape (curvy), and I choose a lot of clothes that compliment my figure while still managing to look "cute" and "fun." (I refuse to buy in the women's section, it's just not my style.) I'm blessed with great boobs and I don't mind having a bigger butt. Yeah sure, I could stand to lose a few pounds, but if I do it'll only be for health reasons. Take it or leave it, I say -- I'm not out to please anyone but myself.

To give you an idea: I'm about 5'6" in a size 12 (sometimes bigger if a manufacturer decides it's going to make all their pants ridiculously small for one year), with a B cup. Very little muscle tone. "Pleasantly plump" comes to mind. I don't wear makeup. (Mostly out of laziness, because I don't want to get up early enough to primp myself that much in the morning.)

What do others think of me? My dad is really preoccupied with weight, so he teases me a lot about the extra fat (he'll pinch my arm fat or make a "concerned" comment). Everyone else doesn't care. My husband thinks I'm sexy, but then, he's supposed to anyway. I hear my coworkers think I'm hot when I wear my hair down, but "hotness" is dependent upon other factors like overall confidence (obviously I'm not short on that since I'm posting all of this in public forums! lol!). So... I don't know.

All I know is that when I look at any given female celebrity it makes me want to go eat a pizza for them.

I can tell you the body image thing varies from state to state. In Missouri, where I grew up, the overall population is heavier than where I live now in Colorado, and so there wasn't as much pressure to drop the extra pounds. Being "overweight" was more accepted. Plus, I was younger and didn't have so much extra padding. I was self-conscious for a few months when I first moved out here because it seemed like everyone was in great shape (in comparison to MO). Luckily for me I got over it, although I've gained 30 pounds in the last four years. Heh.

Hope that helps!

~ Ninja Bunny ~
aka Sarah
bored office worker in Denver, CO

JoNightshade
06-22-2007, 10:12 PM
This is kind of a weird question... tell me if I'm giving you what you want here.

Personally, I think I am beautiful. I am tall and thin and I have, frankly, large boobs. I have huge green eyes and brown hair. I have no body-image problems although I do wish my boobs were a little higher on my chest... I have a long body and they are in technically the right place, but a lot of shirts make me look all saggy. That's probably more a factor of poor clothing design than anything wrong with me.

However, I think other women's reaction to me is usually, "She could be so pretty if..." Why? Because I don't wear makeup. I don't dress up. I wear nice but casual clothing that doesn't highlight my "assets" and I don't pluck my brows and smear colored paint all over my face. So I don't fit in with the normal female crowd.

My experience with men is that they think I'm perfectly attractive, makeup or not. However, if/when I do dress up to the normal female standard (clothing that highlights my figure, makeup), I am constantly oogled. I'm not talking about going-out-to-a-party dressed up, I'm just talking about nice businesswear. Guys approach me randomly, or just stare. This makes me extremely self-conscious; it makes me feel like a slut. This is why I dress casually and don't wear makeup. Fortunately I have a job that doesn't require me to dress up.

As a result, I'm a misfit in most of the female world. Girls are alternately jealous of me and try to "fix me up," although I do have a few close female friends who accept me as I am. I get along great with guys as long as I dress casually. I think because I don't do the usual female "things," they generally accept me as "one of the guys."

Oh... I'm a writer/editor for an online company, and for myself. I live in California. If you want name and specific town, PM me.

Scrawler
06-22-2007, 10:17 PM
1. Am I beautiful? I love who I am, and that's beautiful. My husband thinks I'm beautiful. I don't really dwell on my looks.

2. Am I too fat/thin? Based on whose definition? The media's? I'm at a healthy weight. I maintain my weight to maintain my health

3.Am I too tall/short? Again, based on whose definition? Next to Tom Cruise, was Nicole Kidman too tall? I'd consider my height to be average. My height is not something I ever think about, but this is probably because I'm average and rarely have trouble finding clothes that fit.

How do you think others perceive you? I seldom give it much thought if you mean how others perceive my looks. I'd like to be perceived as a friendly, kind person.

Do Anna Kournikova and Scarlet Johannsen put you to shame? Why would they? Why would how someone else looks shame me? If celebrities make me feel ashamed of myself, I'd need some serious therapy.

Do you constantly nag about your looks? Nag whom? Do you mean demand other people reassure me that I'm pretty? No. Do you mean complain and moan because my eyes aren't the same color as Scarlet Johansen's? No.

Any thoughts you have about yourself. I am what I am. I'm much more interested in what I achieve in life, as opposed to comparing my looks or body to a celebrity, or getting into a self-hate thing because my thighs are bigger than yours.
Scrawler
age 43, Los Angeles

Monkey
06-25-2007, 09:15 PM
Heh. I SHOULD feel like Scrawler. Truth is, I don't.

I am 5'1 and very thin, but this is my natural size and looks fine on me. I only feel like it's a problem when people make a big deal out of it...my teenage son is 6'3, and my husband is 6'8. Sometimes people have supposed that my husband was my father, despite our ages being only months apart, just because of our height difference. My head is below his armpits.

I used to think my breasts were too small, and I hated it. I felt like so many of my problems would just disappear if I had bigger breasts! Guys would be easier to pick up, I'd be more popular, job interviews would be easier, my self-esteem would go up...*sigh*. Now that I've had children, I worry that once breast-feeding is done they'll just be empty bags! Even with that, though, I have finally made peace with my breast size. I am not voluptuous. I am sleek and lithe, cushioned here and there with muscle, but not with fat. My breasts will never be big. Instead, when I wear tight shirts, I can emphasize my tummy muscles and biceps. The overall picture is still nice, IMO.

I have been harrassed about being too thin. Pooh. I'm at a weight that's healthy for me, achieved through eating (lots of) good food and exercising for enjoyment...I mean, I go to the park with my kids, take long walks, do yoga, sword-fight, ect, but I never go to the gym. I don't think about my weight on a regular basis and don't even own a scale. It's only when people (almost always women) start calling me anorexic or giving me crap about being "bony" that I even think about it.

Right now, I am not in the physical shape I'd like to be in, or that I am usually in. It took me longer than expected to recover from the emergency C-section I had with my last baby. Those prized abs and biceps I mentioned have lost definition, and I actually have a tiny bit of "pooch" to my belly, destroying the strong, lithe image that I like to see in myself. I'm working on this (more fun activities), and it is improving.

I have 3 false teeth that I can't bear to be seen without, even by myself or my husband. I also have a thin scar that runs from my upper lip to my right nostril. My nose is slightly crooked. All this stems from a horse accident I had when I was 12. I think the scar and crooked nose look awful in pictures, but somehow they don't seem to affect my appearance much when I'm in person. Many people don't even notice. I've made peace with these flaws by saying that at least they give my face character and show that I've been somewhere. But I still hate pictures of myself.

Also, I've always wished that I looked more exotic. I mean, I have grey-blue eyes, straight brown hair, and no real defining features other than scars. Nothing about me is extraordinary. Make-up doesn't help; if anything, it makes me conform even more. Needless to say, I don't wear make-up.

Jennifer McCall
Near Corpus Christi, Texas
Housewife/Author