Listen, I’ll just go ahead and say it. I have BDD (Body Dysmorphic Disorder.) It’s the obsession of a physical flaw that may be minor or, most of time, in my case, imagined.
For example, I obsess over my hairline, I obsess over my jawline, I obsess over my lips. Sometimes I see myself in the mirror and think I’m chubby and pregnant, then other times I will see myself as a famished corpse. There’s really no in between.
It’s like a high frequency beam that is both mind-numbing and breaks my concentration; however, what’s odd is I don’t always feel ugly. There are times where I can walk by a store window and feel confident. But the thing with BDD is it follows, waiting for you to walk by a poster of a Calvin Klein model in the mall.
A lot of times I compare myself to guys on Google. Hell, sometimes Instagram and Tumblr are my worst enemies. Let’s face it though, they’ve got the best cake.
I rarely take group photos, I go through spells where I don’t use my actual profile picture, I pick my skin, I either avoid mirrors or stare deeply into them; god forbid I get hung up in a dressing room.
Don’t laugh, but the best way to describe it is like being Mr. Potato Head. A fabulous, confident Mr. Potato Head, may I add, and then this angry toddler removes your best features and replaces it with something ugly. You’ll be in a panic, trying your best to remove the horrible insecurity and damn does the child shake the hell out of you.
Then, right when you’re on the edge of breaking down, this kid becomes calm, removes the ugly affliction and puts back the nose you like– then he replaces your eyebrows with caterpillars and, once more, the vicious cycle continues.
But please know that I’m not posting this because I want you to say I’m beautiful or good-looking. As a matter of fact, I know I’m attractive. My mother is the most beautiful woman in the world, and I praise the Heavens I inherited her looks.
The only person who really needs to tell me I’m beautiful is me.
And I also posted this because it’s actually a very, very common psychological disorder… especially with gay guys. For real, I’ve seen a 20 year old guy almost break down cause someone joked about him having a non-existent grey hair.
I’ve seen guys in the basement of a gay club wash their hands in the bathroom sink, then stop and stare desperately at their reflections. Sometimes it’s four of them.
I’ve had a guy LITERALLY start blubbering on my shoulder because he turned 34 and referred to himself as worn-down, old leather. Shit, he acted as if the stock market crashed. (Btw he actually looked about 27.)
I’ve seen genuinely adorable, beautiful guys who legit will get all crazy just because they aren’t good enough or their skin is too pale. Holy hell, I once liked a guy who, in his words, was “fat and disgusting.” I mean, yeah, he wasn’t skinny then, but he has one of the most handsome mugs I’ve EVER seen to this day. Like, for real.
Even one of my best friends thinks he is “gay fat” (I hate that term.)
Again, I’m not posting this because I want you to tell me I’m hot or sexy or gorgeous. I’m posting this because I want you to tell yourself that you’re beautiful. I want to feel okay in your skin. I want you to try and not let this mental plague get the best of you.
Oh, and just breathe.
And stop using tanning beds, cause you’ll end up like a baked Mr. Potato Head.