tomato-greens asked: Hi! I was listening to the Female Gaze cosmetics episode in order to motivate myself to go to the grocery store rather than just staring dead-eyed at the single dusty packet of soup in my cupboard, and it gave me an unexpected wave of great emotional strength when you said you had sort of written off your face because I'd felt like I was the only human on earth who felt that way. So, not that I want you to dislike your face? But thank you for, like, your honesty and shit. It meant a lot to me.
Firstly, /fistbump of solidarity.
Secondly, normally I would be answering you privately, except the more I think about this the more I think that someone else reading this in silence might get something out of our shared experience on this front.
I think that a lot of the modern feminism is about empowerment, about seizing the right and pleasures of feeling good about yourself. Look around any saucy female spaces and you see a lot of people exclaiming about looking fierce as fuck and not giving a damn because they look hella cute today — all with this fantastic, phenomenal positivity, and even more than that, a positivity that is normalized. We can feel good about ourselves and that is a normal thing! You’re gorgeous! You’re great!
That said, in my lifelong losing fight with depression one of the most pervasive and inescapable things has been the desire for people who — out of nothing but love and the greatest of care — want me to be happy. It’s come from my parents and from my friends, and I understand why they want this (it’s nothing less than I want for them after all), but I have spent my entire fucking life figuring out a way to tell them gently that I don’t have the bandwidth to feel good a lot of days. A lot of days I’m just really happy not to feel shitty, or to not feel like I want to walk into traffic. It is the equivalent of telling a colorblind person to try and see red or green.
So for me, in a bizarre way, making a decision to give up on my face was at once crushing — who the fuck likes saying, “I’m too ugly to fix. Not even with this new mineral shit they advertise at 1 a.m., which I see every night because I’m not sleeping.” — and completely fucking liberating.
After a while it stops being something that hurts you every time you stumble over it. Over the course of, I don’t know, weeks, months, a few years I stopped looking at my face when I saw my face, so I can be brushing my teeth or putting in my contacts and never process my face as a complete object. It’s just an eye or my upper lip or a part of my cheek. I don’t hate my eye or my upper lip or that part of my cheek. Taken out of their context they are just fine.
I’d really like to, eventually, or even occasionally, feel great about my face, or think I look cute as fuck. For the moment, I’m glad that I can just not think about it.
Anyway, the point is, I get you entirely. And I hope you got something delicious at the grocery store.
(For those of you don’t don’t have the context here, we’re discussing the make-up episode of Female Gaze.)
The person I blogged this from deserves to have a great day
Dear parents of LGBT+ young people:
You should be less worried about your offspring being influenced into their LGBT+ identities by people they met online, and more worried about the fact that they go online to meet people that will give them the acceptance and support that you haven’t.
This needs more notes