New Gal...

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-05-2003
New Gal...
2
Sun, 07-06-2003 - 12:18am
Hey gang. Just thought I would check in and also vent. I've always suffered from low self-esteem, and am dealing with clinical depression. I've posted on the depression page, but thought I would chime in here. I've really gone down hill with the self esteem recently because I've gained a lot of weight. A lot meaning about 50 pounds. I've always been the cute skinny girl that's always surrounded by a lot of guys, but now I'm the cute skinny girl's fat friend. It sucks. I'm really interested in a guy, but he doesn't call (once in a while--I know I shouldn't push it, but it sucks to wait around and wonder). I just hate being so down on myself, and it seems to really trigger my depression trying to get myself out of this phase. I hate it. I hate a lot of things too about myself. I know the one thing I need to start doing is loving myself, but I honestly don't think I'll be there for a while. I just wish that people would love me for me, and not the way I look. I wish I were skinny again. I try to work out and eat well, but I still don't lose weight. I hate it. I guess there's a lot of hate in my life. I guess my question is this, what are some ways that you deal with self esteem issues? I don't know, because I'm low on mine. Thanks for your help.

Trixie

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: vwtrixie
Sun, 07-06-2003 - 8:10pm
Hi Trixie.

I know you from the exercise circle. Remember that? Like you I've struggled with self esteem problems since I was a teenager. With me the problem was I had social anxiety and had difficulty talking to people. I also have clinical depression and when I meet new people I'm always unsure about whether or not I should tell them about my condition. That dosen't help my self esteem either. I've always done well academically and professionaly, but no matter what my accomplishments were I still didn't think that I was good enough or that anyone would like me. I've been working on that during the last few years, but I still have problems feeling self-confident.

Like you I used to be the thin girl who never gained weight. I have danced most of my life, but I had to stop taking classes 2 years ago. I sat on my butt for 2 years and gained about 15 pounds, then last year my doctor put me on anti-depressant medication medication that made me eat like a pig. Before I knew it I had gained 40 pounds in one year. So now I'm 55 pounds overweight. I've never been this heavy in my life. I still have trouble beleiving how big I am now. Thankfully I'm not taking that medication any more so my appetite is back to normal. At the beginning of the year I decided to watch my diet and workout. I didn't see much improvement at first, I still think I look the same but I've lost some weight and my clothes fit better. It took 3 months before I could really see any difference in my weight and measurements. I'm still not where I want to be but I guess eventually I'll get there.

One thing about working out is that you have to do different things on different days so your body doesn't get used to a set routine. You might walk one day, do aerobics another, ride a bike on another day, then go back to either walking or doing aerobics. If aerobics is your main source of exercise, buy several tapes and use a different tape everyday. The important thing is to try to have as much variety as you can so your body is consistently being challenged in different ways. For more info about exercise you might want to check out the "Beginning Fitness" board on the diet and fitness board. I've gotten lots of info and support there.

I know how hard it is to love yourself. That's something that I struggle with everyday. My therapist suggested that instead of focusing on all of the things that you don't like about yourself and how negative that makes you feel. You began to focus on one positve thing that you like about yourself that makes you the unique person that you are. Overtime you can began to build a more positive picture of youself one peice at a time. That may make it sound like building a positive self-esteem is easy. It's not. Some days I have to struggle to find even one thing that I like about myself. Other days I do something that feels really positive and makes me feel like I've really contirbuted to the life of another person. That always make me feel good. Dealing with low self-esteem and depression is really difficult, but everyday I guess I try to keep going, even if it feels like there in no real reason for trying anymore. I know that you feel negative about your appearance right now, but the true friends in life are those who value who you are, not what you look like. The people who can support you through difficult times are the ones that you want to keep around you for the rest of you life.

Sorry to have gone on so long. I hope you come back and post here. The women on this board have given me lots of support.

Renee

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-1999
In reply to: vwtrixie
Mon, 07-07-2003 - 10:02am
Great posting! You didn't go on too long either. I thik we need to keep posting ideas to help boost our self-esteem, like finding one thing aout ourselves that we like instead of focusing on the things we don't like about ourselves. (I tend to do that, focus on the negatives.)

I've been feeling kinda down myself this week. I'm not sure why. About a week ago I thought I was having a panic attack, something I haven't experienced for maybe a year. It really bothered me. I almost felt this way again today. I think it's a deja vu experience with me because both started when I was at the gym. Also, I think it's related to this heat wave we've been having. My panic attacks started a few years ao in the summer so that's why it's like a deja vu experience for me. Heat wave = panick attack. I'm going to avoid the gym for a few days and exercise at home with some videos. At the same time I don't want to find myself avoiding the gym forever, just until this heatwave breaks.

Good points about alternating exercise work-outs. I have maybe 10 The Firm videos so I'm going to do each one a different day of the week for now. I was never the thin girl, always the chubby girl. Even though I've lost maybe 15 pounds I still see myself as heavy and don't feel that confident.

Also, I'm wondering if living by myself for 3 weeks now is finally sinking into my brain. I just bought some furniture over the weekend so maybe that too is making my big investment seem more permanent too. I'm still just living with a lawn chair in my living room (bedroom is furnished) and the sofa and chairs are being delivered Wednesday. The items I ordered yesterday won't be delivered for 2-3 weeks. I'm hoping once the furniture arrives I will feel more at home and comfortable in my surroundings.

I too just try to keep going each day. One thing that may have been bugging me this week - PMS and my period. I'm just getting over it so hopefully the fog lifts and I start feeling better. For the past few days I kept wondering, what is the point of living? - alone and in my condo. Don't worry, I'm not sucidal or anything, I think I've just been in a PMS funk.

Well, enough of this thinking for now. Hopefully I'm back to my old self soon.

Hugs,

Ben

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