For a very long time, I was only loved for my body.
At least that’s how it felt.
The truth is, for a very long time, I valued the attention of men, boys really, over all the other attention I was getting.
I don’t know why this is, or was, the case. Some will probably argue it’s something about our society. I have a feeling it was related to all those Disney princesses (the old school ones guys) and rom com leading women, who often laid everything down for that one man that showed them love.
But there are plenty of women who watched those movies and didn’t react this same way. So the cause maybe isn’t so important.
For a very long time, it mattered less how many good friends I had or how much support they gave me or how much they loved and cared about me.
For a very long time it mattered more that men were happy to sleep with me but not happy to be in a relationship with me.
For a very long time that mattered more than anything else.
This made me feel that my value to men (whose opinions I valued too much, or at least too much more than anything else) lay entirely in my body and not at all in my other amazing qualities: my intelligence, my humor, my kindness, my resilience, my passions.
I am unlearning this now.
Slowly. Painfully. With a lot of tears.
It is hard unlearning something I have believed for so long.
That my value is not only dependent on how men perceive and value me.
That my value is not (and should not be) dependent on my appearance.
And neither is yours.
I hope you know that.