After finishing high school (5 years ago) I was burnt out and directionless, things began to unravel, and at about that time I also admitted to myself that I was attracted exclusively to women (I am still having so much trouble with this). I cut off close friends and dropped sport (which had been my obsession). I was depressed and binge eating, and for a person who had been living in an underweight and sexless body until the age of 18, gaining weight was essentially like confronting puberty for the first time. I had never had to deal with breasts or excess flesh before. I experienced a similar sentiment to one described in this article:
“I have gained weight, but lost myself,” writes Nancy Tucker of her own recovery. “How can I explain that inside I remain an anorexic, but trapped in a fat suit?” How can one be seen as human being while looking like a woman? The anorexic must struggle with this conundrum...
How can one be seen as human being whilst looking like a woman?
Though I can only identify it retrospectively, this was my greatest existential conundrum for a time. I degraded myself. I felt such disgust for my female body and assumed others would too. I did not expect or feel deserving enough to be treated as human, and assumed others also saw little worth in me. I have considered how the shame of my sexuality may be linked to the shame of my female body. Maybe in a bi-directional way. Specifically: How can I be comfortable in my attraction to other female bodies when I dislike the way my own body appears and the implicit meanings ascribed to it (and vice-versa)? I still feel all of these things, but fortunately with less intensity.
I am still learning to like my body. It will never end! But I am getting better.