Why do you think you're ugly?

Inspired by this thread, in which many lovely, beautiful, attractive, striking, handsome people erroneously claim ugliness, plainness, or unattractiveness for themselves.

Some may be fishing for compliments.

However, I suspect that most really do have a poor self-image about their own physical appeal, and that this was the product of a lot of negative reinforcement, and comparing oneself to some imaginary and impossibly lofty notions of physical beauty. I’ve met a number of people who genuinely think poorly of their looks as well, but are beautiful nevertheless. This is not an uncommon thing.

So, how many of you have (or had) negative thoughts about your looks?

How many have gradually been able to overcome negative reinforcement and realize how attractive you really are? How did this come about?

How do you really help others realize how attractive they actually are?

I’ll go first. I was told repeatedly in high school that I was ugly. It’s taken years, and numerous lovely women (and, interestingly, a few gay men) telling me that I’m a good looking guy, for it to gradually sink in that maybe, just maybe, they might be right. Certainly the aforementioned thread helped as well.

I’m just jumping in here to say:

First of all, I don’t think I’m ugly.

Secondly, it’s a ridiculous thought to have about yourself. Forget about whether you really are. Forget about whether or not you don’t have a soulmate, or you’re alone, or people keep dumping you, or you don’t match up to the stereotypes of beauty.

I’m here to tell you that if you *think * you’re ugly, you will **become ** ugly. Your mother was right. Negative thoughts in the mind really do affect your apearance. Attractiveness is miles away from physical beauty.

So, chin up! Think happy thoughts! I know this sounds trite, but it works on two levels: if you think unhappy thoughts, you’ll be unhappy (duh) and once again, be less attractive!

I was told repeatedly in nursery school, grammar school, middle school, and of course high school that I was… well, they didn’t usually say “ugly”. It was mostly that I was fat. But if I weren’t chubby it would’ve been something else. The fact is that I was probably a difficult kid to get along with. I didn’t work and play well with others in my own age group. I stood out. And with kids, if you don’t go along with the crowd, they’ll tear you limb from limb and devour you like a pack of wolves.

So I don’t think I’m ugly, I don’t even think I’m all that fat. But deep down, I still believe I’m unlikeable and unpleasant to be around. So when somebody says “Call me,” I don’t call them, because I don’t really believe they want me to call them. When somebody invites me out, I think it’s because they feel sorry for me. It takes a long time for me to actually believe with confidence that someone genuinely likes me and wants me around. And once I’m convinced, that confidence can vanish in half a heartbeat.

In summary, even though I don’t think I’m ugly, I’m deeply ashamed of myself and I don’t know how to make the shame go away. Believe me, there are very few things I wouldn’t do to improve my self-image, I just don’t know how.

I think I’m ugly because of my weight and complexion. If I were able to lose about 40% of my mass and get my skin cleared up, I think I’d actually be fairly handsome although still not a knockout.

I used to think I was ugly. The fact was, I had “adult” features as a child, and I had to grow into them. I was unpopular and picked on in elementary and junior high, and pretty much left alone (very) in high school. I always had a nice body, though, so at least I wasn’t tortured for being fat.
I really believe, and I’ve said so before, that for most women who struggle with their looks, it’s not really until your 30’s that it becomes easier to accept them and even come to love them. Then life becomes easier.
I now think that I’m attractive, and more than standard cookie-cutter “good looks”, I possess sex appeal and an attractiveness that comes from having wisdom and confidence. Yes, there are some areas that could use some improvement, but by no means do I think I’m ugly anymore. My photo is on page 1 (I think) of the photo thread.
I do often wonder, though, how it would be to go through life just obviously and painfully butt-ugly. The kind of ugly that announces itself; ugliness beyond the reach of any makeup or product. Man, that would suck.

I think a couple dozen years of being nerdy and chubby and gay will do a number on the self-esteem. They all add up to “can’t get a girlfriend,” and when you don’t want to admit that it’s your “immoral and disgusting perversion” that’s keeping you from wanting to have a girlfriend, the only thing left to do is think that it’s your ugliness that’s keeping the chicks away.

If we could get rid of the stigma attached to being gay, then at least there’d be one less of the ten million things people have to hate about themselves.

I know I’m ugly. There’s a fairly convincing study that says symmetry is an important part of being beautiful/handsome. My jaw is asymmetric, as a result of one tooth growing somewhat to the side which never got corrected. (Orthodontics is very underrated in Japan where I grew up.)

I also know I’m unattractive because I have issues with self-confidence. Which is a vicious cycle, but there it is.

Can’t answer that…

There is some truth to what you have said here, but facts are facts. If you have one thick eyebrow growing across your forehead, that’s ugly. If you have a huge pimple about to explode on the bridge of your nose, that’s ugly. If you have teeth missing from the front of your mouth, that’s ugly. If your skin is sagging and wrinkled on various parts of your body, that’s ugly. Some of these things you may be able to fix with some time, money, and effort. But no matter how you FEEL about yourself, most of society is going to consider those flaws I have mentioned as ugly.

Now, to answer the original OP. I think I am ugly sometimes, other times I don’t. It depends on how many pimples I have that day. :wink:

Yes, but you need to stop worrying about what society tells you. One giant pimple doesn’t make you ugly inside and out. Society has the wrong stereotypes about beauty, and the more people that stop adopting it, the more we have a chance of valuing people for whom they are.

I’m saying ugly doesn’t have to mean what ugly conventionally means. If youa re beautiful but cruel, your beauty is not going to save you in most people’s eyes. Maybe for a while, but eventually the beauty will wear off.

Plus don’t forget, beauty fades with age. People who have been together 50 years, you think they’re now ugly to each other?

We have a wrong attitude, that’s all I’m saying.

I agree. It’s just easier said then done.
I am the first person to give someone a compliment. The reason why? I was pretty much the ugly duckling all through my childhood and teenage years. When I became an adult, and started receiving compliments on how attractive I was, I realized how much people’s opinions of you make a difference in your self-esteem.
Yes, beauty comes from within. What other people think of you should not matter. However, I know it does. That is why I always try to be nice and compliment people. I know how it makes me feel to receive one, so much the better if I can make someone else feel the same way.

I dont’ think I’m ugly.

I’m not very attractive.
I don’t attract attention from the opposite sex, well or the same even, very often. I guess I’m kind of plain.

I used to think I was a big, gigantic pile of blah. Then, about a year ago, I had this epiphany. Screw unrealistic expectations of beauty – I’m pretty damn fine the way I am. So what if my thighs jiggle? That can be changed, even if my love of napping and Three Musketeers may prove an impediment.

I guess I’m lucky in that no one’s ever told me I was ugly, except for my brothers during arguments, and that doesn’t count because they’re poopy-heads anyway. My mother was actually shocked when I told her I didn’t like the way I looked. She looked at me and said, “Honey, every time I look at you, I can’t help but think what a pretty daughter your dad and I have. I think we did pretty good when we made you.*” I already knew that she was proud of me for what I had done and who I was, but it was still nice to know that she thought I was beautiful and accomplished.

I’m just me. And being me is not a bad thing by a long shot.

*My mother was meant to write scripts for Lifetime movies. It’s amazing how things like these come out of her mouth.

When I was in grade school I was the ugly one. My mom has/had no sense of fashion and I went to a private school where all the other girls wore designer clothes and went to Disneyland over winter break and Disneyworld for spring break. I was also a huge nerd and read books instead of playing with the other kids. I was constantly told that I was ugly, ugly, ugly. It wasn’t just my classmates either, but the kids in my neighborhood. Once I was walking home from the pool and these guys started barking at me all the way down the street.

No one ever called me cute other than my parents. If everyone said I was ugly, even random people on the street, then I must be, huh?

When I went to grade school, it was a different set of people but I still suffered from low self-esteem due to my looks. I got a boyfriend but he never gave me compliments. I was a huge tomboy and hung out with the boys instead of wearing makeup and caring about girly things. No one ever called me sexy. Cute, yes, sexy no. It didn’t bother me at all, I already thought I was ugly.

Then I went to college and went to an anime convention. I got a ton of attention. All of sudden guys were noticing me and I was the hot one. I dressed up as an anime character and lots of people called me “cute” but they ment it in a “I’d date you” more then an “awww, how sweet” sense.

I started paying more attention to my apperance. I stopped wearing just guy’s clothing and figured out how to put on makeup without looking like a clown. I started getting random people complimenting me on the streets and someone actually payed me to ‘model’ for their website. Although the most common response to my picture or the viewing of my features is still “cute” I am getting a lot more people saying how sexy they think I am.

Last easter I went to church where I used to go to grade school and a mother of one of my classmates didn’t recognize me. She started laughing when she found out who I was and said she couldn’t believe how beautiful I had gotten. I felt like the ugly duckling who became a swan.

My self esteem isn’t what it should be and I still have plenty of days where I look in the mirror and think “ugh” but I think I am beautiful and sexy over all.

I always tell myself how awesome I am. I think that is mostly what helped me overcome it. I stopped listening to what others said and decided that I didn’t care if others thought I was sexy or attractive, only if I did. As long as I felt good about myself then others would see the goodness in me. And it worked.

As for others, I love dressing people up and taking pictures of them. I am pretty good at making people look lovely on film. I think the best way to deal with feelings of unattractiveness is to get some really nice pictures of yourself taken and whenever you feel bad about yourself, look at the pictures and remind yourself how sexy you are.

I’ve known a lot of models in my years and I can assure you that they have just as many, if not more, doubts about their looks than the average person. I’ve known models who were unattractive both inside and out. And I’ve had coworkers who were amazingly beautiful.

Most people are beautiful even if they refuse to acknowledge it to themselves.

I think most of it was fishing for compliments, especially as it turned into a picture/flirt thread of people posting pictures.

“Oooh! Tell me how ugly I’m not!”

Since I replied in that other thread, I’ll reply to this one too.

As I said, I don’t think I’m ugly. I used to, because I was a quiet, awkward, and chubby kid. I got made fun of by some kids, and even my best friend at a time told me that I was fat. Not nice things to hear when you’re a very impressionable 10-year-old girl.

I am not bitter. Sometimes I wish I could go meet my 10-year-old self during the times I felt really sad, and tell myself that everything will be fine, and that in the end, I will be a stronger, more compassionate person. It’s true… Even today, I find that I gravitate more towards quiet, shy people during classes because I know how it feels to not have anyone to talk to.

I think I’m pretty, but whatever. I’m much prouder of my personality and my life experiences because it is what gives me pride, confidence, and heart, which I believe has a great effect on how others perceive me.

kimera, you were ugly? Who is that girl in your Teeming Millions profile?? :confused:

I don’t think I’m ugly. I’m not really that photogenic, but I have a few pictures that show a fine-looking monstro, if I should say so myself.

Those pictures are when I’m dressed to the nines, face full of make-up, hair done, etc, however. I don’t wear make up on a normal basis. Nor do I like dressing up or doing something “nice” to my hair. So I feel like an imposter when I look “beautiful”. I’m more comfortable in my skin when I’m plain looking, with messy hair, no make up, and tom-boy clothing. When I’m all pretty and stuff, I get attention that I find unnerving (like guys hitting on me).

I took a sociology class one time, where the teacher was explaining how societies put different pressures on males and females. She asked the males in the room what it was they felt society demanded of them. The replies were mixed: “to be athletic”; “to be wealthy”; “to be strong and tough”.

Then she asked the females what they felt society demanded of us. Every single girl in the room, without exception, replied at once: “to be beautiful.” It was overwhelming. And not that males don’t feel the pressure too, but it’s absolutely inescapable for women. An ugly man can still get babes and respect if he becomes wealthy and successful. And ugly woman can become wealthy and successful… but she’ll always be that ugly old hag.

I waver between thinking I’m ugly and thinking I’m unattractive (two different things: see discussion above in thread). My friends and family can tell me 'till they’re blue in the face how beautiful I am, and I won’t believe a word of it. They have to tell me that, you see. They love me. But I see beautiful girls all the time, and I’m not treated the way they’re treated. People gush about how pretty they are, and guys go crazy over them, and hell, a few of the other girls go crazy over them. And that doesn’t happen to me. So I know I’m not beautiful.

But oh… I wish I was. I wish I wish I wish.

In my head, I know that I’m a reasonably attractive young woman, and when I make an effort, I’m striking.

But I can’t help feeling, when I look in the mirror, that 135 lbs. on a 5’6" frame is about fifteen pounds too much.

(I blame the media. ;))

As I posted in the other thread, I suppose I should explain myself.

I’m underweight. Got bags under my eyes and a perpetual hang dog expression even when I’m not depressed. I get asked if everythings okay a lot. :rolleyes: My nose is a bit off the beam due to a meeting I had with a baseball bat. I’ve a few scars on my face and head from a life of stupidity. My teeth are nothing to be proud of. They’re all still there, but they are as crooked as my soul…sorry, goth moment. :stuck_out_tongue: My fingers are long and spidery, and I have a really hairy neck.

Simply put, I’m far from thrilled about the way I look. I cringe when I see pictures of myself or if I see myself on video tape. Thinking about my appearance too much can work me into a wonderful deep blue funk.

Thankfully I’m a load of laughs and a nice guy to boot. My self esteem issues play right into my self deprecating sense of humor. I’ve a fiancee who thinks I’m hot (she has lousy vision :wink: ), and after a while to get to know me, most women think I’m kinda cute.