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Struggling More Than Ever (Lee-Ann)

May 5, 2014

I’m really struggling with my body image, I always struggled but it’s worse than ever. I have never felt so horrible about the way I look. In my mind, I have the worst and ugliest body ever, to the point of tears, incredible sadness and depression. I just had my third and last baby almost 3 months ago and my biggest fear is that I will never lose the baby weight or be able to look in the mirror and be o.k. with what I see. I am nursing my little guy and so I can’t diet and/or possibly revert back to old ways ( starving ).

All this causes a huge strain in my marriage. See, with my first son, I was a single mom. With my second son, my husband died the week I gave birth ( we were in a bad car accident ) and so this time with this baby, it’s the first time dealing with the post baby body with someone who sees how horrible I look. With him, it’s even more difficult because for the first 3 plus years we were together, he wasn’t exactly loyal, there was a lot of damage done esp. in regarding my body image. He was always complementing other woman, looking at other women, saying how hot they were while I got nothing. I remember like it was yesterday, we went to a water park/hotel. Prior to the weekend we went, I told him how hard it was going to be for me to be in a swim suit in front of people and that I’d like it if he complimented me when he saw me in one. Well, I put my bathing suit on and got nothing. When we left our hotel room and got to the water park, he proceeded to drool over every other women there. Several times, I have put on lingerie and literally got nothing or at most a little look at that’s it. These are just 2 examples of MANY and I have such a difficult time letting go of all the times I “wasn’t good enough”. Before you ask me why I am with this man, let me explain something. Before me, his only other experience with a real woman was in high school and after that for about 10 years until he met me, all he had was porn, page 3 girls, magazines, strip clubs and his buddies who weren’t much better. The man was a pig and a thoughtless jerk and because of the porn and other smut, I believe he was a victim of what society does to men ( brainwashing them about what woman look like/what woman are for, just like we are affected by all the crap we are fed ). For the past 2 and a half years, he’s really changed/grown up. (at least I hope he truly has ) He won’t dare ogle other women ( at least not in front of me ), he’s extremely affectionate, he compliments me every day, he’s really attentive, is a wonderful dad and a hard worker for our family. But every time he looks at me, I am thinking of all the women he wanted/was attracted to and I know I can never measure up or be as good as them. And it kills me inside because all I want is for him to look at me and see the most beautiful woman ever ( which he claims I am ). I guess I am really stuck in how he use to be and afraid to trust that he really does love me and my body now or that I am what he wants, in spite of my flaws.

I hate!!! my middle, wish I didn’t have so many stretch marks or cellulite and my nipples look deformed to me…one is much lower than the other. After I gave birth, I was down to my pre-pregnancy weight within a few weeks but because of nursing, I eat and eat some more and have put on almost 10 lbs. So, as most women lose weight after a baby, I am gaining and this messes with my head. It doesn’t help that it’s a bad winter and can’t get out for walks. I am stuck at home, in p.j.’s, covered in vomit and it’s just hard to feel sexy/sexual. I try to look at my children and remember that my body did that….gave birth to 3 beautiful boys. I avoid anything that triggers me feeling worse about the way I look and of course, I am ever thankful for SOAM for showing me I am not alone. I just want to feel good in my own skin and maybe even one day, feel beautiful. Thanks for letting me share and for posting some pics ( I couldn’t decide which ones to post so I am sharing them all ). -Lee-Ann

Age-36
# of pregnancies-7/live births- 3
Ages of children- 18, 9 and almost 3 months

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5 Responses to “Struggling More Than Ever (Lee-Ann)”

  1. Michele Says:
    May 5th, 2014 at 8:22 am

    Okay first of all, you have very pretty breasts that is what caught my attention first. Next, I am a mother of three as well and it took me 15 mths after my third baby to get my body back toned and where I like what I see in the mirror. It took hard work, walking/running and lifting weights all three to four times a week, watching what I eat and drinking plenty of water. You don’t like your middle, I understand that, with drinking plenty of water, watching what you eat and maybe finding a treadmill through craigslist etc to start walking on at home, you can change the shape of your body. I am not going to be one of the women who says, your body is a shape of a mother embrace it, love it and be happy where you are when clearly you are unhappy where you are and it’s easy to get to where you want to go by exercising and toning up your body. Six mths from now with doing that, you will be in a much better shape mentally and body wise for YOU and then it will also make you more confident around your man. I pray that I am not met with negative remarks from others, because this site is about empowering women, but its also about honesty and really wanting to help someone else. I do not just snap back. I wear a size 6 now and I am very toned, but there was many times when I looked in the mirror several times a day and just cried and cried. I do not even notice my stretch marks anymore because they have faded and being toned makes everything look better anyway, so take it from someone who has been where you are, you are not stuck where you are, do not be depressed and down, or feel you must accept anything because you have had kids, NO you can workout, you can eat better and you can take care of you for YOU! Much love and encouragement.

  2. Elizabeth Says:
    May 5th, 2014 at 9:46 am

    I think your body looks great after 3 kids..and no your body is not “ruined” i wish i had your body! After putting on 34 pounds during pregnancy and losing 24 in the first 2 weeks i have horrible deep red stretch marks all over by boobs, stomach, arms, sides, back spreading literly down to the middle of my calves…and my boobs and stomach sag unnaturally and my belly button is sunken in and wrinkled…i wear a belly band and push up bra and my body looks ok with clothes on…but when i take them off YIKES! I will never again wear shorts let alone a bathing suit so now I always cover myself up head to toe I think its partly because of my bf who also seems to be brainwashed by the “ideal” image of a women..he makes fun of my body and tells me I need plastic surgery while “secretly” watching porn and flirting with other girls online…I wish I could show a picture of my body it would make you feel alot better!

  3. joan Says:
    May 6th, 2014 at 4:36 am

    hi babe I must say that like the other comments on here you look beautiful your boobs look great&there is not alot wrong with your nipples,your husband should show you more affection towards your body&being sexy,you should go out on the town get yourself dressed up,i bet you will get lots of wonderfully comments&looks!

  4. Miya Says:
    May 9th, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    Girl, you better work that shape! You have a beautiful shape. Your boobs are WAY perkier than mine and i’m skinny with saggy SAGGY breast. The trick is to find things that you love about your body until you can work on things that you dont like so much. I focus on my shape (that I like). You have great breast and a wonderful shape.
    When you are ready to workout or lose the baby weight your body will be even more gorgeous!

  5. BellaMama Says:
    July 5th, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Girl, I would loove to have your body, especially your chest. Curvy. Beautiful.

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