Will I ever feel beautiful? (Catherine’s Mommy)

Age: 21
# Pregnancies/ Births: 1/1
Catherine is 2 1/2 months old.

I’ve read some wonderful stories about finding yourself beautiful AGAIN. But what do you do if you’ve never felt beautiful. I started feeling terrible about the way I looked at age 5. My father who was very mentally and physically abusive always said, “You are too ugly and useless to ever find someone to love you.” My whole life I’ve been mistreated by men. I’ve never been respected and there for have never really loved myself. Not once have I ever looked in the mirror and thought, “I look pretty today.” When I was 19, just 2 years ago, I married the guy I dated from the 2nd week of 10th grade. He cheated on me from day one, but every time I thought about leaving he said he loved me and I stayed. I knew I didn’t love him, but just not being alone was enough for me. Right after we married the physical abuse started and I stayed for awhile after that. I figured I deserved it and wouldn’t find any better. After all that’s what he told me. He would say,” You’re fat, ugly, and useless. No one else would ever want you. You’re used goods.” So I stayed with him for 3 months after we got married. Until I went to work one day and some of the guys I worked with saw a choke mark on my neck. They told me I was moving out that night. They helped me move out while my ex was at work aka at his girlfriend’s house.

I moved back home and 9 months later I found an old friend on myspace and we started talking. My friend and I were raised as practically family. His aunt was my mom’s best friend for about 16 years. When I found him I immediately planned a trip to see him. Even though we hadn’t seen each other in 6 years, because he was in the Air Force something was just telling me I needed to see him. Even though it was an 8 hr drive I had to do it. I visited him March 27th, 2009 and we’ve been in love every since. On July 25th, 2009 we started trying to have a baby knowing we were getting married August 8th. He was so cute about it. He even got on the computer and made out our baby making calendar. He had figured out my ovulation schedule and told me which days we could and shouldn’t have sex. We married on August 8th, 2009 and exactly one week later we found out I was pregnant. I knew about 3 months prior to our ultrasound that we were having a baby girl. Our little Catherine filled my dreams every night(the little that I slept). I was scared we were having a girl. I’m even more scared now that she’s here. I don’t want my daughter to feel the way I do. I want her to love herself and see herself as beautiful. How am I supposed to teach her to love herself when I can’t love myself. I have the most amazing husband in the world. He loves me unconditionally. He still finds me attractive,and he tells me all the time how beautiful I am. Unfortunately I just don’t see how he thinks that. I’m so lost at what to do. How do you decide to love yourself and the way you look?

Just some rambling,
Catherine’s Mommy

17 thoughts on “Will I ever feel beautiful? (Catherine’s Mommy)

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:18 am

    I think you look absolutely beautiful! I know what you men by not feeling pretty though. I am 24 and I have had 2 boys (both ceasrean). My first was born 9/24/06 and my second 4/10/09. I just started doing P90X last night with my husband…and I have to say, even after 1 day, I feel better! Working out raises confidence! You do look gorgeous. I am so glad you got out of your first marriage, met a great man, and started your family! You look tiny, esp for only having a baby 2.5 months ago…oh, and you have a beautiful face and bone structure!!

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:20 am

    I share the same burden of life long self doubt and hatred. My mother passed down the same emotional abuse that she suffered at the hands of her parents. Only now at the age of 60 is she realizing she might have done something wrong. If you find an answer to your question please share. I would love to wake up and be comfortable in my own skin, even if just for a day.

    I also share your fear of passing this on to my daughter who turns one in two days. I pray that I can find a way to break this cycle so she does not suffer as I have and continue to.

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:47 am

    i wonder why you can’t believe your man when he says that he does think you are beautiful, sexy, attractive…i have been married 14 years and been pregnant twice, once with twins. i know i don’t look the same as i did before, but neither does he, and i still find him attractive. you guys are still young, but time will change him in subtle ways over the years and you seem the kind of woman who will still love him and be attracted to him when he is maybe a few pounds heavier, hair a little thinner… give him the same credit that he can feel the same about you. as long as your husband treats you with love and respect – not just words but actions too – thank God for him, smile because you got a good man, and let him love you! you deserve it! good luck to you!!!

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Wow. My heart aches for you that you feel so badly about your looks. I doubt that anything I say can make you see differently, but for what it’s worth, I think you look beautiful. I always scroll down to look at the pics before I read the post. My first thought was, “Wow! She’s pretty. Look at that perfect, glowing skin! Great cheekbones.” You remind me of the actress Ginnifer Goodwin. I’ve always thought she was gprgeous. Not in the fake, cookie-cutter way so common in Hollywood, but simply, genuinely beautiful. You’re so blessed to have a baby girl and husband who love you so much. Enjoy them and believe him when he tells you you’re beautiful. Life’s too short not to just soak that up. :-)

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    you are beautiful!!

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    u really do look pretty! u have a lovely face. i believe u also has to be a nice person. but i don’t think that my/our words – even if they’re honest (and mine are) – can help you much.
    you have many old scares on your soul and i believe it’s really very very hard to cure yourself without any professional help. i think u should find somebody (like a psychologist) who would help you to lern to love, like and respect yourself. i do believe u should do it for urself, for ur husband and for ur little doughter. to make them really happy u have to be happy with yourself first.
    take care!!

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    & sorry for all mistakes i made writting my last comment – english is not my native language. hope my message still stays clear to you.
    all the best to you

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    First of all, you are absolutely gorgeous. Seriously. I’m not just saying that. I know it’s subjective, but when I look at you, I think you are just classically beautiful.

    So sorry you’ve had such a rough time of it. It sounds like you’ve truly found love now, though. Maybe this will help you learn to love yourself.

    August 8th is a great anniversary. Mine is 8/8/98, coming up on 12 years. Maybe it’s good luck. :)

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    clear skin
    thick glossy hair
    perfect eyebrows
    lovely bone structure

    you are a beautiful healthy mommy!

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    BABE !! you look like a great big spunk to me :) i think it is really important for you to get some proffesional help about your past, its amazing how much your will get out of this to help you heal and move on , and with your daughter you are so aware of not wanting to pass down these trats of self dought , and that the first step , i am sure you will continue to be a amazign mother and break the cycle , i have faith in you !!!! you have a wonderful husband and a beautiful baby girl enjoy every moment :)

  • Thursday, July 8, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    I agree with Elodie. You are SUPER pretty!

  • Friday, July 9, 2010 at 2:08 am

    I had to reply as your post made me feel so sad for you. This isn’t you. How you feel about yourself is not who you are, it’s how unkind, unhappy, unconfident, abusive people have made you feel about yourself. Please believe that says more about them than it does about you.
    You are really beautiful. I know you don’t see it, but take it from a stranger who has seen your photo. You look like a Madonna from a painting. I’d love to look like you. I can see why your husband loves you and tells you that you are beautiful. It’s the truth.
    Another truth is that you love your daughter and you worry that she might also grow up to feel as you do. That’s Mother Love I think – the primal urge to protect your child from the things that have shaped you in sadness. She won’t grow up this way because the very fact that you’re worrying about it shows that you are aware. It’s awareness that stops the cycle and I’m proof of that.
    I grew up with a very negative mother who never told me I was beautiful or pretty and the upshot of this was an acute lack of confidence in my teenage years. But I can tell you now that I think that I’m beautiful and that I’m a good person and that I try to do my best for people. I look in the mirror and feel happy about myself, flaws and all.
    You should take this moment as the new you. Women you’ve never met have read your post and told you that you’re beautiful. Take it as the truth from other mothers and believe it. The next time you look in a mirror see what we see. Tell yourself that people you’ve never met know that you’re beautiful inside and out, and let that feeling grow every day.
    You don’t have to become strong and confident and happy overnight. You can take it each day and let it grow.
    Take heart, beautiful girl. You’re a mother and amazing.

  • Friday, July 9, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    My parents were both obsessed with dieting my entire childhood. Every fad starvation extreme diet you’ve ever heard of, they tried it, and encouraged me to do so as well. During puberty I was overweight, and my mother’s hatred of her own figure projected onto me hardcore. After years of struggling with a life threatening eating disorder that enabled me to find myself in one incredibly abusive relationship after the other, I finally got my shit together, but I didn’t truely love myself until my son was born.
    Every time you feel insecure, just remember how much you love your precious daughter. How could your body, which created the most precious thing you’ve ever known, be unworthy? You are a miracle machine honey. Your flesh is the thing of legend, that which conquers all the power of the universe to create. Your amazing. Your love is amazing. Your body is literally a vessel of all the most beautiful things that have ever been, or ever will be. As a fellow mother, I love you. If you believe in your daughter, you can’t disregard yourself. Show your daughter that you love yourself, and she will love herself also. Even if you have to fake it. <3

  • Friday, July 9, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    I can relate…I’m thankful I left a mental, physical, emotional, and verablly abusive relationship when I did. I do still carry the negativity he put on me. I don’t understand why we are led to believe so easily the words of an insecure man n scar us while a strong, gentle, and loving man comes along gives us the world and treats us like the beautiful queens we are, and we fight ourselves to truly believe it. I don’t understand but I wish you well. And you are beautiful with amazing stregth because you DID get out of the abuse and put yourself first. :)

  • Saturday, July 10, 2010 at 4:06 am

    You & your baby are beauties! i’m so glad that you married a wonderful/loviing man & had a beautiful baby with HIM (instead of your ex-husband).

  • Thursday, July 15, 2010 at 5:41 am

    You are already teaching your daughter one of the most beautiful lessons about how to love yourself: being honest and forthright with your feelings and fears is one of the greatest traits you could teach her. As for loving yourself more, try finding a photo of yourself from when you were your daughter’s age, and when you have negative thought about yourself or your appearance, imagine what loving compassionate words you would say to your daughter and say them to yourself. (or better yet, use it as a journal entry and see what love or anger or sadness or joy flows forth from there.) It may feel silly or contrived at first, but if you keep that image of yourself as an innocent little being (because that’s all you’ve ever been anyway…) then over time you will develop a gentler, more loving relationship with yourself and you will be your daughter’s greatest teacher simply by example! Wishing you an abundance of acceptance, peace, and joy!

  • Thursday, July 15, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    As much as I hate to use it I am going for a quote from the “Lion King” forgive me… “…the past is behind you….” Thankfully your past is behind you, the physical and mental abuse, feeling isolated, doubt about yourself worth.

    Posting here is a great first step. Keep surrounding yourself with supportive family (sounds like a cool husband and darling daughter) and friends (the co-workers who said ‘NO!’ to the abuse and moved you out, EXCELLENT!!). Listen to the posts above with your heart. You are a beautiful person, woman, mother. Stay strong for yourself, your daughter, your husband and your family (the three of you).

    Seeking counseling might help heal the scars of the past, but won’t make them go away. Use them to strengthen your resolve in seeing yourself as a powerful woman, as all women are.

    In parting know that other see the beauty known as “Cathrine’s Mommy” show them the strength that you have as well. Carpe Diem!!!

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