Beauty as subjectively defined, society, and media

/ Saturday, November 18, 2017 /
Lately I've heard a ton of comments from people and also have read a bunch of stuff involving the topic of physical beauty. These comments range from issues surrounding underlying self-esteem to hatred and even malice.

Here are some examples:

  • "I'm 24 and still a virgin. No guy will ever want to (do) me."
  • "I hate the engagement photos and wedding photos that people post in their profile pictures. Every day they remind me of how single and lonely I am."
  • "I'm so ugly. I was bullied in high school and lost 30 pounds. Now guys want me, not for who I am but for my body. When can I find a decent guy?"
  • "Why do people post Facebook statuses about how wonderful their significant others are? Are they out just to laugh at me?"
  • "The girls who talk about "27 and still single" are just too messed up to get anyone."
  • "Someone recently confided in me that she got raped. At least she was attractive enough that someone wanted to rape her."
  • "I'm too fat. Nobody wants me."
  • "Why can't I get a guy?"
  • "No one likes the nice guys."
  • "Nice guys always finish last."
  • "I'm single, unemployed, and living in my childhood bedroom. I'm a loser."
  Whatever people and society think about these comments, these words still reflect underlying issues - doubt, uncertainty, regret, lack of self-esteem and self-worth, even jealousy and hatred. Despite these facts, this is a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

  • Life is what life is, but you control how you're portrayed.  Whatever your beliefs are - atheism, God, Buddha, Allah, Sikh, animistic beliefs, etc - uniqueness was endowed onto your body and your mind. Despite how cliched this sounds, your soul, your mind, and your spirit are things that you control. The looks you were born with will remain, but it's the way that you react and portray to them that define who you are. Think about it - the girl who is beautiful but hides her face in fear will never be noticed by people, but the girl who stands tall and proud will be noticed because her face will be visible to the world.
  • Plastic surgery can come along, but it also comes with other, "unhideable" results. Anyone who has had surgery will tell you that the recovery process is extremely, extremely painful. And the thing is that physical beauty is temporary. Eventually, the human body, due to telomere shortening in DNA will overcome telomerase, and starts degenerating. Wrinkles will set in, no matter how many botox injections you get and how many nose jobs, tummy tucks, etc you get. Think about it this way - suppose you are very successful and are able to get botox injections to paralyze your facial muscles every week. Your muscles will still limit your facial expressions, and even if your face may look younger, the other parts of your body - mottled skin on your hands, your weak knees and presbyopic eyes will give your true age away.
  •  Rape is a horrible tragedy and crime. Contrary to popular belief, rape isn't about sexual desire or arousal. It is, more than anything, about control, power, and stems from anger. Think about the 70-year old woman who was rapedBoko haramNanjing. The women in these tragedies have numerous differences in factors of age, attractiveness, body types, etc. What do they have in common though? They were all in situations where perpetrators were assuming control of situations. Conflicts involving anger and violence. Rape isn't a beautiful thing; it's a sad consequence of choices and situation resulting in violence and rage.
  • Engagement, marriage, and having children are beautiful passages of life and are celebrated. When one becomes jealous of people displaying their lives publicly, imagine what they are thinking on the other side of the situation.  I'm so happy XY proposed after 9 years of dating. I'm finally getting security after years of uncertainty. I can finally take my OkCupid account down for good. My parents will finally stop nagging me about having grandchildren. I'll be able to give my daughter the brooch my mom gave to me. Aren't these beautiful thoughts? There's bad enough news on years of conflictproblems in governmentsensationalized trials and internet pirating, among numerous other subjects. Isn't good news something to celebrate?  
  •  Life is what you make of it. Yes, this is a cliche, but these words reveal a great deal of truth. Everyone is born with weaknesses and vices, but it's how they deal with them that defines who they are and what they make of themselves. Think of Lizzie Velasquez, one of the world's thinnest people who was born with a condition that could not allow her to have any body fat. She was scorned and ridiculed at school, to the point where someone posted a YouTube video naming her the "ugliest girl alive". Yet she didn't let that stop her. She focused on the positive parts of herself - the fact that she only had to buy half the contact lenses that most people buy because she could only see through one eye, the fact that she has beautiful, ravishing hair, the fact that she graduated from college. As Condoleezza Rice once said, ""You can't change your circumstances, but you can change your response to them." Lizzie did exactly that, and because of it, people see her inner beauty and strength, and admire her for her bravery and courage all at the same time.
Bottom line - everyone has their share of insecurities, faults and weaknesses. But it is our actions, our thoughts, and beliefs that ultimately dictate what we are and how the world perceives of us. A wise friend of mine once told me that when you show your true self, and when you proudly present yourself the way you really are, when you are happy for others and accept your own life, others will see that, and truly respect and admire you.

I encourage everyone to go out there and proudly show your true selves. I wish you the best in your lives and endeavors.

Thoughts on relationships

/ Thursday, November 9, 2017 /
Ahh... relationships, relationships, relationships. The subject of much gossip, the lore of rom-com movies and sitcoms, the giggly-girly feelings and awkwardness that young girls and boys feel, all the way to the more practical aspects of arranged marriages, tradition, courtship and beyond.

Growing up, like many other little girls, I was caught up with the idealistic romanced version of love. Of a handsome prince sweeping me off my feet and into a castle (well, Kate Middleton did that, but it took a lot of work). Some tumultuous relationship with ups and downs like Carrie Bradshaw. Heaps of exciting dates, amazing adventures, cuddling by the fireplace, etc. Feisty drama and parental concerns.

What did I get in reality?

A mix of some but other surprises.


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