anyone here suffer from body dysmorphia?

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Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), or body dysmorphia, is a mental health condition where a person spends a lot of time worrying about flaws in their appearance. These flaws are often unnoticeable to others.

People of any age can have BDD, but it's most common in teenagers and young adults. It affects both men and women.

Having BDD does not mean you're vain or self-obsessed. It can be very upsetting and have a big impact on your life.

Symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD)

You might have BDD if you:

  • worry a lot about a specific area of your body (particularly your face)
  • spend a lot of time comparing your looks with other people's
  • look at yourself in mirrors a lot or avoid mirrors altogether
  • go to a lot of effort to conceal flaws – for example, by spending a long time combing your hair, applying make-up or choosing clothes
  • pick at your skin to make it "smooth"

BDD can seriously affect your daily life, including your work, social life and relationships.



https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/conditions/body-dysmorphia/

As long as I can remember, since being a young child and before puberty, I've always had this background ambient thought that I'm ugly; particularly my face. I can obsess over the tiny details, the slight bits of asymmetry, the way a certain part of skin looks more freckled than others, etc. I go out of my way to not look at myself in a mirror, even when I'm shaving my beard or head. I'll focus on bits in the background when using a mirror, to avoid looking at my face. It's also part of the reason that I act like a twat in most photos.

As a nearly 37 year old, this has never really gone away. I've just learnt to live with it. It's a kind of background noise that I've somehow made to work as a part of my life.

The reason I know it's some sort of dysmorphia is because I can look back at photos where I explicitly remember hating the way I looked, and I can think "wow, he's actually a handsome chap" - so I know the way I perceive and the way I feel isn't objective.

My missus thinks I'm nuts. She says she still fancies me and all that nonsense. I think she's nuts for thinking that. What a pair!


Anyone else have anything like this?



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Comments

  • LongtallronnieLongtallronnie Frets: 1007
    I guess everyone does to a certain extent? 
    There’s certain aspects of my appearance that I’m not happy about that my wife thinks I'm being completely irrational about. 
    Then there’s the classic stuff like being bald, short and a bit overweight that distract from my natural sexy-as-fuckness. 
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  • TheMadMickTheMadMick Frets: 40
    Afraid I have the opposite problem. I like to look neat and tidy if I can although I prefer to be casual, I really don't care how others see me. It's summarised thus:

    As a beauty I'm not a star
    There are others more handsome by far
    But my face I don't mind it
    For I am behind it
    It's the people in front get the jar.

    Hope you can develop something like this. Good luck.
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  • SpringywheelSpringywheel Frets: 445
    edited July 26
    Oh yeah. From about 8 I had the irrational belief that everyone was judging my perceived ugliness. In my 30s it’s very much diminished (it no longer interferes with my life) but it’s always in the back of my mind. I realised recently that it stemmed from my mother having very low self esteem as I was growing up, often commenting how hideous she thought she looked. Parent’s insecurities often transfer to their kids, there’s nothing new in that. Looking back I was just a normal looking kid; today I’m not exactly good looking but not hideous either. It did a lot of psychological damage in my teens as I just felt totally worthless, but it is what it is. As I got older i realised the error of my thinking, and it hurts because of the time wasted worrying over what is basically an illusion. At times the paranoia will take hold but I quickly regain perspective. 

    Edit: I’ll also add that I didn’t know BD was a thing until my early twenties, so until then I thought my perception was reality....that I was this ugly, repulsive person.  Getting from the stage of identifying it to managing it took a long time. 
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  • HootsmonHootsmon Frets: 13990
    Is it possible tae be dizzymorphic and ugly?
    tae be or not tae be
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  • WezVWezV Frets: 12260
    I think its fairly normal.   

    Let's face it, few of us look like the beauty standard that are forced on us through the media.   This is talked about for women a lot, but not so much for men.

    I've never liked my awkward pot belliedz skinny limbed and stupidly hairy dad bod.... but I have a younger woman constantly telling me how much she likes my body, and that she is punching above her weight.   It's finally starting to break down years of negative perception I have had about myself.


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  • Philly_QPhilly_Q Frets: 10980
    I don't like what I see in the mirror but I think that's because I am an ugly twat.

    Sorry Drew, I know it's a serious thread but I'm guessing that'll drift...
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 8861
    As a nearly 37 year old, this has never really gone away. I've just learnt to live with it.
    Good because, in the future, those "imperfections" are only going to get worse. 

    Fortunately, advancing age brings the gift of worsening eyesight. As the wrinkles multiply, the ability to discern them in the bathroom mirror diminishes. 

    Eventually, when looking into mirrors, it will be possible to mistake yourself for your father and/or grandfather. 
    Be seeing you.
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  • Philly_Q said:
    I don't like what I see in the mirror but I think that's because I am an ugly twat.

    Sorry Drew, I know it's a serious thread but I'm guessing that'll drift...

    My band: TACOMA NARROWS BRIDGE DISASTER
    Trading feedback: https://thefretboard.co.uk/discussion/147077/
    I like Japanties. Not the forum Road Warrior.
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  • zepp76zepp76 Frets: 2325
    edited July 27
    .
    Tomorrow will be a good day.
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  • jonnyburgojonnyburgo Frets: 9288
    Yes Drew, I think it happens to us all to some extent, nowadays I see my dad when I look in the mirror, however when looking back at pics of me in my 20s I think, wow I was beautiful. Did I know that at the time? Did I fuck, did it give me the confidence to sex up loads of babez? did it bollocks, but it damn well should've. Never a truer saying that you don't know what you got til it's gone mate. Sometimes the brain is a bastard.
    "OUR TOSSPOT"
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  • TTBZTTBZ Frets: 1971
    edited July 27
    I definitely used to more than now - I'd been very overweight for most of my life but over a few years managed to lose pretty much all of it and got down to 12st, size small in most things. Even at my smallest I still felt fat (it was actually just some loose skin and small stubborn bits of fat) but looking back at photos I actually was a bit too skinny then. Was much better after I'd quit messing around doing keto diets, obsessing about food and feeling awful for it. Casual weight lifting plus a normal diet filled me out enough to not look ill. I've gone a bit too far the other way over lockdown so trying to rein the calories in a bit as I'm feeling awful again.
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  • DominicDominic Frets: 9493
    No,
     I was made of Handsome
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  • StratavariousStratavarious Frets: 1426
    You see lots of smart guys with dumb women but few smart women with dumb guys.

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  • SassafrasSassafras Frets: 23884
    I think it's fairly normal but when you get to the stage where you become anorexic or addicted to cosmetic surgery, that's when you know you're in trouble.
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  • SnapSnap Frets: 4901
    Learning to be comfortable with what you have got, inside and out, is one of life's big challenges for most people IMO.

    Thing is, mostly, what you are isn't going to change a lot, so we all need to get comfortable in our own skin. My family love me for who I am, that's enough for me. Not bothered what anyone else thinks. That's the mantra mate!
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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 20538
    There's much I hated about my looks growing up, particularly having widish hips, and a fairly pointy chin. I was a shy kid and always awkward around girls. They were not attracted to me, and I perceived it to be because of my looks. Sure, I ain't no oil painting, but I realised later in life that attracting women is a lot about personality. 

    I finally made peace with my shape/looks about 10 years ago, although to be honest it hasn't bothered me so much since my 20s. I think we like to be liked by the opposite sex, and I found that I was pretty good at getting there by just talking to them. 

    Drew - you look fine, nothing to worry about at all. Although if I was a woman I wouldn't fancy you, I'd be a lesbian.
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  • relic245relic245 Frets: 429
    Bdd is a pretty severe mental heal Disorder.

    a lot of people (many or most?) have lower self confidence and self esteem than they would care to admit to. Often that is the cause of perceived problems like BDD. 

    Also the constant bombardment of ‘beautiful‘ people in the media and the suggestion that we should be like them doesn’t help.

    from videos you’ve posted on here I think the only thing that you are suffering from is the same thing that me and 99% of the world are suffering from too, which is being fairly ordinary looking.

    you don’t have much control over how you look. There are many great qualities that I’m sure you have and that you have much more control over. Focus on them instead. 

    It’s hard to become more beautiful.

    I think it’s a lot easier and a lot more worthwhile to become a beautiful human being.


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  • thecolourboxthecolourbox Frets: 6699
    edited July 27
    I've wondered about this before, but came to the conclusion that everybody kind of has some level of this feeling one way or another. What makes me think I don't have this is my opinion that as well as my insecurity and dislike of how I look, I'm simultaneously quite vain and narcissistic which probably just means I'm a bit of a melodramatic tit rather than having an actual disorder.

    That said, from your quoted text in the OP - I do obsess about having a big head (currently because of my fruitless search for glasses which will fit my big head), I often choose my haircuts and clothes based on a Pinterest board of others' looks that I wish to recreate, I avoid mirrors most of the time and don't use one to shave or sort my hair out but then do keep glancing throughout the day to check I still look the same etc, and the skin picking thing I definitely do. So I score fairly high on that list! But I think a fair amount of those are common nervous habits of somebody low in esteem in general and not just body dismorphia
    I want to be forgotten, and I don't want to be reminded
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  • SnapSnap Frets: 4901
    I think it's a bold person who says they are completely comfortable with who they are and how they look. Nothing wrong with trying to look your best, or look "good", but getting obsessed about it can't be good for your head. This is one of the big issues, IMO, for the instagram generation. It's not real, but it becomes a pseudo world for those caught up in it. Not healthy
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  • ThePrettyDamnedThePrettyDamned Frets: 5933
    I do, or did once, to my right foot. That might sound weird, but it has caused issues in the past.

    It is a rubbish foot. It has had problems and, given the choice, I'd have had it removed. Sometimes I still want it gone, even though it functions as a foot. 

    This is less of a problem now I take my mental health seriously, but I still hate that foot.
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