I Still Hear the Voices: I Just Don’t Tell Anybody About Them

mask

I wanted to say how I’ve learned to keep the voices quiet, but that would be a lie. I still hear them. On a regular basis. The only true part about me keeping them quiet is that I don’t talk about them to others. Much.

“A face only a mother could love.”

I wish I knew where these nagging voices came from. Which is yet another lie. I know where they come from. They come from me. Although they’ve been with me for as long as I can remember, I’ve never learned to like them. It’s like that annoying ringing in my ears. You just do with. You know?

I DON’T KNOW IF I SHOULD TELL YOU WHAT I HEAR

Leo tells me that I’m “fishing for compliments”. Don’t I wish. I do believe we all have some form of inner monster. Some are just better at kicking their ass than others. And then there are people like me who listen, hush a quiet “stop it” but then keep on listening. I’ve been told it’s rude to ignore when I’m being spoken to.

“A face for radio…”

Some of the voices are gone. Some of them have stopped. Some have changed their tune. But some are more stubborn than your pet’s pee stain on the white carpet by the entryway.

WILL IT EVER GO AWAY?

My friend shared this remarkable *video on Facebook. The basis of the video was all about the children’s song “stick and stones may break your bones…” and the conclusion of the video was that words do and will continue to hurt. My favorite quote from the video felt like it was speeking directly to me:

“If you can’t see anything beautiful about yourself, then get a better mirror.” -Shane Koyczan

It spoke to me because my inner demon tells me daily that I’m ugly. It reminds me about this when I see a picture of myself. It repeats the words over and over again “you’re ugly, ugly-ugly-ugly” when I look into a mirror. Sure there are times where I surprise even myself when I happen to admire the reflection. It happens. Trust me, it does. How do I handle the 99% of the times when I happen to agree with the voice?

AT LEAST I HAVE A NICE PERSONALITY

In the spirit of honesty I must tell you that I just cope with it, and focus on my bubbling self. Once the class clown, always the class clown.

“Seeing you is proof that we do come from monkeys.”

What I wish I could tell you is how I always have the capacity to find something beautiful about myself even if I may be having a bad hair day.

Circa - from the years with my ex
Circa – from the years with my ex

I’m hoping that in putting this out there it will force me into a sense of accountability. Years ago I found out my ex-husband had confided in his best friends that he was relieved I had a hot body because my face was pretty ugly. Shocking news: we got divorced! I couldn’t help but think to myself “But when you love someone, you always see nothing but beauty in them.”

And here is me having an a-ha moment. I do love myself. So… logically… do I really need to spell it out to you?

“I love myself, hence I see nothing but beauty when I look in the mirror.”

I’m lucky to be loved by people who tell me I am beautiful. It’s time I start listening to them instead of that inner voice. Do YOU have any inner demons? What do they whisper in your ears at night?

……………………………………………….
* You have to see this video. It’s called TO THIS DAY. And I give it a two-thumbs way up.

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27 thoughts on “I Still Hear the Voices: I Just Don’t Tell Anybody About Them”

  1. Can you recall what I told you when I wasn’t sure if you were the lady that befriended me on Facebook? You have a beautiful smile 🙂 It stuck with me and I recognized you. Only collect the ones in your life that see you for the beautiful lady that you are. Inside and out.

    My inner demons are floating around every now and then. They often strike when I’m mentally tired and then I hear things like, “you’re not good enough yet”. It’s rude, you know.

    Thanks so much for sharing this with us.

    xoxo ❤

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    1. Smiles are contagious… I will keep that in mind – to only collect those that see me as a beautiful lady inside and out… Wow. Thanks!

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  2. My inner demons haunt me day and night. Never this, never that, never going to be. Fat, thin, pretty, ugly, smart, not.

    Finding people who love you, see you as beautiful and will tell you that is priceless. You are fortunate, hold them tight.

    Thank you for sharing your story.

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  3. So, another ballet Mom and I had this … ummm … fascinating discussion, in which she revealed that if her husband ever became physically unattractive to her, she’d stop schtupping him. And I thought, “Woah, backup, waaaaitaminute ….. let’s define physically attractive.” Because the thing that attracts me to Scott? It’s not stereotypical chiseled figures and a gym-proof physique. I adore his soft professor hands. I love his frowse of escaping curls. His smile turns me on, and when he giggles, he pulls up his bottom lip over his teeth and tucks in his upper lip and flicks his eyes from side to side, and it’s utterly precious.

    But I have a feeling that this woman, whose husband isn’t ugly by any means, and who does, in fact have that chiseled thing going on, meant that she seriously expected him to look that way forever.

    Newsflash. We all age. We will not look the same at 37 that we did at 17. (In my case, because I have lost so much weight, I actually look better, though I had no body image issues when I was 17. I’ve always been pretty contented with my body.) But you are far from alone. A LOT of people, especially women, struggle with those voices. And while they’ve been made to come out in your.. . ‘voice’ for lack of a better word, the words come from a larger society that doesn’t value women’s bodies except based on an extremely limited, exquisitely sexist basis.

    (And for the record, I think you’re utterly adorable. You have the chiseled nose and cheeks thing going on, too, but in a narrow, feminine way that few ladies I know can wear with any class, Not only do you have class, you’ve got the kind of straightforward attitude that matches those features., And you’ve got utterly swoon-worthy eyes.)

    Here are some titles that might be useful for you. A lot of them are aimed at giving girls a positive self image starting young, but most apply to anybody struggling with self-perception. (I have read several in an effort to make sure Caroline knows she’s gorgeous no matter what, since she’s chosen to follow ballet for now, one of the worst environments for that sexist standard.) The Body Myth by Joe Kelly. Can’t Buy Me Love by Mary Pipher (this one is realllly good and realllly addresses the things you’re hearing.) The good body by Eve Ensler.

    Do this exercise.starting today. Look in the mirror and say, “I have gorgeous eyes. I love my eyes.” Say it until you believe it. It may take a long fucking time. That’s OK. Be patient and persistent, and when you hear the voices, stop, acknowledge what they’ve just said, then tell them, “Fuck you. I have gorgeous eyes.” And once you believe that, then pick out a different body part. The cheeks, the chin, whatever.

    Leo thinks you’re just fishing because he’s a guy. He’s never been the focus of oversexualized media that invites him to be overly critical of his own body. Though plenty of guys DO struggle with body image issues, it’s more rare, because they don’t endure the same scrutiny. Also, because all he sees is your beauty. He simply doesn’t get how you could feel anything but beautiful, because when he sees you, he sees utter beauty.

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    1. And now I have lost the battle against my tears. I love you! You’re so, amazing. I wish you were here right now so I could punch you in the arm for making me cry, then hug you for having such a way with words. The way you describe Scott. Wow. Now there’s a post!

      Thanks…

      Like

  4. Oh, I love this post more than I can say. It’s incredibly important to surround yourself with people who see your beauty and respect you, uplift you – the people who will whisper against your inner demons to tell you, “You are beautiful and you are loved.” Thank you for writing this so honestly. Just love it.

    Like

  5. oh my incredible, beautiful, sexy, amazing friend.
    Yep, we all have those demons and those voices but I hate that YOU hear them, because you shouldn’t.
    Your voice, your smile, your laugh and your ability to just “BE” are so attractive to me.
    I know it doesn’t mean much to say, “don’t feel like that!” because you will, it happens, but what I hope you answer those voices with is…
    “I am beautiful!, I am loved! I am special and incredible. Interesting and attractive. I am EXTRAORDINARY just the way I am.”

    because…you are!
    I love you, every single part.
    xo

    Like

  6. We are all beautiful to someone. We just need to find that someone. And you have (and I hate your ex and I don’t even know you guys; what an asshole). That picture of you is gorgeous; you look happy. It’s not easy being happy. I struggle with that sometimes.

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    1. Last night I was told I was the most beautiful woman in the world by someone who really seemed to believe it. I do hope you find your happiness Gina…

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  7. Oh, Marie! I’m gonna punch you in the arm for making me about cry, too! Listen to what every one of these posters have said, because you are a beautiful and wonderful woman who has a heart of gold. Especially adhere to “inner demons are assholes.” We should all heed that warning and not listen to those devilish bastards.
    Any time you have a doubt, watch that video of you with the whales when you turn the camera back to yourself and say, “Oh, my God!” That brought me such joy to watch, and I hope it does you, too. It is the epitome of beauty!

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  8. What you’ve written here probably encapsulates the way a lot of people feel about themselves – you just had the guts to write it here, out in open. So well done to you for that! I’ve never understood that rhyme; I still carry around words that people have said to me that hurt me more than a broken bone ever could! We’ve all got to try and like ourselves a bit more, and surrounding ourselves with people who can’t get enough of us is a great start 🙂

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    1. Yay!

      It starts with not making people feel arrogant or like shit heads simply for loving themselves. I have this one vivid memory from when I was 14, a gang of friends were attacking this one friend of ours screaming non stop “You just love yourself don’t you!” as if it were the worst insult ever.

      Sick.

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  9. Okay, A) You’re cute. Joe has spoken. B) OMG, the voices! I tend to just agree with mine when they remind me every chance they get that I have a face like a cake left out in the rain. But when they tell me, as they often do, that I’m stupid. I’m not stupid. Sometimes, I do stupid things, but by and large, I’m actually relatively intelligent – especially given the ongoing decline of the civilization to which I belong. C) Some of my voices are those of exes, relatives, and even customers and classmates and teachers from decades past. I relive incidents and arguments, and this time, I win them. I win ’em good!

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      1. I am delightfully inconsistent, in my assertiveness. You caught me on an assertive day. Mostly, I just like declaring things and saying “Joe has spoken.”

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  10. Hell yes! And keep listening to those who love you until your demon just withers away from inattention.
    You rock. Don’t ever forget it.
    (But we’ll remind you if you do.)

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  11. You my lovely friend, are beautiful inside and out and never let those voices tell you otherwise.
    I know they can be hard to ignore, I have my own demons.
    But you are very special. This is my voice and you have to listen cause I have a cute accent 😉

    Like

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