Keeping a Positive Body Image while Dating

The teenage years can be confusing enough as it is, bodies go through all sorts of changes and so do minds. Insecurities are magnified by all of the “perfect people” we see on social media and it can be hard enough for teens to accept themselves.

Add the filter of dating and other people’s opinions about your appearance on top of that, and it can feel downright depressing. (Sidenote: If you’re struggling with anything, and need someone to talk to, here are some valuable hotlines for teens.)

You can work hard on loving yourself and building confidence, but that can all come crashing down pretty quickly when you enter the dating game.

There are some things people are insecure about which they can more or less hide or keep to themselves, but if you’re dealing with weight issues, it’s not easy to hide.

When you try to flirt with someone or ask them out, or you meet on an app and meet up in person and it doesn’t go anywhere, overweight people will often question if it’s because of their personality, or just because of how they look. Being rejected because you aren’t a great fit personality-wise is one thing, but having people judge you before even getting to know you can be hurtful.

Young adults can be very insecure and they’ll often project those insecurities onto others. As such, plus size dating can be extra difficult but for what it’s worth – in the “real world” it’s not nearly as much of an issue. People grow up, they become more mature, they realize there’s more to a person than just how they look – but MOST importantly, being bigger does NOT mean you aren’t attractive. Furthermore, plenty of people are only attracted to plus-size partners.

It’s easy to think that young adulthood and teenage years are the be all end all because you haven’t experienced much else at that point.

Signs of Negative Body Image

We’re conditioned by society to feel certain ways, sometimes without even realizing it. You could be suffering from a negative self-image in ways that hurt confidence, without even fully realizing it… Ask yourself…

Do you find yourself focusing primarily on perceived imperfections?

If you find yourself mostly focusing on the things you view as negatives, it’s an unhealthy sign. We all have things we don’t love about our bodies, but they shouldn’t be the primary focus.

Do you find yourself scrutinizing yourself in front of the mirror?

How much time do you spend in front of the mirror hating how you look? Do you dread seeing yourself? Remember, nobody else on this planet is putting nearly as much scrutiny on your appearance as you are, most likely.

Have people in your life set a negative tone?

If you’ve been in a relationship where someone had negative things to say about your appearance, or if you grew up with parents that are very critical of physical appearance, it’s very likely this could have rubbed off on you.

More Resources

  • PositivePsychology has some helpful worksheets that are worth taking a look at.
  • Activities like Yoga can help you to get in touch with your body in a positive way. Here are some beginner poses.

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