Being 'Ugly' In Middle School
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Health and Wellness

Being 'Ugly' In Middle School

It can affect you more than you think.

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Being 'Ugly' In Middle School
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I think we can agree that middle school was awful for everyone. For most people, when school let out on that last day of eighth grade, all of the nonsense of those past three years was behind them. I, for some reason, still find myself being followed by my 12-year-old self.

My awkward stage (we all had one -- don't lie) started in fourth grade and ended around seventh or eighth grade depending on who you ask. I have a treasure trove of pictures from that era and take pride in the fact that I'm the queen of "glo-up" pictures and transformation Tuesdays. They're fun and I'm able to laugh at myself but lately I've realized that the insecurities I had back then never really went away.

I really wasn't bullied in middle school. I was hard on myself, but no one else ever said anything. When high school rolled around however, people I considered my friends seemed to think it was now OK to tell me to my face how unattractive they found me back then. I would always laugh and agree with the things they said, but those comments were affecting me more than I realized.

It's almost like I had convinced myself that the old me was a different person, when really, it was still me. If it wasn't OK then to come up to me and say: "Wow Tyger, you're looking pretty rough today." Why did people seem to think that it was totally cool to tell me how ugly they had found me those past three years, as long as they ended it with: "but you're so pretty now."

I had a boyfriend who constantly felt the need to mention how awful he thought I looked back then, and it really screwed with me. I found myself thinking: "If you didn't like me then, how much can you really like me now? I'm the same person."

I think it was that thought that really brought on more issues with my self image. Having people confirm that the things I hated most about myself in my most vulnerable years were in fact valid was kind of devastating. It felt like I was back in middle school, and people were making up for the things they wished they could have said then. Many insecurities that I hadn't given a second thought were now bubbling back up to the surface and becoming all I could think about.

This is honestly a constant battle for me. Often times I find myself in the same self conscious place I was in seventh grade. While I am the same person, I also have to remind myself that I've changed since then and the past is in the past. It can be fun to laugh at yourself every now and then, but people still need to use discretion when they're making jokes. It took me a while to make the connection between my issues with self esteem and my middle school self, but it really makes sense when I think about it. We all have an insecure, awkward 12-year-old somewhere inside us, and we need to learn to be nice to them.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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