I had spent a really long time thinking I’m an individual, so different than the rest until I created an online dating account and saw that eight other people put all the same things on their profiles about how they love horror films and like to go on adventures. You might think that’s good because I have things in common with other women, but I think we all would like to stand out of the crowd a little bit, especially in the dating game.
The truth is we all are unique and important but sometimes it gets hard to see that. People might not treat you with respect, they might not understand you, judge you, etc. The key to being above that is to love yourself.
Society has a way of making you feel less important than you actually are. One of the best lessons I’ve learned on my little “adventure” of life was the importance of finding yourself. It is essential not only for self-respect but happiness. I would even say that its essential for life.
Before I realized I was a lesbian, life was overwhelmingly confusing and stressful. I spent most of my teens hating myself and thinking I was a freak because I was bullied pretty bad in middle school and I had a crush on this girl, I saw as superior to me, and I was in denial about for a year. That was my train of thought and I felt like I was a burden on my family and friends. I cringe now thinking about this but the truth was that I didn’t understand myself.
I decided to believe all the horrible things people thought of me instead of having opinions of my own. I decided to see myself through the eyes of people who intentionally wanted to hurt me. Once I discovered this my life changed significantly. Not only did I begin to see myself more positively, I slowly learned to accept that I liked women and to be kind to myself.
That is why learning to reflect on and respect yourself is very important. I began writing out my thoughts out on paper. I discovered that not only do I have flaws but they are a part of me just like the positive is a part of me. I also learned that being a lesbian is not a flaw, just a part of who I am.
For me personally, I still struggle with self-love, but I’m aware now that my mind also likes to put me down and reflect on the negative. The trick is to realize you are doing this and know yourself. The human brain already tends to focus on the negative, we do that enough to ourselves so don’t let others add onto that.
Find out what you want in life and its ok to be unsure. We don’t need to, but we should make the best out of our lives. If you didn’t hear this already today: you are amazing in your own way, be kinder to yourself, and follow your passions.
about the author
Leslie Khattarchebli has been in Bakersfield for 9 years. She's originally from Glendale, California and passionately loves coffee.
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