Dry spells, self-esteem and fat-phobia

There hasn’t been much sexy-time lately in the Average household. John has been sick and I’m getting there. I’m feeling less than attractive, between the coughing and the fevering and the still-fat-from-my-pregnancy-ing.

Why is it that being “fat” isn’t such an awful thing when you’re getting some on a regular basis, but it sucks fairly hard when you’re going through a dry spell? I may be committing a mortal sin by using that term, since “dry spell” is often used by the PUA community. A web search for “feeling unattractive during a dry spell” reveals post after post for PUAs looking to bang chicks under 30. I also came across a very random article about how Eva Green feels unattractive

"Ugly Duckling"? Excuse me while I puke.

“Ugly Duckling”? Excuse me while I puke.

But perhaps, maybe, possibly, all these things have something to do with each other. If someone as unconscionably gorgeous as Eva Green can feel “ugly” in comparison to celebrities who have surgery, take Botox and power diet,  how are normal women – particularly women who just brought forth spawn – supposed to not feel like the abhorrent land whales of epic proportions?

The DailyMail published details of a study that says post-partum women take, on average, 18 months to feel like a woman again.

That’s 547 days, for any parents desperately counting down the time on their calendar, before new ­mothers are able to ‘feel like a woman again’.

During that one and a half year period, however, sleepless nights, loss of independence and weight worries all contribute to a crisis of confidence.

More than two thirds of those questioned admitted to feeling ‘saggy’, ‘fat’ and ‘unattractive’ in the months after giving birth.

Six out of ten claimed their confidence took a real knock when they realised their old clothes didn’t fit.

And a quarter of the 3,000 women said they felt they were competing with other mothers – including celebrities – to lose weight quickly after birth.

What the fuck? I know I need to lose weight, since I’m a full 35 pounds heavier than when I got pregnant. I very often lie on my bed, crying to The Man that I’m fat and flabby and nothing fits. I always hear the same thing – Dear, you just had a baby. And, typically, I ignore it.

In a world where celebrities pop out a puppy and return to tight, toned bodies within 3 or 4 months, it seems irrational for the average woman to give herself a free pass. Celebrities shame us and we even shame each other. The mantra “I did it, so can you” runs rampant, and those of us who have a reason – not an excuse – ignore our special circumstances altogether. We use how quickly we get back to our pre-baby body as a metric by which we judge ourselves as people. Take too long, and you’re just a lazy slob letting yourself go.

It’s all about judging and comparison.

Return to original topic, could this be why women not getting a lot in their relationships often feel less secure? We aren’t getting that external validation that we are, in fact, desirable? I thought about this idea a little more, and know – for me and several of my closest buddies, at least – it’s true, but the implications are silly. A man (who statistically is 80%+ likely to have sex with a stranger) would lie next to a woman every night, cuddle with her, shower with her, kiss her, but if he doesn’t fuck her like he means it, he doesn’t find her attractive.




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