Tag Archives: self esteem

Girl Talk: I Put Myself On Mute For A Guy — And I’ll Never Do It Again

I like to consider myself a strong and independent woman. I live alone; I take care of myself and never waiver in my beliefs. I’ve managed to convince myself that I’m fearless; I look confrontation in the eye and am without regret in my behavior – even when it isn’t the most flattering or well thought-out way to handle certain situations. I am, admittedly, a hot head.

I do not allow others to define me, put me in a box labeled by how they see me and will scream at the top of my lungs before I’ll ever let someone try to silence me. I am all these things; I have been all these things, and years from now these expectations that I have for myself will still be true. I don’t give a fuck who might be angered or won’t agree along the way. In the words of the great sailor, Popeye, “I am what I am.”

However, there were a few years in there, the dark years, that I was not all these things. When it came to Christoffer, I was a shadow. Keep reading »

Mirror Mirror: On High Heels

Mirror Mirror: Costumes
What about these costumes we wear? Read More »
Mirror Mirror: Body Hair
Why are women supposed to be hairless? Read More »
Mirror Mirror: Age 65
How Kate wants to be when she's 65. Read More »

Fairest shmairest! Let’s get real about beauty and body image. Mirror, Mirror is a column running every other week on The Frisky. It is written by Brooklyn-based columnist, freelance writer, and bagel enthusiast, Kate Fridkis who also writes the blog Eat the Damn Cake. You can follow her on Twitter at @eatthedamncake.

I lead services at a synagogue, and I need to dress up for my job. Nothing over the top—just business-y, tailored clothes paired with nice shoes. For the longest time, my mom was my workwear fashion consultant, because none of my friends were working somewhere that required a suit, and she advised that I go with padded shoulders, long skirts, stockings, and thick, low heels. So I did, because I am oblivious. Then I moved to NYC, and I was like, “Oh! THIS is how people dress.” And I bought some pencil skirts and some legitimate heels. And then those heels wore out, and then, stay with me, because this is about to get really interesting: I went to DSW.

And I tried on heels.

And I began to ask some existential questions like, “How do women wear these things and not fall down the subway steps and kill themselves?” Keep reading »

Emergency Compliments, For When You’re Feeling Really Crappy

Give A Compliment!
Here are seven reasons to compliment a total stranger. Read More »
FB ruins self-esteem
A new study confirms it. Read More »
Have Bad Self-Esteem?
If you truly believe you suck, self help may not work for you. Read More »

Sometimes you’re just having what Judith Viorst might call a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. And despite your best attempts to self-soothe and console yourself, you just can’t deal. That’s where the smart and lovely folks at Emergency Compliment come in. Head there on a particularly shitty day, and be showered in kind words and inspiring thoughts. Like about how good your hair smells, and about how your prom date still wishes they could see you. It’s all true, you know. Plus, these emergency compliments are available as artworks, too. Buy one and display it anytime you’re feeling a tad bit insecure. [Emergency Compliment]

Watch This: Three Minutes Of Beautiful Inspiration

You Are Beautiful
Here are 50 reasons why. Read More »
Beautiful "Imperfections"
What quirks set YOU apart? Read More »
10 Ways To Love Your Body
It's the perfect time to show your bod some love! Read More »
"Express yourself. Often, kindly, and without apology."

Feeling down? Struggling with body image issues? Stuck in a cycle of self criticism? Just generally in need of a potent dose of inspiration? Check out this video, “On Real Beauty,” a collection of gorgeous portraits paired with 10 simple, powerful pieces of advice for the beautiful, unique woman you are. [YouTube via Upworthy]

Mirror, Mirror: The Costumes We Wear

Mirror Mirror: Age 65
How Kate wants to be when she's 65. Read More »
Mirror Mirror: Body Hair
Why are women supposed to be hairless? Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Carbs
Is Kate the only person who still eats carbs? Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Awkward
In praise of awkward beauty. Read More »

Fairest shmairest! Let’s get real about beauty and body image. Mirror, Mirror is a column running every other Thursday on The Frisky. It is written by Brooklyn-based columnist, freelance writer, and bagel enthusiast, Kate Fridkis who also writes the blog Eat the Damn Cake. You can follow her on Twitter at @eatthedamncake.

Every year for Halloween, I used to dress up as a gypsy. I was a lazy little kid, I guess, and I didn’t want to make some complicated costume. So I just put on a long skirt and a bunch of my mom’s jewelry and wrapped a bandana around my head, and people were like, “Are you a hippie?” And I was like, “Obviously not. I’m wearing a sash. Come on, people.”

One year, when I was being a gypsy and I was trick-or-treating with a pirate, a witch, and Simba in the sprawling ranch house development lower-income suburban New Jersey had conveniently provided us with, I saw my babysitter, dressed as a devil. But she didn’t look like a scary devil. She looked like some other kind of devil I’d never imagined. It was weird. I wondered if when I got to be older, as old as 14 say, if I’d wear things like that, with my belly showing even though it was cold. I wondered if Halloween was different when you were my babysitter’s age. Keep reading »

An Open Letter To The Fat Girl

Ugly Duckling Lessons
Life lessons from a former ugly duckling. Read More »
Summer Clothes And Body Image
How summer clothes bring up my insecurities. Read More »
Former Fat Kid Responds
...to the Vogue mom who put her 7yo daughter on a diet. Read More »
You Are Beautiful
Here are 50 reasons why. Read More »

Dear Fat Girl,

Last week, I saw an overweight news anchor respond to a bully with such power and confidence that it made me cry. It also made me want to write about my own experience of being a fat girl. I almost wrote this letter to my younger self: a deeply sad, chubby fourth grader who endured horrific taunts from classmates at recess, and even worse abuse in her own head when she’d go home and look in the mirror. But then I realized that there is something about these two little words, “fat” and “girl,” that denotes a shared life experience. If you’ve ever been a fat girl, you know what it’s like to have a body that feels like an enemy, to suppress your own voice because you think it doesn’t count, to be informed with a sigh that you have “such a pretty face,” as if it’s a bit of a tragedy. Here are some things I wish someone would have told me, back when I felt so hopeless, back when I felt like I would never be anything more than the fat girl… Keep reading »

Mirror, Mirror: How I Want To Be At 65

Mirror Mirror: Body Hair
Why are women supposed to be hairless? Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Awkward
In praise of awkward beauty. Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Rules
Kate comes up with better beauty rules. Read More »

Fairest shmairest! Let’s get real about beauty and body image. Mirror, Mirror is a column running every other Thursday on The Frisky. It is written by Brooklyn-based columnist, freelance writer, and bagel enthusiast, Kate Fridkis who also writes the blog Eat the Damn Cake. You can follow her on Twitter at @eatthedamncake.

The other day, I was having lunch with a 65-year-old woman who was on a strict diet. She told me she needed to lose 10 pounds before she would feel like a real person again. She wasn’t letting herself buy any new clothes until she dropped a couple sizes. She loved fashion, but she wanted to punish herself, so that she would learn her lesson.

“No, no,” I protested. “You look great! You don’t need to change anything.”

She gave me an empty smile. “That’s sweet of you.”

She didn’t like her hair either. She didn’t like her arms. They were too flabby, she thought. Her legs were too short. And then, of course, there were her wrinkles. She was racing against time to combat all of the signs that she was no longer 30. And suddenly, I was scared. Keep reading »

Girl Talk: Stop Waiting To Be Prettier

My Nose Job
One writer talks about getting a nose job. Read More »
I'm Not Beautiful
But that's okay. Read More »
Tell Me I'm Pretty
Is it so much to ask to want to be told I'm beautiful? Read More »

You know that moment, where you’re gripping some of your side fat in the bath, and you just ate all of the leftover spaghetti at once, with pesto and tomato sauce and grated cheese and, weirdly, liverwurst, and you’re thinking, Tomorrow I will go to the gym. And then I’ll go every day after that, for the rest of my life. And I will lose weight. It’ll be easier than I expect it to. And then my hair will grow out and it’ll be thicker than last time. And then I’ll be prettier. And then I’ll wear sleeveless dresses all the time and I’ll be happy?

That moment is lying to you. Keep reading »

Mirror, Mirror: On Femininity And Body Hair

Soapbox: No Pubic Hair
Why this woman doesn't have pubic hair. Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Awkward
In praise of awkward beauty. Read More »
Soapbox: Pro Pubic Hair!
A soapbox about why we should keep our pubic hair. Read More »

Fairest shmairest! Let’s get real about beauty and body image. Mirror, Mirror is a column running every other Thursday on The Frisky. It is written by Brooklyn-based columnist, freelance writer, and bagel enthusiast, Kate Fridkis who also writes the blog Eat the Damn Cake. You can follow her on Twitter at @eatthedamncake.

One lazy, yet revolutionary summer, I let my leg hair grow, just to see what would happen. I’m not kidding, all of the guys I met liked it, even if they had to tell me secretly later, after making fun of me first. I was surprised by how silky it was.

I was 15. My mom made me shave when I started a job in the fall.

I am still not sure how much body hair should matter, but I lean towards “not at all” and the rest of the world seems to think “SO MUCH OH MY GOD PLEASE SHAVE YOURSELF BEFORE WE ALL BARF OUR BRAINS OUT.”

At this party the other night, I listened as the women talked about how they were all getting electrolysis and laser hair removal. There are some great deals on Groupon, apparently. Everyone was getting their pubic hair done first. Then probably all the rest.

I’ll be honest, my pubic hair rarely occurs to me. I mean, yeah, it’s there, I went through puberty and stuff. But mostly, like a backwoods, hopeless, potentially dirty barf-inducing dork-chump, I just assume it’s fine.

And mostly it’s fine. Except for this one time when I took off my clothes and the guy I was with said, “Wow. Um, the last girl I dated was Asian, so…” Keep reading »

Mirror, Mirror: In Praise Of Awkward Beauty

Mirror, Mirror: Rules
Kate comes up with better beauty rules. Read More »
Talking About Bodies
Kate reflects on hearing men talk about women's bodies. Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Girls
Why Kate's always checking them out. Read More »

Fairest shmairest! Let’s get real about beauty and body image. Mirror, Mirror is a column running every other Thursday on The Frisky. It is written by Brooklyn-based columnist, freelance writer, and bagel enthusiast, Kate Fridkis who also writes the blog Eat the Damn Cake. You can follow her on Twitter at @eatthedamncake.

So I’ve given it some thought and I’d like to propose the establishment of a new category of beauty. Awkward Beauty. That’s my working title.

Awkward Beauty sometimes looks like it’s not beauty at all, but that’s wrong. That’s only because we’ve gotten so boring. We’ve watched too many shampoo commercials. Look closer. It doesn’t fit in, but it’s the real deal. Not like Emma Watson playing Hermione Granger with smooth hair. No, like the real Hermione Granger, who had features that stood out, hair that couldn’t be stopped.

The current popular definition of beauty seems to have a lot to do with shininess. Shiny hair, shiny legs, shiny lips, very big, very shiny eyes. Shiny boobs are a plus. The current definition involves a lot of strict symmetry, sort of like those photos that Science compiled of every face in the world that end up with one totally smoothed-out face that everyone thinks is the most beautiful because there is NOTHING interesting on it at all. Keep reading »

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