You know, I’m not really sure if everyone feels as ugly as I do normally, but it seems that the feeling isn’t that unique. Sometimes I just think, “Maybe if someone just told me I were pretty or gave me some other compliment I would feel a little better, a little more validated.” I can concede that is neither a healthy nor feminist mindset, but in the heat of the self-conscious moment it seems like a quick fix.

However, there seems to be some sort of disconnect, and now the good compliment I so selfishly craved is kind of ruined for me. There’s just a fine line between a nice remark and a creepy comment, and perhaps I’ve just ended up on the wrong side of that line one too many times.

I’ve always wanted to feel strong, but a guy sitting behind me at the gym while I do deadlifts is not really confidence building. Same goes for a guy watching me run from his car. I’ve always wanted to feel less alone, but a guy calling me every day in the hospital and finding where I live convinces me isolation is maybe a safer route. I’ve always wanted to feel pretty, but a guy friending me on Facebook and sending late night messages to tell me he saw me stretching at the gym is just not helpful. This is all just creepy, and if that’s what it takes to feel pretty, then i don’t think I want to be pretty.

I guess this is the struggle of being a straight female in the 21st century. While I’ve been incredibly lucky not to have been put in any danger, the creepiness certainly makes me believe in the reality of harassment. I’m dumb for seeking validation like this, but now I don’t need it. I don’t want to be pretty anymore; it doesn’t really matter. I just want to be safe, secure, and at peace with myself.