Sex and Stuff

I have been in a confessional mood lately so I am going to lay it out again today.

I have spent most of the last year trying not to focus on relationships.  I’ve gone on dates, but I haven’t been serious with anyone.

I explored my feelings for one guy pretty openly here, but they didn’t materialize into anything romantic with him.  And I know that I’m still not ready to be with anyone (even though I believe I deserve to be loved now.)  Here’s why…

I feel like the most undesirable girl in the world, and I resent myself for being so overweight that I cannot imagine anyone enjoying intimate moments with me (even when they do.)

My feelings on this are not unmerited. Though I don’t discuss all of my positive experiences, I’ve detailed some of my deeply personal experiences with guys who made me keenly aware of how undesirable I was to them.  And it’s still easier to believe those donkeys than those who would categotically disagree with them.

I am growing and changing and evolving, but I’m still struggling with the realization that who I am today is not enough because of my body.  And frankly, it pisses me off.

I am admitting this today because it’s how my healing process begins, and I am determined not to feel this way forever.

I am loved, but I deserve to be wanted too.

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28 Comments

  • Reply
    Grace @ Grace Dishes
    August 8, 2012 at 7:56 am

    This is an incredibly honest post. I think it’s really brave for you to put it out there like this.

    You do deserve to be wanted. I can understand feeling unattractive. I know I doubted my sensuality so if a guy showed interest, I was immediately grateful (ugh, I KNOW) that anyone would give me the time of day.

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 8, 2012 at 8:02 am

      Guys are interested in me relatively often, and often times I roll my eyes and say no. Sometimes I say yes too, but whatever my response is, I find myself wondering (at least when a stranger approaches me) why they’d want to be with someone who looks like me.

      That’s b.s., and I need to figure out how to cut that crap out.

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  • Reply
    Renee
    August 8, 2012 at 8:14 am

    They want to be with you because you are beautiful, smart, determined, and kind! And they are looking at your deeper qualities instead the superficial things like body size. Just the kind of man uunwantbin your life–one who has his priorities straight!

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  • Reply
    sanumaria
    August 8, 2012 at 8:15 am

    It was incredibly difficult to cut that crap, trust me… I’m still not quite done. I’m sure that my boyfriend will walk out one day because my belly is not flat. Rational? Very much so 😀 I know it sounds stupid, but try every once in a while look at you (the whole you) and say out loud that you like what you see. Or at first you can try “Well, not that bad considering”. I try to get my thoughts away from my big belly by thinking something else in me. Like my legs. “Nice pins, maybe I do my squats today”, instead of “what the hell is that thing around my waist, my belly?”

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  • Reply
    Aretreasia Bynum
    August 8, 2012 at 8:30 am

    I can totally relate to this post. It took me a while to work around that mind state. I’m still working on it. We’re all BEAUTIFUL women inside and out who deserve to be loved no matter what our outer exterior consist of. <3

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 10, 2012 at 4:01 am

      It’s so easy to see the beauty in you and other women here…I wish it was as easy to see it in myself. <3

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  • Reply
    Deborah
    August 8, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Kenlie, I often talk about feeling ‘neutral’…. not attractive to anyone and not sexual in any way.

    It’s not that I don’t want to be with a man, but that I can’t imagine anyone wanting to be with me.

    I’ve spent a long time like this and whether: 1. men aren’t attracted to me cos I’m overweight; or 2. men aren’t attracted to me cos I don’t much like myself… I may never know.

    I only know you from afar, but you DO deserve to be wanted. Hopefully you overcome this before it’s too late. (Which it sometimes feels for me!)

    Deb

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 10, 2012 at 4:01 am

      You’re breathing, love. It’s not too late for you….and it’s not too late for me either. xxoo

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  • Reply
    Kadinh13
    August 8, 2012 at 8:34 am

    I’m roughly the same size as you right now. My husband tells me all the time that I’m sexy and beautiful. I can tell that he’s attracted to me but I can’t for the life of me understand why 🙁 I don’t feel sexy right now. I know part of it is the medicine I take but I do not feel beautiful or sexy and I don’t know how to see myself that way at this size. It’s so frustrating.

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  • Reply
    Vicki
    August 8, 2012 at 8:46 am

    I think its confusing when you don’t find yourself attractive but other people do. I have guys that ask me why I want to lose weight when I look good enough already to them. Nevermind the health aspect, but I want to find myself attractive. If I think I’m hot, then I can understand why others do too.

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 10, 2012 at 4:03 am

      Yeah…it’s not my only reason for wanting to lose weight, but it has always been the driving force. That might be why I’m struggling so much now. I need to think about this some more..

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  • Reply
    Nikki @ Road to Less Cake
    August 8, 2012 at 8:59 am

    Of course you deserve to be wanted.

    I’ve realised that men often don’t see what we see, the don’t focus on our “imperfections” like we do.

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  • Reply
    Eric Van De Ven
    August 8, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Wow! That is quite a post!
    Men are visual in nature, there will always be those that are attracted to certain types of women. If you are not that “type”, there is really nothing you can do about it, so I wouldn’t worry about it. It would appear as though you are your harshest critic, which in some instances, can be a bad thing.

    Some men get off on making others feel bad about themselves. Those types are usually covering for their own inadequacies. I wouldn’t worry about them either..just avoid them when possible.

    For those that wonder why their mate is still with them, I’ll let a little secret out of the bag. When your mate fell in love with you, that is the image he has of you for the rest of your time together. That is why he stays with you, regardless of your looks. He knows, deep down, that the girl he fell in love with is still in there…somewhere! 🙂

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  • Reply
    Jennifer
    August 8, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Even within a marriage, I find myself feeling the same way, but it boils down to the fact he asked ME to marry HIM. He knew what he was getting. And let’s face it…he’s not perfect either. That goes with the territory of a deeper, sustainable connection. He sees me weighing and measuring my food. He sometimes does the journaling part for me as I make a plate of food, or am assembling a recipe to be weighed and portioned later. He watches the numbers ebb and flow when I record my weigh ins on the calendar. He doesn’t applaud me for my losses, but he doesn’t condemn me when I gain either. He recognizes it’s a process, and not one day in our 8+ years together has he ever seen me not trying to improve myself. In his own way, he’s on the same journey, though he’s actually confident enough that he leaves the scales set at his last weight when he steps off them…mine, always back to zero! My husband was bald when I met him, just like I was fat when he met me. He’s still bald. I’m still fat. He’ll always be bald. I’ve lost some weight, but I’m still fat and still working on change, more slowly than I think is acceptable. I’ve never been attracted to bald men, but the rest of the package made that seem insignificant. On the flip side, he told me once when I questioned why he’d even bother woo-ing (fat) me, “Beauty isn’t just one thing…it’s inside, it’s outside, it’s in your actions and words and talents and deeds.” For the very first time in my life, I found myself attracted to a bald man!

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  • Reply
    Valerie (seattlerunnergirl)
    August 8, 2012 at 11:36 am

    There are certainly men (and women) who prefer thinner people or who find larger people unattractive; that is a fact of life. That does not make YOU unattractive. And I have found that we women are WAY more hung-up on how we look than the men in our lives are. You DO deserve to be loved AND wanted. Finding a way to believe that just as you are now will be such a liberating thing for you, and will likely make you even MORE attractive to the men in the world who already see your beauty!

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 10, 2012 at 4:04 am

      You are so wise, V, and I hope I can figure it out…sooner than later.

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  • Reply
    Jen
    August 8, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    Wow. Exactly how i feel and I can completely relate. i will definitely be subscribing to your blog. I absolutely love the honesty of it.

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  • Reply
    Robyn Kichko
    August 8, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    I have been reading your blog for about six months or so and each time that I go on your page and I see your picture, I think, WOW, what a pretty girl and she looks like she knows how to have a good time. When you speak of your struggles to lose weight, I have to go back and look at your picture to figure out why that is something that you want to do. My point – your size is not something that I notice when I see your picture. I see a pretty, funny (the smile), and outgoing person, what do you see?

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    • Reply
      Kenlie
      August 10, 2012 at 4:06 am

      Thank you, Robyn!

      I see a girl who has sooooooooo much to offer, but I see that it’s all covered by an extra 150 pounds or so. I felt soooooo great losing the first 100, and nothing could stop me. I would guess that when I start showing a little positive momentum again, I’ll recapture the confidence that I had begun to feel. I certainly hope it’s true anyway.

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  • Reply
    Jules
    August 8, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    It’s silly and interesting how we let one person’s opinion of ourselves affect us for the rest of our lives. We need to learn to love ourselves before anyone else can love us. If we accept ourselves, others will too. I know that there are times when I feel incredible about how I look. Then times when I know my body hasn’t changed AT ALL, but I feel terrible about how I look. Silly how we judge ourselves and seem to give others the ok to judge us too. We were all given differences so we would embrace each other. Tragic that somehow, somewhere we learned to use those differences to reject others and ourselves. Hugs to you! I saw your picture before I ever read a post and I thought you were beautiful. I’ve read your posts, seen who you are and I think you are stunning.

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  • Reply
    Fatty McFatPants
    August 8, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    I only began having sex again after four years last August, and I was shocked to find how many men were willing or even excited to have sex with me. Some of them just wanted sex. Some were genuinely attracted to me, at my size. One of the things I loved about my ex is how he would kneel over me and just look at me, running his hands over my body, with this look on his face like he couldn’t believe he got to touch me. There ARE men who love bigger women! But at the same time, I completely understand how hard it is to believe it the body you live in every day can be sexy to someone else!

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  • Reply
    Dr. Jennifer
    August 8, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    Hi Kenlie,

    Your post reminds me of a bit by Janeane Garofalo, where she talks about how everyone else seems to be able to make love happen, but not her. She compares herself to Chang and Eng, the conjoined twins who both took wives and fathered many children, and a man whose face was shot off, but he still fell in love, married and had kids. (I was looking for a reference for this and couldn’t find it, but here is a similar story: Chrissy Steltz, whose face was blown off by a shotgun, met her future husband afterward, and had a child.) Janeane Garofalo points out that these people (whom you might think would have dating difficulties) managed to have loving, intimate relationships, while she struggles with relationships because she’s worried about her “matronly upper arms.”

    If you know who she is, you can see that she is, at minimum, okay-looking; most of the comments I’ve heard or read about her looks are from people who think she’s pretty or beautiful. I think the thing she’s not saying about herself coincides with what you actually did say: that you feel really undesirable and have a hard time imagining anyone enjoying physical intimacy with you. Your ending statement “I am loved, but I deserve to be wanted too,” seems like a rebuttal to the jerks who felt comfortable (enjoyed?) making you feel bad about yourself, but it sounds like you have no space in your imagination for anyone who truly does desire you. I know it seems crazy, but a) some men LOVE large, fleshy, soft women with lots of extra curves to touch, stroke and grab, and b) for a lot of men there is a great deal of wiggle room in terms of who and what they find desirable and exciting. There are definitely men out there who like slim women, but become fascinated and fall in love with larger women. I know; I married one.

    I’ve been in your position: I’m fat and I have experienced everything from undisguised disgust to undisguised lust from men, including the highly irritating “yeah, I’d sleep with you, but I wouldn’t date you.” I’ve also been fairly slim and the attraction quotient goes up a lot—I won’t lie to you. But the bigger question here is who, besides yourself, are you hurting by hating your body so much you won’t share it with someone you desire who loves you? I’m not saying you owe anyone anything, but I think it’s likely that, if someone says he loves you, he’s not getting ready to do a bait-and-switch by criticizing you once you’ve gotten intimate. Yes, there are a few people who do that; they are horrible people (of both sexes) who don’t restrict themselves to making large people feel bad: they do it with anyone they can con. It sounds like you have gotten pretty good at spotting those people and weeding them out. And yes, loving people and developing a loving relationship with them can be full of pitfalls and hurt. If you are feeling vulnerable (and it seems like you are), I can totally appreciate your need to protect yourself.

    You believe you deserve to be loved. I think that could be translated into you are no longer prepared to be used or mistreated, but I’m not sure you do fully believe you deserve to be loved, if you can’t trust that someone who loves you would enjoy making love to you. I understand the feeling. When we’re heavy, we never know whom we can trust, and unfortunately, there are fewer people out there giving us unsolicited compliments than there are people giving us unsolicited criticism. I’m sorry you’re having to deal with so much pain. Whether or not being fat is a sign of poor health (and it often isn’t), it is a sign to most people that the person is deserving of contempt, humiliation, embarrassment and advice. That is as wrong as racism, for similar reasons. While we are large, we have to cope with that and try to keep it from ruining our lives by making us unable to trust in something good when we’ve found it. Again, this is not a problem confined to large women; if you ask around, you’ll find that lots of people (male and female) have been lied to, put down, used, abandoned or had some other icky experience in the dating and relationship world. It sucks and it’s rotten when someone uses your size as an excuse for behaving poorly. It really is hard to come out from under the garbage (once bitten, twice shy), but I hope you are able to do it!

    PS: I’m not sure how to do a link here, but if you want to read Chrissy Steltz’ story, you can Google it, or cut and paste this: http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/chrissy-steltz-blinded-gunshot-prosthetic-face/story?id=11162243#.UCLuKPVdC7s

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  • Reply
    Sarah
    August 8, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    You are SO brave! And you’re right; you deserve it! The right man will come along at the right time… and I hope you share it with all of us. In the meantime, know that we love you! 🙂

    Sarah
    http://www.thinfluenced.com

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  • Reply
    Nina Patricia
    August 9, 2012 at 12:48 am

    I am going to join by saying everyone is right, there is a type for everyone. Even though muscles are hot I myself prefer a Kevin James type of a man. (You know, from the king of queens, Hitch, etc.) I have never been attracted to skinny guys.
    My Hubs dated me when I was 120lbs and after 12 yrs we reconnected again and he married me at 180lbs. I know is hard but YOU have to realize that you are worth being wanted.

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  • Reply
    Tammy
    August 10, 2012 at 11:32 pm

    You are amazing and brave. It takes a lot of courage to post raw honest feeling like these. This is one step closer to dealing with those negative feeling and understanding that you are desirable and will find the right one when the time is right.
    I totally understand your feelings. I wonder why my husband doesn’t mind my body. He tells me I’m beautiful and one day I hope I see it too.
    Keep posting your feelings, it’s good therapy!

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  • Reply
    Carina
    August 11, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    One up-side to finding the man of your dreams when you feel unattractive or heavy is that there’s less worry that he loves you only for your body. When you find the man of your dreams at your goal weight, I think lots of women are very nervous about gaining weight (whether they actually gain or just fear it), worrying that he loved them only for their body, and there’s a lot more insecurity.

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  • Reply
    Johanna
    August 13, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    I have started my big weight loss journey recently also and stumbled upon your blog via the article on daily spark! I completely relate to this post! My husband is a gym buff and loves to work out. He embarrassingly weighs less than I and gets comments all the time on being “buff” and “ripped” etc. When he first asked me out back in college I was nervous because I thought to myself “Why is someone who looks like this and obviously takes care of his body into me who doesn’t?” When we went on dates in the beginning of our relationship I felt awkward in public because I thought people were looking at me in disgust and thinking “Why is that hot guy with that fat chick?”. The more we dated and I realized I liked him and he obviously liked me aside from my weight I didn’t think about it anymore. Once we had been dating for a year or more I finally felt comfortable having this conversation with him and I told him how I felt initially and here is what he told me. “I felt the same way but I thought people would wonder what such a beautiful sexy woman was doing with me”. I think that we put our thoughts of ourselves onto other people. I thought I was disgusting and he saw beauty. I understand your thoughts and like you said in your spark article “changing whats inside our head is the hardest part”. Its time for you to feel worthy but before you can love someone else and trust them to love you for you and not for what your body is like you have to love yourself! I hope that you can truly believe “it doesn’t matter what others think of me it matters what I think of myself”

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  • Reply
    Girl Talk, Or Something Like It
    August 21, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    […] sharing my thoughts on feelings on sex and relationships and feeling unattractive last week, I was asked more than a […]

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