View Full Version : Do you undermine gifts of love?
That's the title of an Oprah.com story I just read on CNN.com. I found it interesting and saw a little bit of myself in it. I think that it might be of value to some women here, especially those who have rejected a partner's 'you're so pretty' comments (which, oddly enough, I never have! haha)
09-18-2010, 12:44 AM
I've always been so insecure that when given a compliment i'd always say something like "you're so crazy" or "you need glasses" etc. Deep inside I didnt believe the compliment was genuine because I myself didnt believe it.
It wasnt until recently a very important lesson was learned. It was one of those slap in the face kind of things too.
I never realized that when my guy would tell me these compliments that it actually HURT his feelings when I would dismiss them rather than accept them. Since I hate hurting anyone's feelings it really hit me hard. Ever since that day I have tried really hard to say "thank you" over "yeah right". I came to learn that just because I dont see it, doesnt mean he is lying.
Hate being taught lessons lol :blush:
09-18-2010, 01:43 AM
I almost alllllways refute the "you're so pretty" or "you're beautiful" comments. And have even gotten in fights with friends over it. It's the worst when it's repeated often, because that's when it gets suspicious. Admittedly, it's something I've been working on, but it's tough.
And I tell guys ahead of time not to say "hey beautiful" to me or anything similar. They don't like when I tell them not to, but they don't know how much more I dislike hearing it. It's probably why I'm single, actually, lol. I shoot down "compliments" as soon as possible. Mind you, I find they say those things too soon, which is part of why I shoot it down.
It's tough to give it up.
09-18-2010, 04:27 AM
This doesn't just affect women. I know I can't accept a compliment about my looks. Numerous women here and in real life have told me I'm handsome. I don't buy it. I never have. I don't believe I'm ugly, I believe I'm dead average looking. Nothing special.
I'm not fishing for compliments, I'm illustrating a point. I have the same problem, and it's something I need to work on. Jackie is a good enough person that she can see around my self-deprecations, thank God.
09-18-2010, 08:59 AM
I hate to admit this is an issue that hits close to home for me. My past, how I was raised, the patterns I observed, and my experiences as a fat girl have made it very hard for me to accept love and accept compliments from a loved one. I've been working on it in therapy on and off for years, and I've gotten a lot better at just saying thank you when someone offers a compliment, even if I don't necessarily believe it. I've also gotten a lot better at understanding that when someone compliments me and/or loves me, I need to put myself in their shoes and realize that they see something different than I see in myself, and that by rejecting their love or their compliments, I'm essentially saying their feelings for me aren't valid. Having grown up with a parent who constantly invalidated my feelings and my sense of self, I don't want to be that kind of person. I think I've had some growth in learning to accept compliments and love from others, but I'm certainly not there 100 percent.
09-18-2010, 01:33 PM
Carla I totally agree, it is hard to stop. Its also been a fight source for me too. With everyone around me.
I understand what you mean Dromond and Thirtiesgirl.
Mine also comes from a multitude of things. I'm working on it, but its not easy. I never realized how it felt to be on the opposite end of the compliment until it was pointed out to me. Made me really stop and think before I speak now.
That growth is such a slow process, but the more you learn to give yourself some worth, the easier it becomes. We'll all get there :)
09-18-2010, 06:14 PM
[QUOTE=Jes;1558995]That's the title of an Oprah.com story I just read on CNN.com. I found it interesting and saw a little bit of myself in it. I think that it might be of value to some women here, especially those who have rejected a partner's 'you're so pretty' comments (which, oddly enough, I never have! haha)
Great thread! Unfortunately, this is something I've really strugled with. I longed so much to hear the endearments or compliments but if I received them...I couldn't accept them. :(
09-18-2010, 09:55 PM
I agree with what seems to be the common thread of the thread so far, that it's tough for quite a few of us to accept compliments when they're given. For myself, it's taken a lot of work to be able to even process that a compliment has been said, much less feel comfortable and somewhat worthy of it. And, like Dromond said, it's not only women having this experience. I just recently offered a guy some compliments (not about looks, though he's on track for that, too) and he expressed uncertainty about them applying to himself.
As SS/BBWs we're more used to getting abuse hurled from car windows and groups of immature assholes and our "loving" family than hearing we're pretty or sexy or whatever. Hell, one time when I was 11 I was riding home in the school bus and this boy I didn't know turned to me and out of the blue said that I was ugly. My reply? "I know." I'm not saying we're all pathologically self-defeating just that it's a cold fact of living with fat. We develop a buffer shell against the negativity which reduces some of the hurt but then when we get a genuine piece of positivity it bounces right off, seeming fake or like another, more cruel, taunt.
09-19-2010, 12:27 AM
This thread reminds me of the first time my ex said a flat out obvious comment to me about my looks that was supposed to make me feel sexy. It took me all of about 5 minutes to actually process it and realise exactly what he said. Once I did, I was terrified. I was klutzy and unattentive to what was going on around me. I walked away from him and avoided returning to him at all costs that day. And I didn't talk to him for a week because of it. I didn't know how to handle such a compliment. And still don't, really.
It was for sure a compliment, one that most would kill to hear, but for some reason, I didn't expect to ever hear it or want to hear it. And I'm still in that stage.
09-19-2010, 01:10 AM
I'm really weird when it comes to compliments.
On one hand, I don't really crave compliments, but I do notice and even sometimes get annoyed when they are withheld.
However, receiving compliments makes me feel nervous and weird. I feel the same way when someone overpraises me for a charitable act (I'm definitely an anonymous donor).
09-19-2010, 02:34 AM
When it comes to compliments, I can accept them, but only if they are sincere and heartfelt. Whenever I compliment anyone, its from a genuine feeling, and truism about another. When a compliment is given just to make someone feel good, it cheapens it into a lie, and that I think is the situation here. There is so much mistrust from hurts received, that sometimes can jade one to receiving a true compliment or accolade.
But for me, when given a compliment, I take it, accept it, and am grateful for it, because we all have some good points, and others can see that in us, as we can see it in others, and making sure to acknowledge that in a person, makes us all that much better.
09-19-2010, 11:54 AM
It's been difficult at times for me too. One of my significant others says something that took me a very long time to "get". Every time we see each other, when it's time for him to go, he gives me a hug and kiss and says "thank you for everything". It used to drive me absolutely bug-nuts because I couldn't figure out why he felt the need to thank me like that. It really messed with my head and I was assigning all kinds of twisted motives to it. But then it clicked and I realized that he genuinely means *everything*. And now it makes me feel awesome to hear it. But for the longest time it would leave me feeling confused and totally racking my brain trying to figure out just what he meant by that.
09-19-2010, 12:15 PM
When I was a child I craved attention because I was neither of my parents' favorite. In fact, I was nobodies favorite save for two degenerate uncles who I avoided like the plague, so it is no surprise to me that for the longest time I had no respect for anyone who paid me a compliment. I was suspicious of their motives.
Over time, I began to own my own beauty (because my brains, wit and humor were never in question) and relaxed and invited warm words, gestures and love.
I was in a toxic relationship where I felt compelled to beg for love and attention and became so accustomed to this famine and void of affection that now, in the beginning of a much healthier reciprocal relationship, I am often taken aback by words and gestures so freely given. My heart is wide open and entrusted to someone much more worthy who understands my love is a precious gift and in knowing that, I am able to be free, not only in this relationship but in all my relationships and dealings with others.
I did not need another to know my value, but their valuing me is a gift which I am delighted to believe and accept and return.
09-19-2010, 12:16 PM
Yes and no. I've never been comfortable with or good at receiving compliments. These days I've trained myself to just say thank you and smile but I don't think it will ever cease to be awkward for me. I get really peeved though when the compliment seems patronizing or is designed to pacify. "You know you're beautiful too? No, really," for me seems like a passive agressive put down. Shut up lady, I don't need a boost. :mad: It really makes me want to strike them.
09-19-2010, 12:45 PM
I have ALWAYS been comfortable with receiving compliments. I usually reply with a cute smile and "I know!"
I have ALWAYS been comfortable with receiving compliments. I usually reply with a cute smile and "I know!"
well it's interesting, isn't it? Like...I had the same shit lobbed at me as some here (words yelled from car windows) but I don't have issues with someone I trust reasonably (and I trust most people reasonably) giving me a compliment. Even on things I don't see myself so much. But the deeper stuff....the things that are nice, but not niceties...those can be very difficult for me to get my head around. And I know that it can be hurtful to the person trying to give that to me. And that seems so sad.
09-19-2010, 04:36 PM
I don't have an issue with accepting compliments. I do have an issue with accepting love from other people. Even from friends. Deep down I expect them to hurt me or that they couldn't possible feel as much for me as I do for them. It's something I'm working on, albeit slowly.
For me it's more about trust vs. thinking I don't deserve love.
09-19-2010, 05:22 PM
I've had a hard time trusting love, period.
I'm working on it though.
09-19-2010, 06:35 PM
I used to struggle with accepting compliments, but now it's not a big deal. Especially since a compliment (especially one about appearance) is not something that's too hard to give. I mean, it's very nice to hear and all, don't get me wrong - but it's just some person's statement about their positive inclination toward my appearance. It's just a few words. (Yes, kind words - but it's something very easy and fleeting.) A thoughtful verbal compliment about some deeper thing about me is something that really makes me food good and seen and cared about (given that it's also more specific than, "You're beautiful" or "I like your personality" or whatever).
Receiving deeper acts of love, on the other hand, is something I am continually getting better at. Especially if it involves a guy putting himself out for me or sacrificing for me in some way - I sometimes wonder if there are strings or if he's secretly resenting me for having to put himself out. (Yeah, f**ked up, I realize that.)
With people I have developed trust with it comes up a lot less, because I can learn to trust people's love for me. But in the beginning of a relationship, it can take a lot of effort.
09-19-2010, 06:36 PM
I don't think I have a problem accepting compliments that I believe are genuine, just like others have said.
I do have problems with other situations though. I have problems with people who give compliments that are tinged with surprise, as if they can't believe I might actually have positive attributes. I have problems - big problems - with compliments that feel more like a line given too freely, as in those guys who shower compliments on every woman hoping one will bite and their efforts will pay off. They may truly believe all those women are beautiful, but I don't want to just be beautiful. I want to be special. I have problems with the people who don't know me and do what someone else mentioned... the "no, really, you are". Um, okay, I said, "Thank you." I don't have a lack of confidence. Your compliment is appreciated, but I'm not looking to you as my emotional savior. Ugh. [Perhaps related to self-confidence annoying others thread?]
But I also get really frustrated with people who can't accept honest and genuine compliments, particularly if they're important to me. I've had one too many relationships where the man's self-esteem issues set us up for some problems, one big one being his constant drive to find new bolsters to his self-esteem and another one being his thinking less of me if I'm to see
positive things in him.
One side note, though, is that I believe in concept of a variety of love languages. Compliments are appreciated, but it's not my love language. Give me quality time any day. That speaks volumes more than words to me. Perhaps sometimes our partners feel like their efforts are "undermined" because they're not giving us that thing which makes us feel loved in the unique way we're wired.
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