Everything you learn about life when you grow up ugly
At least it taught you how to be a nice person
We all look at photos from our school days and cringe at the embarrassing hairstyles we used to sport back in the day, but for some of us, our pre-puberty years can be a sore topic.
When I was younger, I carried a lot of extra weight, the hormonal imbalance gave me acne and I walked around with a monobrow and upper lip hair. It may have given me issues at the time but it’s also quite amusing to look back on now. And it taught me some pretty important things about life.
You were a permanent resident of the friend zone
You became one of the guys because boys never saw you that way. Even if you fancied someone, eventually they would reveal to you that they’re secretly crushing on your best friend. Embarrassed, you offered to wing woman the guy and ended up being a tragic third wheel.
You accepted the fact that you were never going to be as good looking as your friends
You were the funny friend or the slightly weird one but never the pretty or cool one and that was fine. Many self-deprecating jokes about it later, you accepted it and moved on. It was good in a way because instead of spending a lot of time talking to love interests or being vain (not that there’s anything wrong in feeling yourself), you read loads of books, got your homework done and devoted time to your hobbies.
Your camera roll was full of the same selfie from different angles
It was a rare occasion, but sometimes after applying layers of make-up and covering half of your face with a terrible fringe, you would feel cute enough to take a picture, or a hundred. Your camera roll would be full of the same selfie from different angles, because you didn’t want to miss an opportunity in letting the world know that sometimes, with a lot of effort and editing, you could look okay.
You became amazing at retouching images
After having your own photoshoot sessions, you would pick an image that looked nothing like you and retouch it with Picnik or Photoshop, if you were a pro like me. Spots? There’s a tool for that. Don’t like that extra weight on the arm? No problem.
You were so good at it that your friends would always beg you to edit their photos before they uploaded them anywhere. The chosen photo would be plastered all over your Facebook, MySpace, MSN and obviously it would be your BBM display picture.
You could never accept a compliment
It sounded like you were attention seeking but because compliments were so uncommon, you felt as though people were either fake or just being nice. The same with flirting, you had no idea when someone was actually flirting with you.
You probably got bullied a little bit, and yeah, it sucked
You may laugh about your childhood now but it wasn’t amusing at the time. People laughed or made nasty comments about your looks and it completely damaged your confidence.
One memory that particularly stuck with me was when a girl in my class went round and told every girl that she thought they were pretty, and when she got to me she said: “Oh… Sorry, but you know you’re not.” Despite the number of soul-crushing complexes you developed, at least you learned not be so shallow.
Your parents were your biggest fans
It seemed like your parents were your only mates for a while. You’d come home crying feeling shit because you didn’t get invited to a party and it must have been because you weren’t cool or pretty enough. Your family would keep reassuring you that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” and that “it’s what’s on the inside that counts”, only to make you feel worse every single time. They had to say that, they’re your parents.
It taught you to be a nice person
Puberty came around in the end and it was a blessing, but at this point, you stopped caring about what you looked like. You learned not to judge a book by its cover and would never treat anyone the way you were treated.
So perhaps, a lifetime of feeling inadequate made you into a really nice person. Despite everything, it taught you to see beyond people’s looks and place value on much more important things, like personality.