Q: When I was in my 20s and 30s, I had more confidence than I deserved. As I push well into my 40s, I feel old, fat and ugly.
Everywhere in the community are signs of ageism, and the little Body Nazis judging everybody are killing my self-worth.
Getting older is certainly better than the alternative, and a slew of our queer brethren died before finding that out. They might tell us that aging is a privilege.
Acknowledge LGBTQ ageism, but don’t absorb it — that just feeds the problem. Reject groupthink about youth-only beauty, especially when coming from younger people themselves. Flip the script, and re-evaluate it for yourself.
How much better off are you now than when you were their age? How much are your knowledge and life skills worth? Would you really take your old body back in exchange for all you’ve gained?
Your experiences define you, and your life is rich with them. Also, you’re younger today than you will ever be again, so stop worrying.
My boyfriend is so hot, and people everywhere we go agree. I’m ridiculously jealous in our relationship, and I’m actually envious, too — of my own bae!
I don’t think I’m ugly, but sometimes I wish Mother Nature made me as hot as him. I love having him at my side, but I wonder if other people think I’m not worthy. Help!
Gay people are in a position to both want, and want to be, people of their same sex. The inner push-and-pull is unique, but your struggle with it is not.
Tap into knowing that this beautiful person chose to be with you. If he thinks you’re sexy (and worthy in hopefully many other ways), so should you.
His attraction toward you will erode if you behave jealously – not because you’re ugly, but because you’re insecure. He’ll also notice if you choose instead to trust him in the presence of others who may find him attractive.
You can’t change nature, but worrying without changing your perspective is just emotional self-flagellation. Stop it.
Q Advice is entertainment and not professional counseling. Send your Qs to [email protected].
Illustration by Brad Gibson
This column ran in Q ATLus. Read the full print issue online here:
Pick up each weekly edition of QATLus at LGBTQ and allied venues around Atlanta.