I used to be so sure that I was beautiful. Inside and out.
For the past two years I've been surrounded by men who mostly take beauty at face value. No one is concerned with intelligence or ambition or loveliness or anything. It's almost always about what that body or body part can do for me. I work along side men every day who make comments about women as they walk past. They've made comments directly to me about my breasts or my legs or whatever else.
When I was in high school, I wanted that kind of attention. I wanted to be noticed, so I would wear low cut shirts or shorter skirts. (My high school boyfriend also battled a pornography addiction. I thought that if I were pretty enough or went far enough with him he wouldn't need porn.)
Now that the attention is unwanted, I see how damaging it is. The girls who regularly get that attention, even if they ask for it, don't go unharmed. It is a constant reminder that you are the sum of what your body can do. The only value you have is in giving pleasure to someone else.
And none of that is true.
In the past two years I've been told I was beautiful by a man one time. We were at a bar.. he wasn't hitting on me, he had been drinking so he was saying things he wouldn't otherwise say but are generally true. I immediately thought of how inappropriate it was for him to say, but then I realized that it was a genuine compliment, which I am thankful for, regardless of the social lubricant involved.
If these words and little comments can make someone like me, someone who is usually so sure of herself and confident, think twice, think about the harm of pornography.
The bright side is that God is good and I know His plan for my life will be good for me. Lately I've been thinking that His hand in each new creation benefits not only that new life, but also every other life in the whole history of humanity- otherwise He would have put that soul in a different time, a different family, a different body. So His plan for my life is not only the best plan for me, but also the best plan for everyone around me. And for that I am grateful. I cannot wait to see how it unfolds, and for the man who will fall in love with my heart, just for the sake of loving me; not for any benefit that I can provide. That's the kind of love that moves mountains.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, pray for us.