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Unread 07-23-2013, 06:04 AM   #1
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Default Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

My boyfriend is perfect. Absolutely perfect... He is the sweetest guy, really funny, caring, he has a good start to his life and is looking forward to getting married and starting a family, and not to mention he is extremely attractive! I couldn't have asked for a better boyfriend. The best part is he loves me back, he treats me like a princess and I wouldn't trade him in for the world.

And then there's me..
A fat and hideous girl, suffering from Body Dysmorphic Disorder.

I've only recently (as in only a month or so) been officially diagnosed, but I've been a sufferer for a few years now. I also (probably-never officially diagnosed but my doctor and family both suspected) had OCD as a child, which I still have, it goes hand in hand with BDD in a lot of cases. I also have social anxiety as a result of my BDD.

I can't always hide my down moods, but to the untrained eye (that is, one that has no clue BDD even exists) I'm excellent at hiding the reason. No one knows I have this besides my mum and dad. Dad only knows that that is what I have, he doesn't seem to have the slightest clue what it is. Mum sort of knows, I haven't talked to her in depth. When I showed her a website she just said "that's you". Whenever I say something bad about myself she just tells me ro "stop thinking that" or something, which is NOT the response I want. If I could just stop thinking this way I would! If it were that easy I wouldn't be in pain. Not even my brothers know.

So I'm pretty lonely here, I have no one to talk to about this. My main concerns are that the person I tell won't take it seriously, as BDD is often just regarded as vanity to someone who doesn't know what they're talking about.

I can trust my boyfriend with anything, this isn't a trust issue. I'm worried that he won't take me seriously. Another big thing is I just don't want him to worry about me. I don't want him realizing how "damaged" (as my mum once referred to me as) I am. He knows that I think bad of myself, as much as I try to hide my condition it really is a part of me. He always tells me I'm pretty, amazing, beautiful, perfect etc. He tells me to stop saying I'm ugly because I'm not and I never will be. He tells me he loves me just the way I am and nothing will change that.
I don't deserve him. I want to believe him, I want to believe every compliment I get. But I can't. I feel horrible that he tries so hard, yet I can't change my thoughts. It does mean the world to me to hear him say things like that though, but at the same time it crushes me. I know that what he says isn't true, and that one day he'll realize that.

I've heard of so many cases of the boyfriend getting sick of dealing with a girlfriend with BDD. It just becomes too much for them, they can't take it. Maybe they even slowly start resenting them. I don't know, I just know I've seen many posts over my Internet research about a boyfriend that just doesn't know what to do anymore. Maybe if I keep my condition to myself, maybe it'll be like its not even there. Maybe if I don't tell him it won't be an issue.

I also don't want him to feel helpless. I don't want to tell anyone because if they can't do something to help, it'll get to them. I'd rather not put the people I care about through that.

This relationship is one of the only things that make me happy. He always knows the right thing to say and can always cheer me up, sometimes without even realizing. I'd hate for him to put any sort of blame on himself. Because naturally, I can't shake that horrible thought of me not deserving him, the thought of disappointing him, the thought of me keeping him from finding someone beautiful and really, I don't want him to know how torturing my mind is. If he finds out this I'm worried that he will put himself down for whatever reason.

I just don't want to lose him. I'm terrified that one day my BDD will tear us apart, as it seems to for others. Any advice, or experiences with this would be great! Should I tell him? I mean, I probably will one day. How do I even bring it up? I'm also scared that he will feel like I'm hiding it, which I guess I am but it's in his best interest. I don't want him to have to deal with this. Argh!
I won't see him in person for about a month (he's away with work) and its not really something I'd spring on him over the phone. Especially when it's adding on to the stress from work. I haven't seen him for maybe 2 months either so it's not something I'm going to drop on him when we finally get to be together again.

I don't know what to do. Some times I feel like I need to talk to someone (I'd love it to be him) I guess I'd like to know I have a shoulder to cry on (literally :/) but other times I just think no it's not fair to him. I have to deal with this but he doesn't. And of course the fear of just coming across as vain. I just want to do the right thing .

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance!
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Unread 07-23-2013, 06:11 AM   #2
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Sounds like he is already dealing with it best he can without the official diagnosis. If you trust him, tell him. And, do not believe that nothing can help, you can help you. In time. I am sure he is fine, but no one is perfect. I am sure he has his own concerns, perhaps even things he has not told you. Try to slow down a bit, enjoy, and focus some on him. (maybe you do but I'm just not hearing it)
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Unread 07-23-2013, 06:28 AM   #3
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

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Originally Posted by winter4me View Post
Sounds like he is already dealing with it best he can without the official diagnosis. If you trust him, tell him. And, do not believe that nothing can help, you can help you. In time. I am sure he is fine, but no one is perfect. I am sure he has his own concerns, perhaps even things he has not told you. Try to slow down a bit, enjoy, and focus some on him. (maybe you do but I'm just not hearing it)
He doesn't really have anything to deal with at the moment. Most of those compliments come out of nowhere, yes I do out myself down but I hold myself back and don't go on about it. He's just the sort of guy that always wants to let me know how much I mean to him.
I feel helpless. I really don't see myself ever being free of this.

To me, he is perfect. He is very open and talks to me about whatever he wants. He vents to me, he talks to me about his friends and family, he knows I'm here for him whenever he needs me. I do focus on him, he's my world how could I not? I know I have body image issues but I am pretty confident that I'm a great girlfriend (in the way I treat him). I never go a day without reminding him that I love him, without letting him know how special he is to me. I'd do anything for him, and he knows that. By what I said I can understand why you wouldn't get this from that, I make it seem like I'm constantly bugging him with this, but I honestly don't think he'd have a clue if I told him. Which adds to the "not being taken seriously" thought. He hasn't seen me at my worst, I won't let myself bring him into that. I just wanted to set that straight, I know you didn't mean it to sound insulting but I just don't want you to think that I'm that "selfish, self centered" girlfriend. He always comes first, no exception.
Thanks for replying!
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Unread 07-25-2013, 11:04 AM   #4
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Chances are you boyfriend will be thrilled and appreciative that you chose to open up to him about your disorder. It is a true honor for someone to let that secret out to their partner. I rarely show my panic attacks and anxiety to my BF, but he thanks me when I call or go to him for comfort. Before I was open about my struggles he at one point complained that I did not let him into how I felt, he didn't like that I was being secretive and possibly not trusting of him.

Every one has issues and the perfect relationship is when these can be worked on together. He's not going to hate you because he discovered this 'new side.' You're not 'damaged', he already find you perfect. You are the same person. If he loves talking and hanging out with you, he already fell in love with a BDD girl and it's not like he's gonna fall out of love. I had the same "damaged goods" fear, but revealing myself improved our relationship and I realized that even when I am depressed that never changed how he appreciated my company.

You are his girlfriend and he is going to take you seriously. He trusts you and what you have to share.
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Unread 07-25-2013, 03:12 PM   #5
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Your bf sounds much like mine, a rare find indeed! I don't know much about BDD to be honest, but I do have my own issues that range from depression GAD and OCD. I opened up with my issues rather early on and found out that he in fact had issues himself (rehab and self injury) which didn't bother me, in fact it made me feel more open to talk about my issues and him to as well, I guess the point I'm getting at is to have the courage to be upfront and honest, you never know when someone else has secrets they don't openly share until they feel the "right connection" and person to talk about it to. It could go either way, I understand that fear too, been there But if he really is the perfect guy, he will understand, not judge, respect your honesty and most of all, help you find solutions, offer to help somehow or just be that ear to listen when you're feeling down. I hope it works out in your favor, you deserve to be loved no matter how badly you may feel about yourself. He finds something in you already
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Unread 07-25-2013, 06:20 PM   #6
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LilMissMichael View Post
My boyfriend is perfect. Absolutely perfect...
THAT attitude seems to be your MAIN issue - even bigger than BDD.

Nobody is perfect - until you take the boyfriend off the pedestal and start treating him the way we treat normal, mortal humans, you won't solve anything, whether you disclose BDD or not.
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Unread 07-25-2013, 09:51 PM   #7
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Hamster, don't be such a downer. And maybe YOU took the context out of proportion. Referring to someone as perfect is a figure of speech. Especially to those who have been treated like $#!t from significant others because they have personal battles inside, it's easy to see some perfection in that person as a whole. You are right, no one is perfect, but that could have meant nothing more than just saying "he's the perfect match for me." Think outside the box for once, not everyone wants negative feedback on how they chose their words, if you can't be courteous about advice on the MAIN issue that was disclosed (not your opinion on what you think it is) then bypass the question. My bf is perfect........................................... .................. for me.
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Unread 07-25-2013, 10:01 PM   #8
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

No, I'm with hamster on this one. This whole relationship or something sounds shallow and not based in reality. Like these 2 people are very young and not really talking to each other. If they get married, they are both in for some big surprises. If you keep such a big secret from someone, you are probably "trading" for keeping their secret. It's a dangerous game, I think is hamster's point. Like they say, if it serms too good to be true, that's because it probably is.
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Unread 07-25-2013, 10:17 PM   #9
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

That I do understand Hankster, and yes, thinks that seem to good to be true usually aren't, I'm no stranger to that. I'd guess that this is a young couple just starting to feel each other out. I think her main concern is how to tell him and when more so than if she should or shouldn't. That;s just me reading the context tho. Everyone does need to figure out some things the hard way, it sucks but it's the best way to learn. If her bf can't accept her flaws then he isn't right for her, and it's better to come right out with it early on and not wait too long to say something. Sometimes wording can be taken wrong and slightly abrupt. Basically what I mean is there could have been a nicer way to share insight or advice.
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Unread 07-25-2013, 11:35 PM   #10
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Default Re: Should I tell my boyfriend I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jumpinggrasshopper View Post
Sometimes wording can be taken wrong and slightly abrupt. Basically what I mean is there could have been a nicer way to share insight or advice.
Oh yeah I am often guilty of that too. A lot of people on PC, english is not their first language. Or even if it is, they are first generation americans so grew up with another language. Unfortunately that's more of an advantage for math or for learning another language, but not so much for english!
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