Since I never address this, I will write a massive wall of text about body issues and sex and relationships problem:
[*]Currently have some physically-related self-esteem issues, and being naked around anyone for any reason is the most nightmarish thing I can imagine.
Even ~10 years ago, my eczema was so bad I covered up from head to toe so no one would see it and run away screaming or worry they were going to catch something. People who are very obviously having health problems (such as being covered in oozing sores) are not considered attractive, also. It took many years and many hospital stays to get the skin most under control, and now I have similar problems due to weight gain from the medications.
To give an idea, it’s not just sexual situations I avoid. I avoid mirrors and don’t even have a valid photo ID card right now because I hate the idea of having my picture taken. I don’t think I’ve posted a selfie online in the past 10 years.
This is a reaction to the current state of things and is not my permanent way of being. I used to take my clothes off all the time. A guy I knew in high school told me the other day he remembers the time I changed clothes right out in front of everybody while we were practicing for high school jazz band. I’ve let art students take nude photos of me. In my old apartment, I had topless photos of myself on the kitchen wall. So it’s reasonable to assume, I think, that this is a strong reaction to weight gain, Cushing’s syndrome, skin issues.
That’s not to say I had no self-esteem issues; I was made fun of a lot in school when I was very young, even my best friend would often get mad at me and decide to say things to try to hurt me, like saying I was too ugly to get a boyfriend. I probably believed it in middle school. I had a problem that if someone hit on me, I’d take it as making fun of me (that happened more than once, also) and react badly. By high school I considered myself average-looking and, as a result, had more or less normal relationships with people.
[*]Due to medications, I also had zero sex drive for about 8 years, and zero interest in relationships. I consider being single and celibate an ideal situation for this reason.
I think I also get a lot of my insecurity from my mom. When I was in high school, and I’ll tell you right now I had a fucking fantastic hourglass figure and great tits, but I’d put on a dress and get ready for school and she’d give me a disgusted look and tell me my legs were too fat to wear that and I should go change. And so on. Eventually I ended up having a very hard time taking compliments and would be very uncomfortable if complimented for anything physical. Eventually I tried to ugly myself up enough that no one would compliment me on my looks (not that I was a supermodel to begin with) and any compliments would have to be about things I could do, not how I looked.
What was it that RuPaul says on her show? “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell can you love anyone else?” I think that sums up my problem. I have gone from hating myself and wanting to die, to hating myself [physically!] and not wanting to die. I think it will take me some time to recover from all of this.
I realize that many/most people would recommend continuing to at least see the therapist, and maybe that sounds helpful in theory, but I tried and tried for years and I can’t discuss anything important to me with any therapists. I experience a sort of verbal block. It’s stupid, but I have not been able to overcome that, making therapy quite worthless for me. Toward the end I actually felt really bad about wasting my therapist’s time and/or boring him to death. I’m not anti-therapy, I am just unable to make any productive use of it.