Ugly Duckling Syndrome


Today, I came upon an article that described what it’s like to grow up feeling a tad less … physically awesome…. than other girls, and how that manifests in adult women.

14 Lasting Side Effects Of Growing Up As The Ugly Duckling

They call it Ugly Duckling Syndrome, and I can really sympathize with many of their examples. I selected a few from the article to share with you. 

1. You have difficulty accepting a compliment.
At the hands of any kind words paid in your direction, you become uncomfortable and rebuke with a self-deprecating statement or silent rationalization of why the compliment can’t be true.

–> if people tell me I look nice, or I like that shirt, or whatever, I immediately feel like a) I do not, b) I am wrinkled and frumpy, and c) are you saying I usually look like a scrub? And then my friends say, can’t you just take a compliment? And I’m like… no… cuz I’m gross and you lie….


2. The idea of jealousy pointed in your direction is baffling.
Because you can’t rationalize that you are someone worthy of targeted jealousy, you have difficulty understanding the hostility you receive from other women.

You don’t understand why women have the tendency to compete with you, and you can’t fathom why the existence of “frenemies” is present in your life. You also put the blame on yourself for lost or undeveloped friendships.

–> this is extra funny cuz it’s never happened. Not one of my three boyfriends (yes, I have only ever had here, but they’ve been good ones) was ever jealous, cuz I don’t flirt, I don’t know how to flirt, and evn if I did, I knew there was always someone else more flirty (read: hot, drunk, slutty) around that they should be talking to.


3. You see yourself as a conversationalist, not an object of desire.
When you’re out socializing in a bar or a nightclub, you’re nice to people, but being approached by a member of the opposite sex is rationalized in your mind as an innocent conversation, not a pick-up tactic. When a stranger asks for your number or pays the bill from across the bar, you’re shocked.

–> yup, always surprised, usually in denial, make excuses… again, hasn’t happened often, or if it has, I honestly haven’t noticed.


4. Stares from men (and women) come as an insult, not a compliment.
When out and about minding your own business, you’re put off by eye contact with strangers. You become defensive and take the stare as an assumed insult, rather than what it truly is: a compliment.

-> do I have something on my face? Did I spell coffee on myself again? It happens a lot. I assume my hair is sticking up.


6. The powers of your beauty are lost on you completely.
You don’t realize you can get nearly anything you want or have almost anyone you desire based solely on your looks. Therefore, you rely on your smarts, your integrity and your inner strength to get ahead in life.

–> sometimes I can see it… but usually.. ogre, scrub, frumpy….


7. When beauty is expected, you become a neurotic mess.
You’re much more comfortable being the simple, makeup-free you, and when beauty is expected for special occasions, you feel anxious and nervous. Suddenly you have nothing to wear and your makeup and hair are a mess. The object of beautifying yourself is, needless to say, a nerve-racking feat.

–> I am happiest in stretchy pants, tshirts, no bra, no makeup, hair in knot on top of my head. Oh you want to go out…. I’ve already taken off my pants… I’m in for the night. Maybe tomorrow.

When I have to get dressed up and go out for a wedding, or fancy occasions…  i feel like no matter what i wear i still look like a sporty frump girl.  sure i could have a great dress (usually only if someone has picked it for me, read: bridesmaid dress), great jewelry (might match the dress, might not), but the makeup, hair, and shoes are always a mess.  oh wait, if the shoes are good, i won’t be able to walk in about 15 minutes and will either sit all night or take them off immediately.  

accept me for who i am. 


12. You appreciate your privacy.
Though you’ve likely developed your social skills much more than those who were beautiful from birth, you still appreciate your privacy and alone time. You might light up a room when you enter it, but since you likely don’t realize it, you prefer to light up your own quiet room, instead.

–> we have already discussed me bing an introvert and needing alone, recharge time.


One thought on “Ugly Duckling Syndrome

  1. Mary

    Oh Lauren, I have seen these traits as you describe???however! you are a naturalBEAUTY and nothing in your head will change what I see. Love you

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