How many of you guys are familiar with a website called Tumblr? Back in the day, that was my holy place. From the ages of maybe 15-19 years old, I lived on Tumblr. It was a place where I could post whatever I wanted, whether it was fashion related, a poem I just wrote, or long letters to myself. It was the best place to vent because not very many of my “real life friends” used the site or followed me on it. It was pretty much all strangers interacting with me. Other depressed kids, or kids with cool style who lived in New York. I loved having these people follow me, reply to me, and give me advice. It was like an escape from reality. It opened up a door to different cultures, art, music, ways of thinking…stuff I couldn’t get from my mostly white suburb in Texas. Most of the time, it didn’t feel like the people around me locally could relate to anything I was struggling with. I was embarrassed to talk them anyway. It was much easier to type out my feelings and get feedback from thousands of miles away. Spoiler alert: Tumblr isn’t the same anymore and I haven’t used the site in years. But because of that, I also feel like I haven’t gotten the opportunity to “type out my feelings” much lately.
Twitter is the closest I’ve gotten, but that 140 character limit is a bitch. I’m a wordy person, and I need space to really vent properly. Of course I have a youtube channel, and I’ve done some really personal vlogs on there, but it always feels like I’m stumbling over my words and thoughts. It’s hard to sit in front of a camera and speak your mind freely while also trying to be concise. I’m way more comfortable with writing. I like being able to go back and edit, add more, etc. The problem with writing is that it’s 2017 and people don’t like to read anymore. They want everything thrown at them in a 10 minute video, or they’re not here for it. So I know a lot of people are not going to take the time to read this, which is actually ideal for me, because the idea of everyone reading this does give me some anxiety. But my desire to be heard and understood, and also hopefully inspire someone or help them to know they’re not alone, pushes me to post it anyway. I will warn you right now though, that this post in particular isn’t going to be very inspiring. It’s going to be negative and quite whiney. There. You’ve been warned.
So here’s my first crack at getting personal with my writing online again. I have this blog, I own it, I might as well use it for more than just the occasional outfit post. These personal posts aren’t going to attract more followers, they’re definitely not going to bring in any extra dollars, but I miss the days when none of that mattered anyway. Being a full time social media influencer is so weird sometimes. It’s like there’s a business plan behind every little thing that I do in my life and it’s hard to just live and be human. Right now, I’m struggling. I am human, obviously. And I have flaws…a lot of them. It’s difficult to cope with personal flaws when it feels like everyone is staring at you, and some are actually waiting for you to fail or fall apart. Having said that, I still cant hide the fact that I am very insecure right now. I’m dealing with a list of issues all at once that have taken a huge hit on my confidence. I’m second-guessing the way I look, the way I talk, walk, dress, parent my daughter, you name it. Nothing feels secure, nothing feels comfortable.
Allow me to beat this dead horse one more time: I’ve had acne for the past 10 years. When I was 19-20 it went from pretty bad to really bad. It erupted into very severe cystic acne which left my whole face red, bumpy, swollen, and scarred. During those college years it definitely bothered me. I was trying to make new friends, date, get into modeling, and just have confidence at school in general. But all of that was made very difficult with my acne. At times it really did feel like it was ruining my whole life. But the good news was, at the time, I had other things going for me that allowed me to still feel somewhat confident with myself. I remember loving my figure. I never had any issues with my weight or my shape, and I had even come to really like my above average height. I had a lot of fun with different hairstyles, when at the time, not many girls around me were switching up their hair like I was…so that was something I was known for and often complimented on. I also loved fashion, I would get all dressed up for class everyday. Wore heels, flashy outfits, and even made clothing for myself. Then I ended up getting my teeth done. I now have 10 veneers which transformed my smile into the big, bright white look I always dreamed of. So all of these things helped me to still feel like myself even with a face full of severe acne. And I told myself my acne would heal soon, and then I’d have nothing to worry about.
Alas, I’m now 24 years old, and my skin is still severely broken out. The difference is, I’ve now given birth to my daughter. After her birth, I suddenly dropped 20 pounds, my hair thinned out, and my dark circles got worse. I’m a stay at home mom with no reason or motivation to be fashionable anymore…and I hate the way I look in most clothing now anyway. Everything is too loose and literally hanging off of me. I have no curves to fill out the clothing, and I feel like a child playing dress up. On a bad day, I literally see a teenage boy in the mirror. Boney, spotty, flat chested, shoulders wider than my hips. After breastfeeding, my already small boobs deflated into really sad misshapen things on my chest. So still having such bad acne on top of all of this is a much more depressing feeling than when I dealt with it in college. My overall appearance makes me angry. I avoid looking in the mirror in the morning because sometimes it causes me to breakdown. Other times, I cant stop looking in the mirror, just trying to fix things. Picking at my face, looking at my chest, applying creams and lotions, and just trying to imagine myself as a different person. I’ve never been this obsessive over my appearance before. I’ve never completely hated my body or my face. I’ve always had some level of self-confidence, some small voice in my head saying “It’s okay girl, you’re beautiful!” but that voice is dead. So much has changed.
Nobody really knows the truth. I haven’t shown many people how my bare skin really looks in normal light, on a normal day. Even in my videos where it seems like I’m being transparent, I’m using lighting and effects to still hide a little bit. I haven’t shown anyone how my breasts look now. I wear certain bras and tops to camouflage it. In photos and videos, I’m very careful about what I’m wearing, how the camera is angled and how I’m posing. It’s all an illusion compared to how I look when I’m just walking around my house. Something more obvious is that I photoshop my pictures. I edit my skin and my figure sometimes too. That’s why I don’t post very often anymore, it takes a lot of work to get something I’m comfortable posting. But when I do post, it comes across as “perfect” because it’s not real. So to people online, it seems like I’m crazy. They don’t understand what I could possibly be complaining about. Lately, I’ve been trying to post some unedited raw images and video because I feel guilty. I’m worried that people will be disappointed or shocked when they meet me in person. Especially when it comes to my acne.
From my understanding, my acne is genetic (my father really struggled with his skin too), but it’s also hormonal, and it’s also allergy related. It’s like everything is working against me. Nothing works. It always comes back. Stress causes acne, and I don’t even know how to become un-stressed. And I’m tired. I don’t have the energy to fight this anymore. I have a daughter to raise, a brand to run, friends and family to worry about. I cant spend every moment of my life worrying about what’s touching my skin, what ingredients I cant eat, taking 10 pills every morning, a 12 step skincare routine, multiple doctors appointments, etc. I’m sick of it. It should not be this hard to just feel healthy, or feel like myself again. And the funny thing is, after doing all of this, where are the results?? I’ve wasted my time obsessing over it, for years, for nothing. And even when I have decided to say “F it!” in the past, and just let life take it’s course…that makes things even worse. My skin gets worse, I lose more weight. I have to obsess over it just to maintain. And that’s still not enough. I feel absolutely disgusting. I have low energy, I’m weak, I’m nauseous, constant headaches, my face hurts, burns, itches, my body breaks out in hives, I’m pale, and thin and lifeless. And I’m tired of having to pile on pounds of makeup and “power through”. It’s not just how I look. It really is my health too.
It’s already been a year and a half since giving birth. If that was the only problem, I think it would’ve worked itself out by now. I know it’s multiple things. Depression alone is a huge factor. It causes a loss of appetite, and lack of motivation to stick to routines. It’s a vicious cycle. I’m depressed about my appearance/health, but my depression worsens my appearance/health. And it feels so wrong to be so upset about this. So wrong. It’s so vain and so shallow. It should be insignificant. I should love myself anyway. And maybe I would if I had a different career, a different history with relationships, a different passion. But I’m a single mom, trying to start dating again. I work in social media. It’s my job to be on camera, in the public eye, looking presentable. It’s my job and my passion to dress up, do my hair and makeup, and “serve looks”. But right now I hate makeup. I hate fashion. It isn’t fun anymore. I used to dream of being a fashion designer who modeled my own designs. And it hurts that people still ask me about that all the time. “Why don’t you model?!” I don’t want to be a model anymore, I gave up on that years ago when my skin first got really bad. Are you kidding me? I can’t book anything with skin like this. That’s more makeup and photoshop than any agency would be willing to deal with. The modeling industry is heartless. I got a taste of it in college. I don’t even want to be a fashion designer anymore because the whole subject irritates me now. Everything I once loved, everything I was looking forward to, things that used to make me so happy, are all sore subjects for me now. Especially that part about dating. But that’s another blog post.
It’s just crazy how your physical appearance can have such a huge effect on all aspects of your life. Like if an overweight person rejects an invitation to the beach because they don’t want to be seen in a bathing suit. It’s not just about the bathing suit, they’re also missing out on the beauty of the beach, fun with friends, a new experience. I feel that way now. The event I attended and hosted this past weekend is an example. Of course I forced myself to go because it’s work, but I was so anxious and uncomfortable in my own body the whole time, I barely remember it and definitely didn’t enjoy myself. My ears were ringing and I just wanted to leave. What was worse, was seeing all the photos that were taken of me afterwards. My heart sank. I was rushing to get ready, didn’t pack the right makeup or have time to do my hair so I felt even uglier than usual. But so many people wanted to take photos, and I wasn’t going to say no! And I also needed photos so I could have content to post. I’m so embarrassed of how I look in those photos and now they’re posted online because that’s my job as an influencer. I managed to get a couple decent photos where the lighting and posing was better, and I photoshopped them to a point where I could deal with posting them on my page, but I have no control over what everyone else posted.
The thing is, I cant wake up in a brand new shell. This shell I have is the only one I’m ever gonna get. The only thing I can do is work on it, make adjustments, and wait. I still have a few last resort tricks up my sleeve that I’m hoping will bring some relief and some results. There are no quick fixes though, it’s all going to take time. Some of it truthfully may never be fixed. I cant change my DNA. Right now, it hurts. I’m broken, I’m weak, I don’t want to face the world. Doing videos and events has become so difficult, but I cant just stop. I have to keep going and just figure it out as I go. I just don’t want my 20’s to be completely ruined by this. This is my time to feel young and beautiful. I need something to change soon.
Again, I feel ridiculous. I feel guilty and stupid for being so engulfed in this. I understand that it’s vain and shallow. But none of that makes the feeling go away. I thought maybe venting would help put things into perspective. Truthfully, after writing all of this, I’m concerned about the possibility of something like body dysmorphia. Because what I see in the mirror is so extreme, disgusting and noticeable. Yet thinking back, I still receive some compliments in person. Do people seriously not see what I see? Are they just being nice? Or am I crazy? I don’t know…
To be continued…
We love you Raven!!! Thank you for having the courage to be so raw and open. It truly is inspiring!! Im very hopeful that things will get better for you very soon.
Raven, I just wanted to let you know that you are a beautiful and amazing person. I struggle with self confidence myself sometimes and this post really spoke to me. It lets me know that I’m not alone in feeling insecure about myself, even when people are constantly complimenting me. Just keep in mind that god makes no mistake, and you’re beautiful the way that you are. You have really inspired me to follow me dreams and passions in life, and I hope that you can start inspiring yourself to be successful and find something that you love to do. Don’t let society tell you who you have to be. Love you for you.
I really enjoyed your post. Very real and honest. No one can tell you how to feel because this is just how you feel right now. Keywords “right now”. I’ve been watching you for a long time and even though it doesn’t feel like it, you’ve come a really long way. Try not to be too hard on yourself and just take it one day at a time (easier said than done, I know). We’re all struggling with something, we just haven’t reached our full bloom yet. I pray that one day you will see yourself the way that you actually are. Beautiful. Inside and out.
You are exceptional and no I’m not just saying that but you are also not alone many of us get compliments and say that slow dragging thank you In disbelief …you are so inspiring living your truth and you are very transparent vlogs don’t have the best lighting and you’re still gorgeous in that light we support you Raven and we also recognize you are not perfect which makes you even more of an inspiration to us!!! Thank you for being brave enough to display yourself to us daily #squad #beautifulshambles
You aren’t crazy. People aren’t crazy. You are a beautiful person inside and out, Raven. The way that you are feeling now will be a thing of the past very soon. When it does pass, you’ll be able to look back and say “Hey, I got over this hump and I am ok!”.
I’ve watched your journey for the last three years and I consider you my favorite internet BFF, if not my only internet BFF. It’s hard for me to explain but we have so many things in common that you wouldn’t believe. I suffer from anxiety and I shy away from getting the most important things done in my life because of fear. At this time in my life I know that I have to get out of my head. Not only for myself but because I am now a mother of a 6 month old. I have been stuck in a rut since high school because I won’t just accomplish my goals, when I know I need to. If I don’t change now, I’m going to look back and not have anything to be proud of.
I truly hope my comment helps you in someway, even if it just gives you a little smile. You are not alone, girl. We all have our struggles and we would never even know. You taking the step to vent like you did in this blog post is a step toward finding happiness and confidence in yourself. Once you clear your mind, good things come into play. The mind is a very powerful thing.
I honestly can relate with what you’re going through. I am also struggling with my appearance, mostly my skin. My skin has randomly broken out in the past two months, and it has taken a toll on me. And the thing is I was on accutane and it cleared me up, and kept me clear for a year and half. I’ve become so depressed, I don’t go out or hangout with people because I’m so ashamed of the way I look. What makes it worse is that I have a boyfriend and I’ve been avoiding seeing him, because I feel so ugly. It’s so hard for me to look at myself in the mirror, because sometimes I just start to cry. Acne sucks so much, and I honestly feel like it’s ruining my life. Anyway I love you Raven, you’re my favorite YouTuber, because I can identify with you. Hopefully things gets better for the both of us, such a good feeling to know that I’m not alone in this.
Hi beautiful I know when u read this ur probably going to look at the word again and think I’m not addressing u but I am because u know what u are beautiful. I really pray that u see this message because I understand exactly how u feel cause I go through the same thing especially the bit about not wanting to look in the mirror, take pics or go out. What makes u beautiful is that ur human, ur a great mom, u are successful and guess what as crazy as it sounds some ppl have worst skins than we do yet they still carry on and that’s all we can do. Think of it right ur acne is what made ur channel start off, ur acne is what got u ur sponsorship with RPG wigs, ur acne is what gets u invited to style con. U were not born with this skin nor will u live with it for the rest of ur life. I know it so easy to be angry at urself and feel ugly, only if u could see yourself through others eyes. I mean through Ziya’s, ur mum, ur sister, ur fan ur an inspiration and a great role model. Ur appearance does not define you. You will get clear skin, you will gain the amount of weight u want, u will have a great relationship, do your modelling, have ur clothing line it’s only a matter of time. Just think about it… how good does it feel to envision all those things?u feel happy? Take this feeling and save it in ur mind, everyday u wake up open up that secret box in your mind and remember that it will happen. Believe in yourself because we certainly do. Lots of love xx Sheri
Raven keep your head up.
if you need someone to talk to try really talking to me or any of your other subscribers. trust, you’re not alone
Wow… I can relate to this on so many levels as I also struggle with loving my image or what I see in the mirror due to acne and all the scarring that gets left behind. It’s nice to know that someone else is going through the same things as you because I often felt I was the only one or that no one could possibly feel the same way you feel. But after reading this whole blog post it made me feel relived in a way that someone is feeling the same way. How I’m learning to cope with it all is going to therapy and really telling my therapist how I feel and she comes up with different self confidence techniques for me to do to help. And honestly it’s been helping for the most part. Also in the morning once u wake up and go to the bathroom give yourself a pep talk and tell yourself that “I am beautiful” it sounds silly but eventually you will start to believe it. Trust me, I too have been struggle with Acne and my image for 15+ years I’m only 26, have 2 beautiful baby girls. Last year the end of 2016 I told myself I wasn’t going to be a prisoner in my own body. So I decided I was going to wear much more revealing clothing that showed my scars and the thought of me doing that just made me more anxious and afraid of all the judgment and cristicim that I thought I would get. Funny thing is once i did that, I started to recieve so many compliments and it’s like they didn’t even notice my body Acne and scars. I felt like myself and it felt good to not have to hide myself after so long. Raven you have a daughter that needs you, a daughter who will become a teenager and eventually you will have to talk to her about being confident and loving herself…you can’t do that if you are struggling yourself. Moral of the story. We only have one life, do what makes you feel good and wear all the things you want to wear. Let go of FEAR and BE FREE! Xoxo I hope I inspired you to do so for your daughter. ?
I was actually at the event this past weekend and you did great, and I honestly mean that. To get on a bright stage with cameras pointed at you while you’re voicing your opinions takes so much courage, especially if you’re struggling with body image and confidence. I don’t think any of us cared about your hair, or makeup, or outfit. We were just excited to meet you! In an industry filled with fake people, you always manage to come across as a girl we’d really be friends with in real life. You got onstage despite feeling bad about yourself and continued to inspire women, it’s soo cliche but you are beautiful on the inside so don’t let the physical stuff get you down.
raven, reading this literally felt like reading something i had written myself. i relate soo much, that’s part of the reason i am so drawn into your videos. your videos make me feel like someone finally understands and not feel like im exaggerating or being overly self-concious. im dealing with the same insecurities as you. i’m tall, thin, and have bad skin. my skin makes me the most insecure. i look at other people with clear skin and get so down on myself wondering why i had to be the person that got stuck with the acne scars and pimples. i’ve been trying everything i can get my hands on, wishfully waiting for results. i often run from the camera or social media because i feel like the only thing people will see is my acne scars. i sit and wish that one day i’ll just wake up and they’ll be gone, but it doesn’t work like that sadly. for now all i can do is wait for my miracle product. just writing this so you know you’re not alone sis. you’re not alone.
I love you post like this raven. I definitely don’t think you should feel bad at all about feeling like this. Our physical identity is a major part of us whether people want to admit it or not. It’s who we see everyday and we you don’t look like yourself you don’t feel like yourself or comfortable. Also I know this might not mean much now but I’ve always thought you were stunning acne or not. You have gorgeous features and and this you look very modelesque with the shape you are. Some people are just thinner and I think it fits you well. I know all that Doesn’t matter because what’s important it how you feel about yourself , but I hope you find that happy place again and see what others see. Also your doing a great job a mom:)
I am so glad that you sharing this blog. It’s crazy because, you never know what someone is truly going through… especially when it pertains to the same things you’re going through as well. I myself have been struggling with skin problems, weight, and just overall sadness. My skin has always been horrible! There was a time when my skin flared up so badly, that my entire completion changed. This has been on going for 20 years, and I am currently 28. I hate my weight to the max as well. I try to stay positive and motivated, especially since I have two children as well. I never want them to feel such sadness about themselves the way I do. I always pray to get through it day by day, but sometimes the tears just fall. You’re not alone! Let’s conquer this together ? love you Raven!!!
I wish we could be friends lol.
Allow me to let you in on a secret. Your 20s ain’t all that. It’s your 30s that all that! Your hormones regulate, you’re smarter, acne lessens, fuckboys are not less of an issue, and you’re way more confident! In the meantime, please know that there are thousands who love and admire for the way you are and will revel in your glow up.
I loved being friends with strangers in my 20s, too. I wouldn’t add none of my real life friends or family to Instagram. It was my little hideaway from the world. I loved that people actually loved my content and it was almost kinda weird, so I took many breaks lol. Now I don’t care about anything and I focus on my family first.
Hopefully this doesn’t seem odd but we should be friends. I’m older I am not judgmental and I’ve been through a lot, been all over the world. If you need a stranger to vent to I’m cool with it! I know it’s an odd suggestion and I’m sure you have people in your life you can turn too. But I feel we are very similar and talking to i friends can cause a lot of feelings of regret because you have to hang out with them after you’ve spilled your guts lol. Ok sorry this is too long. I wish you all the best.
You’re in my thoughts sweet.
You weren’t whiny at all. I’m really glad I read this, cause I also feel like this a lot of the time. So thank you for posting this and speaking up for not only yourself but me too ❤️
Thank you Ray thank you thank you THANK YOU for letting me know I’m not the only one ESP being sombody I watch daily look up to and aspire to be like from mothering creativity fashion and just in general you are a great person. Your like my media BFF ! I love you and your not alone. I’m so happy your keeping it real I hope this becomes the next trend for girls to be real with their platforms and letting people that look up to them that it’s okay to be yourself just the way you are. MY ACNE SCARS DO NOT DEFINE ME! <3
There seems to be something going on in the YouTube influencer community in the last few months with many others feeling like you’ve been feeling and my heart goes out to you ladies. I can’t imagine the pressure of “showing up” as a beauty icon of sorts everyday when beautiful is the last thing you feel. I can see how it would make you question your career choice because if it’s not being an entrepreneur in this space, what is it? That’s a lot to digest. Oh and let’s add the responsibility of being a single mother and trying to hold it all together because someone else is depending on you day and night. I’m a full time single mother so I can completely relate. Some days you just want to sleep through because what’s going on in your life is something you don’t want to face but you can’t. You’ve gotta get up and “fight through” if not for yourself, but for the little one. Imagine though if that little one gets to that stage where they’re giving you a hard time, wanting anyone but you because they don’t understand how much you’re sacrificing to give them a good life. My son is 3 and has everything in the world but he takes me for granted and wants anyone else but me. Imagine that sort of behavior after a long day of work or just feeling down and terrible! Smh. So yeah, not feeling yourself, having to do a job that you’re not in love with because it’s your livelihood, not knowing what else you want to do, oh and who even has the time or stomach for “dating”, and oh yes, be a great mommy too please – even when the kid isn’t being a great kid. I’m not going to feed you what everyone else has because you hear that you’re beautiful from others all the time but we all know that perception is reality so if you don’t perceive yourself that way, it doesn’t matter what anyone else says. But I will say this – your vulnerability reaches lots of women and your relatability helps others. I think that our purpose in life (everyone’s) is to help others. Sometimes it’s not pretty but we still have to do it. So keep doing what you’re doing. There are a few of us that still love to read (I’m one of them), and you writing this was helpful for me because it gave me a platform to get these thoughts out. Keep going. And maybe you’ll come to accept the way in which your purpose is being fulfilled – by you sharing your less than perfect story with such a large platform and giving others like you comfort in understanding that we’re not alone. Even when we feel like we are.
You’re exactly right, depression is a vicious cycle that distorts everything but remember you are strong through weakness you feel, you are a light amongst the darkness and it’s ok to not believe any of this but I hope deep down inside you know, and you write down the things you love about yourself in your “highs” so you can read them in your “lows” and hopfully that puts a small break in the cycle. ? It helps me. I hope it helps you as you’ve done for me with every video you post. You’re amazing and we are all crazy in some form shap or way, It’s what makes us human.
Raven, as someone who never says any ol’ thing to someone just for the sake of saying it, I want you to know that I truly think you are a beautiful person, inside and out.
I know you are so tired of hearing this, but PLEASE do not be so hard on yourself. I know it’s difficult, feeling as though things will never get better, but I have faith that they will. Reading this post (and yes, I read the whole thing) made me a bit emotional because I know how frustrating this must be for you. I don’t want to offer any advice; I just want you to know that your followers and supporters love and adore you, and want you to win. You WILL get through this. TRUST ME. You will. Stay tough, and keep your head up. It will get better.
I’m heartbroken that you have been feeling this way 🙁 when I watch your videos I always think to myself how beautiful you are and I’m in love with your personality and the mother you’ve become. I wish you could see yourself through my eyes. Its disheartening to feel so down about yourself. I feel like that a lot of days and i just tell myself that I’m me and the acne on my face, the weight on my body can be changed or made a little bit better and the rest is in my head. You are such an inspiration to me and my day is better from watching your snaps and videos. I hope you get some relief soon from these negative thoughts and feelings. You’re better than that and you’re gorgeous and fierce as hell and I want you to own that again
You are a beautiful person inside and out and an amazing mother! Ziya is proof of that.
Still, I completely understand what you are going through and there’s no need to feel bad about it. I recently gained a bunch of weight and hate looking in the mirror. It’s discouraging to think back to how I used to look, how much confidence I had, to now where I’m afraid to see people I haven’t seen in a while because I know they’re thinking “wow she blew up! She gained so much weight”. I used to post pictures on Instagram everyday and now I maybe post once every few months. I also went to school for fashion design but lost my passion for that too because of my appearance. How we look is a big part of our identity so it’s not unrealistic for it to have a major effect on our lives and how we feel. My advice to you and myself would be to take it one day at a time. We’ll get through this. As many people as there are praying on your downfall, there’s five times as many praying for your success. The squad loves you girl and I’m sending all of the prayers, positive vibes, love and light I have to give ❤❤❤
I can relate to this blog on so many levels. I’m 31 and I’m still struggling with my acne, even after going to dermatologist and being on antibiotics. I had a baby a year a month ago, my second and I’m also having body issues. Got a few pounds I can’t shed, I feel uncomfortable in my own skin. My breast are also deflated from breastfeeding, I don’t want to go anywhere. I don’t even want to buy new clothes to fit this new body of mine. I’m not happy I’m the only one feeling like this. Just know you’re not the only one feeling like that. You’re beautiful inside and out, you’re a great mother. Keep pushing babes, this too shall pass.
I am truly saddened to know that you feel and view yourself in such a negative way. Raven we all have imperfections , that’s what makes us unique and separates us from everyone else. If only you could see what we see and know that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. You are one of God’s greatest masterpiece, and the sooner you realize that and stand firm on that TRUTH your perception of yourself will change.
Hi raven, I just want to say how much you are not alone and how much you made me feel like I am not alone either. I been watching you tubers since early high school and would think how beautiful they are and how they don’t struggle. I realized people chose what to post and decided to cut out watching people that made me feel insecure. Your content was always real to me, I think that’s why I loved your vlogs more. Since high school to now 22, I have a scalp condition called sebborheic dermatitis. Which is scaling of the scalp and causes bad hair loss till one point I had bald spots. I hate wearing hats and ponytails to hide from embarrassment of my scalp and people thinking I’m dirty. This is a genetic disorder I’m stuck with as well. In my 20s you would think we would party have fun and not worry but I never go out due to worrying what I will do with my hair or clothes. I’m a 90pound flat chested girl with toothpick legs that people use to make fun about. It made me wear leggings under my jeans so I can appear more thick. It’s sucks we play this waiting game of hoping things get better when life is shirt. Are we going to look back at 60 when beauty doesn’t matter and say why did I not live out my 20s?
This makes me sad. I’ve been following you since you were pregnant because we were pregnant at the same time. I had my son a little less than two weeks after you had Ziya, so I often watch you and compare our kids growth/milestones and have even picked up some things from you (as far as parenting). It saddens me to read that you’re struggling with so many things. As a new, first-time, single mom myself, I know that things can be very difficult as life has completely changed. I struggle with the fact that I have gained weight since I’ve had my son and it’s SO hard to lose it. I struggle with some of the same things you do as far as parenting, constantly questioning whether I’m being the best parent I can be, if I should be doing more or doing things differently. It’s hard. While I don’t struggle with skin issues, I do know that any type of issue with a person’s appearance will undoubtedly have an effect on their self esteem. I don’t think you’re crazy or vain at all for feeling the way you do. I don’t have much advice, but I know that it gets better. I know that, for me, no matter what issues I’m facing, when I see my son smile (as cliché as it is) it really makes it all better. I pray your strength and that things turn around for you.
Raven! My heart breaks that you’re feeling this way. I have countless journal posts from my early 20s that almost mirror this blog post verbatim. I’ve struggled off and on with severe acne since College as well. I’m 31 now and my acne has flared again since pregnancy and breastfeeding. I understand completely how you feel and I know there’s nothing I can say to convince you otherwise. Just know that you are not alone. I found your channel through your acne journey and honestly YOU helped me to feel better about myself. Here was a beautiful young woman being transparent and sharing her insecurities for all of the world to see – and you were unapologetic. I thought “whoa, I’m terrified to even go to the grocery store without makeup and here is someone saying ‘this is me, take it or leave it’. And guess what, you have so many followers because we accept you, appreciate you, admire you, and are inspired by you FOR EXACTLY WHO YOU ARE! Your courage in being vulnerable never ceases to amaze me. Although it’s no consolation right this moment, know that these things WILL get better and you WILL feel better.
Thanks for always being so transparent and sharing what’s going on with you, Raven. Thanks for venting and just being real. Whether you know it or not, you inspire SO MANY PEOPLE. When I’m having a bad day or am feeling extra anxious, one of the first things I do is go to Snapchat or YouTube to see what you’ve posted. I’m not feeling the best about my body rightnow either, so it feels good to see someone going through something similar. It’s something about feeling like you’re not alone that makes the biggest difference and I get that when I watch your snaps/videos. Please continue to persevere through this. It does get better. Sometimes you have to go through the storm to get to the rainbow, I know it’s super cliche, but it’s true. Some of my darkest moments have been followed by the brightest ones. Never forget that you have so many people who are rooting for you and who genuinely love and care about you. We’re here for the ride, no matter how many ups and downs. Love you, Raven ?.
P.S. You’re beautiful (inside and out), makeup or not. People aren’t “just saying that” – it’s true.
Thank you for your honesty x
I just want to say thank you for writing and sharing. I’ve never closely followed you but always felt that you were beautiful and living the life and I still feel that. You are wonderful, and sometimes if not often we all go through hang ups and challenges with our bodies. I hope this and know this is not forever for you and that you will continue to go through it and be with it. Thank you.
Raven, first off just know that you are loved. I know there are so many people that troll and say rude stuff but you have some genuine followers who truly connect with and care for you! I know it took a lot of vulnerability for you to post this blog and I’m proud of you for clicking submit. I have been dealing with similar things for the past 2 years as you; trying to gain weight, health issues, anxiety, and overall emotional pain from life situations. One thing I’ve learned is that I can control how I love myself and care for myself and for me it had to start with writing positive things to myself on the mirror and repeating them back to myself. Starting to eat paleo and cut out the junk that was making me feel sick and workout. I know this doesn’t work for everyone and I’m not saying that it will work for you but I would just encourage you to love yourself even on the bad days, I know it’s hard but being a woman and a Mama you have got to make time for you and do some things for you to just breathe ya know? Being a mom is so honorable and I applaud you for raising Ziya so well, she is a beautiful baby girl and you are doing an amazing job so don’t feel down about how you parent because you can tell she is truly flourishing into an amazing young lady. Again, I’m really glad you shared this with us and I am wishing nothing but positivity and wonderful progress as you continue on this journey of health and feeling like yourself again. I know you can do it!!!! You are amazing❤️
Raven, you are fearfully and wonderfully made. God created you the way you are for a reason. You possess qualities that are not even attainable for some. You’re a special possession to God. I really hope you can understand that. Depression is such a terrible disease. Please, I’m begging you…whatever it takes, look into seeking professional help not just for you, but for Ziya. I’m an advocate for mental health therapy and counseling, I’ve seen it change and save lives. I am proud of who you are… through your quest of life, your vulnerability and openness goes unmatched in this day and age of superficiality. Allow God to work with you, if you can, please pray to God. Things will get a little clearer after that, I guarantee. When you have a chance, look up some of these scriptures and just recite them to yourself to give you an emotional or spiritual push. Psalm 34:17-18, Psalm 139 or even try reading the book of John to learn about the power of Jesus. If you choose to read them, try reading them in an understandable version like NIV or NLT. Either way, Raven you’re in my thoughts and prayers, and you WILL fight and WIN this battle!!
Raven, you are absolutely beautiful. Everyone always talks about what a pretty girl you are! I obvi don’t know you personally – but I think you may have some type of body dysmorphia. People would literally KILL to look like you.
I really believe you should seek out professional help so that you can be the best version of yourself for you and your beautiful daughter. And I completely understand the acne thing. I went from having FLAWLESS skin my entire life, to suffering from adult acne. It’s not fun, but I deal with it. Something that has helped me is Murad. Your may have tried this before but it does provide some relief for me. Also I noticed that what I eat plays a huge factor. I try to stay away from red meat and dairy as much as possible, and I drink a liter of water a day. I honestly don’t think water plays up to all the hype people say it does – but it can’t hurt.
Anyway, much love to you and I hope you feel better soon. It’s a process – and I think you are moving in the right direction.
Raven, you have EVERY reason to love yourself girl! Personally I’m learning to focus on this myself and from what I hear, things fall more and more into place the more you love yourself. I just finished reading “Love yourself like your life depends on it” and the practice is really starting to change me, my life and my thoughts.
Always wishing you the best and i know things will get better for you xoxoxo
You’re a talker and so am I so I automatically love you. You’re young and talented and have such a cute daughter and you have your parents. It’s taken me years to realize second guessing myself is a waste of time, you have a wonderful personality and you’re so creative. Enjoy your life.
Raven you have honestly made me love you much more after reading this. Most youtubers don’t touch on subjects like this that their subscribers can relate to, but you do. And for that I’m extremely grateful, because for someone who I think is so beautiful but also has all these insecurities, it makes me feel like I’m not alone. I can’t imagine how hard it is for you to deal with all this and constantly be in the public eye as an influencer, and raising Ziya. You’re the definition of a a very strong woman.
Hey Raven! Thank you for being so open. I can’t imagine how hard it is being a social media influencer. But just know that cystic acne don’t define you. Your weight/height don’t define you. Your character to me is what define you. I am a 23 year old mother to a three month old son and I know how hard it can be. I too suffer from acne and I also have hyperpigmentation literally all over my face. It’s so bad that I try not to wear makeup and because of that I don’t have much pictures with my son because I feel like I look ugly. He turns four months in a week and I barely have pictures with him. And the pictures I do have, I crop myself out because I can’t stand to look at the pictures. I know how annoying it is when people think they are helping you so they throw out suggestion of things to try on your face as if you haven’t already tried majority of the herbal/natural remedies and the prescription remedies for your skin.
like do they really think we wouldn’t put an egg on our skin if that meant we would have clear skin? Like do they know proactive and acne.org ain’t that expensive for us not to try it? Sigh. All I can say is continue to do you and be a voice for people like me. You give me hope.
So im not alone…
First, I want to tell you it will get better. I too suffered (still do, I just am able to manage it now) with acne. I had perfect skin until my mid-20’s and then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I went thru many of the same emotions you described and isolated myself during the worst days. There was about a year when I was 27-28, where I avoided everyone. I made up excuses as to why I couldn’t hang out, ordered groceries online and spent a fortune on both professional care and self-care, trying to heal my acne. It was hard on me emotionally, and painful physically. You know the feeling. But it got better. It wasn’t easy, until it was. You just have to find the right rhythm. I know you’ve tried a lot already and it seems hopeless, but it’s not, and eventually you’re going to figure out that secret sauce that’ll turn your world around. I know we don’t know each other, but I’ve experienced a lot with dealing with acne (mainly hormonal adult acne) and if you ever want to chat, I’d be more than happy too. I’ll link to my acne story that I wrote about over a year ago in case you want to read it, maybe it’ll help you feel so not alone. There’s some pretty gnarly before pictures that might make you feel better about yourself ? And seriously, if you want to chat, let me know. Because I know your pain, and while I didn’t care much for advice from people with clear skin, or the occasional spot, I always was interested in hearing other peoples stories who experienced a hell similar to mine. It was how I eventually figured out what worked best for me. PS. That’s how I found you years ago, thru your acne videos.
I love you Raven !!!!!!!! you are amazing and don’t ever think different ! I am so proud of you, I have been watching you since the beginning. You literally crack me up on snapchat and on your vlogs. You have never switched up, you have always been the same. You are such a bomb ass mother to sweet Ziya.
I’m so sorry you’re feeling this way, Raven. Don’t let those feelings overcome you. I don’t want to act like I’m your parent but maybe speak with a therapist. You’re obviously a great mom seeing that Ziya is so happy and smart! You’re also so creative and artistically talented. Take the steps to get back to that fabulous Raven, try that accutane, consider therapy and nourish your body! I know you aren’t religious but I’ll be praying for ya!
You shouldn’t feel guilty about how you truly feel. Whether you feel that society would deem it to be vain or unimportant these are your personal and valid life experiences that you are allowed to go through. I do hope you surpass these challenging times and once again find joy in your life
I can’t relate to this post on soo many levels. Scrolling through the comments and just seeing how many people actually struggle with the same issues as me is comforting because a lot of the times I do feel as if I’m the only one struggling with horrible acne and hyperpigmentation when everyone around me has clear skin. Everyday I’m learning to love and accept myself the way that I am because crying and depression just makes things worse. I never want to wake up in my 50s and regret living throughout my 20s. I still haven’t found the courage to post pictures on social media after a year of dealing with acne and I honestly don’t know when I will get the courage. Everyone looks so amazing in every picture and here I am just looking “regular” and “unworthy”. Social media can be cruel sometimes. But I’m taking it one step at a time even if it means just walking out the house with no makeup on. Eventually I will get to a point where I’m confident in my own skin. Thank you for this post Raven.
Excuse the typo, I meant to say *can
I completely know how you feel with the weight lose after birth. I had my daughter last year and lost so much weight that I was down to 95lbs. I’m already skinny and I’m still juggling with my weight. I’m 101lbs. I hate it so much. Boobs are saggy lol and no booty. I’m struggling with my Natural hair. I wish I could get cute but I’m a stay at home mom as well. I start work soon and I guess I can get cute at work. But it is depressing not being able to style yourself anymore because you don’t even have a reason to. Especially being a single mom.
You’re beautiful and its funny that I read this today because I was literally talking to myself. Yes, I talk to myself it helps and I was saying how I’ve come so far with my acne. I suffer from acne on my back and chest and it really took a toll on my life. Just like you said I would wear long sleeve shirts and nothing that showed my chest because I felt so uncomfortable. But, please understand that I live in Miami so half of the time I was burning the hell up. No one really knew maybe my close, close friends but I was pretty secretive because I would always hear people say such mean things about people with acne. I never understood it I don’t see someone for their acne or something they have zero control over like their personal appearance. You’re not shallow or vain it’s understandable and it takes a lot of time to really just say fuck it. I’m still working on it sometimes I feel comfortable and I’m wear something that shows my acne but the anxiety is realllllllll. I’m like what is that person looking at and I usually have the most serious face because I don’t want anyone to say anything to me. I would love to be your friend and by friend obviously this would be a long distance friendship. Haha my name is Stacey and my email is [email protected] feel free to write me.
Has humans we have to allow ourselves to accept that we will not always be satisfied with where we are in life. However, do not let that dissatisfaction prevent you from living life and moving forward. Life is hard, adulting is hard, maintaining confidence is HARD, but taking one day, one hour, one minute at a time can be so much easier. So do just that, take your time, and don’t beat yourself up along the way. Trust me girl, you are not alone. Much love <3
Hey Raven first off I would like to say I’m a big fan. When I first start watching your channel I was in college looking for ways to dress up more and look more stylish. I liked your page because to me you didn’t have one of these greatly enhanced bodies and you were just a beautiful young woman the one God created. Now there is so much pressure to have big boobs and butt like strippers and other reality celebs have, that the “average” yet wonderful woman has a hard time relating to. I hate that your feeling that way and I know it might not mean much but block negative thought and negative spirits and only keep happy positive people around you. I know your a social media STAR lol but just post what you post for Raven and don’t look at what the next person is doing, saying or reacting. You don’t know what comes along with some of the women that we compare ourselves to.
Hope you have a blessed day gorgeous.
First off I really have to say WOW! I have always seen your youtube videos. And after reading your post it is good to know that not alot of us are alone. I am 26 a mother of 3 and a stay at home mom. Aside from my own issues, being skinny having acne, not having my own income always saying I WISH I could do this, I WISH my face didnt have this.And after 3 kids and being skinny the OBVIOUS STRETCH MARKS just make it all worse. Aside from my own issues. My oldest was preterm I was 19, she has Asthma, She has sleep disorder, goes to Occupational and Physical Therapy. I have to take her to appointments almost every other week. It is very stressful. I would love to be able to be a blogging mom that can stay at home and have income like you! Your daughter Ziya is goung to grow up to be auch a lovely and proud daughter, your doing it by yourself.. You are such an inspiration for mothers and every young lady out there with the same types of issues. It is sad that not alot of people still read. I loved how honest you are.
You are an awesome person and you look flawless to me! And I love you so much. You make me smile every time I watch your content anywhere. Don’t let these things get to you. And I know it’s easier said then done.
Raven you are so inspiring to so many people. When I read this post, I felt myself in your shoes. I have skin issues, issues with my new natural hair, it was hard to get into dating again with such low confidence but luckily I found and have an amazing boyfriend who sees past the physical and loves me for me. They say you have to love yourself before someone else can love you but I’m not even there yet to fully loving myself but somehow I have this incredible boyfriend. So have faith that with time of working on yourself you will find a real man who will be there to step up and help you with your brand and everything else you can imagine.
I have no friends and often feel like you, i look in the mirror and dislike what I see. Yet in person some people will compliment me that I have a nice smile, or something and I’m shocked. Your post motivated me to try and sit and make a list of what I can change and actually put REAL effort to work on it. I feel like diet helps with skin issues btw. The past few weeks when I’ve been hating myself and eating garbage my skin has gotten worse. But the other times when I put effort into my food I see small noticeable changes. Health is key. And I’m working on losing weight but I know gaining weight is just as difficult. You HAVE TO UP YOUR CALORIES also for weight gain. There are weight gain shakes out there which make it easier to consume more, and lifting weights builds strength and curves.
As a 22 year old mom myself , I can definitely say I have experienced these same feelings for a while now! After having my daughter, I experienced post-partum depression and significant weight gain from BC. I am now starting my own lifestyle blog and it’s so frustrating to try and uphold the image of the “perfect blogger”. But you are such an inspiration to me! You sharing your journey about your acne and depression have helped me push through some really low times in my life. Although we (as subscribers and readers) can’t see every detail of your life and struggle , you sharing your truth really inspires me to keep pushing and look forward to things to come . You and your daughter are absolutely beautiful and your bond is amazing . We need more bloggers and influencers like you to share their truth and show younger generations, like our own daughters, we all have flaws and how to embrace them and live our best life, spreading love but first loving ourselves !
Much love ❤️
Thank you for sharing this I know its not easy opening up about your insecurities but I believe that some good may come from this… you might not read this but imma say it anyways, Going to therapy is not a bad idea. It might even be a good outlet for you to grow mentally and emotionally
Wow, after reading this I have developed a whole new respect for you. I feel like I owe you an apology, this blog post have me torn up inside and brings me to tears to know that all this has been going on throughout the years that I’ve been watching you on YouTube and never even knew the half of what you go through on a day-to-day. I just want to commend you on your poker face really because you have to be one strong, confident, determined, gangster, boss ass b**** (sorry for the profanity it’s just there for a better lack of words). Like you truly are a superwoman in order to have gone through such a personal struggle in your every day life and still perform your job at the top of your class with such professionalism and flawlessness. It’s heartbreaking to hear one of your role models isn’t So Perfect as you picture their life to be. That brings us back to we are all human and we all go through personal stuff too. From this day forward I just hope you took this vent and read all these comments and put it all behind you because I mean you’re beautiful for goodness sakes I know you know that. You’re really good at what you do and it shows through your fan base your family and of course your income. I understand we are you know in a world where our bodies and our face is our brand you know quote-unquote sex sells, but listen honey you’re doing a damn good job at it you don’t have to photoshop or Contour or do a damn thing!! You’re Raven Elyse maybe Ray baby Ray had to you know crawl before she walked but now you’re established all the other stuff is just going to continue to fall in place. I wish you all the luck and God bless you. ???
I just wanted to let you know, I am a first time mom of a 19 month old boy, I had him when I was 24 (now I’m 25) You’re videos with you and Ziya inspire me and make me so happy! you’re doing a great job with her and it shows!
You have been an inspiration for me throughout my pregnancy and throughout my journey through this thing called motherhood.
It saddens me to see that you are fighting with your thoughts on your apparance/life/career etc. but just letting you know you are not alone!! Honestly it took me a whole year to feel like I was “myself” again and still I do not feel 100%. I too am naturally skinny and honestly I think I look ridiculous, not only did I lose the baby weight but it’s like I lost muscle too and gaining weight is like impossible! And let’s not talk about the boobies ? totally considering a boob job whenever possible lol. I too think about my career, although I’m not an influencer I always feel anxious like I’m never doing enough and I need to do more to succeed. My sense of style went down the drain! I no longer dress up or wear makeup….currently trying to do better ?. And I don’t have any friends so no going out for drinks ?
I guess I’m saying all this to let you know you are not alone…i think having children is a huge blessing but it does take a toll on us as mothers. We have to take it day by day! Now I’m doing this thing where I try to appreciate more of the things that are going well for me in life than to focus on the negative. When you’re with your daughter try your best to live In the moment and absorb all the love that she has to give to you. You are her world her joy. Your bring her so much happiness you are a blessing to her and to others that you unknowingly have touched! At the end of the day all this physical stuff, the material things do not truly matter, it’s all an illusion.
I’m not sure if you have any hobbies like yoga or anything or even just dancing to some trap music lol but find something that gives you joy and use it as a sort of therapy! (I dance to trap music in my car lmao that’s the only time I have to myself really but it helps) and if you feel you really need to, find someone you can confide in and vent to.
I can totally relate to this post, I love your disclaimer, about it not being inspirational, and it’s going to be whiney lol but honestly I think its very brave of you to put your true raw feelings about yourself like that(that’s inspiring to me). The acne, weight(boobs,body dysmorphia), depression, I can relate to of that all! Obviously I dont wish these things in anyone, as I understand the toll it can take on your well being but, It’s nice to know im not alone in experience those things and feel the same way. x
Your the very best Raven we lovw you and ziyah
I'D LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU!