My Relationship With My Nose

I may or may not mention a *mystery male body part* in this post. It’s a fleeting reference. It’s done in a jokey way. It’s in no way pornographic; it’s just there. So if you are offended/upset/absolutely disgusted by those sorts of references then please don’t read this post. Also, I’m sorry that I had to mention *mystery male body parts* to mention the fact that I mention them. And I’m sorry for that time too.

When I was six years old, me and my nose went on a date. He didn’t take me out to dinner, or to the cinema, and we didn’t “Netflix and chill” at his (in fact, it was the nineties, so it would’ve been “video tape and chill”, if anything). No, me and my nose went on a date to the hospital.

We’d been running round the playground. Speeding through the breeze without a care in the world. For some unknown reason, I decided to run over the step that led back into the school. As I did so, the door to the school opened towards me, knocking me off the step and onto the playground. And, for some unknown reason, I decided to break the fall with my face.

Unfortunately, breaking your nose isn’t like breaking a leg. If six-year-old me broke her leg, it would have healed and no one would’ve noticed. But, instead, six-year-old me thought it would be absolutely hilarious to break the main feature of my face. A feature that doesn’t generally receive the correctional surgery that a leg would. A feature that, when you bump it, remains bumped forever. You go, six-year-old Amy!

Ever since that day, me and my nose have had a turbulent relationship. We fight, we make-up, we fight. *cue dramatic montage*

Just kidding. But we haven’t always been the best of friends. Not. Even. Close.

The pre-high school days were fine. I don’t remember really having a grasp of the difference between pretty and ugly until I started high school. I just went through life not realising that my nose was anything other than a nose. Which is how it should be really. My nose was annoyingly more sensitive to pain than it had been before, but it didn’t really affect me in any other way.

But, things change when you go to high school. Being pretty becomes important. Being popular becomes important. And all the confidence you’ve built up through doing well at long division becomes redundant.

Although I was lucky to never be seriously bullied, there were a lot of comments. People would say I was ugly. People would call me “cock nose” (yeah, I’m worried about the triangular penises they’ve seen too). And then there were the kids that would stop me in the corridor to explain to me that my nose was huge. You know, just in case I hadn’t seen it before. Yeah, thanks mate, nice one.

My relationship with my nose became rocky. I wanted it gone, to be quite honest. I remember asking my mum if I could have a nose job. I was only a young teen, but that was what I wanted. She laughed. ‘Don’t be silly,’ she said, ‘You’ve got a lovely nose.’ But I didn’t believe her. I felt so ugly all the time. No matter how much make-up I wore or what I did with my hair my nose still sat there laughing at me. ‘Stop kidding yourself,’ it’d say. Well, it would’ve done if it could talk. Really, it’d just almost bash into the mirror as I drew wiggly blue lines on my eyelids. Which is almost the same thing.

I used to compare nose sizes with people on television. I’d get a ruler out and measure the length of my nose and compare it with the national average. It was obviously bigger. I’d always be on the look out for someone similarly endowed, but was always convinced that they were waaaay smaller. If they were Subway sandwiches they’d be the six-inch to my foot-long. If they were “unmentionable male body parts” I’d be windmilling proudly. But unfortunately, a big nose is not something that gets a parade. A big nose is viewed negatively. A big nose is something bad. Unless you’re auditioning for Pinocchio, of course. Then you’re in business.

Teenage me was extremely self-conscious. Teenage me hated herself. And teenage me was convinced that the bump on her nose would leave her single forever, and that she’d die surrounded by hairless cats. (To clarify: I’m allergic to cats. I’m not just addicted to cat-shaving). I wished I could be someone else. Someone prettier.

When I was around 13, I started reading the Confessions of Georgia Nicholson books. If you don’t know, the main character, Georgia, describes herself as having a massive nose. I was so happy when I found those books – finally a character who didn’t have model looks! I’d read them, and think there was hope. I’d feel like I could get a boyfriend, be confident and feel less weird. A few years later, however, the film adaptation came out and Georgia’s nose looked pretty small. I don’t know if that was just my own paranoia, but I was devastated that I had a bigger nose than the girl with the huge nose. I mean, if she struggled with her appearance, then how would I ever be okay with it? How would I kiss a boy without stabbing them in the eye? Would I even be able to get close enough to reach their lips? I realise now that these are really stupid questions, but at the time I was terrified.

So how did I deal with this? How did I become confident enough to not spend hours obsessing over how ugly I though I was? How did I stop being so down on myself? I’ll be honest, I don’t know. I think at some point, after high school was over, I learned that a couple of comments from people I barely knew weren’t worth anything. I learned that seeing a pretty face in the mirror isn’t everything. I learned that my nose isn’t that important. Yeah, it could probably qualify for it’s own postcode, but it’s definitely not something to cry about. After all, I don’t want a huge nose and puffy eyes.

I’m joking. That’s a good look. 🙂

But yeah, I guess I’ve gotten used to my nose. Some days I might get annoyed with it, and some days I might not want my photo taking, but I’m definitely more confident than I was back then. I can’t do anything (bar horrible surgery) to change it and I shouldn’t. It shouldn’t affect me. I have loads of people who love me, loads of great things in my life, so why should a nose stop me from being happy? I mean, it’s just for breathing anyway. I’m sure fish don’t go around getting paranoid about how sexy their gills are. So neither will I.

Plus, some kids on the bus told me I have weird hair, so I need to start being self-conscious about that now. I mean, there are only so many hours in the day…

I’m joking. Again. Sorry!

Have you ever/do you have any appearance hang-ups?

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9 Comments

  1. You’re definitely NOT alone, Amy. I’ve hated my curly hair, my ugly Filipino nose, and my short stature…. I learned to hate every bit of my appearance, which led to destructive behaviors like starvation. I used to avoid the mirror, and I used to obsess over my weight.

    Until I realized I am just fine the way I am. Sure, I can make more efforts to treat myself with kindness and compassion, but I feel like I just have to accept how look now and strive to not compare myself to others. Also… Even the most “beautiful” people in the media never think they’re good enough… Take a look at all the celebrities that have gotten plastic surgery for their already perfect nose.

    And beauty is only temporary and cue all these other cliche sayings about what matters most is skin deep…. LOL

  2. I’m not a fan of my nose. I think its huge! Everyone says I look like my dad and it’s all because of this nose. I joke about it now, calling it my Pete Townshend nose, but there are still times I look in the mirror and wish it was smaller.

    I also hate my hips because they’re wonky because of the surgery I’ve had on them. But there’s not much I can do about that.

    I broke my mum’s nose. That’s a pretty horrific statement to make but it’s true! I was jumping up and down in the swimming pool when I was about 7 years old and I smacked my mum so hard in in the face her nose broke. He’s had a lot of sinus problem since and I still feel terrible even though it was an accident. The surgeon who took my teeth out and fixed my tongue tie offered to fix my mum’s nose for her because she didn’t want the surgery.

    So yeah, she’s self-conscious of her nose too.

  3. Fun post! I’m not a fan of my own nose, not for its appearance, but for its functionality or lack of. It’s only good for colds and allergies. If I can breathe through it, that’s a good thing. Wouldn’t count on smelling stuff with it. But I’ve gotten used to it. Other than that, I’ve got “freckles” in my eyes. At least that’s the term my doctor uses. That’s just weird. But anyways, you are right. There are only 24 hours in a day, and there are much better things to be concerned with than appearances. 😀 Cultivating a beautiful character is more important than the way one’s face looks.

  4. Actually the other problem I have is my hair and it annoys me, and that’s why I shaved it off this summer but I am currently growing it back for reasons lol I like my nose in fact. I think I have a chipmunk nose because I’m a very small and short person. I just don’t like how it’s always clogged up with allergies and colds and such and that part I can do without, but otherwise, it’s fine.

  5. Eep, landing on your face and breaking your nose sounds painful! It’s really unfortunate how high school seems to be the point where popularity and looks start becoming a thing. That’s so mean of people to make fun of you for it. I actually think it’s interesting to have something different and a story behind it. I only have one dimple on my cheek because I apparently ran into a table corner when I was a child. (I have no idea if that caused my dimple, but my mom claims it did, haha.)

    I’m glad that the comments don’t bother you now, and I agree that it shouldn’t affect you! I have to admit that I’m not a fan of my nose either. I’ve always felt it was too flat, and sometimes I look in the mirror and think my face is too round. Oh well, appearances aren’t everything!

    By the way, I really enjoyed reading this entry! You have a very fun way of writing!

  6. This post is so brilliant and I am glad that you shared this. It’s great that you have been able to become accepting of something that has caused you distress in the past. It’s so annoying how awful other people can be, especially in the teenage years. I think when you get older you also get a better perspective on the world and the things that really matter. Plus, if you didn’t have this experience, maybe you also wouldn’t have the same sense of humour that you do, and that wouldn’t be cool. 😀

  7. Nose comes in all sorts of forms. I never thought there was anything wrong with yours. It’s a nose! I’m glad to hear that you gained confidence to overcome nasty comments from those jerks in high school.

    I used to have hang-up’s about my teeth. I even got braces to fix the problem, but there were a couple of people who still bagged on it. At the end of the day, I realized the same thing you did, “who are these insignificant losers to me? oh, they’re no one!!!!”

    I think the next generation of kids should be taught how to embrace other people rather than putting down for it.

  8. I felt really sorry for you when I read this! 🙁 It must have been rough dealing with people giving you hell and especially saying your nose looks like a cock. What the fuck! I understand that your self-esteem must have plummeted.

    There is nothing wrong with having a big nose, though. In my opinion, yours may be big but it seems in proportion to your face. 🙂 Nick has a big nose but I love it, hehe. 🙂

    The only thing I have been self-conscious about is my cheekbones. People have said they love them, but when I smile, I have small line-like dimples in my cheeks. One of my ex boyfriends said it looked like I had ‘cat whiskers’ and I got really angry and hated it. I didn’t ever want to smile because it accentuated my cheeks. I wasn’t angry at my ex, but it was more that he called them ‘cat whiskers’ and it made me very self-conscious because people would point them out. 🙁 I am OK with it now, as no one has ever said anything about their appearance being like [insert something else here]. I guess it’s when someone says ‘your x looks like y’, it can really get us down, when we want x to appear just like whatever the hell x is.

  9. Oh man, I hope 6 year old Amy is okay… That sounds painful, so painful you ended up in hospital. x_x

    I don’t think you have a big nose, until you mention it I didn’t look at your nose at all. I’m always like that though, like I know it’s a main feature of a face but I tend to just fixate on eyes so much that I don’t see people’s nose if that makes sense 😛

    But like others have said, there is nothing wrong with having a big nose. I personally think your nose looks really good with the rest of your face xD I’m sorry you had to go through shit though. I had similar things happen to me too as everyone else has, I used to hate the fact that I have one eyelid bigger than the other. People would point it out and say I look like one of those monsters from those Monster Munch crisps. Kids are mean.

    But I’ve learnt to deal with it now and now I think I like the unique look I have with one eyelid bigger than the other (also it’s easily fixed with eye makeup so :P)

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