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-   -   First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger. (http://birthmark.org/board/showthread.php?t=1578)

djbrianuk 09-03-2005 04:53 PM

First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
This is the first time I've posted here so a brief bit of background. My name's Brian, I'm 33 and I have a port wine stain on my face. Looking back on my younger days I want to pass on the one thing I wished I'd known about and done when I was younger, rather than waiting till I was 27.

If you're young and have something like a port wine stain, seriously think about getting into for want of a better term is called the 'alternative' scene. This is for two main reasons.

One - these people are the people who don't fit into conventional society already. This promotes a certain solidarity and camaderie, and makes them far less judgemental on people who don't fit in for other reasons - facial disfigurements, homosexuality, unusual sense of style etc. They're all misfits already!

Two - OTT makeup is common on both girls and guys! You don't have to agonise about whether someone might notice you're wearing makeup, or that it's unusually heavy or anything like that - You'll look like any other goth or mansonite.

This isn't a solution for everyone, but if you're coming up against things in the conventional social scene that you just don't want to be dealing with it's worth a shot. Maybe I'll get grief - "mainstream society should just accept us and treat us no differently!" type rants, but I'm talking about real life, not some non-existant utopian ideal. And I KNOW it works from personal experience. There are many paths to dealing with facial disfigurement, and this one is as valid as any other. Whether we like it or not, we do get treated differently, and anything that can eliminate that is worth consideration.

I wish someone had tolde me about this a hell of a lot earlier than I did, I could've saved myself a load of grief.

So if you're young and worrying about how your'e going to fit in anywhere, maybe this is the thing for you. But hey - it's just my opinion - make up your own minds!

DJB

Sensible discussion encouraged - Flames will be ignored.

beccasmommy 09-05-2005 02:43 PM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
I'll jump in, since I had pink hair at some point in high school. ;)

You know, on the surface, that seems like a good idea, but when these kids grow up, they're not going to have pink hair. They're going to have to get a job, raise a family, and be an old lady (or man). Pink hair, goth make-up, and the like are a great teen angst cover, but once they hit a certain age, that's not going to work anymore.

Yes, to get through high school, you could do that. Kids are nasty sometimes. But after that, it's time to learn to deal with your differences. Actually, I do bealieve it's better to skip the whole cover-it-up attitude, and deal with it already. The sooner the accept what you're born with, the sooner you can get on with your life. If someone doesn't accept you for the way you look, then they are not worth your time.

If my daughter, who has some scarring/uneven texture from her hemangioma that was surgically removed, decides to have pink hair I will support her decision. I will also help her deal with the reason behind the pink hair. It's a cover for something else.

BeccasMommy

djbrianuk 09-05-2005 08:51 PM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
Well, I'm 33 and still dressing up! I can see your point though. I should probably point out that this is something I only do socially and then not all the time. During the day I don't bother hiding who I am. If I'm going to the cinema, or down the pub for a couple of drinks I don't either. But if I'm hitting a major london club, hey I want to look my best! So I put my contacts in, fix my hair, sort my makeup, wear my coolest gear and know that if I get stared at, it's cos I'm looking damn hot!

I don't think using this strategy is necessarily incompatible with getting ahead in life, marrying, getting a career etc, though it may influence the directions you take.

In essence I no longer need to do this - using this strategy built my self confidence to the point where I realised I no longer 'needed' to do it - it was a choice I could make.

We all present 'masks' in different situations. Everyone 'fakes' it a little, I just do it more than some other people!

Like I said - it's aimed at the kids who really can't see a future, who are afraid they'll always be defined by the mark. Without exception, everyone I've met in 'goth' mode, who's met me afterwards has said they couldn't care less about the birthmark, it's more been something I've done for myself. When I put the mask on, I could go out socially knowing that I wouldn't have to second guess what everyone was thinking - it's a bit difficult to put into words, but I could actually be 'me' more with the makeup than without. I could relax, knowing that I wouldn't have to deal with questions or feel self-concious about things.

Thanks for replying

Brian

djbrianuk 09-05-2005 08:54 PM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
Just for the record I've never used the phrase 'darn hot' in my life! Methinks the censoring software here is a little OTT!

beccasmommy 09-06-2005 11:31 AM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
;) I'm wondering what you typed to get 'darn hot'. It couldn't have been that bad.

"I could relax, knowing that I wouldn't have to deal with questions or feel self-concious about things." I would have given anything to have had that when my daughter was a baby, but since her birthmark was/is on her face, I couldn't really hide it. (It protruded 3+ inches from the side of her head.)

I didn't mean that people who wear the goth stuff won't get ahead in life, just that at a certain point, it doesn't work anymore. I can't imagine an old man, or woman for that matter dressing up. :) I'm glad it's something that helped you though.

mallis 09-07-2005 07:33 AM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
...I have pink hair. I think it distracts from my birthmark.

mikeb23ft 12-10-2005 07:28 AM

Re: First Post - The ONE thing I wish I'd known about/done when I was younger.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mallis
...I have pink hair. I think it distracts from my birthmark.

I've noticed that if I dress in a slightly unusual way (nothing too extreme) just something that requires a little bit of confidence and eccentricity to pull off, the birthmark kind of...'fits in' more with it. If I were a girl, I might have pink hair... :o


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