You know how you always see those articles titled “What I would say to my younger self?” Well, I’d like to think that I’d tell my younger self the same things I wish I could say to the young women of today. I wish I could let them know that there’s nothing they can’t do, they just need to believe in themselves.

I saw a young woman on the train this morning, she was nicely groomed, neatly dressed, with beautiful skin and perfectly applied make-up. But she was overweight, and I could see she was self-conscious. I wanted to say, you are beautiful, and strong and you don’t need validation from the world – or from a man. And if a man doesn’t see your worth, it’s his loss, not yours.

Whether you believe it or not, you can do it, with or without a significant other. You are enough, all on your own. Oh, we all want love, but we shouldn’t have to change ourselves to fit the image of a perfect person that someone has in their heads.

But if I went up to a young woman, if I told her she was beautiful, she’d think I was creepy, or too old to know what I was talking about. I wish women were more supportive of other women, I wish we didn’t look for the flaws in other women but instead saw their beauty, their strength. I wish we were more comfortable telling each other these things, of pointing out each other’s positives. I wish we didn’t feel as if we had to compete for a man’s attention, as if he were the prize at the end of a race. I wish women could realize, we are the prize.

I wish young women knew that sex isn’t something you give away to get a man’s time and attention. Sex is a gift you give yourself, and it should only be shared with a man that you desire, someone you want to have sex with. It’s not a ‘prize’ you withhold until he buys you dinner, or roses or a ring. Fulfilling your own desire should be the prize, going after what you want, a gift you give yourself.

At the end of the day, you must love yourself first, know that you are enough.

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