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    “Help! I’m Self-Conscious About My Looks!”

    This is not relationship advice, but it’s about self-image and confidence really.

    So all my life I’ve had this gap between my two front teeth and it’s the worst thing to me. I don’t know why I have it, but things got worse when my gum started to grow in between it. I can’t get braces or anything until after I get a surgery to remove the gum. My family has insurance and all, but we’re in a tight spot and I feel guilty asking them to spend so much money on this. The gap is ruining my life … it’s SO hard for me to smile, talk, laugh or do anything that requires me to open my mouth. It feels like when people look at me, that’s all they see and stare at it … I think it’s because of that I am so introverted and awkward now….

    I don’t what to do about this, and honestly I just need some help and prayer. I know God made me beautiful in his sight, and I am fearfully and wonderfully made and all that…but it’s just so hard to live in a society where people judge you based on appearances….

    Hey girl! Thanks for your question.

    You know, the first thing I thought of when you mentioned the gap in your teeth was how that is actually considered a lucky feature! Not kidding. I think it’s a French thing. In fact, not long ago, it was a beauty trend. Women had surgical procedures to achieve that gap.

    There are numerous supermodels who have gaps in their teeth. Mick Jagger’s daughter, Georgia May Jagger; Lara Stone; Vanessa Paradis (Johnny Depp’s former girlfriend); Jessica Hart; and Ashley Smith are just a few. Smith considered having hers fixed when she was younger, but like your situation, her family didn’t have the means; now she’s a supermodel and flaunts her gap on the covers of magazines. Paradis is even quoted as saying, “Why would I fix them? I was born with them. I can spit water through them. They’re useful!”

    What I’m trying to let you know is that what you think is a “flaw” is only such because you make it so. These women have taken advantage of their unique features and benefited from them.

    Have you ever noticed that once you get to know someone, you no longer see their “flaws”? Also, have you noticed that with people who ignore their own “flaws” and instead show confidence and joy and kindness, their inner beauty shines through?

    Now, I don’t think a gap in the teeth is a “flaw.” But unfortunately, we now live in a society in which perfect teeth, perfect complexions, figures, hair and so on are promoted and encouraged. But that’s unrealistic. God doesn’t want us to all look the same. Otherwise He would have created us this way. We are who we are and we all need to learn to love and trust in His creation.

    So here’s what I think you should do:

    1. Recognize that beauty comes from the heart. You said that your teeth attract people’s attention. Well, once you’ve captured their attention, let your Godly self capture their hearts.
    2. Learn to love the you that God created. You are beautiful and I suggest you smile with joy. Who cares what people think? You are a Godly girl with an Almighty Father who holds you in higher regard than you’ve ever placed yourself. Is He wrong? Of course not!
    3. Ask God to help you overcome your sadness regarding this. Don’t let it be the focus of your life. It’s destroying your beautiful self and probably hindering you from meeting people and getting involved. And that’s sad.

    Good luck and God bless!

    Need some advice? Ask your questions in the Ask Olivia Girl Talk forum or in the comments below and I might answer them in a future article!

    Ask Olivia
    Got a question about boys, your besties or God? I'm here to help! As the girl all my friends always came to for advice, I've turned my girl talk, level-headedness and love of Jesus into a job -- one I love because I was a teen not long ago, too! Click into Ask Olivia in our Girl Talk Forums to ask me a question!

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