To Bleach or Not to Bleach?
Posted 28 February 2011 - 09:35 PM
I got through the check up and x-rays painlessly and then he brought up the dreaded subject of bleaching. Pretty much every dentist Iíve seen in my adult life has done the same thing because I was born with very yellow teeth. (Iím not a tea; coffee, red wine drinker and I donít smoke. They just are yellow).
In the past Iíve always resisted the suggestion strongly as one of my front teeth is fake. (Most of it got knocked out when I was ten) Because the bleach would affect my teeth and not the fake one Iíd had to of have one yellow tooth or get the scary injections and let them make a fresh one for me. Well this new guy explained that he would be able just to take off a thin layer and put on a new false front that would match my new white teeth. So I went for it. I got fitted for trays and have to go pick them up in a week.
He was really flattering and said how they would really give my face a lift. Only problem is now Iím scared about that whole changing the front of my tooth bit. Iím feeling a little scared about he might be going to go about it.
Iím also feeling hugely vain for spending this money on my looks rather than something more sensible. Last year I went and got a few new outfits that were fashionable and suited me. Never done that before, I always went for the comfy cheep options and left fashion out of it. I also forked out for a decent hair cut and a little make-up. I was also talked into buying new shoes that came from the girls side of the shop not the mensí and purchased my first pair of runners. I feel very much more self-conscious than I did and have to wonder am I going to end up like my sister who thinks about nothing but shoes and how she looks. I find myself looking around me and thinking I should really loose some weight and worse looking at others and thinking the same thing. Iíve never been a judgemental person about anyone in my life before. It came as quite a shock at the musical I went to see on Saturday night when I noticed that well over half the cast were size 16 or up. Iíve always looked at people and seen the beauty. Iíve never in my life looked at someone and not found something that I could not appreciate. And there I was thinking that these people really needed to do something about their weight. Of course I felt awful right afterwards for thinking such things.
Then last night I went to my friendsí house to watch the red carpet show before the Oscars. Never done that before. One of the girls there kept getting texts from her friends and relatives, people who where actually there and the bitchy comments flying aroundÖ Wow Iíve knew girls could be bitchy but never heard them like that before. (Although I did laugh about the one quote from Charlie Sheen.) I thought the dresses were pretty and my one complaint was that hardly anyone seemed to be wearing any pretty jewellery. (I like stuff that sparkles). Everyone there kept commenting on peoplesí weight, and how perky their boobs were. How bad their hair was and how their makeup was all wrong. I sat there in a top I had purchased about 8 years ago thinking that theses people on TV were the most glamorous in the world and they were getting picked to bits. What on earth would they be saying if they had to comment on me? Iím now more than ever completely uneasy about it.
If I go ahead with the bleaching well surely thatís just one step from going ahead and getting one of those tummy ops so you get thinner?
It all keeps getting bigger and bigger. Where does it stop? Perhaps I shouldnít go ahead with the bleaching thing. Iím not sure Iíd like myself if I went down this road.
I believe that to a certain extent you can consciously choose your character in life. If you consciously try to behave a certain way, after a while it becomes second nature and really is you. (Might be a faulty premise but I donít have many beliefs in life so Iím sticking with it). Iím not saying that your family and friends do not affect your behaviour, as many of my behaviour patterns have come to me from my mother. But I do believe that when you become aware of them you can choose weather or not to keep them.
Iím aware that she tried to pass on the premise that Ďpeople who spend time on their looks and care what others think about them, are vain and stupidí but although I still believe that it doesnít matter what people think about you, to a certain extent, Iím very aware that I live in small town where people do gossip and you do have to be careful about your reputation. I work around children and so really canít be seen to be out getting drunk all the time, and that sort of thing.
If I choose to be the sort of person who is prepared to change her looks to please others then what does that say about me? Obviously I canít be changing the teeth for myself. I donít see them except twice a day at brush Ďní floss time. However could it be that I like the idea of having a nice smile? Certainly people do respond better when you smile. Is it vanity or social lubrication?
Last thought, Last Tuesday was an Up day. Iíd gone to the city the night before the appointment and been to a nice restaurant for dinner and the cinema to see The Kings Speech. I stayed in my favourite B&B and got up at a reasonable time rather than really early and driving in. Now Iím having a Down day. Canít help wondering if the fear and panic that comes with a down day is affecting what Iím now feeling about the bleaching process? If I have another Up day tomorrow or the text day, will all these thoughts vanish again to the fog they came from and let me feel confident for once that I made the right decision.
Well I guess you could say the subject is on my mind but canít keep taking up space here so Iíll leave it for now.
Posted 05 March 2011 - 01:05 PM
Vain? No, I don't think so for this one! I also have a sister who is obsessed with how she looks, her weight, her hair, nails, clothing, etc and I am not even close to being like that! I think for something like bleaching teeth, that your motivation is more geared towards wanting the nicer smile.
I do agree that personalities can change, but I don't believe they can change that drastically unless it's a part of you that you have suppressed for years and years and years... I don't think that there is anything wrong with wanting to look better than what we all do, I think it's the extreme measures that people go through that makes the difference and draws the line.
I think you are doing this for you, it just becomes common place for depressives to ignore our own wants and needs as we feel we don't deserve good things in life. It's easier to believe it's for someone else or for other reasons, that way it just feels more comfortable if that makes sense?
I do think you deserve this.
Posted 05 March 2011 - 04:46 PM
Yes makes perfect sense. I'd go to hell and back for a friend but find it very difficult to justify spending time and money on myself. It has been pointed out to me that I don't need a reason, that I have a perfect right to spend money on myself if I want to but yes it's a comfort thing and avoiding guilt thing if Iíve done it for a specific reason.
Iím still panicking about the actual procedure when they change the front of my tooth but Iím putting that aside to deal with nearer the time. At least Iíve finally made a decision so can stop worrying about that.
Posted 06 March 2011 - 07:09 AM
Yes, do the bleaches and worry about the false tooth later just before the procedure and by then you will have adjusted to the white smile and brushing and flossing will be more delightful too.
Let us know how it goes. Boy that dentist is on the ball 8:30 a.m.
Posted 28 March 2011 - 09:06 PM
Posted 29 March 2011 - 11:15 AM
Glad to hear you're liking the results!!! Yes, do take it slowly to avoid having so much pain though.
Happy you decided to go through with it.
Posted 30 March 2011 - 04:22 AM
Here's to beautiful smiles! May this be one more good reason for you to smile as often as possible.
I can relate to what you were talking about in your first post - throughout most of my twenties I spent a lot of time and energy on having the perfect hair, make-up, clothes, accessories, and so on... Then after realising that despite it all I was still as miserable as ever, I gave up on all that and wore track-suit pants and refused to have professional hair-cuts for the next decade or so... heh! I felt like it had all been a lie and that the whole effort to 'look good' was just another form of competition, trying to 'armour' oneself up in some way perhaps, a waste of time, and like you said, another facade to keep people from looking more deeply and seeing the real person inside. I guess I felt angry about it all, like I'd been cheated somehow into believing that all that stuff really mattered and was going to save me in some way. So I just wanted as little to do with it as possible.
Over the last couple of years I've started paying a bit more attention to my appearance again, but it took a fair bit of soul-searching before I could feel comfortable about doing it. I think like you and some of the others have mentioned, it's the intention that matters. I think if we're looking nice and presentable for the sake of brightening up someone else's day, or brightening up a room, like the way some nice flowers or pretty decorations would please ourselves and others, then that's a perfect reason to do so. If we're trying to do it for the sake of one-upmanship, then it really just ends up backfiring on everyone - we end up getting so caught up in the competition of it all that we end up losing touch with what beauty really is in the first place, and we end up diminishing other people as well as ourselves. We're all human and it's hard not to have those critical and judgmental thoughts about how people look, popping up, but I figure if we're aware of it and we remember not to buy into those impulses when they come along, we can keep our intentions on the right side of things for the most part...
I think the fact that you would spend as much time as you have contemplating the various aspects of this issue, and bringing it up for discussion, proves that you'll never fall down that slippery slope to becoming a mindless slave to image. You're much too thoughtful and considerate a person to have anything like that happen.
Edited by listener, 30 March 2011 - 09:04 AM.
Posted 30 March 2011 - 01:20 PM
My therapist says this week I have to make an effort to accept complements without going on about how crap i am really, so I'm just going to leave it there.
It is nice to know I'm not the only one struggling with these issues though.
Posted 17 April 2011 - 06:18 AM
Posted 21 April 2011 - 10:19 AM
Posted 12 August 2012 - 02:09 PM