Here's how a Tinder date helped a woman restore confidence in her body

We often make a distinction between bodily love and real love. But for a woman struggling with body image issues, someone loving her body can change her whole life.

“I had never ‘hooked up’ with anyone from Tinder. Actually, I’d never really hooked up with anyone at all. I really wanted to though, to have sex with new people that I could connect with for the while that we had sex, people who weren’t creeps, and then forget about them. But then every time I matched with someone, I would quickly deflect all of their interest, because I never wanted for them to meet me in person and see how fat, short, awkward I am and then lose interest in me.”

This is the story of S from Bangalore. And like most of us women, S too was conscious of her body. Very conscious. And in the struggle of fitting into the unrealistic demands of society about how a woman is supposed to look, she had lost all her confidence about herself.

Till she met somebody on Tinder.

“I did meet one guy. He was younger, he was funny, and he was blunt. The first time I met him, and we hit it off, he hugged me from behind, wrapped his arms around me, and said, “I love that you’re so round!” He was genuinely delighted by that. I don’t know if it made me happy, but it certainly made me a lot more aware of myself, and that maybe I was not as unattractive as I felt,” she says in her anonymous Facebook post on the page, Individuality.

This man made S realise that she was attractive in her own ways and she was awed by the way he made love to her and complimented her curves.

“The first time we actually slept, we spooned, and he said, feeling me all over with his big hands, ‘I love all of this, there is so much to work with, so much to love.’ That one time, I was very glad to be facing away from him,” S added.

Not just that, this man made S feel good about her private parts and her breasts as well. She has always considered her boobs to be big and ugly earlier and was embarrassed about as they would “show up no matter what she wore”.

“The first time we saw each other naked in the day time, I remember sitting with my legs spread, and him sitting and staring, and touching and feeling me, almost fascinated. And then he said, ‘You have the prettiest pussy I’ve ever seen’. At one point, he held one of my breasts in his palm, and said, ‘these are so heavy, how do you walk around with them all the time?!’ while sucking on it. I had started to feel that I could get used to this wonderful, amazement-laced, attention towards my body.”

Though S and the amazing man she met did not end up together forever (trust me, it happens only in fairy tales. Yeah, the same tales that give women unrealistic expectations about their bodies!). But she says she will always remember him for something he said one afternoon.

“He said, ‘Isn’t it beautiful to know that someone lusts after you, and your body?'”

And S could not agree more. Nor could I. Isn’t it amazing, yes amazing, to know that you can keep someone lustful and that your body, no matter how imperfect you think it is, can give somebody pleasure? Won’t that make you feel good about yourself and most importantly, your body?

“I still have a lot of doubt about myself and the way my body looks, feels, or works. But mostly, I am able to remind myself that my heavy breasts with the big nipples, and my round belly, and my big thighs, and my dark vulva can bring a lot of happiness to someone,” S says.

This story by S was posted on a Facebook page called individuality and is a part of a project called ‘Body of Stories’ #Bodyofstories. This project is a crowdsourced art project to explore and celebrate the many, varied ways of experiencing the human body.