How Cosplay Can Help Self Esteem

How Cosplay Can Help Self Esteem

Growing up, I was the ugly, awkward, nerdy, overweight one in my family. I started making costumes well before high school. Things changed when I was sixteen and made a Halloween costume of Catwoman.

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I don't think I'm getting the correct message. You seem to want to say that cosplay makes you feel empowered, but by your own admission, that sense of worth and accomplishment is based on how others react and perceive you. Even your choices in persona seem to have been driven by the positive or negative reactions you've gotten. With regards to the sense of "worth" coming from being "recognized as female" and hit on by a guy, how does cosplay differ from just dressing provocatively?

I'm not commenting on the whole hubbub about whether women should be drawn with big or small breasts, rather it just seems this positive account of cosplay, comes down to the ideal of "being attractive is good for your self esteem".

Solkard:
With regards to the sense of "worth" coming from being "recognized as female" and hit on by a guy, how does cosplay differ from just dressing provocatively?

oh silly, you have to say the proper mantra before the power of cosplay is revealed;)

but in all honesty, it's not so much dressing provocatively, it's just finding something you enjoy/want to be and "owning" it (that's how some of my friends who cosplay have described it as, I myself haven't had a chance to and I'm absolute shit when it comes to clothing/costume design stuff)

rather it just seems this positive account of cosplay, comes down to the ideal of "being attractive is good for your self esteem".

well at least for me personally, cosplay (whether it's intended to be provacative or not) ends up being pretty hot, maybe it's because I like that character, or it's so different to our current culture that makes it attractive, but I think your statement is just a by-product of having fun and really getting into a cosplay.

Well, I learned something today. I learned even very attractive women can be incredibly insecure about their physical form. And it makes sense considering Liana's past. I wonder if Liana even realizes that as far as what is found to be attractive to men, it doesn't get much better than her body type. I blame decades of bullshit marketing from companies trying to convince women of a standard that requires help from said companies. In my experience, the dude that prefers the waif model over the buxom woman with curves is the exception, not the rule.

Solkard:
I don't think I'm getting the correct message. You seem to want to say that cosplay makes you feel empowered, but by your own admission, that sense of worth and accomplishment is based on how others react and perceive you. Even your choices in persona seem to have been driven by the positive or negative reactions you've gotten. With regards to the sense of "worth" coming from being "recognized as female" and hit on by a guy, how does cosplay differ from just dressing provocatively?

I'm not commenting on the whole hubbub about whether women should be drawn with big or small breasts, rather it just seems this positive account of cosplay, comes down to the ideal of "being attractive is good for your self esteem".

I think "being attractive is good for your self esteem" is accurate, but doesn't cover the whole truth.

Nobody likes feeling like they're ugly, or invisible. However, the options are not "be hideous" or "be a sex symbol". I don't know if you remember the 80's, but there was a trend called 'power suits' that was embraced by both men and women. Everyone thought it was sharp, a style that meant business, and women could wear it alongside men and appear just as professional without looking like frumpy old secretaries or women who had to sleep their way into their current position.

Something that I've picked up in the Agents of Cosplay videos, especially over the last couple of weeks with the interviews, is that you can wear something that looks one way to the audience (for example, a skin-tight superhero outfit looks sexy) but to you it feels entirely different (as a reminder that you have power over yourself, and to an extent over others). You feel attractive, but strong, like a supervillain giving their speech to the UN where it doesn't matter so much what they look like but the fact that they are in control of the situation.

This shows once again that everybody is different and has different views on sexualization. And if you truly believe in freedom of thought you have to accept and respect that; something I think is severely lacking in certain social justice warriors - you know who I mean...

So my respect goes out to Liana Kerzner, and Yaya Han, and other such cosplay ladies who are brave enough to just do whatever feels good to them, and not listen to the bigots who are calling them every ugly word in the book because they don't conform to their very personal views on what women should be like. And again, those personal views are not bad either, but the way they try to aggressively push those on others, and harshly judge them when they refuse, is.

So you're cosplaying because you feel unattractive normally but when dressed up as a slutty character dudes want fuck you and it makes you feel better. If this was suppose to be challenging the perception of cospaly girls I don't think it dose what you intended.

DementedSheep:
So you're cosplaying because you feel unattractive normally but when dressed up as a slutty character dudes want fuck you and it makes you feel better. If this was suppose to be challenging the perception of cospaly girls I don't think it dose what you intended.

The problem is your own perception, not hers.

Scow2:
The problem is your own perception, not hers.

I strongly doubt that, given as she's prone to structuralistic thinking, as shown in:
"It's no secret that the TV industry can make a person feel pretty worthless."

That's based on the idea that 'the society' or 'the media' should be blamed for people's own voluntary thought processes leading to low self-esteem. It's weird and unrealistic view of the situation that ignores the fact that all people have free will, an own perception, a way of logical reasoning, etc etc.

I really dislike the underlying idea that people are mindless drones without free will who are made to believe things by 'the media'. It's simply not true.

But before I continue down a logical path here I'm going to stop. Because I were to suggest that the solution to feeling bad about your weight, is to lose weight to a healthy level, you'd be shot, stabbed, clubbed, burned, sued, shamed, beaten, harassed, doxed and defamed by a horde of angry feminists, so I won't dare suggest there are other and/or better ways of dealing with personal image issues than escapism into being fictional characters.

Solkard:
I don't think I'm getting the correct message. You seem to want to say that cosplay makes you feel empowered, but by your own admission, that sense of worth and accomplishment is based on how others react and perceive you. Even your choices in persona seem to have been driven by the positive or negative reactions you've gotten. With regards to the sense of "worth" coming from being "recognized as female" and hit on by a guy, how does cosplay differ from just dressing provocatively?

I'm not commenting on the whole hubbub about whether women should be drawn with big or small breasts, rather it just seems this positive account of cosplay, comes down to the ideal of "being attractive is good for your self esteem".

in nerd culture, you get graded on a curve ... that, and there's not nearly as many catty mean girls around who do the real Tearing-Down

...that's the snarky VS. snarky answer...

The old-person answer is that confidence doesn't come in a bottle and when it does it just turns weak people into even weaker alcoholics. No real Confidence comes from taking every little scrap you can manage starting off and building up from there. It's like any of those RPG's where you start out with nothing. You're picking up rat hides at first, but you're super excited about it b/c one thing leads to the next. And it's that early nostalgia that carries you through the long road to Maxed out shining armor

 

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