5 minute read

Am I Beautiful Enough for Him?

Last Updated: February 20, 2014

Ashley Weis

Ashley Weis is a wife and mother who has a pain-filled past that no longer haunts her. After discovering her husband’s pornography addiction she thought she’d never heal, much less have a “good” marriage again. God has shown her that without rain, beauty never grows. Now, with a beautiful marriage and a heart that knows the radiance of hope, Ashley reaches out to other women through books about recovering from pornography.

“You’re not beautiful enough.” That’s what my husband’s struggle with porn told me. His issues with lust reinforced so many lies I heard over so many years of never measuring up to someone.

Because of my wound of insecurity and my struggle with beauty already went so deep into my heart, George’s problem with lust literally knocked me off my feet and I felt like it ruined me. I stopped believing in the beauty of marriage, thinking romance could never exist. At least not the way I imagined. I believed no man could ever be pure and I would never be valued and loved just as I am.

But those things were lies—lies that I believed. And they almost ruined not only me, but my marriage as well.

Insecurities have a way of making us go crazy. You wouldn’t believe some of the things I put George through because of my own issues with pride and wanting to be the most physically beautiful woman in the world. My anger swelled when he accidentally looked at a woman. No lust. Just looking. I couldn’t deal with the fact that he saw other attractive women. I wanted to be the only one he saw, even if he wasn’t lusting.

Imagine how tiring that can be. At times I wanted to strap a camera to his shirt so I could see everything he saw and compare myself, in detail, to every attractive woman his eyes glanced at. This mentality broke me to pieces and caused me to ask questions that only further damaged my heart.

In my novel, Exposed, the main character (Ally) also struggles with this. Here’s an excerpt showing her tortuous way of dealing with insecurity:

“Ally, if something is bothering you, please ask.” He squeezed my hand. “The more you hold in, the more you’re going to run. Talk to me.”

I inhaled. The comforter rose with my body.

Somewhere inside of my head, my heart, and what felt like my entire existence, there lived an annoying woodpecker of desire. Desire to know things I knew would hurt me. He pecked and pecked and pecked so much that he made every desire feel like a need. An insatiable need that would only be reconciled if I gave in to the pecking, the constant, annoying pecking. And if I did, I knew, I just knew, the pecking would stop.

Or so I hoped.

“Was she prettier than me?” My words came out with a gush of air. Relief and nausea plagued me at once.

Jessie shook his head. “Who?”

“The nurse. Yesterday.”

After an exaggerated inhale, Jessie’s chest dropped. “Why do you ask questions like this?”

I didn’t even care if he lied. I needed a no.

“I already know the answer,” I said.

“If you already know the answer, then why do you ask?”

“Guess some part of me wanted you to say you are so captivated by me that you’d never think that in a million years.” My lips trembled. “But I know that’s not true. Can you just say it? I need to hear the truth.”

“Ally, she was more beautiful than you, yes. Physically. Just physically. Why does this matter so much? Don’t you understand how much I love you, all of you? Not just the physical, but every little detail.”

I bit my lip. Something about the way he said beautiful smashed my aching heart to pieces and made the woodpecker go crazy. I never said beautiful. I said pretty. Why did he choose that word?

Beautiful.

Beautiful.

Beautiful.

I never wanted to hear the word again.

Now, I no longer ask questions like Ally did in the above excerpt. I no longer want to see everything my husband sees and compare myself. And believe it or not, I no longer seek the beauty this world wants me to seek. I’ve learned to seek the most beautiful beauty. God’s view of beauty.

Do you think there are women in this world who are more beautiful than you? Do you think there are people in this world who are ugly? Well, if so, you have a distorted view of beauty. And a distorted view of beauty is often a good cause for insecurity. We are seeking after things that are not attainable, so we will never feel like we are good enough.

When we learn to see ourselves through God’s eyes we realize that beauty is not in the eye of the beholder, or the eyes of our husband, or the eyes of ourselves, or the eyes of Hollywood. Beauty is in the eye of God. Until we learn to look at the world and ourselves through His eyes, we will never know true beauty.

I like to explain this to women as though we are flowers in God’s garden. You are a rose, I am a daffodil. We are all different. Unique. There is no other flower that can be a daffodil, and no other flower that can be a rose. You are beautiful in your own and I am beautiful in my own beauty. There are no comparisons, only the living out of our own beautiful, unique ways. There are no ugly flowers. God smiles on all of us. We were all created to glorify Him, and in that, we are beautiful. He does not make mistakes. We don’t ask Him to add a few more colors to the sunset or tell Him that the sky should be red. No, we trust that as the creator of beauty … we are beautiful. Because we are crafted by the hands of God

I’ve stopped seeking to be the most physically stunning woman in the world to my husband and instead I rest knowing that there is no most. I am the most beautiful woman to my husband because I am his wife. This surpasses physical beauty, which is fleeting. And for me to even desire to be the most physically beautiful woman in the world is unhealthy, unattainable, prideful, and self-centered. It’s not something you would admire in me, and it’s not something I would admire in you. Yet, we keep getting caught in these cycles of trying to measure up, trying to be better, trying to be the most beautiful.

I love this quote from Thomas Kempis: “Whenever you desire anything inordinately, you immediately find that you are dissatisfied with yourself. Those who are proud and avaricious never arrive at contentment; it is the poor and the humble in spirit who live in great peace.”

My insecurities almost ruined my marriage, and Ally’s. My husband sought purity and his heart was truly changed. But I held him back—I held our marriage back—from true healing by focusing too much on my own pursuit of physical beauty. Now, I realize that beauty isn’t something to be pursued or attained—it’s something to receive.

God has given me beauty, in my own way. He has given my own heart to love this world. I have found so much freedom in receiving and resting in my own beauty, instead of pursuing something that will always make me feel like I’m not good enough. Humility focuses on things unseen and not so much on the things our eyes hold dear. That’s what I want. To seek true beauty, hidden from the eyes of Hollywood and tucked away in the treasures of God’s heart.

That’s what I want for you, too. Freedom. Freedom to stop striving, to stop trying, to stop seeking and pursuing, and just live with a humble and content heart that is so focused on the unseen things that it rarely stops to consider something as trivial as becoming the most beautiful woman in the world.

Rest is yours. Freedom is yours. And it all comes down to one question … are you willing to stop viewing beauty through the eyes of others and see beauty through the eyes of God?

My world changed when I said, “Yes.”

  • Comments on: Am I Beautiful Enough for Him?
    1. Peter Pan on

      This is very helpfull from a man`s point of view as well.

      Truly shown us once again what real beauty is, and motivates me personally as a man to stay oure and focus on my wife and love my Creator.

      Blessings
      Pete

      Reply
    2. Ellen on

      Thanks. What you’ve said is helpful but I still find it hard to deal with the need to be beautiful in my husband’s eyes. It seems like no matter what – i will never be. I sometimes feel so hurt that I wish i could leave the situation or sometimes i wish someone would tell me i’m beautiful… that i don’t have to worry about what he thinks. Photos of beautiful women never used to worry me but they now upset me… going to the mall and magazines … and any public place… where there are women … they cause me pain. I try to forget about it and avoid … but i don’t quite know how to deal with it – it hurts.

      Reply
      • Linda Smith on

        I feel exactly the same way! Happily married 37 yrs to find porn has been going on for 20-30yrs behind my back along with other little secrets n lies before marriage, nothing any big deal but I thought we told each other everything n had something so special! We never fought or even cussed at each other most we did was say whatever n walk away. Boy I sure made up for that! I really feel like a different person. I never noticed other women before but porn is everywhere, stores n beaches where they wear the raunchiest clothes, every tv program, in a restaurant an 11 x16 pic of Marilyn Monroe head n mostly chest shot with low cut shirt it’s everywhere n I never even noticed before. This is a great guy who never in a million years would I have thought was watching porn but seems it started slowly n then when smartphones came porn overload in high def n he could even watch it on the iPad I bought him for Christmas on couch in silent while we watched tv n switched to Solitaire when I came over! Probably to give him a kiss. Where are their morals? Having a hard time forgiving but I still love him so much, always have n always will. Says he can stop doesn’t want to loose me seeing counselor but who knows? Only God! I’m sure there’s a reason. I just can’t understand why if they say they love you so much they would hurt you like that or jeapordize the marriage? Thanks for a place to vent n someone to talk to! God help us all n make this world a better place.

      • Kay Bruner on

        Hey Linda. I think one of the huge problems that men have in our culture is lack of emotional training. Men are taught to ignore and repress emotions rather than recognize, feel, and process through them. This means that porn is the perfect place for them to retreat with any stressful feeling: sadness, anger, fear, etc.

        He CAN stop! That’s the good news! But, he will have to get past just the behavioral issues and dig down into his own emotional life in order to do that. Expect his recovery to take about 5 years. He will fail a lot during that time, and he has to keep getting back up and working it out again. He has to learn how to connect to you rather than to porn. He has to learn to be emotionally trustworthy. Here’s an article that might help as you think about these things.

        I hope you will find a therapist just for you, someone who can help you process through your emotions and create healthy boundaries for yourself throughout the recovery process. You might also appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women.

        Peace to you,
        Kay

    3. Sue on

      Wow! I thought I was alone in this. Reading this is like looking in a mirror and seeing myself. I need that kind of healing, peace and freedom. Thank you so much for writing this article! Bless you!

      Reply
    4. Alethea Page on

      I have been struggling with my husband looking at porn and nude pics of other women. This is my 3rd marriage and I have had a past of abuse and pain from this in my other marriages. I want to trust my husband again and I have confronted him about this. We have only been married for 7 months. I am extremely paranoid and constantly checking his history online to see if he has been faithful. I don’t know how to stop these insecurities when I have been so scared. I can’t afford to see a councilor and am trusting in God to help me, but I still need someone to talk to who understands.

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        HI Alethea,

        The paranoia is very normal for a woman in your situation. He’s broken your trust, so you are right not to trust him until he’s earned it. Yes, being neurotic about snooping is no way to live. It will drive you crazy if you let it. But your desire to rebuild trust by examining his actions are normal and good. The big missing piece, however, is your husband’s willingness to do whatever it take to rebuild that trust.

        There are a number of articles here that you might enjoy, and many women leaving comments you can chat with. Here are a few things you might find useful:

        1. We have a free book your can download called Porn and Your Husband: A Recovery Guide for Wives.

        2. Here’s a series of videos you will find very helpful. Christian counselor Brad Hambrick really helps women to unpack the betrayal of sexual sin in a marriage. If I were you and I really could afford counseling, I would find a really good Christian friend to confide in, share your story with her, and then ask her to meet with you every week to pray and watch these videos together.

        3. Christian counselor Ella Hutchinson has written a number of article for our blog on this topic, such as “7 Questions Wives of Porn Addicts Often Ask,” and “What Every Wife of a Sex Addict Has a Right to Know About Her Husband’s Recovery.”

        4. Here’s an interview with author Vicki Tiede who has written a book on this subject.

        5. Given your story, you might also like to read this testimony, “My Husband’s Porn Addiction: How We Rebuilt Trust.”

    5. Michele on

      I disagree to a point. If I’m not the most beautiful to my husband then why did he date me and marry me. If I’m not I don’t want to be with him. It’s why I chose him. Cause he’s the most everything to me. I don’t see how to ever be okay with husband thinking someone is more anything than me. I just don’t know.

      Reply
    6. Rebekah on

      Idk if comments are ever responded to on here anymore, but I have an issue that has been eating at me for a couple months. My husband is a wonderful man, never been into porn, doesn’t stare at women when we’re out, completely respectful,etc.
      I have ALWAYS had low self esteem for as long as I can remember. Going into specifics would take forever so I’ll just discuss my issue. A couple months ago I was feeling insecure and had just read Through a Mans Eyes by Shaunti Feldhahn (which made me feel awful on a whole other level) but I was asking him to rate women(some celebs, some regular people) on a 1–10 scale. Well one person I mentioned he said was a 9 to him. And later on when I asked him if he thought she was beautiful he said yes. ( I totally agree, I would give anything to look like her myself). He refuses to say that she is prettier than me. He swears up and down that to him she’s not prettier than me, but everyone on this message board would agree she is. I mean I even believe it she is.
      Anyway, for some reason I just cant get passed the fact that he said that someone other than his wife is beautiful to him. I know that sounds so vain. I could see saying someone is attractive of pretty, but beautiful just seems deeper to me for some reason. It seems he only tells me I’m beautiful if we’re being intimate. Any other time he just says I look pretty. And if course since reading that wonderful * being sarcastic * book I now feel like everywhere we go he’s staring women down and undressing them with his eyes, even though he never did this before it’s just making me paranoid and self concious. Can anyone tell me how to finally get passed something like this?

      Reply
      • Kay Bruner on

        Rebekah, it sounds like you’re falling prey to the idea that your value is connected to your appearance. I know it’s kind of normal in our culture to think this, as women. It’s normal for men to push this idea on us as well. The problem with this is that you’ll never, ever be beautiful enough and you’re only going to get older, which in our culture means less beautiful, every minute. I would say, stay away from media that pushes this idea on you: magazines, Insta accounts, stupid books… Your value is in YOU. Put yourself into places that affirm this: continuing education classes, yoga classes, hobbies that fulfill your gifts and purposes. Expect your spouse to see you for you and not just for your appearance. You might also want to find a therapist who can help you understand your own worth and value more fully. Peace to you, Kay

    7. Julie Neal on

      I randomly found this article, and I am so glad I did. Although it is going to be a struggle to start viewing beauty differently, this line really resonated with me “And for me to even desire to be the most physically beautiful woman in the world is unhealthy, unattainable, prideful, and self-centered.” Its such a true statement, and I never thought about it that way. And although I feel like your character Ally, where I want my husband to just tell me not in a million years would he even consider someone being prettier than me, I know that is not realistic.

      The struggle is getting over my insecurity of not being good enough. Letting go of whatever issues I am holding onto, and release them. All I can do is be the best ME that I can be, and even though I know that, its much easier said than done.

      I feel like I am in a constant struggle of competition to win over my husbands love, when I already have it… and have had it for years now.

      I do not want to ruin my marriage with my constant pressure of “is she prettier, hotter, or sexier than me”… I want to just feel FREE. I’m on 2 different anti depressants, which have been helping, but I still struggle with low days.

      I don’t even know if you will read this considering you wrote it so many years ago, but I am very thankful that I came across it. I prayed, and God answered. I am going to book mark this article and read it every time I start feeling insecure.

      Thank you a million times over,

      – Julie Neal

      Reply
      • Kay Bruner on

        Hey Julie,
        So glad you found this article helpful. Another way of working on insecurity is by looking at our boundaries and taking responsibility for those. Here, here, and here are some articles that might be helpful as you think about boundaries. And you may appreciate the online support at Bloom for Women as well.
        Peace,
        Kay

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