Changes and Body Dysmorphia


Molly Neuzil, Staff-Writer


Dear Journal,   Oct. 21, 2022              

I’m not sure what is happening to me. I mean, what I’m going to say will sound weird, but every single time I look into the mirror something is different. I don’t look like me. I’m a normal-looking guy – just a normal 16-year-old guy, 5 ’11, 200 lbs on the dot, kind of muscular (as in I play for my high school football team), shaggy black hair with dark green eyes and glasses. I would say that’s pretty normal, so I have no clue why I look different or HOW this is happening to me.

Since no one will ever see this, I’ve tried everything I could even think of. This will sound embarrassing, but I even tried talking to my local church about this, and they ended up not believing me. I mean I don’t know what happened in this old house before I got here… I tried covering every mirror in my house for long periods of time. Almost everything I could think of, I have tried. I have honestly just given up; I’ve gone crazy about this. 

-Liam, 3:35 A.M.


As I wake up just in time to get ready for school, I put on my usual hoodie with my school’s blue and gray tiger on the front and ripped jeans. It is the same thing I wear every day pretty much.  Walking into my bathroom, I noticed it for the first time. “What… Why is my nose like that?” I ask myself seeing that my big nose is now smaller in the mirror before shrugging it off telling myself I still must be tired. Very tired. I continue my usual bathroom routine, brushing my teeth, swishing mouthwash, brushing and styling my hair, and getting my backpack and phone just in time for my bus. I wait for my bus, texting my friend Oscar, who I’ve known since we were in 1st grade. Well, he was in 1st grade, and I was in Kindergarten. He’s a year older; he is also the one who even got me into football in the first place. 

“Good Morning,” the driver tells me in her slow, grave, and groggy voice. I don’t say anything back. I walk back to my seat, next to Oscar, who’s already nodding off. Looking from Oscar to my phone’s black screen, my reflection begins to look different again. Turning on my phone and going to the camera app, I saw that my nose was still as small as before, but my ears were the same size as my nose was, smaller than they should be. 

Oscar and I walk into school together like normal. I go to my locker, put my backpack away, and get all of my binders out, Honors Algebra II, ELA 10- ELA was never my thing-and, Chemistry. I got to my first period, Chemistry. 

“ Good morning, Liam,” my teacher says as he sips his freshly brewed coffee. I don’t say anything back. I just go to my seat and put my binders down. I look at the whiteboard to see the assignments he has for us today. Similarly to every other day, people come piling in the classroom as he greets them with “Good morning.”

 Mr. Clint starts the lesson as everyone takes notes. I raise my hand, “can I go to the bathroom?” He says yes, and I leave the classroom. Walking to the bathroom, I look into the different classrooms seeing my friends either asleep or looking bored out of their minds. I get into the bathroom, once I wash my hands I look in the mirror. My eyes are bigger than usual, but everything else is back to normal. I just tell myself, again, I just must be tired.

I get home and do my normal routine: completing chores, walking the dog, doing the dishes, and finishing my homework for my classes just before I can get into the bathroom. I looked into the mirror before my shower, seeing that all of my facial features are the same. Everything went back to normal, so I just must have been tired. I get in and out of the shower and start getting ready for football practice. After being exhausted from football practice, I get another shower, eat dinner and go to bed.

Dear Journal,   Oct. 23, 2022

For the past few days, I’ve started to notice more and more that my facial features have changed every single time. I look into any reflective surface, mirrors, my phone screen, and any desk that is shiny enough. I have no idea what’s happening because I’ve recently gotten over a depressive episode. Maybe, I’m not completely over how much I hated myself and my body when I was younger. 

I don’t know what’s happening to me, or why? I could talk to my coach because I trust him with almost anything. He’s helped me through my episode when my Mom and Dad kept fighting every day. 

I come to my coach’s office, “ Hey, uh… Can I please talk to you? It’s kind of important.” I tell him with an obviously uncomfortable impression. 

“ Sure, what’s going on?” He offers me a seat, 

“Something is going on. Every time I look in a mirror or something I look different, or the first thing that just comes to mind is ‘this isn’t my body’ or ‘this isn’t what I look like normally’ which is what is happening. I look different.” He looks at me confused, like I’m lying or, I look crazy.

 “Well, you definitely don’t look different. You look the same as I saw you at practice last night. Have you thought maybe this is connected to what you’ve experienced with your mental health before?” 

I think for a minute, “that’s what I thought but, I don’t know. You say I look different but I swear, I look off.” He doesn’t respond, just thinks. He takes his phone and shows me the camera app. 

“What looks different to you?” 

I look at him confused, analyzing my face. “It looks like my nose is bigger and my lips are smaller; I just look different.” Coach stares at me. 

“You don’t look different, it’s just you, Liam.” 

I don’t say anything, and he continues to look at me. I open my mouth, not saying anything, “am I crazy?” he looks up at me, looking stunned.

 “You aren’t crazy, you might just have a mental issue called body dysmorphia.”


Dear Journal,   Oct. 25, 2022

After talking to my football Coach, I did research about what he told me was body dysmorphia. It all makes sense.