Body Image Issues

Body image is how you see yourself when you picture yourself in your mind or when look in the mirror. Most people worry about how we look occasionally or see at least one aspect of our physical appearance we don’t like. But for some, these occasional thoughts can become frequent and disruptive. People with negative body image issues may avoid social situations and experience problems in relationships, depression, anger, anxiety, isolation, self-loathing and/or an obsession with weight loss. Body Dysmorphic Disorder (or BDD) is one example of a body-image disorder, characterized by persistent and intrusive preoccupations with an imagined or slight defect in one's appearance. The good news is that body image can be changed and BDD can be treated. Contact one of TherapyDen’s body image issues experts for help today!

Meet the specialists

I view body image issues as a form of Obsession-Only OCD. Intellectual change usually doesn't produce a comfort at being in this skin. Many of my women patients and some men have struggled with negative feelings regarding their obesity. I believe in Health at Any Size and Mindful Eating . I have also treated several men with anxiety regarding the masculinity of their bodies.

— Etan Ben-Ami, Clinical Social Worker

Healthy Body Image is not popping out of bed to wink at yourself in the mirror with a narcissistic grin. Just like feelings about anything else, how we feel about our size/shape/body parts fluctuates, for better or for worse, due to lots of factors. But how able are you to ACCEPT yourself physically right now? Your body IS what it is right now- whether that's optimal in your opinion or not. It is much easier to change, grow, and improve, when we can accept what currently exists.

— Kathryn Gates, Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX

Diet culture surrounds us each and every day. For many, we don't realize that we are developing body image issues or disordered eating until it has been deeply engrained in us. Before we know it, we're walking by mirrors and subconsciously body checking ourselves to make sure our outfit is flattering us the right way. I work closely with HAES/ Intuitive Eating specialists to help make sure that you are getting the best care while we build your confidence back up.

— Shelby Solis, Therapist

Our society sends us many messages about what it is to be healthy and attractive. Learning to love and accept ourselves for who we are is not only a personal journey but one that often involves pushing against these messages of society. Being happy in our own bodies these days is no small task, I am there to help you voice and navigate your struggles with being happy in your own skin.

— Stephanie Boulton, Counselor in Broomfield, CO

We all deserve to feel good about our bodies- but for many of us, that's complicated by years thinking or hearing that there's one right size or shape that we need to attain. I support you in sorting out diet culture programming from what's right for your health and well-being, and developing confidence and healthy habits that do not require a certain size.

— Abigail Thompson, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Francisco, CA

Having had bariatric surgery back in 2005, I've struggled with body image issues throughout my life. Having the surgery definitely didn't change my brain! There is a lot of work that has to go in to working on our mindset around becoming able to love ourselves and our bodies completely. Body image and self-esteem are so closely intertwined. By working on skills to become more accepting of our bodies, we can actually work to improve self-esteem without any physical changes needed!

— Amanda Dutton, Counselor in Stockbridge, GA

Body acceptance has been a critical part of my mental health journey, and I would like to help you find peace in the beautiful body you have.

— Anna Sutton, Licensed Professional Counselor Intern in Raleigh, NC

I have extensive clinical experience and training with a specialty in the treatment of eating disorders and body image concerns.

— Carolyn Karoll, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Towson, MD

The vast majority of adults (and many children) in the United States have some kind of disordered relationship to food and body. We're taught that the way we are isn't good enough and listening to our bodies' desires is dangerous. But many of us receive similar messages about all kinds of things. We're afraid to "take up space", use our voices, be free. Perhaps, your struggle with your body is a way you've learn to cope with not feeling good enough. We'll work together to understand the beliefs you hold about yourself and the world. We'll begin to bring these unconscious, automatic behaviors and reactions forward so you can choose other options. Over time, you'll feel more free and comfortable in your own skin. Depending on your needs, I may want to collaborate with a physician, Registered Dietician, and any other members of your care team.

— Lily Sloane, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Francisco, CA

I work with clients to develop a positive body image and form self-nurturing patterns regarding food, eating, movement, and sexuality. In my work, I encourage clients to challenge all forms of oppression. These include oppressions around race, gender, and sexuality as well as about the body.

— Kaye-Ailsa Rowan, Marriage & Family Therapist in San Jose, CA

Appreciating ourselves and what we have to offer the world can be difficult. There are a lot of messages out there that confuse and hurt us. My experience has led me to support people who are struggling with their body and appearance. I operate from a HAES® approach, this means that I believe that your weight does not determine your health or your worth in this life.

— Shae Ferguson, Licensed Professional Counselor Intern in Newberg, OR

Let's be real, who doesn't have some sort of body image issue in this world? For some, this issue can go much deeper and impact self-esteem and self-worth. I have experience treating individuals with body image issues, body dysmorphia and body dissatisfaction. My approach to treating body image issues includes reducing shame related to weight and appearance, increasing body acceptance, challenging your inner critic and practicing self-compassion.

— Kaitlin Stone, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist

I use the evidence based HAES (Health at Every Size) perspective and do not endorse intentional weight loss.

— ClaireMarie Clark, Clinical Psychologist in Fircrest, WA

Our bodies are the vessel in which we show up in the world...they sustain life, allow us to express and experience life fully.

— Michelle Kelley, Counselor in ,

Our bodies are the vessel in which we show up in the world...they sustain life, allow us to express and experience life fully.

— Michelle Kelley, Counselor in ,

We live in a society that is SO hostile toward those who don't fit the traditional ideal of beauty, which, let's face it, is most of us! Scientific studies have proven time and again that one's health is NOT determined by one's weight, but you'd never know it given mainstream media and the medical establishment. I do NOT promote diets of any kind and work with clients to improve their relationship with food and their bodies using the principles of Health-At-Every-Size and Intuitive Eating.

— Jacqueline "Jackie" Abeling, Marriage & Family Therapist in Maple Grove, MN