Real talk: a letter to my 15 year old self

On New Years Eve, the trend of sharing a photo of yourself from 10 years ago was doing the rounds on social media. In this week’s real talk series, I thought it would be fitting to write a letter to my 15-year-old self who was also entering a new decade.

Dear Charlotte,

Happy new year! You’ve probably already set your new years resolutions. They most likely revolve around losing half a stone and exercising four times a week. Is this the year you vow to give up chocolate? I’ve lost track of time but spoiler #1 – you did it! Most people will think you are crazy for even trying but your will power is strong. (Spoiler #2 – It declines as you age.)

I know everyone tells you this but they’re right, you don’t need to diet. In the years to come, you will understand consumerism better. You’ll be shocked at how much time you will have spent on trying to change yourself because marketing directors made you feel like you weren’t good enough. You are wonderful, exactly as you are.

Soon, you will attend an assembly and the speaker will ask you to make some goals for the next 10 years. I can roughly remember what you will write down. You will aim to drive a baby blue convertible VW Beetle. Seaking fluent French was also on the list. You also write down owning a West Highland Terrier puppy. I remember you thinking how old I would be in 10 years time but 10 years is nothing compared to our lifetime ahead of us. Spoiler #3: in 2020, we drive a blue Hyundai i10. Our French isn’t fluent but it’s pretty good and we have a degree in it! We also have an 8 month old Cavalier-Bichon crossbreed. So really, everything is going to turn out just fine.

I just wish you could stop thinking about calories so much and enjoy your teenage years. It’s not really your fault. Every magazine that you have read has glorified thin bodies and how to achieve them. In about 9 years time (spoiler #4), you will discover the body positivity community. I just wish it was there for you now.

Here is my final spoiler: the next 5 years will throw difficult situations at you followed by another 5 years of incredible happiness. Be strong, listen to your instincts and embrace every opportunity.

With love,

Charlotte x

I hope that this week’s real talk series of writing a letter to my 15 year old self has inspired you to be more reflective. If you’re struggling with your relationship with food, contact BEAT Eating Disorders service for support.