I’ve worried about others’ opinions for the majority of my life.

You need to be able to love, forgive and trust yourself before you can consider giving them to another person.

If you don’t know how to give yourself love, you’ll be clueless how to give it to anybody else. Rob’s ambition, smarts and dedication intimidated me.

There was no way that he could like me in that way.

I was interested in giving a relationship with Mike a try, yet I was afraid.

They weren’t serious relationships, but I was still jealous. Even after goofy Mike literally asked me on a date, I didn’t take him seriously. We acted together in a summer theatre program called Second Stage.

Since I was insecure and lonely, I was jealous of anyone who found someone that understood, cared for and stood by them. I was too insecure and loathed myself too much to be able to understand what another person could value in me. I met him at auditions and it was love at first sight; for me, at least.

I was still losing weight and learning to love myself when I met my husband, Rob. How could somebody such as Rob ever like (or love) a person like me?

I was afraid he would realize how much work I needed.

I was more attractive because I cared about myself and what I put into my body.

The number of messages I received on OKCupid confirmed that I had something valuable to offer. True, I still had some weight to lose and wasn’t completely confident in myself.

I dwindled down my conversations to a handful who were smart, thoughtful and intriguing. If you can honestly say ‘yes’ to all those questions, you don’t need to lose weight to date. That’s not the way to find friends or maintain healthy relationships. I tried to lose weight because I thought I would make more friends.