I'm a 21 year old girl from Norway (please excuse my lousy english). I have PWS on almost the entire right side of my body, including the face.
I grew up in a loving and caring environment, and I had a great childhood, with a lot of friends. My parents were worried that I would be teased when I started going to school, so they always told me that it was important to be polite and kind, but also that I had to stand up for myself, and not tolerate teasing. I learned to read early, and my vocabulary greatly exceeded that of the other children of my age (I got to read books for adults too), so I promise you, the children that tried to tease me were those that ended up crying.. And I always got away with it, being "the poor little girl with the birthmark" *evillaughter*
I made many friends at school. Puberty came, and of course, that was a horrible time. But; and this is important to remember, it is for everyone! Noone gets through puberty without a scar or two.. Looking back, I now see that I had no reason to be that uncertain and unhappy.. I used to cry because I had no boyfriend. I thought that I was ugly and didn't dare to do something about it. After growing up, some of my friends from that time have told me that they were in love with me, but didn't dare to tell me because I was such an "Ice queen".. It wasn't my PWS that kept the boys away, it was my uncertainty, and thus my coldness..
I left home when I was 16, to go to highschool. It was difficult to make new friends, so I decided to develop the interests I already had. I started to work for an organization (operation dayswork), and got involved in youth politics. Suddenly, I found myself standing in front of 400 people, talking about international issues, without any makeup on (easier to get attention that way
I have to admit, though, that I wear makeup on my face in public. Why not? People that don't have PWSs wear it too. I live in a big city now, and I really do not have the time to answer all the questions from curious people. I feel more comfortable in public with my makeup on, but then again, so do all the other girls that I know.
Now, I study biology at the university. I live with my boyfriend. When we started to date, I was, of course, very nervous. The puberty issues were still there. But he said that he was so fascinated by my strong personality that he wouldn't let me go.* And I am grateful for that now, we have a great relationship. He loves me for who I am, and gets angry when I wear foundation when we're at home, he wants to see the real me.
Oops, I have written too much already. I just hope that my story can cheer other young girls up. One must not indulge in that "I have a birthmark, poor me" thing. Everyone has an issue, something that they don't like about themselves or their lives, or that other people don't like about them. A lost leg is a pretty big issue, so is a molester uncle. A PWS is not! Do not define your personality from that birthmark of yours, define it from what interests you, what makes you happy and what makes you feel like a complete, strong person! Write down a list of the things that you think are "you". It can be interests, food you like, music you like, favourite writers, words you just think sound beautiful, words that give you a warm feeling. Take a look at that list now and then, find out which things you want to learn more about or do more of, and do them! This is especially important if you start to feel depressed. Your PWS is not what makes you different, your personality is. Indulge in your personality, develop it, let it shine through. Live life to the fullest, what else is there to do?
Wow, that rhymed, a clear sign that I have to stop writing now
I wish you all good luck