What a great thread!
I'm 33. My PWS is on my right leg, starts at my toes, covers the bottom of my right foot, covers the back of my calf and thigh, goes over right butt cheek and stops on my lower back.
Dating and relationships were never an issue for me - and it's not like I ever make any effort to cover the birthmark with long pants, makeup, etc. In fact, I look at my birthmark as a "jerk filter;" I'm a pretty terrific person, and if someone's not going to go out with me because I have a big ugly birthmark on my leg - HIS LOSS! He's obviously way too shallow and obsessed with appearances to be my cup of tea..!
I've now been through two marriages (first divorce was because he did something truly terrible, second divorce was because he turned out to be gay!), but neither husband nor any of my more serious boyfriends had any issue with my birthmark, ever
. In fact, as I was laying in bed with my college boyfriend and we were talking about it (because, yeah, we'd just "done it" and I was naked as a jaybird), he told me it was as if the day I was born, G-d had just gotten a brand-new purple Magic Marker and was eager to color with it. I thought that was really sweet and cute!
I do a lot of theatre, and I'm a dancer, so my legs are exposed a lot - but for some rehearsals, I wear dance tights that do an excellent job of concealing them - although I wear the tights mostly to conceal the cellulite, NOT the PWS, ha! My boyfriend is in the show with me, and he told me later that it was weird to see me without
the birthmark - that he felt like something was missing. He said that my birthmark is part of the "whole me" - and he happens to love the "whole me."
I am an extremely extroverted person - perhaps with an overabundance of confidence, sometimes to my detriment! I put myself out there and live my life as if nothing is wrong - because nothing is wrong.
I have a PWS. It's a part of me. It's not wrong, or bad. It's just there.
Is it ugly? Depends on the person looking at it. I happen to believe that ALL life is beautiful, no matter how it's colored, marked, shaped, sculpted or created - and that includes myself.
I try to find others like me to spend my time with - but I'm not going to find them by hiding myself. So I get out there... and by being confident, I think I've been able to meet and have meaningful relationships with good guys, some lasting for years.
I know it is so hard to get past it - hey, I even have some days where I hate the thing, especially when I audition for a part and I know
I didn't get it because I have this lousy purple thing. BUT - I just don't give myself permission to feel inferior... because I'm NOT. And neither are any of YOU.