Lena Dunham’s sister Grace is opening up about a personal battle with body image, self-acceptance and gender identity.
The 24-year-old writer is one of the nine people who appear in Fullscreen’s special season of StyleLikeU docu-series – The What’s Underneath Project.
For the project subjects get real about their own insecurities and how they found comfort in their own skin while simultaneously (and symbolically) removing layers of their clothes.
For Grace – who originally came out as a lesbian at the age of 17 – the struggle is about understanding which gender to identify with – if any.
I think at this phase in my life, there’s a particular weight on gender and trying to adequately communicate [that] I’m not a woman, but I’m not a man.
Grace was inspired to go down the path that defies categorization by friend and trans-activist Reina Gossett – who opened Grace up to the possibilities after struggling to fit into the box of perfect femme lesbian.
I think I was really confused. I was like – but I am having sex with women? I’m out. Everyone knows I’m a lesbian. What is this feeling I am having? Why am I still feeling a lot of shame? Why do I still hate my body?”
Grace now understands that there are more than two gender identities to choose from – and embracing the unknown is powerful enough.
Maybe just accepting I don’t have a name for myself and accepting that uncertainty is a more accurate reflection and a more freeing reflection of who I want to be then trying to figure out which box is best. I think self acceptance and self love is a process that might not ever come to an end. My body – like, it’s mine. It’s me. It’s who I am.”
Grace isn’t the only star featured in the episode of – Christina Perri, Lina Esco, Lauren Wasser, Crystal Valentine, Jessie Kahnweiler and Gaby Dunn is also feature