Wow! I really thought we were living in a world where no one should feel ashamed or embarrassed about their body: including weight, size, looks, bra size etc.
So, when I went wedding dress shopping on Saturday (I get married next year – eek!), the owner of the second store kept redirecting me to the ‘plus sized’ section.
Now, I have no qualms about having curves. I love food, I have boobs and, yes I would like to lose a bit of weight, I’m at a place where I’m quite content with how I look. I’m early-thirties and did enough stressing over my looks during my twenties. My hubby-to-be loves me for who I am and, therefore, so should I.
But on Saturday, I felt fat!
I’d spent the morning shopping for dresses in the first wedding shop I’ve visited. My word, the woman helping me was incredible. She made me feel amazing! She kept saying how she loved my body shape (hour glass with a massive bottom!!) and even asked me if I squat. (I don’t… I wouldn’t get back up again after the first one! Ha!) Don’t get me wrong, it’s her job to make women feel beautiful but she really, really did!
Since going on the pill at 18, I went from a size 8 to a size 16 at my biggest – with my weight fluctuating many times. Hey ho, it happens! I came off the pill about 8 years ago (migraines! yuk!) and the weight did not come off as easily as it went on, believe you me!
So, anyway, I was feeling fabulous and the dresses I tried on were gorgeous. I said to every single one “I won’t fit into that! It won’t go over my bum!” but it did. Yay.
Next stop… the second shop.
I was told I wouldn’t fit into dresses from the normal racks (sizes 8-10) and that I had to get ones from the plus-sized rack (which had about 10 dresses on there so the choice was limited).
I picked up a size 14 dress from the normal rack and was told “You won’t fit into that!” by the shop owner.
My heart sank.
I am a size 14 and she said I’m too big for it.
I went from feeling so elated and feeling beautiful to feeling humongous and ugly.
I put the size 14 dress onto the ‘try on’ rail and she huffed and puffed about it. She eventually helped me into it… and, guess what!
She said “Oh! It does fit… and your waist is a lot smaller than this dress!”
It looked like a sack on me!
So, not only did she tell me that the size I am wouldn’t fit me, the dress itself was actually bigger than me!!
Needless to say, I didn’t buy a dress from that shop and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone, but my point today is that, at 34 years of age, I felt somewhat body-shamed. I had a wave of feeling like I wanted to cry but have chosen to remember the body-boosting comments from the lady of the first shop instead.
But what if I were an insecure teenager or someone who had battled with body-issues all my life?
I’m furious that we still live in a world where being over a size 10 is deemed FAT! We should be celebrating the diversity of each other’s body shapes, not making girls feel like they should be one small size.
Thanks for letting me off-load. I just had to share my experience because it’s mortifying knowing that there is still pressure for girls to be slimmer than what they are.
Side note: I think one of my legs is a size 8 but oh well!
Here’s to girls feeling beautiful in their own skin and remembering that Marilyn Monroe was deemed one of the most beautiful women in the world, and she was curvy at a size 16! And a size 16 is the average size in the UK…
Lots of love,