Summer is coming

The weather’s getting warmer here, and today we had a taste of the summer that is coming. I hate summer. It’s another reminder that I’m a freak. I can no longer get away with wearing a hessian bag.  I was reminded of this fact when I heard the weather forecast this morning and looked despondently in my (new) wardrobe for some appropriate attire.

Alas, not much there. In part because I’ve gained weight, and in part because I’ve never really worn nice clothes. I’ve always been more comfortable in my hessian bag. My therapist says this is about not being noticed, and not being noticed as a “sexual being”.

Despite the fact that I still like the protection of my hessian bag, there’s a little part of me who’s sick of feeling like a slug and looking like a sack of potatoes.

Trouble is: I don’t really know what else to do. My mother always had a “that will do” attitude to her own appearance, and took a similar approach with mine. She never encouraged me to “dress up” or dress to look and feel good. I’m guessing because for most of my growing up years I was overweight, so when Dad wasn’t making nasty comments about how fat and ugly I was, my mother was saying, “you’ll have to wear that one then” – meaning the big and ugly one.

So I just don’t really know how to dress not to hide, let alone how to dress to feel and look good. I don’t know how to do skirts or dresses or high heels, let alone anything that’s comfortable in warm weather. I only really learned to do make up when I was about 25.

On my way to work I stared longingly at the clothing stores and the little summer dresses on display. Even if I had the courage to go into such a shop, I’d never try one on. Just the fear of it not fitting me would be enough to tip me over the edge.

So I stick with my hessian bag, and continue to feel like a slug and look like a sack of potatoes.



8 thoughts on “Summer is coming

  1. Do you have a friend who is good at shopping and dressing you could take with you? I have a partner who is good at picking out clothes that will fit and suit me and it really helps.

  2. Hi Sword Dancer, thanks for dropping by. I do have at least one friend in this category. Alas, I would be too scared to ask her. In part it’s a fear of admitting how hopeless I am at this stuff (as if she doesn’t know already!) and in part it’s fear of not finding anything that fits or looks good, and having to show how hideous I am to this friend. *Sigh*

  3. As I may have mentioned here and also on my blog, my mother is a woman of non-standard size; she’s at least 100 pounds overweight. However, when she dresses up and wears clothes that she feels good in — which she rarely does, because she doesn’t feel she’s worth the effort — she looks great.

    I don’t know about where you live, but here, we have more than one very nice women’s clothing store that caters exclusively to women who are US size 18 and above, and which are staffed exclusively by women who wear those sizes. That’s where my mom shops; where she knows the clothing will fit, and where the sales staff are women she can relate to, and perhaps most importantly, who look attractive and well-put-together in the very same types of clothing she is looking at.

    So that would be my recommendation — to see if this is an option where you live, so you can shop in comfort, knowing that the right choices will be there, and that you can be supported and advised by women who are comfortable being a larger size and also being attractive. Because those two things are in no way mutually exclusive.

    The other day I thought of all the female bloggers I know who struggle so painfully with self-image and weight, when I was doing some paperwork with a client of mine … she is not only a very big girl, she’s also pregnant. Despite both of those things, I found her to be the most attractive woman I’ve met in a long time, other than Beth. I don’t usually have completely pheromonally-driven reactions to women; it’s very rare. But I would have no hesitation in describing this woman as incredibly beautiful.

  4. Hi David, thank you once again for your thoughtful comments. Thing is… I can’t shop in the plus size stores either (although I used to, years ago). I can generally shop in mainstream stores, except the ones designed for tweeny-sized micro humans.

    I guess the problem is that I have gained weight and I am embarrassed to be seen, even if in the scheme of things the weight gain isn’t that big. I am, as you say, just struggling with self-image and weight.

    I am embarrassed by myself, by the fact I can’t wear “nice” things (which in my book equates to skirts, dresses and the like) because they just don’t look good on someone like me. I fear that whatever I wear I will never be “beautiful”. Or perhaps that’s my mother talking??? Hmm…

  5. I’m curious … how do you know that skirts and dresses don’t look good on you? Perhaps it’s the style that doesn’t suit you, rather than the garment? There’s nobody, not even the most perfect figure, that can successfully wear every style. The secret to beauty is finding out what *does* look good on you. I’m sure there is something that flatters you, because I have seen thousands of women in my lifetime, of all shapes and sizes, and many of them have looked attractive and comfortable in their clothing. Unless you have four arms or a body part in the wrong place, I am absolutely sure that there is clothing out there that will flatter you.

  6. I hear you, Kerro. Until I was about 27 I was all kneecaps and elbows. Then my thyroid went bad (I had no idea it was that at the time). Even so, all of my childhood, my mother told me I was fat. Do you remember Sears when they came out with their new “chubby” line? Well, my mother would buy only from that line and then make me wear them. They were always way too big. I often pinned the pants to the back of my shirts to keep them up. Finally, my friend’s mother had her invite me over regularly so she could sew them in for me. After awhile, tho, I thot of myself as fat anyway. It’s devastating. All those years ago, when I weighed 112 pounds, I cried because I was fat. People just don’t know the damage they can cause with their words…

  7. @ David – I know because there’s a little voice inside my head that tells me so; because whenever I try anything on I just want to vomit at the sight of myself; because it makes me want to hurt myself – badly; because all I see is ugliness and lard. 10kg ago I could have told you what clothing suited me – even what shaped dresses and skirts would suit me, though I would never have had the courage to wear them. I think this whole weight gain thing is just so triggering for me. It’s hideous, even if I do have the standard number of body parts, all in the right places.

    @ Ivory – I have a dud thyroid too (or did until it got removed). I can’t believe your mother told you that you were fat when you weren’t. Outrageous! My mother still makes “fat” comments. I don’t remember Sears’ “chubby” line coz we don’t have Sears here, but my mother made me wear the ugly “big people’s” clothing when I was a kid. Or the boys’ clothes coz they were bigger. Either way I felt like a freak. I don’t want to feel like this anymore.

  8. Pingback: Repeat « Kerro’s Korner

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