Women are constantly being told what they can and can’t wear. Unless you’ve got the perfect size eight figure, you’re supposed to dress frumpy and keep your wobbly bits hidden. In fact, there’s some clothing companies and designers that only make clothes to fit skinny women.
Why would a woman who’s 160 lb want to wear a figure-hugging dress? they assume. Well, the answer to that is because she’s got the confidence to rock it, even if her less-than-perfect tummy’s on show.
When I was younger, I wanted to wear tops that showed off my midriff, but my mom wouldn’t let me because she believed that it would attract the ”wrong” kind of attention. Now that I’m older, I’ve got a collection of crop tops that I couldn’t be happier with.
Women should be allowed to wear what makes them feel good about themselves, regardless of what other people think, because no one should dress to satisfy other people’s expectations about how they should look.
Katey Johnson is a blogger and mom-of-two who’s got a sizable Facebook following. On August 14, 2017, she decided to post a photograph of herself in a figure-hugging dress, which she admitted she had ”no business wearing”. This was accompanied by a brilliant post about body image, and why women need to change their attitudes towards what they will and won’t wear. Why? Because a positive attitude towards your body can affect so many other aspects of your life.
What made Katey’s post stand out was because her message is unusual. Instead of hoping that the Facebook community she’s built around her blog, The Mother Octopus, would compliment how she looks in the dress, she admits that it’s not flattering to her figure, and she doesn’t want people to commend her for wearing it.
”This is me in a dress I have no business wearing. It’s not the first time I’ve worn it, and it won’t be the last time. I know it’s not flattering, but I don’t want you to say, ‘OMG, YOU LOOK GREAT!’ I don’t want you to say, ‘GOOD FOR YOU!’ I want you to know why I’m wearing a dress I have no business wearing.”
Someone could say that I look a little pregnant in it because of, you know, that part sticking out in the front. I do look a little pregnant. That’s fine. Once upon a time I grew two babies in that part sticking out in the front, but I assure you, now it’s just where I keep my cheeseburgers and sauvignon blanc.
I bought this dress for a trip my husband and I took in July. When I tried it on, I knew the dress wasn’t made for my 5’2″ body, 160 lb body, but I felt great in it. I don’t know why. I just did. I’m not known to wear form-fitting clothes. At all. But I wanted it, so I bought it. And I was proud of myself for it.”
”I’ve always struggled with my weight, and if you’ve ever struggled with your weight, you know it’s not a physical struggle. It’s about how you see yourself and how you speak to yourself in your mind. After 40 years of telling myself I have no business wearing things I want to wear, I’ve decided to change the subject. I’ve decided to start being kind to myself.”
In a world where an increasing number of women are suffering because of societal pressure to look a certain way, Katey’s post is a breath of fresh air. By letting go of preconceived notions about what she can and can’t wear, she’s increased her confidence and rocked a dress she’d never have worn otherwise.
People look to bloggers for advice all the time. They’re ordinary people like you and me and that’s why many of them are so successful online – we can relate to the highs and lows of their lives. In Katey’s fantastic post, she called on the readers of her blog to do the same as her:
”Here’s the thing. If I can put on a dress I have no business wearing to go out with my husband or to go to a fancy dinner at a nice restaurant with my best friend because it makes me feel good, you can too.”
So the next time you find yourself in the mall staring longingly at dresses – or anything else – that you wish you could wear but don’t think are made for your body size, think of Katey and the dress she ”has no business wearing” because a little change to your wardrobe could actually be a big change in your life.
Here’s the message in full: