Body positivity isn’t something that comes easy.
No matter your body type, as women especially, there will always be something deemed ‘wrong’ with it.
And we’re surrounded by messages of this constantly, from Victoria’s Secret’s refusal to diversify the size of the women in their shows, in order to maintain the ‘fantasy’ that plus size women couldn’t possibly sell, to the plus size models we do see having ‘perfect’ hourglass figures.
Even when there is representation of bigger women, it’s still clear that there is a right way to be bigger, and that is *white*, with defined waists and smooth stomachs.
Not to mention the amount of stores that get away with not even catering past an Australian size 12 or 14.
I’m generally a size 16, I have thick thighs, boobs that require extra room, bigger hips and a tummy, but I also don’t really have an ass and my waist is proportionatley smaller than the rest of my body.
And walking in to a store that doesn’t carry my size in lots of their clothes sucks.
It’s like being told that this something that we don’t want to see on your body, that your body isn’t good enough.
It’s almost worse when stores have an expanded size range in a lot of their clothing, but then select items are just a few small sizes, it’s like hearing, ‘well we’ve given you that, but this, this isn’t for you’.
It’s hard to not take it to heart.
And it might not be so disheartening if the clothes that have the size that supposedly fits you sometimes just didn’t fit… because why would sizing need to be consistent?
I went shopping today and I tried on clothes that were ‘my size’ that wouldn’t fit my thighs, and clothes the same size that I was swimming in.
My favourite playsuit (which I own in two colours) is a size 12 but then there are clothes from the SAME SHOP that won’t fit in a 16.
How is that a thing???
It’s something that I’ve really had to learn to process, like so many other women, regardless of their size, to get to a place where I have to remind myself that the letter or number on the tag doesn’t mean anything.
I used to be beaten down by this so much, even as an athlete two sizes smaller than I am now, I hated my body for not being able to just fit this inconsistent system.
The number meant so much to me that sizing up was heartbreaking, because the bigger the number, the less worthy I felt of loving myself.
As if a number should have dictated how I felt about myself.
Which is such bullshit.
Even at my thinnest I still had a stomach, my hips were still wide and my thighs still fought with jeans, the problem is not my body.
But knowing that, and being on my body positivity journey doesn’t mean that I’m suddenly bulletproof and that it doesn’t hit home when stores continue to tell me that my body isn’t good enough.
And my body is technically ‘mid-size’, which means I sit between standard sized and plus sized clothing, and can wear both.
(This also seems to mean I’m not fat enough to stop people making fatphobic comments around me, just as a side note)
So what I experience, I imagine only gets worse.
I just would like to be able to go shopping without being suffocated by fatphobia.
There are things I do to keep my own internalised fatphobia at bay as I work on ridding it from my life, but shopping seems to work at bringing it out to make sure I despise what I see in the mirror.
Those are my thoughts, what are yours? Let me know