Fat: and MY issue of femininity?

Monday, July 23, 2012 Permalink
[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/Schmiet/status/227220428198916096″]

Yes, it’s true. I arranged to catch up with an old friend today and after seeing her and while out and about, I drove into my workplace to go to my fave gym class.

And it was perfect for many reasons – empowering music and dancing, not to mention our fabulous instructor. I walked out of the class feeling great.

And then… I saw this guy I kinda like the look of. Don’t get me wrong. You’ve read my posts long enough to know that – although I KNOW better – I still believe I need to lose a lot more weight before I am attractive to men (and am able to believe myself to be attractive to men). So, a relationship isn’t even on my radar – although I recently realised (and sheepishly admitted?!) that it is something I want more than I wish I wanted it. (If that makes sense. It does to me, so that’s actually all that matters!)

Anyway, it’s rare that I come across anyone who makes me wish I looked different and was more available. (I should mention that I don’t see this guy as an option at all and he’s possibly married, but it’s more that he reminds me of the potential that exists out there).

So, I got into the lift feeling chuffed that I’d been to the gym on my day off, enjoyed my class and seen the cute boy, but then…. I caught a glimpse of myself in the reflective metal of the elevator.

Holy shit! I. Looked. Like. Crap.

Worse than crap. And I’m not being self-deprecating here. My face was redder-than-red and my hair sweaty and all over the place. My t-shirt completely wet around the neck, though long enough to cover my rotund stomach, hips and thighs (encased in 3/4 leggings).

I sighed but I wanted to cry.

I mean, the fatness (eek, must remember to speak nicely about myself) rotundness of my body is one thing (and I’m trying to deal with that); but I just looked unattractive.

I’m growing my hair. Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE my short hair. I love how easy it is to manage. I love that it doesn’t matter that it’s constantly sweaty cos it looks all choppy and groovy anyway. And I love that it’s not typical of a forty-something year old woman. But, I do wonder if I look like the stereotypical butch lesbian. Which I’m not. Gay, I mean. If I was that would be fine. But I’m not. Now I hardly think it’s been cramping my style and that men would have been beating down my door had they not all been assuming I was / am gay, but still… I suspect it doesn’t help.

Now, I’m not growing my hair because I think I look gay or worry that people will assume I am. Rather, I’m growing my hair because I want a change. Although, I must confess… I do want to look a bit more feminine. And of course, now that it’s growing and completely styleless, it looks – horrendous!

And THAT’S what struck me in the lift this morning. It wasn’t that I felt fat and frumpy or even fat and flabby. I felt unfeminine. It occurred to me that I’m not even vaguely girly at the moment and I could not believe that bothered me. As it doesn’t usually.
So naturally I’ve been wondering about that ever since returning home.

I have not worn a skirt or dress for years. At least five or so I think. I used to wear them occasionally, but not recently. In fact I haven’t worn any since I started regaining weight after losing it in the early 2000s.

Some people are the opposite. I recently worked with a fairly plump woman who ONLY wore skirts. There was no way in hell she would wear pants she said. They made her feel too short and pudgy.

I’m the opposite. I’m almost tempted to say I feel ‘unworthy’ or ‘undeserving’ of a skirt, but that’s not really true. It’s just not something I feel comfortable in at the moment.

I know it’s me (not you!). I know that – even though I’m big – I should be able to feel sexy or feminine. Just as I should feel worthy of love and attention. (Yadda, yadda, yadda!) But – quite frankly I just don’t.

Never fear, I’m hardly likely to don stilettos and pastels and florals and frolic about with picnic baskets. Cos that’s just not who I am. And it’s not something I’m usually overly angsty about.

I tend to (increasingly) go about my life worrying little about what I look like and I suspect THAT’S what concerns me. I’m pretty sure I avoid ‘frumpy’ and hover closer to ‘funky’ despite my weight and clothing limitations.

I believe I focus on being ‘me’ and my clothes reflect that. Which I guess says it all. I don’t feel feminine and so don’t dress that way. But it’s moments like the one I experienced today that remind me that I wouldn’t ‘mind’ feeling a bit more attractive or a bit more feminine from time to time. I know one doesn’t have to be feminine to be attractive or sexy (particularly if one isn’t female – hee hee!), but for me it’s another reminder of the way my mind works and my own slightly-screwy belief system.

Are you a wearer of trousers or skirts? Or both?
Do you have any magic elixirs that will make my hair grow quickly? 

 

 

20 Comments
  • Sharmila
    July 23, 2012

    Great post! On the hair .. I was made to have short hair as a child and hated it. You have a pretty face and I envy women like you who can wear short hair so well. Longer hair does make me feel more feminine. I have always been a pant wearer and have lately been feeling the same as you in wanting to wear more dresses and skirts! Problem now is trying to find dresses and skirts to suit my body type .. always a challenge!

    • Debbish
      July 23, 2012

      True Sharmila… Last time I wore skirts they were longish – just below mid calf – but they were all kinda edgy and oblong lengths etc. I’ve still got them though may struggle to fit into most. I just can’t imagine wearing them at the moment.

      Deb

  • Miz
    July 23, 2012

    Im pants. COMPLETELY.
    fancy events interviews hanging out work functions all of it.
    and Im also short hair—if I could pull it off 🙂
    It looks fantastimo on you.
    on me? not so much and it doesnt “feel” right either.

    • Debbish
      July 23, 2012

      I definitely envy you your long hair Miz. Mine’s been long from time to time, but I’m always too hot to wear it out (so wore it up everyday and it defeated the purpose of having long hair). I’m now going for something in between. I hope!

      Deb

  • Vanessa @ Babbling Bandit
    July 23, 2012

    I wear both pants and skirts but I so know what you mean about feeling unfeminine. Since I spend most of my days looking after kids I don’t wear make up as much as I used to. Being fair skinned you really cannot see my features (eg eyelashes) without make up so it makes me feel really unfeminine without it.

    Even though I always have my hair tied back I will never cut it. It is my my favourite feature (when I actually blowdry it)! No matter how fat I ever feel, I’ve always got my hair. I’ve had short hair in the past though because at the time I felt I needed a change, but I always regret cutting it off. Wish I could pull off short hair for the convenience of it! Plus I get ‘hair headaches’ which I am sure would not be as bad if it was short. You are lucky short hair suits you!

    I also feel too fat for love. Crazy, hey. All my life I’ve blamed my singledom on being too overweight to be loveable. It sucks, but not enough to get me to the gym!

    • Debbish
      July 23, 2012

      I don’t wear makeup Vanessa (my face and head gets hot and irritable – which is why I cut my hair off in the first place). I do wear lipstick though and that does help a bit (me feel more feminine). But yeah, long hair is probably a good start.

      Silly isn’t it and I cannot believe that I’m an adult having these thoughts. Mostly I like that I had the courage to cut it off really short and ‘buck’ the system (and that WAS supposed to be a ‘b’) but it’d be nice to feel a bit more girly sometimes (and I cannot believe I admit that!).

      PS. Not so much my gym, but many gyms feature cute guys!!!

  • Kerstin
    July 23, 2012

    I’m with Sharmila, you have a lovely face for short hair, not everyone can pull that off. And I totally get it about the ease of it. I cut my hair short when I moved to the States seven years ago, I was growing out my roots and going natural, i.e. grey! I also love the look of long hair and how feminine it is, but long hair doesn’t really suit me, never has. So I am always in between but the craving for those luscious locks never really goes away.

    As for skirts, I love wearing them. Always long ones because I don’t think that big calves and short skirts go together. Despite my weight I am still quite shapely and that’s what I am basically trying to enhance with the way I dress, go with the lines of my body rather than fight them. Which means low-ish cut tops, not hiding my waist and covering my calves. And I always feel more feminine and sexy when my nails are done and I am wearing a nice perfume.

    Don’t forget how great you felt after going to the gym on your day off, that is all that matters. You did something for you and that’s all that matters, too. The right guy will fall in love with you not because of how much you weigh, but because you are YOU. And from where I stand you are a very attractive and lovable woman. Who is a great and funny writer! 🙂

    • Debbish
      July 24, 2012

      Oh Kerstin… thanks so much and your comment made my day!

      I love the middle paragraph and I was reminded in previous comments that things OTHER than skirts and dresses can be feminine. I’m a lover of perfume and have a nice supply and perhaps I need to make more of an effort in other ways. I think of my ‘look’ as a bit funky (nearly middle-aged funky, I must add) but perhaps I can soften it myself a bit (without – yet – donning a skirt).

      And you are most certainly right. I did feel great after the gym. Fit and healthy etc.

      Deb

  • Jo Tracey
    July 24, 2012

    i wasn’t allowed to grow my hair when I was a kid & now love it long- it makes me feel a lot more in touch with my Venus. I mostly wear pants, but also do skirts when the occasion warrants. The one thing I don’t do since I put on weight (again) is heels…& I always loved my heels…

    • Debbish
      July 25, 2012

      Jo, I’m not a lover of heels but I feel more ‘dressed up’ or feminine when I wear them. (Of course I can only wear them for brief amounts of time!) People have always assumed I don’t wear heels cos I’m tall (5ft 10) but that doesn’t worry me. It’s always been the comfort factor for me.

  • Georgie
    July 24, 2012

    I’m with you on this: I couldn’t possibly wear skirts because with my humongous frame I don’t feel feminine enough. It’s a total nightmare in the heat though and I am soooooo envious of the skinnies wearing those lovely floaty skirts/maxi dresses in the heat as I sweat myself thin (I wish!) through my heat absorbant black trousers! Love your blog x
    http://dysfunctionaldieter.blogspot.co.uk/

    • Debbish
      July 25, 2012

      Hi Georgie and thanks. Will pop by your blog and have a look.

      It’s winter here in Oz at the moment but I know what you mean… in summer I look enviously at those in their sleeveless floaty dresses as I wear long sleeves and long trousers!

      Deb

  • patricia
    July 24, 2012

    hi just read this – yep i gre my hair form short and chopy to shoulder lenght- sure did not feel atractive when i did this – no secret except say to get a good hair dreesser on side and have a cut every 2- 3 months (it seems it helps the shape)

    i once had super short blonfd hair , was wearing leggings and a tunic top and ankle boots- the comment i got was who is the giant blond dyke?????

    I thought i looked good- but that was not the look i was aimimng for – goodluck

    • Debbish
      July 25, 2012

      Thanks Patricia!

  • KCLAnderson (Karen)
    July 26, 2012

    I have known skinny women who were totally NOT feminine and I have known very heavy women who were the epitome of femininity. I have known women who only wear pants who are extremely feminine and women who wear skirts and are mannish. Same with hair of all lengths.

    Femininity is such a state of mind and it’s a spectrum…really and truly. And it is something to practice, not something that you can just turn on or off. In the end, I think it comes down to confidence in who we are that makes the biggest impact.

    I tend to wear pants although have come to appreciate dresses and skirts. Fact is, lately I don’t have many opportunities to “dress up” although I am going to a retreat this coming weekend that requires “business casual” which is certainly more dressy than what I wear at home every day (yes I work from home).

    I say embrace your femininity right where it is 🙂

    • Debbish
      July 26, 2012

      Yes, since writing this Karen (and having thought about the comments) I think I was linking femininity with attractiveness. I tend to feel blah and asexual rather than attractive and sexy. More about how I feel about myself than what I wear I suspect.

  • Karen@WaistingTime
    July 26, 2012

    I was just looking at hair styles at the gym recently, wondering about going short again. Mine is about chin length in front and shorter in back. I saw an Oprah episode years ago about women who look young for their age and they ALL had long (or longish) hair!! And when I was looking around the gym, most of the short cuts were on older women. But, get this – having mine longer makes me feel that my face doesn’t look as fat! I have a very broad jaw-line:(

    • Debbish
      July 26, 2012

      I’m a bit worried Karen that the style I want will make my face look fatter – as I’m looking at a blunt straight bob cut around the bottom of my ears. Sometimes if my hair is too flat on top (my hair is dead straight) it isn’t very complimentary. Guess only time will tell… (unless my face becomes thinner before then!)

  • Julia
    July 27, 2012

    I think you are doing so many great things for your body, but it is about feeling good in your soul, too. If you feel feminine inside, it doesn’t matter what you are wearing on the outside – make up, long hair or skirts. I think your baths are a great example – they are your way of pampering yourself. Can you do more of those things for yourself – masks, massages, etc? If you aren’t into makeup, and your hair is in a funk, you could do lots of other blissful things for yourself. While I always feel more feminine when I’m wearing something girly, I feel just as womanly in sweats if I’ve just given myself a good scrub, plucked my eyebrows, did my nails and had a good shake to Madonna.

    • Debbish
      July 27, 2012

      I’m probably due for some pampering stuff Julia and a facial / massage might be the way to go. I’m also getting my hair colour done soon so hopefully that’ll help brighten it up a bit (given I’m in that ‘growing it out’ phase!).

      Deb

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