Feeling crappy about yourself? Get a dose of body positivity RIGHT HERE

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by JBe Photography

Who knows what triggers a bad day. You're going along, feeling pretty good, and then suddenly you're being sucked into a vat of negativity.

"Nothing fits."
"Why do I look this way…"
"Why can't I…?"
"Why am I…?"

Oh, darlings. On those days, I wish I could give you all the hugs. Instead, I've got a whole armful of encouraging, beautiful photos and quotes about body positivity for you to wrap yourselves in. You're gorgeous, loves!

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Seattle Boudoir Photography

I'm freakin' HOT!

It doesn't matter about size or scars or weight or anything. What matters is how you FEEL. And I have never been more amazed at how comfortable I could be with myself.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride

I will not let you tell me what to wear, how to fix my hair, or how I should do my make-up.
I will not spend nights in tears because I am not "beautiful enough," or "thin enough" for you.
I will not go on a crash diet.
I will not refrain from getting my septum pierced for fear that you will tell me it makes me look less-than-bridal.
I will not try to hide my stretched lobes or cover my tattoo.
I will not be ashamed of my lopsided breasts.
I am me. I look fine just the way I am, and I will not let you tell me otherwise.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Whitney Lee Photography

I promise to love my body, and to let my partner tell me how beautiful I look in my wedding dress. I also promise not to compromise my choice of dress out of a misguided sense of worthlessness due to my rolls or double chin. I promise to stop trying to get out of hiring a photographer "because it's too expensive" just because I'm embarrassed to be seen in pictures.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Lara and Susie Photography

As beautiful as I may tell myself I am, that dress represented the fear of having gained weight on an already large body. It wasn't a problem being fat, I just wanted to be certain I was fat and fabulous.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Kate O'Brien

If you feel up to it, you can always say something like "I'm not planning on losing weight for my wedding". You don't need to sass them back, or come back with a quip that will make them regret ever saying anything to you. You don't have time for that, and you'll feel rotten afterwards. Focus on your main goal – getting this theatrical monster of a wedding on the road.

DRC_3930
Photo by The Dark Room Company

The biggest challenge was feeling worthy of a wedding. I've always held the notion that black girls like me (queer, dark-skinned, nappy-haired, chunky), didn't get their happily ever afters. So I never put much time or effort into dreaming up a fantasy wedding.

But I overcame the doubt of worthiness by remembering that I have a partner/teammate/husband/friend/homie who truly loves me unconditionally and without apology. He loves my whole self and doesn't ask me to dim the light I shine in this world.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Making the Moment

I'm doing my best to emphasize body positivity, communicate to my friends and family that I love them just the way they are, and help those who wouldn't otherwise want to change their bodies understand that looks don't dictate one's ability to celebrate a marriage.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Dawn's Eye Photography

… my fiancé has been able to bring some excellent perspective… for instance, when I make an offhanded comment about the possibility that my dress might conspire to "make me look fat," he replied: "How can a dress make you fat? You don't eat it."

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo from TravisandLucy

… make sure you're paying a professional (either a dress-maker or bridal store) who encourages and supports all body types. Vendors who make disparaging comments about weight are worth neither your money nor your time.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo from Katy Zimmerman

In ten days it will all be memory. In ten weeks it will all be "stories" to share. In ten months it will be "WOW! We've been married almost a year. So much has happened." In ten years it will be photos I look back on and smile, and memories I hold dear (possibly while sharing my wisdom with The Girls as they plan/dream about their own weddings). And in ten decades… in ten decades it will only matter that we lived and that we loved.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Maile Lani

I’d found myself on the phone with a friend, tallying off the list of note-worthy happenings: the visits, the bridal appointments, the body image, the self-hate.

“You know all these things are connected to each other,” she said to me, as I abruptly broke down in a series of sobs that didn’t ease up as she continued, “I don’t think the fear is ‘What if I don’t look good?’ I think the real fear is ‘What if I look stunning and I accept myself for who I really am?’”

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Oliver Barth

… my wedding is complicated because I'm complicated. It's not Wedding Industrial Complex, it's me complex. We're having a curated playlist in lieu of a DJ, and barbecue for dinner because I'm the Cool Girl, but I'm also wearing heels and getting my hair and makeup done because I am a Pretty Pretty Princess. More than one personality type can fit within a person—revolutionary!

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo by Richard

I finally let it go. I finally hit the point where I said "I am not my envelope." Sure, I want to feel my best during the wedding, but the choices I will make for that will be focused on what is right for what's inside the envelope… Now I'm planning on writing a mantra card and sticking it on my wall: I AM NOT MY ENVELOPE.

body positivity on Offbeat Bride
Photo from Beatrix734

Attractive giggling and a well-composed chuckle aren't my thing. I'm a full-mouth, teeth-showing laugher. And I hope that I am laughing at least once on my wedding day and am not caring how I look… because I'll look and feel fabulous anyway.

Tell me, loves. What's your surefire method for reminding yourself that, as Abilene Clark said, you're kind, smart, and important?

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  1. I love this post!

    But I'm super excited you used my wedding pic! It's the first one…the one with the legs! Yay!

    1 agrees
  2. I needed this today. Bathing suit shopping today made me feel really down about myself. Now I feel awesome and think I'll go eat that ice cream that's been calling to me all night! Thanks! 🙂

    2 agree
  3. Wow, I just had a total break down today because of an issue completely related to this article. I tried on my wedding dress last week for my sister who was in from out of town and she told me, in a considerate way, that the tulle skirt underneath it made me look fat and I should wear it without the tulle because why would I want to look twice my size when I'm not…? Since then I've been very conflicted, I really loved the full tulle underneath and the poofy princess ball gown looking bottom and my mom even dyed the ends of the tulle pink, so when I lifted the skirt of my wedding dress up the pink would peek above my shoes…. But maybe I should forgo all that in case it really did make me look bigger… So in the middle of a workout with my SO today, because somehow I got in my head that maybe if I just lost weight I won't look as fat, I just started crying thinking it was so futile trying to lose enough weight for the wedding which is next month… It was the worst workout ever! Usually we do it to keep healthy but today I just felt this hideous pressure and hopelessness. My SO gathered me up and basically told all the things in this article after I told him why I was so sad. I really think he/all of you have the right idea but cognitive therapy is not easy… I'm really going to try to keep things positive though I'm still unsure about the tulle??? I hope I can change my brain and keep repeating weddings are about us being happy. Thank you everyone for writing these positive & insightful articles

    1 agrees
    • Please, don't get rid of the tulle. Talking about it makes you sound so happy! You deserve to feel as beautiful as you want to feel on your day. Your sister is not communicating in maybe the best way, but she wants you to feel beautiful too. When you're on the dance floor, pink tipped dress twirling, she'll see that she was just blinded by societal pressures and be happy for you. <3

      1 agrees
  4. Love this article !!!!!! it made me feel good and I hope it will help all the brides to be feeling good about themselves !
    Thank you a lot for this 🙂

  5. THIS!!!! All of this!!!

    I have embraced the body positivity and some days are very VERY hard, but this post is bookmarked on my phone, tablet, laptop, and desktops (both work and home) for when that pesky voice starts talking.

  6. This was the best ever. I took so many important thoughts from this, and I think it will make a big difference keeping these concepts in the forefront of my mind in the final two months before the big day. I have a shot at sanity. 😛

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