I'm a fat bride #WTF!?#body image#identity#plus size September 22 | Guest post by hannahisdead "Fat bride" t-shirts are now available at the Offbeat Bride Spreadshirt store. My identity as a fat woman is no secret, and I'm not ashamed of it. I bear my body with pride. However, not everyone feels the same way. I recently posted on Facebook that I want anything emblazoned with "bride" to be changed to "fat bride." This was met with a myriad of comments and calls, all from people who know my stance on my body. My mother in particular always supports my fat pride, but clearly she's still very fatphobic and ashamed of fat bodies (herself being a plus sized woman) and wondered why I would want to label my self that way. I told her because it's part of my identity. But still, within two weeks of being engaged, I was asked by numerous people how I intended to "shape up" for my wedding. Yep, still fat. I work at a bra boutique. (I definitely recommend getting sized by professional bra fitters before you go to any dress fittings! Chances are you're not what bra size you think you are.) Recently a soon-to-be-bride came in the day before her final fitting. She and I are similar in size and shape (26/28, tummy heavy). She wanted a basque, and she wanted to look like the plus size models in magazines, which, as much as she wants to, isn't going to happen with shapewear. I spent over two hours with her trying everything we could, but in the end she wasn't totally satisfied with anything because she wasn't satisfied with herself. When she learned I too was getting married, she asked what my plan was to "look better." I shrugged and said, "Nothing. I'll be fat the day before my wedding, the day after my wedding, and during my wedding. I don't give a fuck anymore. Why should I? I am fat and beautiful. You can be both." She couldn't wrap her head around it, and it made me really sad. Related Post How to deal with pressure to lose weight for your wedding All of my anxieties about my mother scrutinizing my weight all through the engagement process ("No wedding dresses are going to look attractive on you... Read more Another time, a little girl was in with her mom, and since someone else was helping her mom, I was keeping the little girl busy. She saw my ring and started asking about my wedding. She then noticed my stretched lobes, and she was pretty freaked out by them. But her first reaction was "Did you do that for your wedding?" This seven-year-old girl already knows people go to extreme lengths to transform their bodies for their wedding. I was so horrified. I understand wanting to look your best, but I don't understand wanting to look like someone you're not. I guess I am so far along in my body positivity that I don't really understand just being able to move on from hating yourself. But I wish that more people could accept themselves, and accept that I am okay with me. Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Guest post written by hannahisdead I'm an almost graduated English major from Minnesota, who works as a professional bra-fitter. I love movies, comics, and video games. I'm really passionate about my job as a bra fitter, and my writing. I love lipstick and dresses and leaving lipstick kisses all over my fiance. http://tribe.offbeatbride.com/members/hannahisdead PREVIOUS Sweeten up your wedding with a honey unity ceremony NEXT Abigail & Kevin's candlelit gothic wedding in the woods Show/Hide comments [ 58 ] I love you and I love this article. I am a fat bride. My mom is plus sized and is the same way. I just really appreciate this article and I can't explain it. 34 agree Reply Thank you! It's really hard when you're like YEAH I'M FAT AND AWESOME and people around you are like yeah!..but you could lose some weight and be prettier… And this just gets amplified by the wedding process and bridal stuff. It's important to speak out and be posi no matter what. 29 agree Reply I don't really like the 'lose weight to be prettier' stance either. I am just wondering how you'd feel about the lose weight to be healthier argument. I lost about 40lbs from just being more conscious about portion sizes, not eating sugar..and mainly having veggies, salads and protein, with controlled carbs. Sure, I was hungry for the first week, but then everything felt great! I have a thyroid condition that kick started my weight gain, and since extra fat percentage is very tough on your body (and can lead to further complications such as heart disease) I tried to combat it by eating healthy. I am still not one hundred percent happy with my body, because I can feel how the extra fat affects my health. I am completely disgusted by weddings shows that host a variety of 'lose weight solutions' booths, for pre wedding slimming down. That is just terrible. It has to do with skinnier=prettier. However, I don't think we can ignore that losing some weight=healthier. What do you think? 27 agree Reply If you want to lose weight for youself that's awesome. Go right ahead. I'm not saying losing weight is bad, I'm saying that you shouldn't feel pressured to lose weight or look thinner or anything to please other people or to be "better or prettier," your fine the way you are. In the end the only person you should lose weight for, health reasons or otherwise is yourself. It'd not an issue of being lazy or prideful or anything. It's being ruler of your own body. 50 agree Reply I completely agree with you. I think the problem is that society doesn't accept plus size women so plus size girls and women don't accept themselves. But then you have women like us that say FUCK THAT, I am beautiful no matter what. This is the most important part. Loving yourself is the key to having a healthy mind. There is a thin line between being a healthy weight and being overweight because it can mean something different to everyone and BMI is just complete bullshit. I think that plus size girls should be taught to love themselves but also to take care of themselves. Heart disease is the number one killer of women and we should be aware of that. Skinny doesn't equal healthy/pretty either though. I think we all know that it's okay to indulge every now and then but our bodies are not meant to be starved nor are they meant to be over indulged. Binge eating is just as bad as bulimia and anorexia. Binge eating is an eating disorder and is accompanied by unhealthy mind and self-hate. It all starts with the mind. Love yourself for who you are at the size you are now, and then teach yourself how to have healthier habits. Eat what's good for you and exercise because you want to take care of yourself. Do not think that just because you love yourself the way you are that that gives you an excuse to binge eat McDonalds. If you really loved yourself you would take the actions you need to take to take care of yourself. Healthy body, mind, and spirit all go with one another. You will be happier if you are healthy in all aspects. Yes you can be a size 18 and still be beautiful and healthy. Do not give one damn about what the world thinks about you. The only thing important is how YOU feel. Look deep inside yourself and if you are satisfied with yourself and you feel healthy then stop worrying and start living your life happily! If you are unhappy because you know you are not healthy, do not let your weight and eating habits kill you, because it will if you don't control it. That's not a judgment, it's a fact. You need to find your balance in life that makes you happy. If you can do that then that is all that matters. There is nothing wrong with being a plus size woman. The number on a scale does not define who you are, you define who you are. You have complete control of your happiness ladies. 12 agree Reply Being fat and being healthy are not mutually incompatible realities. Neither is being fat and being athletic. I've done two triathlons now and didn't weigh less than 240 pounds for either of 'em. Research is hugely (har) contradictory, and the only thing I've found to be particularly consistent is that exercise is good for you. I'm fat. My blood work/labs are fine, my blood pressure is perfect, I can run fivish kilometers in around a half hour, I can swim for all day if plopped in a pool, etc. And I still get people who are "concerned about my health" telling me I need to lose weight. I have a hard time not being hostile to them, and I found myself being highly reactive to you as well. Less weight isn't synonymous with more health, it's just another one of those variables that tend to co-occur. The more I train, I tend to weigh less, and if I slack off, I get bigger, but I don't think I'm any more or less healthy either way, overall. Thems my thoughts. 😀 56 agree Reply Yea, I really hate how fat-shaming is thinly disguised as being concerned for the health of the person, especially if they are a stranger on the Internet. Really, unless you are my doctor, you should be getting my permission to talk about my body and health like that. 32 agree "Thinly disguised." LOL. Beatrix, high five. 4 agree I stumbled upon this article. I really hate body shaming also. Being "healthy" is a relative thing. Personally, I have a condition that even dieting and exercising, it's nearly impossible to lose weight. My fiance fell in love with me this size, he doesn't expect me to look like someone I'm not for our wedding. He wouldn't want me to. When I explained that to people, it usually shuts them up without me losing my cool with them. Haha. Loving yourself and not relying on other's views of you to regulate your internal happiness can be the hardest thing you do, but it's also the most freeing. 1 agrees I think it boils down to this: if you feel you need to lose weight for your health, then do it. But losing weight for your wedding has nothing to do with health. If you were losing weight for your health, then it wouldn't take a wedding to jump start it. Losing weight for your wedding is about thinking you need to do it to feel beautiful. And we should be able to think we're beautiful at any size. 9 agree Reply YESSSSS. A million times yes. So much yes. Reminds me of this post: http://offbeathome.com/sword-fighting Honestly, my wedding HAS kick-started my desire to lose weight and get healthy. And it's because on the day of my wedding, I'm pledging to spend my whole life with the most amazing man I've ever known, and I want to make sure that life is as long as possible. Your wedding can be a reason to get healthy. Anything can be a reason to get healthy. 3 agree Your wedding can be a reason to get healthy. Anything can be a reason to get healthy. Absolutely, although be careful with conflating weight loss and health. Sometimes they go together, sometimes they don't. The issue here isn't that anyone should ever lose weight for their wedding (or any other reason). The issue is that many brides are pressured to feel like the wedding SHOULD be a reason to lose weight. As Psychology Today said: "It’s estimated that 33% of women are advised by someone important in their lives (e.g., parents, friends, even fiancés) to lose weight before walking down the aisle, with heavier women hearing these comments more often." So by all means: lose weight weight for your wedding if YOU want to, but recognize that it can be hard to determine what you actually want when you're being pressured to do something. 5 agree THIS, THIS and more THIS when getting yourself prepped and dolled up for your wedding. "I understand wanting to look your best, but I don't understand wanting to look like someone you're not. " 23 agree Reply Wedding industry, and it IS an industry, creates fear and loathing of fatness worse than the media, in general, does. It disgusts me. We are in this industry and I have NO qualms using heavier girls as models in our booth at wedding shows and putting their photos in our "book" or on our wall. Ladies of EVERY size get married. Society needs to get past their ignorance. In fact, another vendor at a bridal show came up to me THREE times to ask me to try their skinny wrap thing. I was offended. 13 agree Reply The fear-based marketing within certain corners of the wedding industry is baffling to me. It's short-sighted, culturally damaging, and just plain ol' bad for business. All the more reason I'm launching Offbeat Industry. I really want to help shift the wedding industry's bad habits when it comes to how we talk about body image. Using shame and fear isn't only bad for people's confidence… it's bad for business. I mean, even if you don't care about other people's feelings, vendors should want to make a buck, and it's hard to make money from people who are offended by your sales tactics. 34 agree Reply Ariel, You are amazing. Keep it up. How do we get to be part of your new launch? Michelle 3 agree Reply Take the survey at http://offbeatindustry.org and let me know if you have any comments over here: http://offbeatempire.com/offbeat-industry 🙂 Reply Confidence in who you are is always the sexiest, but finding a dress that fits your own personality and body shape helps if you want to look your best on your wedding day (or ANY day for that matter!). As a dress designer/maker (yes, I'm a part of the wedding "industry", but I'm 100% against brides feeling pressured to change themselves for their wedding), I see way too many women that want to be something they're not (not everyone can be a rail thin model you see in the mainstream wedding magazines and ads), and they try desperately to squeeze into a dress that's just all wrong for them. I believe EVERYONE can look and feel beautiful if they dress for their size/shape, and most importantly, accept and love themselves! Please NO more self hate!!! 10 agree Reply I have gotten the same questions and I've told people, I was fat when he met me and I will be fat when we get married. I love me no matter what and so does he. I don't plan on changing myself. The whole idea of "losing weight for the wedding" is shoved in every brides face. I saw it a lot at a Bridal Expo I went to this past weekend and it makes me sad 11 agree Reply Yeah, sadly this kind of stuff is all too common at bridal expos: http://offbeatbride.com/wic-bridal-shows 4 agree Reply I LOVE this for so many reasons! I own a plus size bridal shop, and I know first hand just how awful this industry treats plus size brides. We have to fight to get our sample gowns in plus sizes and some manufacturers flat out refuse to work with us. I do think however, that the wedding industry is slowly (very slowly) catching on and becoming more plus size bride friendly, and I like to think that shops like mine and blogs like this are to thank for that. It's our goal to have every woman leave the shop feeling beautiful just as she is, however, we encounter many hurdles… Sometimes we need to overcome the bride's own insecurities, sometimes it's negative body comments from a member of the entourage etc. The world needs more body positive bridal blogs and posts like this. Plus size brides deserve to have amazing and confident bridal "roll-models" like you. Bravo! 18 agree Reply When she learned I too was getting married, she asked what my plan was to "look better." "Better than what? I'm already fabulous!" 😉 I'm a fat woman and will probably be a fat bride–I do work out and am trying to eat better, but if I lose weight, it's not 'for the wedding'. 18 agree Reply YES! This. Reply I absolutely, totally agree with this. I've been plus sized for most of my life, and funny enough, I like it that way. I can't say I don't want to change at all ever, but I'm happy with how I am now. My fiance praises my body every day, and in the end, all that matters to me is that I'm happy with it and he accepts it. I got all sorts of fitness questions thrown at me, and even now with only five days until the wedding, my mother (also plus sized) is near-starving herself to fit into the dress she bought. I'm over here all like, "He proposed to me looking this way, why change what we both already like?" I can totally get on the "fat bride" shirt idea. Loves for being real! 6 agree Reply I am the mother of "hannahisdead", and love her and am so proud I could bust. I was thin till I hit thirty, then a major job changed started adding pounds on. In truth I did not fight it the extra weight helped me do my job. My job was around the clock and heavy construction, and yes the extra pounds helped. But Hannah is right, I never was comfortable being heavy. Everyone I ever knew thought "I was so pretty". And ask what diet am I trying. Even at plus 50 years it hurts. And makes you wonder about old friendships. 7 agree Reply My FH has put on three stone since we had our Daughter. I know that isn't a lot to some people, and tbh I couldn't care less what he weighs! But the other night we were discussing wedding plans when he said; I need to lose weight. I asked why and when he replied; the wedding, I could have cried. It has never occurred to me to lose weight for the wedding and knowing that at some point FH has looked in the mirror and seriously thought he needs to change himself for the sake of one day really upsets me. It's not as common to think of men feeling like that but it just shows how ingrained this idea is in our cultures today. 6 agree Reply My darling is a big guy (350) and I'm a big girl (290). I love the man he is. I hope to love the man he will be, forever. Yes we are both "shaping up" but only because we are older and we want to be around for each other longer! (I'm 37, he's 46). I wish there were more body positive stuff for guys. We enjoy our time together, but there is this demon always lurking of those people who are mean and call us fatties, and judge. I love my darling JUST AS HE IS, he feels the same way about me. But he doesn't seem to have the resources available of a loving accepting sisterhood that fat women seem to have scraped out for ourselves. Love and Bright blessings to all of US. Reply Just making sure your dude had seen this post: http://offbeatbride.com/larger-men-wedding-fashion 🙂 1 agrees Reply I'm so happy that you feel comfirtable in your skin! I felt like that through most of school. However, the last few semesters, I spent a LOT more tine sitting, studying, researching, and typing. I also spent a lot of time eating quick meals or take out. By graduation, I felt like a cow. I wasn't actually that big for my height (16-18 and I'm 5'8") but I FELT big and tired and out of shape. In April 2011, I decided I was ready to change and I started with my diet. In October of that year (25lbs down), my DH proposed 2 days after being released from a 12day stay in the hospital. Shortly after, the comments about wedding weight loss began. I fought that the entire year we were planning the wedding. No one seemed to be able to understand that the wedding and my weight loss were unrelated and coincidence was responsible for them happening at the same time. In total, I lost 55lbs and dropped from a size 18 to a size 12 shocking my bridal shop. The manager said she'd never had a bride make the size she wanted on the first try. I told her most brides were losing weight for their wedding, I was losing weight for myself. 3 agree Reply I have been dealing with the stress of looking fat on my wedding day but recently I have just decided that I need to stop. I dont want my wedding to be about my weight. I want to have fun and feel beautiful on my wedding day. And the only thing stopping me from doing that is me. So at size 20 I've decided that it's not about the way I look, it's about how I feel and how healthy I am. My health is more important to me than the way I look. I'm pretty healthy and I have someone that loves me for who I am. So why am I stressing so much about something that really isn't that important. I refuse to be that superficial. I am one hell of woman and my looks and weight don't define who I am. I hope you ladies don't let it define you either! We are so much more than the size on our pains and number on the scale. Stop thinking losing weight is going to solve all your problems. Trust me girls, skinny girls aren't any happier than us plus size girls! Happiness has nothing to do with our bodies. 5 agree Reply I had a friend who decided she was going to "look better" for her wedding. She's a beautiful, plus-sized brunette. She managed to lose a *lot* of weight for her wedding, and she colored her hair blonde. She was an absolutely beautiful bride… but not more beautiful than she is anyway, in my opinion! After the wedding, she put the weight back on, and let her hair go back to its natural color. I look at pictures from her wedding, and it doesn't look as though it it's *her* getting married. She's happy with it, so her decisions were absolutely right for her. But it made me decide that, for my wedding, I was going to be my normal, healthy-but-chubby self, and would not do anything drastic to attempt to look "better." I when I look at pictures from my wedding, I recognize myself! That's important to me. 4 agree Reply Yup. Almost everyone asked me if I was gonna lose weight for the wedding. And when I say almost, it's because the only ones who didn't were the nice ladies at the wedding gown shop, who absolutely begged me not to change weight (in either direction) in the months before the wedding so the dress would fit well with the alterations they were doing. Funny thing is: my husband is also overweight and not one person asked him that… 3 agree Reply OMG, so very much THIS. Along with what everyone else has said here. I'm a plus-size bride and damn PROUD of it! Do I wish I were thinner? Sure, but more for health reasons than how I look. I ordered my wedding gown almost a year before the wedding, because I NEVER had any intention of losing a ton of weight before the wedding. This is me, people: like it or lump it. (And, if it posts, check out the smile on my face here in the bridal shop when MY dress came in and I put it on. I feel so gorgeous in this dress, I can hardly wait for the Big Day. Link – https://www.flickr.com/photos/124252652@N08/15306091976/) To Amanda, with the plus-size bridal shop: Do you sell any clothing emblazoned with "Bride" that comes in sizes that may fit those of us who would be proud to wear them? I was at my bridal shop a few weekends ago with my Minion of Honor, and while she was putting on her dress I browsed through all the "Bride" paraphernalia. They didn't even sell an XL, let alone the 2X that fits me or the 3X that I'm most comfortable in. This is one of the WIC bridal shops that actually does stock sample dresses in plus sizes, so that kind of surprised me. Every time I've been in there, there has been at least one other plus-size bride trying on dresses. Why not sell all the extra stuff that no one needs but everyone wants? 5 agree Reply Brilliant article! My mum wants to lose weight for my wedding and I don't see why she should have to. She is far fitter than I am, and she always takes pride in her appearance. I genuinely think she looks lovely the way she is. Having said that, she is self conscious about her weight and wants something nice to wear, not just the first thing that fits. I'm concerned that she may not lose as much as she wants though, or struggle to keep her target dress size after the wedding. I just want her to be happy. I think it's awful so many brides are expected to lose weight. Planning a wedding is stressful enough without having to diet as well! If you want to look like a better version of yourself, a great outfit and a flattering hair cut works just as well in my opinion. 1 agrees Reply Very much related post: Why is my wedding making everyone ELSE insecure about their bodies? 1 agrees Reply Just to put this out there, im not trying to say that all plus size women have binge eating disorder. I know thats not the case. When I made that comment its because my wife and I both are emotional eaters and binge eat from time to time and it plays a key role in my life. I have a lot of overweight family and its because we are the type of people that goes for seconds or thirds every day. So yes over eating and lack of excersice is the key factor to my being plus size. And its not healthy mentally or physically to do that to yourself. But I did right that he it is okay to i nduldge when you damn well please. Thats nobody's business but yours. But I think alot of us do have a problem with over eating and that contributes to our bad health. Im not saying that plus size=unhealthy. Im just saying that eating habits are just as important and play a big role in how we feel about ourselves. 2 agree Reply I really need this article today. I was just trying on my whole "ensemble" and noticing all the areas where my weight was showing. It's 11 days until my wedding and I was feeling like I don't have enough time to improve my appearance before then. But you're right, of course – I CAN be fat and beautiful, I CAN be both, I WILL be both. Now if I can just convince the little voice in the back of my mind telling me otherwise… 2 agree Reply This. This is exactly what I needed reminded of this morning. My life is surrounded by people who fat shame me, and usually I can wipe the comments from my mind. However, with the impending dress making and pinterest filled with skinny brides, I've somehow lost my love of my body. So thank you. 1 agrees Reply Jenny, this Offbeat Home & Life post might be super relevant for you: 5 strategies for responding to or preventing body shaming Reply Wow… I really wish I was as strong and confident as you are. I'm not hugely overweight – though enough, that's for sure! I love cake! – but even without a wedding going on, I'm acutely aware of it and somewhat ashamed. I feel it's a reflection of my failure; my failure to self discipline, both with my exercise and with my diet. It really makes me depressed and feel worthless, even though I've hardly had any comments on it. I'm going to try and take this article to heart and be as strong as you! Thank you! 2 agree Reply The first step on the path to my eating disorder was dieting for my wedding. The wedding planning workbook I was using told me that I should start "watching what you eat and exercising so you can look your best" 6 months beforehand, and I did. That wasn't the only thing that contributed, but it was what opened the door. Until that point, I didn't have a stellar body image, but I thought that dieting was something that only vain, shallow people did. That workbook told me that it was something that all brides should do. Every time I think of that book, I want to give that whole company the finger. 2 agree Reply OMG THANK YOU FOR THIS POST!!!!! I am a plus size bride (fat/chubby/curvy…whatever you wanna call me!) and I love myself and I don't see why I (or anyone) should change for their wedding. This is me. This is who I am. My FH met me this way. he loves me this way. Obviously since he put a ring on it 😉 So why should I change for one day? There are so many beautiful gowns, and there is something out there for everyone. Thank you for this body positive post!! Also, I so agree on a proper bra fitting! FINALLY found someone in my area (well, a 3 hour drive away!!!!) to do one. Was I ever surprised!! I def recommend every woman getting one. 1 agrees Reply I just wanted to say I am so happy that so many people have wrote in about how this has inspired them, reminded them, or encouraged them to love themselves. You're all precious peas and amazing! I wish I had time to respond to every single one of you, but life is busy. However, I wanted to share with you some resources. Also, thank you to the ever efficient Ariel for proving people with supplementary posts from OBB and OBH and telling us more about Offbeat Industry. (sidenote, i saw the venus fold backfat post and i've been telling EVERYONE at work that not to worry it's called a venus fold and that's so pretty) Google "bra boutique [your city]" and get properly fitted by a professional bra fitter. It changes literally everything about your body from the waist up, and will make you feel a lot more comfortable and confident! Places like Lane Bryant, Victoria Secret, and the like dont size properly. I had a women who'd been measured at a 48C somewhere and she was actually a 42 H! Most people are above a D (I promise) and it'll really change your life! Secondly, inundate yourself with images of your own body type. follow blogs and plus models and selfie-happie fatties and remember that even on your worst days, you're still incredible. Remember that it's okay to feel down sometimes. There are days when I feel "bad fat" but life goes on. Think of the dancing hippo (petunia!) from fantasia and you'll feel okay. Remember that even accomplishing 80% of your goal/tasks/whatever is still incredible. and if you're really having issues, seek help. Read The Unapologetic Fat Girl's Guide to Exercise and Other Incendiary Acts by Hanne Blank and Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girl's Guide to Life, Love, & Fashion by Virgie Tovar. They're life changing, and while you're at it pick up the brilliant Offbeat Bride by our very own inspiring Ariel Meadow Stallings. Dont let people talk body negative around you. If they do, call them out on it and suggest more positive ways. Dont bring these people dress shopping with you, and if you have to, set strict rules to discourage body negativity. Look in the mirror naked every day and find one thing you like, even if it's just a cute freckle or your nice nail beds. find something new every day. Be happy, body posi, and fulfilled no matter what your size! 8 agree Reply "Remember that it's okay to feel down sometimes. There are days when I feel "bad fat" but life goes on" As a very thin girl, I have a body I usually love. But sometimes I still feel "bad skinny" staring at a mirror at my pronounced sternum, or when my son comments on my bony backbone. Everyone has bad days where we don't feel beautiful. That doesn't make us right. 3 agree Reply I loved this post. I was so saddened that when I went dress shopping I had a very small selection of dress I could try on that would fit me. In fact- I was kind of outraged by it. I should not have to be expected to lose weight for my wedding day-it's stressful enough without being hungry added to it. I found a dress I loved, ordered it about a size smaller than what I am and have had a corset back put into it. I have yet to see it back from my seamstress, but I'm happy I got a dress I loved. And it certainly wasn't from trying it on at the store. Super sad that they didn't have any cute bride memorabilla in my size. I'm only a 1X and their XL is made for a teenager. In fact the manager told me the clothes are considered junior sizes. Why would you make wedding clothes in all junior sizes. JUST CRAZY. 4 agree Reply Thank you for this. When I called one bridal salon to ask if they carried certain dresses in a size I could try on (I'm a 28), I was very blunt and told the manager that I'm an unapologetic fat bride. I refuse to apologize for my size, and I'm sick of people thinking that women (and men) need to be model thin in order to be beautiful. We're all beautiful. 3 agree Reply As a manager of a bridal salon I always feel terrible that I can't put every bride in every dress for her shopping experience. I have made it a priority to bring in samples in a larger variety of sizes and not just carry a 'plus size line'. When it comes time to measure and order a size I often hear brides say that they intend to lose weight for the wedding and want to order smaller. This is where I lecture. I always tell my brides that they shouldn't try to lose weight just for the wedding. Who would want to look back on their wedding pictures and feel bad that they're no longer that 'thinner, more beautiful' bride?! I feel like everyone has a natural state of being and should try to be happy in it. Of course you can alter your body with diet and exercise and that's your choice. If you're not happy with your body then change it but for heaven's sake don't do it because you have to be thin to be a beautiful bride. You're all beautiful as you are. Your husband to be knows it….you should too. 2 agree Reply In the words of my wonderful now husband, "You were fat when I asked you to marry me. Fat AND beautiful. You will be fat and beautiful on our wedding day and I will be the happiest man alive." I bought my wedding dress online and he helped me take my measurements to find the right fit because I was still struggling with the whole concept of being a fat bride. I couldn't face my measurements and he stepped in without me even needing to ask, bless his heart. And then my wedding dress arrived and I put it on and it was perfect because it fit ME. And he cried when he saw me because he was so glad he could still see my big beautiful butt! I had a lot going on emotionally before the wedding and I made a conscious decision to love the body that he had proposed to, instead of trying to change it because society made me feel inadequate. Instead of spending precious effort and headspace on losing weight, I channelled my energy into making our wedding a safe emotional space for both of us, as that is so much more important to me. We focused on being healthy as a couple, physically, mentally and emotionally, which was hard given the circumstances. And I am so glad I made that choice to accept me as me. And for anyone who is interested, I bought my wedding dress from Pin Up Girl clothing online. 1 agrees Reply I love this post. We're getting married in New Orleans (in under two months…um…yikes.) and I've been fighting the "Lose weight for your wedding" thing since we got engaged LAST June. For the most part people who know me know it's a lost cause- even before I was on the body-positivity bandwagon (just the past six months or so) I didn't like myself but didn't particularly have the drive to change (mental illness FTW) so there was no point in asking me about it. I just had my first fitting the other day and she was like "are you planning to lose any weight?"(Which I feel is a legitimate question- lots of women do and I'd want to know if all this work I was doing was just going to have to be undone if I were her…) and I was like "heck no. In fact, we should probably leave a little extra space- I'm going to be in NOLA four days before I actually get married- I need somewhere to put all that food." The thing that really got me totally is that other people are getting weird about their weight- my FMIL, FSIL (though the two of them that's just a whole nother heap of bad relationships with food/body image…) even my aunt and my best friend. And I'm just over here like I want yall to be happy about this, not look at it as some kind of doomsday… Bleh. Anyway, awesome post and I am right there with you. 1 agrees Reply I needed this post very much today. I have grown to become more secure with my weight and size 16 curvy body after struggling with weight since elementary school, but there have been a lot of comments about my weight from total strangers (3 comments in the past 3 weeks!) and it's starting to make me feel a little insecure. On top of that, I just went to a wedding where the bride and her friends made several jokes about "X number of days and then [the bride] can get fat!" comments. To which the groom commented "I would rather see you pregnant than ever fat!" after asking for clarification if she was talking about pregnancy or gaining weight for other reasons. HOW HILARIOUS IS THAT!?! Anyways, thanks for the reminder that beauty is so much more than weight, because I really am beautiful and sexy – especially when I'm not feeling insecure about my body! FH certainly thinks so (he tells me just about everyday that I am beautiful). I am quite lucky and I just need to remember to let those comments roll right off me… 1 agrees Reply I really needed to find this post. I have three months left before my wedding, and my weight has been all over the place since my FH proposed. I've lost 20 lbs since the proposal, which is great because I was really unhealthy at that weight, but now I find that, to a few people around me, it's just not enough. I have a bridesmaid (who is a person I simply adore and who simply adores me) who said, totally meaning well, "Are you just going to try to lose as much weight as possible before the wedding?" and that to lose weight I just "need to hate myself more." I get where she's going – it definitely just came out wrong, because I know it comes from a place of love. But hearing from you strong, positive ladies…I want to feel like that! I want to eat clean and exercise to be healthy, not because I don't like the number on my wedding dress. Lots of rambling…long story short, thank you for the new perspective and a new goal…to LOVE my BODY as much as my FH loves it, and me. <3 1 agrees Reply Totally agree, people should be themselves. When you marry is the day you found someone who loves you the way you are inside and outside, so why try to change the way look. Great article thks for the insight 1 agrees Reply I really agree with this article. I want to lose weight before my wedding but not for anyone else but MYSELF. It's just wrong that it is expected from everyone that you should loose weight for your wedding day! I still go to school and when i told a teacher i was getting married she asked me wat kind of dress i wanted to where and when she saw it she asked me when i would get married. When i answered that it would be 2 years later she said: ow great! Now you have the time to lose the weight! I really didn't know what to say and i was perplexed! It really hurted me like i couldn't be beautiful just the way i was! 2 agree Reply I am a skinny little fit girl. I hate that my body has all kind of digestive and stress and anxiety issues. It was hard enough for me to learn to love my body (darned naked-phobic society)! But in learning to give body-hating society the bird, I also learned that everybody deserves to feel beautiful. I am friends with all colors and shapes and sizes of people. Some of my bigger, rounder girl friends are among the most beautiful girls I've known. What makes you beautiful? You do. The way you carry yourself, the way you love yourself. I may have muscles on the outside (I have to lift heavy boxes for my job), but what makes a person beautiful really is all inside: their strength, their grace, their confidence, their character. Anybody willing to change their bodies for their wedding is missing the point entirely. You marry a person who loves you for who you are, and to whom your inner character matters more than your outside bits, or you're basically doomed. Thank you for being an awesome, proud, hot-rocking Round Person. You're paving a very cool road. 3 agree Reply Thank you!!! I'm a fat bride-to-be too. I used to cry over what I thought was my gross body, but it feels so good to feel pretty as I am, now! He loves me, fat, he'd love me thin, but I'd rather enjoy this planning than endure it, starving! 2 agree Reply I love this 🙂 Congrats on how far you've come and your confidence 🙂 <3 2 agree Reply Yes to so much of this!!! I've always been a big girl and wear my weight well. I was a size 14 for my wedding. I got so much pressure from people including my mom who is a size 22/24 to loose weight. I said No! That was 5 years ago. I had an awesome wedding and looked amazing in my pictures. And I'm still married! Really making the wedding about *us* made us realize what is really important. Weight and size was somewhere at the bottom of the list. 1 agrees Reply Leave a Reply to Stephenie Ferguson Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy. 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