Self Esteem and Body Image – Large Women Can Be Sexy Too

Self Esteem and Body ImageI can’t talk enough about self-esteem and body image when I talk about plus size clothing and capsule wardrobes. One subject that seems tabu is that we larger women (and men) shouldn’t talk about sex, feeling sexy, and enjoying sex. A lot of it has to do with our own self-esteem and body image, but a lot has to do with making skinny people uncomfortable.

My Own Self Esteem and Body Image

I spent my entire childhood and teenage years being put down by my parents and some of my siblings. They made fun of me for being fat and ugly, and came up with cute (what they thought were cute) names to call me, even in public. One time I was so mad at my sister. She and her friends were making fun of me at school for being fat. I was 9 at the time, and I really didn’t know how to express myself.

Instead of telling my mom that my sister and her friends were making fun of me, I said “[SisterX] is telling everyone that I’m fat!” My mom and family laughed so hard about that. The very idea that my sister would have to TELL people I was fat, when it was totally obvious, was what they found hilarious. I was mad because my sister was laughing and agreeing with her friends instead of defending me. My family brought that up over and over again, and laughed about it for years.

I have since estranged myself from those siblings, and my parents have passed away, so I am not subjected to that kind of garbage anymore. However, it took many years to get past that era in my life. When you are a child, you take that kind of thing to heart and you start believing what your supposed loved ones tell you. Well into my 30s, I degraded myself for being fat, and along with it, weak, ugly, unwanted, and a myriad of other devastating things, repeating in my mind what I had always been told by my family.

And I never ever felt sexy.  Sex was a sin.

I dieted and exercised, sometime to the point of starvation and exhaustion. But I always gained the weight back, and of course felt worse than before. I yo-yo dieted to the point of real obesity before I realized that yo-yo dieting can be even worse for me health-wise, than just carrying the weight. I ruined my metabolism, took too many diet pills, and suffered acute depression. I had eventually ruined my health.

So here I am. I exercise and try to eat well. My health is not great, but not horrible. At least I’m not trying to ruin it further with starvation dieting and killing myself trying to exercise. And I have a doctor directing my medication intake.  I am slowly gaining a better attitude about sex and feeling sexy.  So I think I’m going in a good direction now.

I have come to terms with my body and how I look and feel. This is the body I have. I am feeling much better about my body and how beautiful it is, and how beautiful I am as a person. A lot of that self-worth and beautiful body image came from taking care of myself, and wearing pretty clothing, doing my makeup every day, and embracing my attitude about sex, feeling sexy, and enjoying sex.

Self Esteem and Body ImageModesty is Still OK

 

 

I am still rather uncomfortable discussing my sex life as it pertains to my body image, but I think I would be uncomfortable with sharing that aspect of my life anyway regardless of how I look. I was raised in a strictly religious home, and modesty was a big part of how we dressed and how we discussed sex (in other words, we didn’t discuss it).

I have come to feel a lot better about discussing sex, but in general terms and nothing specific. I believe that my sex life is a private matter between me and my partner, and I will not be sharing anything about my sex life here.

I think that modesty is a choice and a comfort zone. It all depends, from one person to the next, on how much a person wants to reveal and how much a person wants to divulge about their sex life. I will not judge another person for revealing what would be too much for me, just as I would not judge someone for being covered head to toe.

For me, my comfort zone is, I would say, 80% modesty, and 20% exhibitionist. I don’t mind showing a little cleavage, and I don’t mind appearing in public in my bathing suit, but I’m surely not going to go naked in front of people, or show off my underwear.

I am adhering to what Stacy London and Clinton Kelly repeatedly admonish on What Not To Wear. They believe that dressing sexy does not have to mean showing a lot of skin. Part of sex appeal is NOT showing everything, and leaving a little up to the imagination. I like that view, and I dress according to the view. But that’s just me. As I have said repeatedly, YOU DRESS HOW YOU WANT!

The Power of Sexy Matching Underwear and Lingerie


Wearing beautiful underwear and sexy nighties that we see advertised all over have a particular power to to them. Sure, nobody in general will see the underwear, but YOU know you are wearing it. You know that under your business suit, you are a sexy vixen wearing your matching bra and panties. For some reason, knowing that vixen is in there gives me more self-confidence to go in front of people and strut my stuff, even if I’m dressed head to toe in my modest office wear. Every woman should have at least one set of sexy matching bra and panties, to get that feeling of confidence inside.  And I don’t really have to tell you that wearing a sexy nightie really sets the mood when enjoying time with your partner.

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https://metro.co.uk/2019/05/26/woman-bullied-fat-girl-wants-show-plus-size-women-can-great-sex-lives-9694001/Meet Karla Crowe

Karla Crowe was bullied as a child and a teen because of her size. Now, she’s a body-positive model in the UK, who’s showing plus-size women they can have great sex lives – and that loving sex is nothing to be ashamed of, whatever your size.  I think Karla is very brave, and absolutely adorable. You can read her article from Metro here. And follow her on Instagram. I think Karla and others like her are great examples of forward thinking women who are tired of hiding, and tired of feeling like they need to hide. When a person like Karla bravely puts herself out in front of the world, it makes it easier for we modest girls to understand the empowerment we can feel by embracing our bodies and being sexy at any size.

What You Can Do To Improve Your Body Image

I have a list here of some things you can do to boost your self-esteem and feel better about yourself, but I have come up with a few more, so here goes…

  • Never wear boys or mens clothing again! You are a woman and should be dressing in women’s clothing. (OK, if you are more comfortable in endogenous clothing, there are plenty made for women that are more flattering on you than the boxy stuff men wear.) For years, many plus size women, myself included, had no other choice but to wear men’s clothing, because there just wasn’t anything pretty in our sizes. Those days are gone. Even though the selection is still limited, we no longer have to buy men’s stuff to fit. So, unless you are EXTREMELY uncomfortable in anything other than men’s clothing, don’t buy it and don’t wear it.
  • Get the matching undies and bra, and a sexy nightie, and wear them.
  • Start a “Love Me” list. Put it on your phone. Start with 10 or so items that you love about yourself. Add to it every day, and pull it out to read when you’re feeling not-so-beautiful. My current list has 30 items on it, with things like, “I love my hair” “I’m a good mother” “I have great Word and Excel skills” “I’m a good listener” “I make a really bad ass lasagna”. It doesn’t matter how small or how great your aspects are. Put them on your list and read it every day.
  • Come up with a list of come-backs to use when someone makes a degrading comment about your weight. It’s a lot easier to put a person in their place when you have a few well-rehearsed lines. Say something like, “Ya sure I’m fat, but that makes me harder to kidnap, so maybe you should eat some cake.” Or “There’s more of me to love.” Or, “Ya I have so much awesomeness that I wouldn’t fit into a skinny body.”
  • Call your loved ones out on their misguided and often “well-meaning” remarks about your weight. Say something like, “Do you realize that what you are saying is hurtful?” Or something along those lines.
  • Start having the conversation with your friends and colleagues. Educate them on how and why you got to be a plus size person, and the hurt and frustration you suffer every day. And if you’re comfortable, don’t hold back when the subject of sex comes up with your friends. It’s more than OK, it’s normal to feel sexy and to enjoy sex, and it’s OK to talk about it. You don’t have to hide anymore.

In Conclusion…

The more of us that start talking about size inclusivity and positive body image, the sooner it will be that we can be open and honest with ourselves about our bodies, about sex, and about our own beauty inside and out. Start loving your body today and throw away those old notions that we larger women shouldn’t talk about sex.

 

Thank you for reading, and please put your questions and comments below!

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2 Comments

  1. Sunewako

    It is very important to have self esteem no mater what the situation. People may look at you at a certain way or think about you  in a way to make you feel like you worth nothing, you are ugly and fat or you are too skinny. We have to learn that people will always have something negative to say about the other.
    When you have higher self esteem what ever they do will not affect you. We have to accept our-self as we are and cherish what God has given us.

    • RhondaLeigh

      Thank you for visiting my website.  And thanks for sharing your thoughts.  You are correct.  There will always be a person with a negative comment.  Misery loves company, and people who feel crappy about themselves will often degrade others, just to make themselves feel better.  We need to rise above it and not let those negative comments affect our self-esteem and self-worth.  Thank you again for your comments!  Rhonda 

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