This post is part of The Modesty Panel, a series focusing on the concept of modesty from the perspectives of various bra bloggers. Each of us has experiences, beliefs and assumptions about modesty that influence how we blog about breasts, and this week we are taking the time to share our views. Make sure to check some of the other posts out!
I’ve been thinking for a while (since the idea came up to do this “event”) about what modesty means to me….as a woman, as a human, as a blogger, etc…
I’ve shared at great length my own personal story about coming to accept my own bustiness, so I won’t rehash all of that here again.
When I think of what the word modesty means, I’m struck with the overwhelming sense that there’s no real way to define what modesty means. It’s a very subjective word that applies to how we dress, how we talk, how we interact with others, and how we talk about ourselves. To me, modesty means putting someone else’s feelings and concerns before your own happiness. Instead of choosing to wear what we like and what we think looks good on us, we might choose to wear something that is more “modest” and socially acceptable. Instead of saying that we love a lot of good sex, we’ll err on the side of modesty and not even talk about our sexuality for fear of “slut shaming”. Instead of bragging about an accomplishment that we worked hard to achieve, we go the modest route and try not to sound too self-centered.
I’ll concede that there is a time and a place for modesty; but there is also a time and a place for NO modesty.
Originally I wanted to write a post about modesty from my perspective as a fat woman….but I feel like that is too cliche. Not to downplay reality, I grew up fat. People made fun of me. I’ve always been big. My older brothers picked on me and would tell me that my clothes were painted on. Or that I looked gross and needed to change my clothes. My parents never once told me that I was beautiful. I don’t mean to be flippant about it, but I was basically bullied into covering up my body in such a way that wasn’t flattering due to the comments of those around me. I spent much of my early childhood and teenage years wearing clothes that were way too big and did nothing to show off my body (and let’s be honest, when I was a teenager, I was around 60 pounds lighter than I am now and I would TOTALLY rock the hell out of that body right now).
But here I am now. Still fat. Still have large boobs. Still have older brothers whom I’m sure live to torture me despite the fact that they are both almost 30 and it’s a little old now after almost 25 years of it. But what has changed is me. This post isn’t about self-esteem or body acceptance, but I do feel that those topics really go hand in hand with confidence as well as modesty. I’m at a point in my life where I’m going to do what I want because for so long I was trying to make other people happy. So if I want to wear dresses all the time (which I do), I’m going to do it. If I want to spend a half hour talking about my love of bra fitting, I’ll do it. If I want to share an accomplishment, I’m going to do it. Because that’s what makes me feel good.
Why should someone else’s ideas about modesty dictate my life? Should I be limited in any way because I am fat? Because I have large boobs? Because I am a woman? No. And neither should you 🙂
For reference, I consider myself moderately modest. For example, today I went shopping at Torrid and Lane Bryant and took my husband along, a little pre-birthday shopping. I tried on swimsuits, jeans, dresses, etc. I always stepped out into the hallway to get my husband’s opinion on things as he knows what I like and knows which things I buy and take home and either don’t wear or do wear. So he tries to give me pointers on things he knows will sit in the closet if I buy them.
Anyways, today I happened to try on a two piece bathing suit at Torrid. When I opened up the fitting room door, another couple was standing just outside of the fitting room area. The man in the other couple gave me a dirty look like, “OH NO! FAT GIRL IN A BIKINI!!! GROSS!!”…..and I asked what my husband thought about it. He loved it. While I wasn’t a huge fan of the look of the swimsuit on me, I didn’t really care that I was fat, wearing a bikini, and was in public. Oh well. To the man that gave me the dirty look: Hello. You were in a clothing store for fat women. What did you expect? Of all places for me to NOT have to hide my body, being in a plus size clothing store is like coming home for a fat woman, so if you don’t like it, get the hell out 🙂
I’m going to wrap this post up at this point because I’m tired and I’m not sure I’m making sense, but I do hope to elaborate on this topic more at some point.
Also, tomorrow is my 25th Birthday (May 18th), and I am going to rock the hell out of my quarter-century birthday with friends and this adorable dress:
This blog is one of many that is participating in the Modesty Panel Series….Please check out the following links to read more great posts about Modesty 🙂
Braless in Brasil
Thin and Curvy