I’ve mentioned before that I’m a member of a few different female fitness groups on Facebook; these groups provide amazing communities of like-minded women. They’re places we can go to read about others’ fitness-related journeys and share our own.
I noticed a few comments/posts lately that rub me the wrong way and I felt something needed to be said (and, in each case, I provided a couple short comments/encouragement to the original poster, too):
- “I don’t care if booty shorts make me a ho, it’s too hot to wear long pants to the gym today.”
- “Sorry for the skanky selfie, but I finally have the confidence to wear something like this.” (A progress pic of the original poster wearing a shorts romper with a deep V neckline).
- “I’m still clinging to the hope that some day I can wear a bikini.”
- “That woman needs to dress for her age; she shouldn’t be wearing that.”
So, so, so many alarm bells go off in my head when I read these statements! Now, I’m no expert; I’m – admittedly – fairly new at this whole “love yourself and body acceptance” thing I mentioned a couple posts back. But, damn, ladies. We need to start treating ourselves better than this.
First of all, an article of clothing does not make someone a “ho.” What someone chooses to wear is just that – their choice. If you want to wear something because it’s comfortable, it’s cool, it’s sexy, it invokes feelings in you of being a total babe and goddess….then wear it. It doesn’t matter if that article of clothing is booty shorts, a romper, a maxi skirt, or a hijab.
All of that said, if someone is uncomfortable with the fact that you have legs, you have skin, you have shoulders, etc., that’s on them. Yes, I would argue that some circumstances call for different dress codes that are generally respectful to follow; but, booty shorts at the gym don’t make you a “ho” in hot weather or the dead of winter or ever.
Second, let’s talk about the terms “ho” and “skanky.” These terms, especially when applied to women, are meant to degrade. They are used to indicate a woman is less than; they’re a lower class of person simply for their clothing, means of earning money, living conditions, relationship status, etc.
I’m so sad to see women, who are working hard and seeing progress toward their goals adding a degrading qualifier to their results as if there’s something sinful and shameful about feeling confident and beautiful in their own skin. If you’re feelin’ yourself, don’t be afraid to be you, wear what you want, and be/feel confident and beautiful in your own skin. There is nothing shameful about feeling good about yourself. Be your beautiful, badass self. No qualifiers necessary.
Finally, women get hit hard with a lot of messages every day. We’re told we should look like this; we should wear that; we should buy this to look like her or her. We are told we’re not good enough.
These are really hard messages to ignore and to deflect. The messages are even more difficult when you hear them from a significant other, a family member, or when you’ve taken up saying them to yourself. For our sanity, for our mental health, and for our own happiness, we need to learn to give less fucks. You wanna wear a bikini? Wear a bikini. Try not to let yourself get hung up on what others think or what you think others will think. You’re human; you have a body; bodies have rolls, scars, wrinkles, cellulite, bumps, and curves.
Who cares what others think? What does it matter? AND….Why does society get to tell you what your body should look like or how you should dress or at what age you’ve grown out of certain articles of clothing? These boots were made for walkin’ – and that’s just what they should be doin’.
Practice your IDGAFs. It’s worth it and it gets easier.