Ew. That title is horrifying. It’s a lie, but it’s one that I’ve been fighting with myself not to believe. You see, when I look at other brides, I see how glowing, radiant and in love they are. I see the joy oozing out of their pores and they are nothing but beautiful, whether they are skinny or not.
As much as I see that in other brides, in two months I will be in their shoes, and I’m starting to feel the pressure. The pressure to be perfect, the pressure to be skinny, the pressure to be beautiful without even trying. It’s funny how twisted everything can get in your head–you think you need to look different even though the way you look is exactly the way your fiancé loves you.
A funny thing happened in the kitchen at my office this morning while I was talking with some female coworkers. Stephanie, another bride-to-be, looked at me and said,
You look so pretty today. See, that’s how skinny I want to be for my wedding.
I shamefully confess that I was flattered, even though I know better than to associate skinny with pretty. I responded saying,
Thanks, Stephanie. I’ve been feeling a lot of pressure to be perfect for the wedding, but that’s just a great reminder for me to embrace who I am and stop worrying so much.
And here’s where it got crazy. Without thinking, Stephanie replied,
You can totally lose at least 8 lbs before the wedding! You have plenty of time.
And then the room went silent. In an effort to help get Stephanie’s foot out of her mouth, the other girls poured compliments out on my like nobody’s business…
Oh, but you look so beautiful as you are!
You don’t have to lose a pound!
You don’t even have 8 lbs to lose!
I laughed it off, knowing that Stephanie meant nothing by it. If anything, she understood more than anyone in the room what was going through my head because she’s in the same boat. She didn’t say it because it was true, she said it because she was thinking the same thoughts for herself. I realized then that we are both trapped in the lie that brides should be skinny, and that the most important thing about our wedding days will be the photos.
Why are we so conditioned to believe that brides should be skinny? How did/will you respond to the pressure for bridal perfection?