real life

"This is me in a dress I have no business wearing."

A mother in the US has posted a photograph of herself wearing a dress she claims she has “no business wearing” and it’s gone viral for all the right reasons.

Katey Johnson from New York, author of the blog The Mother Octopus, doesn’t want us to say “omg, you look great!’. The mother-of-two is not looking for congratulations or admiration.

No, she just wants to wear her new dress.

“I took this picture two days ago. I was one and a half proseccos deep during a girl’s weekend with my best friend and we were on our way to a nice dinner,” she wrote on her Facebook page, alongside an image of herself in her ‘little black dress’.

“When I tried it on I knew the dress wasn’t made for my 5’2″ body, 160 lb [76 kilogram] body, but I felt great in it. I don’t know why. I just did. I’m not known to wear form-fitting clothes. At all. But I wanted it, so I bought it. And I was proud of myself for it.”

Johnson said she’s received criticism from others about it – and she doesn’t necessarily disagree but she’s certainly not going to let that stop her from wearing her new dress.

“Someone could say that I look a little pregnant in it, because of, you know, that part sticking out in the front,” she wrote. “I do look a little pregnant. That’s fine. Once upon a time I grew two babies in that part sticking out in the front, but I assure you, now it’s just where I keep my cheeseburgers and sauvignon blanc.”


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Most importantly, however, Johnson she’s struggled with weight “always” and that, as many women understand, the problem is mental more than it is physical .

“After 40 years of telling myself I have no business wearing things I want to wear, I’ve decided to change the subject. I’ve decided to start being kind to myself,” Johnson wrote.

“For 40 years I’ve stood in the mirror and compared how I look to how I THINK I should look. And it’s exhausting. Now, in an ugly world where I have so many other, more important things to worry about. I want to be in the business of loving myself. It’s as simple as that.

“I’m not saying I’m giving up. I’ll still try to get healthy, here and there. I’m just taking a break from beating myself up. I’m muting the negative things I say to myself, because as it turns out, I care way more about my own comments than anyone else’s.”

She’s sharing her story to encourage other women to do the same: “If the hard part is talking yourself into it, tell yourself life’s too short to worry about things you have no business wearing.”