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Old 05-11-2003, 06:06 PM   #1  
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Thumbs up Suicidal Shopping Trip

Yesterday, my husband took me clothes shopping so I could pick out my own Mother's Day gift and what a depressing situation it was. I convinced me how freakishly I'm built, despite having lost a significant amount of weight. Y'see, I wear a 12 top and a 16 bottom and I flair very dramatically from my waist. It looks as if someone had taken two people, cut them in half and reassembled them to make me. Nothing looked right or fit right It took me over an hour to find a pair of pants that a) came up to my waist -- everything is hip huggers! -- and b) didn't have to be taken in at the waist and c) didn't make my thighs look like lumpy sausages. Who's idea was it to put lycra in everything? It doesn't hold anything in. Just exaggerates it.

Needless to say, I was miserable the rest of the day and felt such rage and hatred towards myself, I couldn't stand it. I can't deal with such an intense feeling about something I have only a small bit of control over. (The shape is genetic, based on pictures of other women in my family and none of them ever looked happy). My feelings were sooo intense I actually wanted to kill myself over it. (As you can tell, I've talked myself out of it for now. Intellectually, it's silly; emotionally, it makes sense.)

Anyone else have this problem and how did you solve it (and don't tell me to lose more weight. It ain't easy maintaining what I've lost already. Any clothing brands you recommend? (I find Lee's to be one of the few pants co. to make high rise waists nowadays). I especially want to get over this freakish feeling.
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Old 05-11-2003, 06:55 PM   #2  
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Wundawoman, there's a journalist named Laura Frasier (it's been awhile, at least I THINK that's her name) who writes about weight issues. In one of her books (in which she debunks the diet industry) she talked about her pear-shaped body and how she loved it. She told the story how a man tried to rape her and she realized how strong this pear-shaped lower body was for fighting attackers from the ground.

To me, it seems intuitive that the pear-shape is one of nature's favorite shape for women (apologizing in advance to all non-pears who are wonderful in their own right ... I'm only speaking of pears at the moment). The pear shape lowers a woman's center of gravity to provide a good defense against attack ... the pear shape (doctors say) is among the healthiest of body types (those who carry weight around their middle closer to the heart are at a higher risk for disease, so they tell me) ... and if you think about it, there are probably more pears-shaped women around than any other kind (again, the other shapes are great in their own right) ... this might indicate that the laws of natural selection have found something in the pear-shape that is advantageous enough to want to keep.

So, dear Wundawoman, HOW can you feel it is freakish to possess a GLORIOUS and FAVORABLE pear-shaped body? How can you feel suicidal (glad you're past that now, BTW) because of your beautiful body? (I don't mean that to sound offensive, I really, really understand but you need to sort this out and really work at realizing it's how you look at yourself, not how you really look that's the problem).

I guess my advice (since you asked) is to work at really liking that pear-shape and making it the best asset that you have. I don't know what your exercise schedule is like, but maybe some weight training with an emphasis on the lower body would help or a body sculpting class. Also, maybe Pilates or ballet classes or videos would stretch you out a bit and give you a more dancer-like look.

It's really hard to change our basic shape, as you know, but boy can we maximize what we have. But self-hate and rage towards our bodies will only produce the opposite effect. When you fully realize how beautiful you are, then others will see it, too.

P.S. Don't feel like the Lone Ranger, Kemo Sabe! I hate lycra, too, and have to wear a smaller size on top than on the bottom ... PLUS, I can't wear long sleeved jackets (apart from the fact that I live in the desert) because my arms are too short AND I can't wear any jeans that are not a large size petite because my legs are too short for the rest of me. Sheesh!

BTW, Bobbie Brook's (sp?) jeans have a lot of fitting options and have nice stretchy waists. They are inexpensive, too.

And, P.S., what a nice DH you have!

Good luck.
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Old 05-11-2003, 07:33 PM   #3  
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I must begin this post with the fact that I am an "apple" as opposed to a pear- and that fact is not at all comforting to me as I know that apples do not just suffer from an increased risk to heart attack/cardiovascular disease, but also most cancers. It is all because of where we carry our fat.

But this I can tell you. I have no waist, never had one (even at a normal weight) and never will. You do!!!!!! (I'm jealous). There are tons of styles that I have to forgo because of that.........the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence.

What this is all about is learning to be happy with who you are and how you were made......sounds like you have a wonderful Dh who loves you for being you!!!! What a blessing that is!! I have a neighbor who is also a dramatic pear, she fares well with with LL Bean for jeans (so she tells me). Hang in there~ love yourself for the unique and special person that you are!!!
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Old 05-11-2003, 09:31 PM   #4  
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Hugs to you!!! When you find a jeans brand that you like (Lee's, you said), make that your signature brand. Buy them in different styles and colors. Same thing with tops - find a manufacturer that suits you and go for it! At the risk of sounding trite, find the positive in your situation - when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

And yes, lycra should be out-lawed! I've had to pass up some of the cutest stuff due to bulge-hugging lycra!
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Old 05-11-2003, 11:40 PM   #5  
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I am also a classic "pear" and I used to think I was built like a freak as well. Nowdays, I've gotten so used to buying separates in two different sizes that it is a shock when I do buy a complete outfit and don't need to alter it at all!
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Old 05-12-2003, 02:42 PM   #6  
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Wundawoman! Hang in there! I used to work in a women's clothing store and it made me feel almost normal when I would hear the size 2s and 0s bemoaning the poor fit of pants. A friend of mine weighs 130 at 5'7" and she ranges in pant sizes from a 4 to a 12 depending on the style and clothes maker, so you are not alone. I used to always feel shame, like I was a mutant because I was fat and that was why the clothes were so hard to fit in to, but seeing so many "skinny" people have the same problems made me realize that it is a woman's issue. I was talking to a SCUBA divemaster the other day and he said that if men give him their weight and height, he can fit them in a wetsuit, no problem, but if he has ten women who are exactly the same height and exactly the same weight, he can give them 50 wetsuits to try and no two women would fit in the same one. He said it was really hard to fit women into wetsuits if they're not customized because all of our shapes are different. So realize that you are not alone, Wundawoman and I agree- if you find a style you like, buy buy buy. I personally love DonnaKaren or DKNY, but she's expensive. I just two pairs of pants- save one for dressing up and wear the other until it falls apart.
Please don't let shopping depress you- it's like a mission- the search for the perfect pair of pants- and just remember that the woman in the changing room next to you is probably struggling to find her perfect pair, too.
BTW- I heard that Levis sometimes custom fit jeans for you in their store...I've never tried it, but maybe that might help.
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Old 05-12-2003, 05:07 PM   #7  
so close, yet so far...
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(((((wundawoman)))) I think we've all been there, in the dressing room and either enraged at our bodies or enraged at the clothing manufacturers. I am only 5'3" and have had difficulty finding women's plus size petites! Luckily I have lost enough weight to fit into the "normal" misses sizes again, but still have difficulty finding the petite or short lengths. I am loving this capri pants trend we are having at the moment.

Anyway, addressing your request in finding regular waist jeans or pants and not those hideous ultra-low-slung hip huggers, I have found these brands to be "normal" and fuller cut than other brands: I like Lands' End which you can now find at most Sears stores or Gloria Vanderbilt--I am finding these at Costco or even Sam's Clubs. I also used to love shopping at Lane Bryant, very stylish plus sized clothing. They do offer a lot of the trendy stuff for plus sizes, but they also have a large variety of your normal cut jeans and other casual wear, even lingerie and pjs. I find that Lee and Levi brands w/the normal waist run a little small on me (I have a large behind). I also love shopping at Ross' Dress for Less, designer brands w/out designer prices. Like everyone else says, enjoy your wonderful shape for what it is. Celebrate you and your wonderful hubby.
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