“Btw. When someone makes a comment about how attractive one of my companions is, I tend to lean into it. If the type of comments I made tonight at all makes you uncomfortable, please tell me and I will stop. I think you are absolutely amazing and also physically gorgeous but I don’t harbour any resentment towards you because of that. I just don’t want my verbal antics to make you uncomfortable in any way.”
I didn’t even think about it last night when it was happening. Three martinis in at the pub and a marvelous performance of Mary Poppins in my brain, I was having an excellent time. At one point my dear friend started showing me off because of my unusual dress. Something a little more high fashion than the area would have been used to. Still, I felt good in the dress. It was a statement piece and I knew it, so I was ready for looks and stares.
What I didn’t realize was how many looks and stares I would get, and how much my friend was ready to hype me up. Yes, I felt good. Yes I was allowed to be beautiful, and at no point was I ever offended by her showing me off. It’s kind of why I often bought dresses, so I could look and feel beautiful.
In the past I’ve posted a bit about my struggle with beauty. I’ve always been considered “cute” and only that. Since being medicated I realized that much of that was the kind of clothing I wore. I hadn’t let my wardrobe grow up with me very much. Granted, I really liked cute clothing, but I never did what I could to break the barrier into sophistication. Mainly because I was afraid to. Being sexy or beautiful requires funds I didn’t have and time that was precious to me. Plus being beautiful meant attracting attention, and as an introvert attention was and is something that exhausts me.
There is also risk in being beautiful. People struggle to take you seriously sometimes. People often will give you unwanted attention. People will find reasons to hate you out of jealousy over the superficial. People will use you, like my mother used to when she took me out places, to get better service or discounts. Not that using me for those things is a malicious thing, but it does make one wonder what other ways one could be used.
That night, I was having fun, so much fun that it never occurred to me that my beauty was under any kind of scrutiny or malicious intent. My friend felt that I looked lovely and felt it valuable to let me and others know. Waking up to that message was a comfort to know that she cared and didn’t want me to feel like I was a piece of meat. She wanted to respect my new found step into sophisticated fashion, and wanted to support my self discovery in that area. She wanted to protect my exploration.
I responded:”I wasn’t offended at all. I’m just not used to being fawned over so much by someone other than [my husband]. It was very nice though. [My husband] asked me when we got home if I liked having other people point out I was beautiful. Tonight I did. It made me feel good. I’m learning to embrace being beautiful. In the past I had seen it as a curse. I’m learning that it’s just a thing and only part of who I am, just the more visible part. I had a great time last night.”