Does the thought of shopping for a swim suit make you shudder? Do you feel an urge to crawl into a hole after examining yourself in the dressing room mirror? Is there anyone of the female persuasion above the age of 13 or so that enjoys this event?
I took my daughter swim suit shopping today. She is thin, her weight is within the normal weight for her height/frame, and she is well proportioned. However, shopping for a swim suit was stressful for her. The stress was probably compounded by the fact that she is going to a pool party Friday evening, and it's a boy/girl event.
We had a good discussion about the fact that swim suit shopping is difficult for most of us. Even those with "perfect" bodies will quickly find flaws when scantily clad. (Not that I'm letting my 14 year old buy a skimpy bikini, mind you) I also pointed out that guys her age are also stressed about what to wear to the pool. Most of them don't have Channing Tatum's chest. If they're overweight, they consider wearing a t-shirt at the pool. If they're scrawny, they consider the t-shirt option at well. Then some of them discard that idea because they know that everyone knows why they're leaving a t-shirt on, and this will invite attention and perhaps teasing.
I proceeded to remind her that most of the people at the party are more concerned about their own appearance than hers. Fortunately, she doesn't struggle too badly with this but it still makes me sad. I wish that my daughter could look at herself through my eyes. I wish that she was more confidant about her body image. She's adorable and looks great in a swim suit. But far more important than this - if she didn't look good in a swim suit she is still a beautiful person.
In the end, my daughter decided to wear last year's swim suit. She didn't wear it very much, it's still a great style, and she liked it better than any of the suits that she tried on.
What do you say to your daughter/granddaughter/sister/niece/friend when she's discouraged about swim suit shopping?