What Not To Wear


“It is just awful when a woman over 35 wears anything above her knees.  She’s such an embarrassment, trying so hard.”

This comment popped up recently in an online friend circle.  And it stopped me in my tracks.  I felt this flood of emotions, and knew it was going to take some sorting, as they were all dripping with shame, making them a bit more difficult to differentiate from the mess covering them.  

I guess in my own happiness and lack of desire to be picking apart other women, I had forgotten it was a major pastime.  I felt the burn as comment after comment chimed in validating this original poster’s comment.  

I am above 35 by quite a bit, and I wear clothing above my knees quite a bit as well. I haven’t really ever thought about trying for anything, except possibly staying cool, being comfortable...feeling good.  If I am trying so hard, shouldn’t I be slightly aware of this *thing I am giving my all at?  

I am not one to conform, but I do like to be liked, or at least have an awareness when (and why) I am not.  And I now had to add another item to the list, or cover my apparently god-forsaken knees and get back in graces...which, if you know me just.isn’t.gonna.happen.

But making the decision to continue to be me, didn’t really make the shame thing go away.  I felt angry that it seems so pointless for life to be so very rule riddled, and that I don’t get to just wave a wand and make everyone agree with me.  But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I had put something over my knees (and head), and that I didn’t have a wand, but I did have words.  

So, upon careful consideration of my friend’s generous advice, I want to expand on said advice and help us all.  

What Not to Wear 

  1. Do not put on other people’s shame.  

  2. Do not put on others’ judgements. 

Everything else is a go.  

But here are a few suggestions of 

What To Wear

  1. Confidence. Choose clothing that make you feel super great about yourself.  What colors make you happy, what shape and cut make you feel comfortable and looking good.  What style makes you feel fabulous.  Wear those clothes, and then say with every step that you like who you are and this is it.  Believe in your right to be a unique individual and you will not only be attractive, but attract likeminded people.  And those people will be your people.  And even if they are few in number, their value is far greater than all of the other people.  Trust the mathemagic. 

  2. Acceptance.  As you are walking around as your confident, badass self give all the accepting love you can pour out of yourself.  The parched ones so desperately need a taste of it.  And the ones who have it will give some right back to you.  Because sharing love and good vibes is terribly fun.  

So, there we go.  At first your new wardrobe may feel new and a bit awkward, but soon enough you will find you don’t even have to try hard at all.  

Need validation in your new decision to be true to yourself? Some of my favorite outspoken, wise, loving women who speak words of encouragement and authentic living include:

Brene Brown Glennon Doyle Maya Angelou Elizabeth Gilbert