Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I am 40.....and Self Conscious

If you read Master's blog you will have read that I made a comment about age appropriateness of what someone was wearing the other day.

We were in Office Depot on Sunday and as Master was checking out a lady came in. I was watching her as Master was checking out. She was wearing a dress that was about 1 or 2 inches past her bottom, fishnets and heels (more detailed description later in the post.)

Anyway, I was looking at her and kind of amazed she was wearing what she was...normally in the past I wouldn't have given her a second thought. Or maybe have thought what Master said, "is that her Sunday best?" But the age appropriate comment was way out of left field for me. But I turned 40 this year and with it has come lots of internal dialog. So on the way out Master looked at her too and I said, "that was so not age appropriate." I instantly realized what I said and then I got upset because it brought home why I said it. I am getting older and I have been going through lots of --- I won't be able to do various things because I am too old now and just won't ever have a chance to experience them again. And I am just old and so have to do what others at my age do. It wasn't that I don't think a 40 year old can dress sexy. I know I can even at 40. What made me say it is because my internal dialog has convinced me I am old so I am to be like other women of my age. So that comment wouldn't have happened a couple years ago because it would have never crossed my mind. But because of the internal dialog I have been having since turning 40 - it came up and I was instantly upset that I said it.

Now all that said - I know also even if I didn't say it I would have thought I didn't like what she was wearing. I would have thought it was great that she was trying to show off her slutty side. But because my mind has been trained/conditioned to see what is sexy per Master's desires (not completely mind you as there are something I still have trouble wrapping my mind around but in the list of things that say sexy to Master) she didn't hit the mark. And I actually did make the comment that she would have been more sexy in other things and still looked age appropriate by "normal" standards. Such as if she had been wearing a pencil skirt, a satin blouse maybe with a some cleavage showing, spiked heels - she would have looked damn hot. Instead she I think was trying to look sexy by wearing things that "people" say is sexy - mini skirt/dress, fishnets and heels. But just because it is those things doesn't mean it looks sexy. She was wearing a crushed velvet print mini dress with dark autumn leaves, fishnets and what I call conservative business heel - rounded toe, square heel - not the chunky platforms just a square heel. (Similar to these but her heel was just a little taller.) When I told Master what I thought she should have been wearing to look sexy - he of course agreed as it hit his clothing fetish.

Okay so on to the next part....I made the comment that if she wanted to be wearing that go home and give her guy a lap dance. And again maybe that was coming from inner dialog of I am 40 and old. But I think it has more to do with my views and that I would have been self-conscious in such an outfit in Office Depot. I totally get that everyone is different. I am just saying I wouldn't want to wear what she was wearing to Office Depot. To a bar, to a strip club or lifestyle event/party totally get it as it was trashy and slutty. And I have totally dressed in a similar way and have things in the closet to fit that description. But if I was wanting to be going out shopping and looking sexy - it would be something else because I am just not comfortable with it outside certain circumstances.

I am sad that I have become very self-conscious and even wearing something like it to a bar or strip club now - today - I would be a little panicked. I don't dress like I used to when in Ohio so I think have become more self-conscious because it is not normal for me anymore. And I really struggle over it because even at home with Master alone I still feel self-conscious. When I was in Ohio, I was going to lifestyle meetings, out with friends, play parties and such and dressing up was just normal for me so I was used to it. It was just part of my life. And yes I was self-conscious then too but it isn't nearly the level it is now and I just did it because well I was going out. Now dressing up just isn't something I have opportunity to do in public.

Case in point Master recently bought me a blouse. Now I love the blouse on the hanger but when I put it on I felt very exposed as my cleavage is a focal point of the blouse. I wore it out shopping one day and every place we went into -- each clerk said something about the blouse and I had stares in the store from other shoppers. It made me even more uncomfortable knowing all those eyes were on me. It was a cute fashionable blouse -- nothing inappropriate about it. But I still was very aware of the eyes on me while wearing it. Six years ago I wouldn't have thought twice about wearing it. I would have been excited to wear it. And I really don't think it has anything to do with age. It is just the view of me has changed. I am not used to dressing that way.

So although I wouldn't wear a crushed velvet mini-dress in Office Depot - I still would have problems dressing sexy in public because I have self-image issues. But initially the comment came out of my mouth because of my inner dialog about age -- which I logically can say is silly. I just haven't been able to get my logical to align with the emotions.


  1. I don't think that being self conscious like that is necessarily an age issue. I am young myself and am very self conscious and also conscious of what other women wear. I'm more on the "fluffy" side and know that this contributes to my views. I know when I go out with my Master and he has me wear "sexy" things, I always feel self conscious and in the beginning didn't even feel sexy. But now I know that if my Master is taking me out in public looking like that, then he thinks it's sexy, and that's all that matters.

    However, I also know that somewhere in us, we'll still feel uncomfortable about wearing that "blouse". I'm glad I'm not the only one that's pondered these thoughts.

  2. I think the process of aging is the one area that we are utterly incapable of exerting any control over, and the events and circumstances seem so random and arbitrary that it can really set us off. Living, as we all do, in a culture that glorifies the traits of youth and nubile beauty, it is particularly challenging to continue to see ourselves as women of grace, beauty, and value even as we age. From my position on the path (13 years further along than you are), I am well aware of the kinds of issues you are encountering. The only discovery I have made in all of this is that I can CHOOSE how I will react to the messages that come at me from all over the place about what is and is not sexy. I can decide to be sexy for Him, because that matters. I can opt out of the social norms in this arena just as I have in other areas of my life. That is not an easy fix, but it is a strategy that has made my raging at my aging somewhat less intense. I do wish you all the best.

    Hugs, swan

  3. pet, I don't think being self-conscious is necessarily an age issue either. But for I have gotten older I am more self-conscious. But have always been self-conscious to some degree.

    swan, thank you! *hugs*


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