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I'm suddenly a size 14 with an overhang and have no idea what to wear. Please help

(81 Posts)
crystalgall Mon 08-Feb-16 15:02:36

I know this is going to sound ridiculous and precious but I can't even bear to look at my naked body anymore.

Had a baby 3 and a half months ago. C Section.

I was a size 10-12 before mainly due to big boobs. My staple at work was pencil skirts and tucked in tops and fitted dresses. Skinny jeans and tips for casual. I was v happy with my style and had a decent enough tummy.

Now I look hideous. My stomach is huge and has fold upon fold. It hangs over and is saggy and mishappen. Truly awful. My
Boobs have completely sagged. Huge bum/thighs.

I don't look good in anything and
No longer know what to wear.
I'm on maternity so don't need to worry about work clothes but even day wear has me stumped.

I live in skinny jeans (high waisted to suck in as much tummy as possible) and baggy tops. But I look fat and frumpy.

I went shopping with my sister (21 and a size 6. Clearly I wanted to torture myself). I tried on dozens of tops but either they made my stomach bulge or were too baggy and so made me look big and frumpy. I was in tears by the end of the day.
I can't wear jumpers confused. They make me look fat because my
Tummy just sticks out.

Please help. I know a size 14 isn't huge but it's the giant wobbly belly that is killing me. My self esteem is shot. I used to love style blogs and fashion and style. I loved dressing for work and used to feel sexy. I am
So far from that person it's like she never existed. I will add I have horrible PND at the moment and it may be increasing my anxiety over it all

Is it at all
Possible for me to look good anymore?

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 15:10:21

You are not alone and I am watching with interest as I could have written your post almost word for word. BUT.....as someone who has had PND once and not had PND once, I would say that at least some of the anxiety is the PND. Be very, very kind to yourself, your baby is still tiny and your tummy will continue to get better every day. What helped me when I was at this stage (the PND time) was to make sure my hair and nails and shoes were all nice, that gave me a bit of confidence when I looked at myself. And spray tans quite a lot too, and general pampering.

I know exactly how you feel, and I am struggling a bit with it even though I have no PND this time, but you have to take it from me that you will start to feel better about yourself as you get better.

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 15:15:25

I also bought this dress and got my hair and nails done, spray tan, high heels and went out for a posh meal and cocktails with my DH. It was incredibly flattering and I look at the photos of me in it when I am having a rough day. Expensive and indulgent....but it really helped!

LadyPriggsbottom Mon 08-Feb-16 15:59:02

Agree wholeheartedly with persis. Be as kind to yourself as you can. It's not easy having a tiny baby to care for and PND makes things even tougher.

Spray tan, great hair cut, facial, shoes, nails etc are all great ideas. Also love that Ted Baker dress!

Congratulations on the new arrivals OP and persis flowers

Spudlet Mon 08-Feb-16 16:14:44

If it helps, you're not the only one. I'm 6 weeks into this motherhood malarkey, love the boy but hate what his entrance into the world gas done to my body. I look in the mirror and want to weep... I think our pre-pregnancy styles were quite similar and like you op, I now feel a bit lost.

I was thinking about going to a big department store and using their personal shopping service, I've heard they can be quite good? Might give us some ideas on what to wear?

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 16:38:23

Oooh thanks for the flowers. Mine is 9 months but because I got pregnant so soon after my first caesarean I have had no recovery and just went straight back to work in my maternity clothes!! My pre baby wardrobe was also based on my beautiful flat tummy and I have no idea. Personal shopper is a great idea - I only tried on that Ted baker dress because the nice lady in the shop told me to and she was right!

Congratulations on the babies spudlet and crystal (should have said that before!!). And looking forward to pinching all the good ideas!!

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 16:42:28

PS I know it's v easy for me to say "oh, go and get some nice bright gel nails" and when you aren't well it seems like a totally insurmountable thing to do. I don't mean to trivialise what you are going through and I understand how hard it is. I started really slow (washing and brushing my teeth every day, then shaving my legs once a week, then gradually working up to looking after myself again). I can't promise it will help you, but it certainly helped me see myself as less disgusting - because my nails were so pretty that was one part of me that I enjoyed looking at, and it got better from there.

Shenanagins Mon 08-Feb-16 16:44:43

I remember that feeling well especially as the newspapers were full of slebs who had pinged back into shape within minutes of giving birth!

I accepted that it would take time to get my body back (I gave myself a year) but in the meantime made sure I wore fake tan on my face and got my eyebrows done.

ouryve Mon 08-Feb-16 17:00:24

The boobs can be sorted with a good, well fitting bra (ie avoid M&S!)

I'm a 14 with an overhang and saggy boobs and, in middle age, pretty much stuck this way for now. Good bras really do help - if I can look good from the chest up, it seems to make a difference to how I feel about everything else. (and yes, it sometimes makes me feel crap, even without PND)

Good fabrics are helpful. Avoid anything clingy like modal. A good drape or a little bit of ridigity are essential.

These are a couple of things I've bought recently and really like on me.
www.next.co.uk/g6518s3#365675
www.next.co.uk/x57198s1#401158
And a dress/tunic from laura ashley with a gathered skirt and baggy pocket on it - though it probably wouldn't be practical if you're breastfeeding.

FaFoutis Mon 08-Feb-16 17:01:45

For me it hasn't gone back. Youngest dc is 6, I had 3 c-sections. I'm not fat but I have the overhang and have to dress for it. I remember feeling like you do, but I'm used to it now and often think I look good (clothed). If I was really bothered I would get a tummy tuck but I don't care that much.

You need something that skims your stomach and gives you a nice shape, it is surprising how many dresses do this. Go and try on different shapes of dresses. Toast is my favourite.

ApocalypseNowt Mon 08-Feb-16 17:06:22

Oh gosh OP I could've written your post.

I find dresses better than top and skirt/trousers. Wrap style is good as is a well fitted skater dress for a more casual look.

Definitely go and get a bra fitting - your body and boobs have changed so if you're like me you'll have no idea what size you are now.

You're still really in the early stages so be kind to yourself. If it's something you're interested in though I started slimming world at around the stage you're at now and that definitely helped with the tummy.

crystalgall Mon 08-Feb-16 17:39:38

Thanks all.

I get my bras from bravissimo so the boobs are ok. Am a 32ff.

I suppose I need to go and get loads of things in but it's so bloody depressing to pick something up thinking it looks great on the hanger and then realising how dumpy you look when you put it on. Worse is when I pick up things in a 12 thinking oh this looks quite wide and then it is stuck over my
Stomach and hips. I clearly don't even realise how massive I am.

Any more tips on the kind of clothes I should be going for or shops even?

I loved zara but their sizing is so small I doubt even the xl would fit for some things.

I also like Oasis for the dresses/skirts. I think I tried on about 20 things in the Oxford st branch and I kept one top!

crystalgall Mon 08-Feb-16 17:40:11

That should be 'try loads of things on'

FaFoutis Mon 08-Feb-16 17:43:53

I would say go for brands aimed at slightly older women. The fit is different.
Department stores are often the best places to find out what fits you.

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 17:44:12

Having ignored them all my life as for grown ups, I have started buying things from fat face and white stuff. I have also got some good stuff from all saints (although their sizing is tiny!), hush (ditto sizing). I aspire to a jigsaw or white company poncho as I think this would hide a lot of sins!!!

FaFoutis Mon 08-Feb-16 17:53:45

Seasalt dresses are generally very flattering for the tummied too.

PacificDogwod Mon 08-Feb-16 17:58:34

I know this is S&B and my advice is not fashion advice, so forgive me, but I think it's relevant:

Your body made a whole new human being in 9 months. You are not saying how old you are, but you should quite reasonably expect 9 months for your body to become 'unpregnant' again.
Work on your core - Pilates etc is good. Mutu stands for 'mum tim' and offers good free advice on safe AND effective exercises (you don't have to buy the program to benefit from the free bits).

High-waisted trousers and semi-fitted/structured tops are always flattering my 49 year old, mother-of-4-one-by-CS opinion thanks

PacificDogwod Mon 08-Feb-16 17:59:29

*in my*… opinion blush

Fuzzballs Mon 08-Feb-16 18:13:57

I'm sure it will get better. My tummy was hideous when baby was 3 months but it got back to normal over time. All is not lost and it is very early days for you

PeaceOfWildThings Mon 08-Feb-16 18:15:53

As a side note, have you had your thyroid checked recently?

Knackeredknitter67 Mon 08-Feb-16 18:17:51

The overhang will eventually diminish. Mine is only there when I bend over now, and I have had 3 c-sections, my last was 4.5 years ago. I would say it has shown most improvement over the last year or so because that is how long it took for me to enter a more positive frame of mine and to stop focussing on it so much.
It's only been 12 or so weeks for you, and that is no time at all really.
Take your time and when you feel up to it, start with some gentle walking with your gorgeous baby, good for you and the little one. x

PeaceOfWildThings Mon 08-Feb-16 18:56:55

I've had 2 c sections. The surgeon who did the second one removed the scar tisdue from the staples of the first one, a d did a nice sewing job, but it left a bit of an overhang. It's only recently that I've sorted out treatment for my hypothyroidism that I've been able to eat and exercise effectively.

SpaghettiMeatballs Mon 08-Feb-16 19:03:55

My favourite brands post DCs are Fat Face, Hobbs, Phase 8, Joules and a bit of Boden when they do something in 'longer length' as I'm a bit above average height.

I didn't shop at any of these places pre DCs so I'd agree with the advice to change where you shop.

PersisFord Mon 08-Feb-16 21:30:33

Also are you breastfeeding? First time round I didn't really make friends with my body again until I stopped at 13 months as I just felt I looked wrong - soft and mumsy. When I stopped BFing (and I don't know if I actually changed shape or if it was psychological) I started looking more like me again.

I've been thinking a lot about this since I read your post, and I think what really threw me was that I had to stop wearing what I had always worn before and wear things that, in my eyes, were frumpy and mumsy. Many, many tearful shopping trips. But what helped was taking these dreadful dresses and making them my own - with shoes, accessories and makeup. So a mumsy dress, bright lipstick and neon bangles or something like that.

You are still you, and you are still beautiful flowers

GaryGilmoresEyes Mon 08-Feb-16 22:51:42

I hear you!
I find 50s style dresses from collectif are perfect for me.
And they are very pretty.

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