Warm weather can have it’s own difficulties for body image

Warm weather can be difficult for some.

It’s getting hotter now, in the UK, and even though we’re in lockdown (a situation already pressurising our mental health), we can still be affected by this.

Although a lot of people (myself included) embrace the summer heat and soak up those
rays, it is dreaded by some. It can be triggering. Those with visible scars of any kind on show (I used to really struggle with my self harm scars in the summer). Those with eating disorders, unable to hide underneath clothes and having to display their body in a way they may not be comfortable with (or risk sweating 24/7). Those with body image anxiety, looking at all the influencers’ ‘perfect bikini bodies’ and perfect tans and then comparing that to how they themselves look (a lot of these influencers often use strategic poses/angles so don’t take their posts too literally – you’re beautiful as you are). Those with visible medical conditions who may find it difficult to conceal these under clothing and may be self conscious of them (like having a stoma). Those experiencing gender dysphoria, the distress someone can feel if they don’t feel as though their gender matches their assigned sex at birth and the change of clothing items in hot weather. Some people may long for the winter months where they can hide under baggy clothing and feel more at ease with theirselves.

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Whatever the reason is, it’s valid. If someone wants to wear something or doesn’t want to wear something, that’s fine. If someone wants to cover up or doesn’t want to cover up, that’s fine. If someone wants to wear whatever they want in order to make themselves feel better, that’s fine. The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week was kindness and, I know I talk about mental health all the time but, let’s make sure we’re kind to one another all the time as well. Don’t judge someone for their choice of clothing – it’s none of your business. They have the right to wear whatever they want. They have the right to enjoy the sun, as much as they can, as much as you do. We all deserve to feel the sun on our skin. We all deserve to enjoy the sunny weather. Wear or don’t wear whatever you want. Whatever you’re most comfortable in. You do what’s best for you.

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