Dress: eShakti; $40 (22W)
Cardigan: Forever 21; $9.80 (3X)
Necklace: Torrid; $4.80
Earrings: Earthbound Trading Company; $3.00
Shoes: Avenue; $15 (8.5W; Black)

Total: $72.60

So there’s kind of a story behind this dress. This is a dress that almost got me fired for having too much boob. Or more specifically, for showing too much cleavage.

See, when you have a big chest your cleavage pretty much takes up an obscene amount of your upper rib cage. Mine goes up pretty much to the line of the second button on a blouse, which means any time I wear anything like a v-neck or a scoop neck, I show cleavage. It’s just the way I go. And apparently this offended someone in my office, because I was called in for a “chat” about my work attire by a former manager.

I was told that I needed to dress more conservatively, that this dress showed too much skin. .. I was told this by someone who was at that very moment was covering even less skin than I was. When I pointed this out (in as much of a “oh god I don’t want to get fired” way as possible– something along the lines of “I think I might be unclear on our dresscode standards. Could you let me know what portion of it that I’m violating?”) I was told I wasn’t in violation of dress code; they just found the amount of skin I was exposing was inappropriate.

It wasn’t the dress I was wearing. It was the body I was wearing it with that was offensive.

When I figured that out I reported her to HR and we had a sit-down talk where we discussed the fact that I was, essentially, not violating any sort of dress code. That what I was wearing was in full compliance with my company’s work policies and I was in fact covering more skin than most of the women in my office. This dress goes to my knees, for the record, and yeah you can see the line of my cleavage but seriously, my cleavage goes up forever. This is part of being fat/having big tits. There’s nada I can do about it. I just liked the dress, goddamnit.

The manager was told to suck it up and I got to wear my dress. The manager has since moved on and I’ve gotten no flack for it since. But seriously, it’s ridiculous how much we police other women– especially fat women– for things we wouldn’t even consider hassling thinner women for wearing. Though I’m sure being told that your body is too offensive to be seen in the same sorts of things “normal” people wear isn’t a fat exclusive experience, which really digs at me.

It also really highlights how much women’s bodies seem to exist for viewing and judgment by others. How many men get pulled aside and given the same conversations, do you think?