For the next 30 days I want to share stories, your stories, of where WE as women support and love each other. Where we come together in a world that doesn’t judge and compare and compete, but one where we say, “YES! ME TOO!”

Here is my friend Julie’s story:

When I bought my last bathing suit, I didn’t think much about it. I have four kids who love the pool and I needed a suit. Simple.

Somewhere in the back of my mind, I guess I thought it might help me blend in (or dare I say, disappear?) at the local pool where it can feel like all of us Moms are in a sorority pledge line-up.

Even though I let go of that crap a long time ago, I remember thinking – yes, this will work – when I paid for my bathing suit. And it has worked for me.

I am aware I do not have the body I had at 27, surely not the body at 17, but my 43-year-old body is a body I have worked for. Four pregnancies, hypothyroidism, a hard-to-quit love affair with cheese and wine, none of which has been a struggle, just the way I have chosen to live.

I really, truly thought my bathing suit purchase was between me, the bathing suit and the three-way-mirror at Target, but recently, a post from an acquaintance on Facebook told me that wasn’t actually true.

Swim dress new

Many wrote to this post and said things like: “It’s a cocktail dress made of swimsuit material. I don’t get it.” Or another, “People swim in them to cover up their bodies.”

What the post said to me was; Yes, we are watching. We are judging. We see you. And we see your swim dress. 

You and your bathing suit are not good enough. 

So, I defended my beloved swim dress.After someone posted this:

Swim dresses are usually skirted bathing suits. The skirts are usually full to ‘cover up and minimize trouble spots like thighs and butts’ (in quotes because thighs and butts aren’t trouble). This is not that kind of swim dress. This swim dress has a modesty panel so you can look hot with your poolside cocktail while the kiddies take their swim lessons, and momma doesn’t have to worry that her bikini wax is scheduled for next week.”

Someone responded:

Is there something under it?”

Why do we do that as women? We categorize and assume and make all of these statements to imply things that we don’t even know about other women, when all of us are just trying to make it. We need each other, not to be stepping on each other! 

I wrote:

Whoa. Le’ts just go easy. No need to be swim dress haters. Mine–that I wear all the time–makes it possible for me to feel beautiful among the teeny-tiny bikini parade at the Edina Pool.”

Another woman responds:

You have always been thin. You can’t know.”

Why do we constantly compare and assume and make these statements about one another? We need each other. We need to be saying, YOU WANT TO WEAR A SWIM  DRESS? YOU GO GIRL!

After 24 hours of letting the banter on FB stew, I can’t help but think one thing.

Why the hell does anyone care what I wear TO THE POOL?

If I choose not to judge myself, why does anyone else think they have that right?

It’s so subtle, but it is there and it infuriates me. And my gut (same one that is hidden under some Spanx in my swim dress) tells me that others may feel the same way. Enough is enough.


I decided to do something about it.  #swimdress  #metoo #iamenough



Love this girl! Won’t you join me in 30 days of #metoo? Send me your stories and I will share them here! You can email me at: xo Lee henri nouwen

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