Surviving Your Wedding When You Don’t Feel Beautiful

you are beautiful

I’m not going to lie to you, I’ve cried too many tears over my weight. I had an eating disorder for ten years and although I was technically recovered by the time I came to walk down the aisle, it was still at the forefront of my mind when planning the wedding.

My thoughts of self-loathing reared their ugliest head when it came to choosing my dress of course. I was worried that I’d never find one that I felt good in. I was worried that I’d be uncomfortable all day. I was worried that I’d look back at my wedding photos and cry because I looked so enormous.

There seems to be two main schools of thought when it comes to body image, weight and weddings. There are those, like me now, that believe you should focus on being healthy and not stress yourself out by trying to lose weight before the wedding. Then there are others that go on a diet or sign up to some kind of sadistic bridal bootcamp torture as soon as that sparkler is slipped onto their finger.


The latter makes me so very sad. I just wish these people knew how much happier they’d be without putting that extra pressure on themselves, and that on the day, how much they weigh will be the very last thing on their minds. But, believe me I get it, accepting your body the way it is can be difficult for even the most confident people.

I haven’t weighed myself since I was in my early 20s (it was a huge trigger for my disordered eating) but I think I was a little bit heavier on our wedding day. When I look back at our photographs I can see this, sure, but it doesn’t devastate me like I thought it would. I don’t look back and see the weight, I look back and see our happy beaming faces and the inexplicable joy that radiates from every single image.

I don’t think anything can prepare you for how you’ll feel on your wedding day. I didn’t think about my weight or my body once. I didn’t walk down the aisle worrying about how I looked, I practically ran down the aisle, desperate to see and marry Gareth.


For probably the first time in my life I felt completely gorgeous. I adored and felt comfortable in my dress and everybody told me how beautiful I looked.  But more importantly, I felt loved. By Gareth, by my friends, and by my whole family who were there to celebrate with us. Nothing else mattered.

I know body image and weight can be a huge stress and burden for so many of you. I feel you, I’ve been there… in fact many days I am still there. But your size or how your body looks does not determine your lovability. Your wedding day will be amazing because you are amazing, and because you are marrying an amazing person who loves every last amazing inch of you.




  1. Heavy and hopeful

    I read your article because I am marrying a very handsome musician soon, who is the love of my life. We have opened our home to his brother who is also a musician and thus we have had to put our wedding off 4 times due to extreme poverty. I am having such a hard time finding a used dress that is in my price range, as I am a 16 to and 18 and pretty sure I can’t get any more weight off due to thyroid issues. I have cried many a tear over this wedding business and have finally come to terms with my weight and my issues and our pocketbook. Thank you for this article. It made me very happy to see the beauty that is not a size 6. Now to find a used dress before Dec… Hopefully I don’t loose my mind again.

  2. Post author

    Jessie – the cream ones are Irregular Choice. Not sure about the green ones though xoxo

  3. Jamie

    Thanks for yhis. I have spent many years battling anorexia so I know how it feels. Recovered now but constantky still battling it in my own mind ever day and it so hard. Panicking my wedding photos won’t look good because I have never been happy with how I look. I hope many brides to be look at themselves in a new light after reading this. Xxx

  4. What a lovely article. I believe that every woman is naturally beautiful and that by going with our own natural style we find our own unique beauty. I remember a lady who was convinced her legs were like treetrunks, whereas to me they were graceful, curved legs that perfectly suited who she was. When we don’t like something about ourselves it is usually because we haven’t learnt to accept an aspect of ourselves, and sometimes that turns out to be something brilliant. That said, I have definitely not learnt to accept my belly, brought on by living too close to Ottolenghi’s! And I do think it’s worth eating healthily in the run up to one’s wedding day, not so as to feel stressed, but so as to feel fabulous and enjoy it all the more.

  5. Leah

    You don’t know how bad I needed this. I lost 90 pounds before and have gained over half back since getting engaged. I have felt so fat and ugly and even having thoughts of not having a wedding. All because of how others will see me! So tiring.

  6. Kate

    I get married in 2 weeks and i have never felt more stressed in my life, not because of the wedding but because im terrifed i am going to looks horrible and fat, like some kind of over-stuffed chiffon based Blamonge! it scares the living crap outta me and then i ave just read this and i could cry… i wish i could un-do the stress i have put myself under this past year

  7. Lael

    I’m really struggling. My wedding is in a month and I just simply don’t feel beautiful. I just want to be married I wish I could skip the bullshit all together. It’s ridiculous. But I’m doing this reception party for him because I love him. It’s just giving me anxiety because I’m not ever going to be the perfect skinny minny bride. It’s just not me. Oh well. Whew.

  8. Emma

    I bloody love this!
    I’m getting married in November and i am constantly stressing about my weight! And pretty much every one has said to me ‘oh well you don’t want to look at the photos and see how big you are?!’
    I mean come on!
    Thank you for this article – it goes with what my guy is always saying ‘we’re happy so who gives a crap about anyone else’.
    You rock! Awesome photos too! My wedding shoes are the irregular choice ones you have in the pics! 🙂

  9. Mia

    Loved this article! I’m getting married over Easter weekend and the whole weight thing has been on my mind…especially if I stress eat… but luckily your article relieves me from silly worries. Thanx! Xx

  10. Joy

    Thanks for this! This past weekend I had my reception and had a ton of fun. I had on a very tight dress to show off my curves but upon looking at some candid side profile pics from the big day, i had a protruding belly. For the last few hours I have felt like crying because I tried so hard to lose weight for months and then felt serious wedding dress regret for being so daring….but trying to get body positive is so hard. It’s like all my dieting and counting calories was for nothing but I’m trying to tell myself it’s not true. And you’re right the pressure to lose weight was annoying as hell on top of the wedding planning. EFF our modern beauty standards!!


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