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  • Writer's pictureBen Pechey

What Not to Wear

Dressing is very important to me, it is not a mere consideration of covering my body. To me, dressing is celebrating my personality and my existence. My clothing choices to some may be out of sync with their neurotypical viewpoint. Thus in dressing the way I want causes many opinions to be fielded in my direction on a daily basis.

Outward appearance is just one way in which an individual can express themselves. Yet to judge and categorise others by appearance alone is a very narrow-minded tool of appraisal. Leaving the victim feeling incredibly insecure and uncomfortable. Walking down a street can feel like a battle.

My existence and appearance go hand in hand, dressing for myself makes me happy. However, relentless struggles with other peoples perceptions of me are very tiresome, and wears me down, turning the positive relationship I have with my appearance into something negative and difficult. It is hard to feel confident when the very thing that causes you issues is the way you look.


I’m not being big-headed, I really do turn heads just by existing in public spaces. There are days where I don’t want to be noticed, to walk through the food-hall of Marks and Spencer shopping for dinner without being stared at. There are days where I feel that I am constantly in Trinny and Susannah’s 360-degree mirror of shame, constantly receiving judgement I did not ask for.

This daily passive prejudice can leave you feeling very uncomfortable, which goes against everything that dressing for yourself should be about. I’m confident and comfortable in my own skin, yet this constant judgement leaves me feeling so small. I have no solution to this, well not that would work, because judgment is part of human nature, we all do it. However, wouldn’t it be amazing if we could keep that to ourselves, not saying if we don’t like something. How amazing would that be?

Perhaps instead of what not to wear it should be what not to say…

Shot by Rachel Pechey

Shop my Look:

Jacket: M&S, sold out

Scarf: Vintage

Jeans: Old

Loafers: Vintage Gucci, Similar

Earrings: M&S, Similar

Sunglasses: Céline, Similar


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