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Jane K

Ladies Question re Wearing Dresses

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Hi Everyone,

Not intending to exclude you fellows but the context of this topic tends to pertain to the female gender....but please read on since there well may be a guy version of this issue.

I'm approaching my 4 year anniversary becoming a amp. I think nothing wearing shorts while out and about going to the gym, store, dump etc. I am a through knee and I don't use any cover. A cover is not really an option because of the mechanics of my hydraulics. Kids are curious, adults too. None of this phases me - it is what it is. I'm more mobile and not in pain as I was for the 6 yrs before the amp.

My quandary is I would like to wear dresses on occasion but somehow I feel odd about wearing a naked leg and wearing a dress. I admit there is no logic in this thought but I was wondering if this isn't a issue with any of you ladies?

Thanks for your thoughts.

Jane

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Jane, I have been an amputee for 12 years & still can not go {bare legged}...I hate the looks & stares terribly. I always have mine covered. I have'nt worn a dress since. That's really bad I know, but just can not do it. It is just a hang-up for me. Since you have no qualms about shorts, I think you will get over this concerning dresses. :happy:

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I only wear a removable cover under pants (skinny ones in particular) in order to "fill out" the pant leg. With shorts and dresses I leave my leg bare. I even have a high heel leg that I leave uncovered with dresses. I don't care if people look. I would look too. Carbon fiber legs look awesome. My attitude may be a result of my occupation. I am a Physical Therapist and am used to prosthetics, orthotics and all kinds of assistive devices and I always notice how people walk and try to figure out why.

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Jane, I'm not much of a "dress" person...almost always wear slacks or shorts...but I have been thinking recently about what I'd want to do if I ever decided to wear a "dressy" skirt or dress. For me, I think I'd be more concerned about the shoes I'd need to wear than I would be the dress itself. I have a ton of requirements for my shoes...for a "casual" dress, I'd be fine with my usual orthopedic tie oxfords, but that just sounds so incongruous with a "dressy" outfit.

My last time at a formal event I was still a very new amputee and was wearing a cosmesis on my leg...my dress was fairly plain, so my plain shoes were OK and my leg was more-or-less inconspicuous. I was fine with that. I think I'd also be OK with a plain short dress, my plain shoes, and my current uncovered prosthesis.

But now, like you, I'm wearing a "naked" leg, which I truly love and do not want to cover up. However, a really formal, dressy, dress combined with a naked prosthesis and orthopedic tie oxfords just sounds "cringe-worthy" to me. Just a decent-looking pair of shoes (I have a major "thing" about shoes) would probably make me feel fine about the whole thing.

I guess that It all comes down to "what feels right" to the individual amputee woman. I was very reluctant to wear a swim suit for my first couple of years...but after the first time I wore one, it was fine and I never looked back. Maybe you could try wearing a dress sometime when it would be among a small group for a short period of time and just see if it did turn out to "feel right." You might discover that you truly do feel uncomfortable with it...but my own experience makes me think that you might realize that it's not really a problem at all.

Good luck on making up your mind!

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Hi All,

as my prosthetic leg (RBK) is the sexiest leg I've ever had I have no problem showing it in all it's technical glory. It's the other leg I hate being seen! I had half my foot amputated on that side and the 'gizmo' I have to wear to be able to balance and protect the end of my foot is very ugly. As with Cheryl, I tend to worry about my footwear too. I had to go to a very formal dinner last year and decided the best thing to do was just to front it out. So I wore a highly embellished long indian tunic type top over a pair of wide legged matching trousers. and a pair of baseball boots.....! I simply cannot get ANYONE to take the footwear thing seriously at all. Orthotists don't want to know about 'pretty' shoes. I am now three or so years post amputation and haven't worn a dress yet because I think they look awful with running shoes/oxfords etc. I'm sure someone could make an absolute fortune making shoes for us amputee women which allow us to walk safely yet be feminine at the same time. In the UK there doesn't appear to be anyone except the uber-expensive 'designer' type shoemakers - cobblers seem to be a thing of the past.

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I think it boils down to whatever is comforting to you. :happy:

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Ann, I think you're absolutely right about that! We amp women have a number of issues that non-amp ladies don't have to think about...whatever makes us feel comfortable is a good thing.

I have a very good friend who has an ongoing problem with my "naked" prosthesis. She is a lovely woman and has been very supportive, but she really can't seem to figure out why I wouldn't want my leg to "look normal." If she were ever to lose a leg, I'm sure she'd want to have the best cosmesis she could afford...that would be a comfort to her, and I think anything comforting in that situation would be nice.

Now on the "dress and footwear" front, I love the description of your "formal dress" outfit, Kate! And yes, I think if anyone ever comes up with "cute shoes for women with foot problems" they will become overnight millionaires...wish I could manage that one!

I happen to be a fan of TV's Dancing With The Stars, and it's been fascinating watching Amy Purdy compete, both for her ability as a dancer and for the combinations of her costumes and prosthetic feet/shoes..........granted, I'm not a wonderfully young, beautiful, incredibly fit amputee woman, but it's been grand watching one in action...and she has certainly looked really, really elegant!

I don't know if all of these "offshoot" topics are addressing your original situation, Jane, but I hope it's helping!

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I totally agree cheryl....we {ladies} do not wear the same pr. of shoes with every outfit { if we can help it} like men usually do. We use colors, flats, heels and designs. This would be a multi-million adventure, for sure.

I love to see her dance...{Amy}....such grace & poise. Did you see it Monday? Guess she injured her back/shoulder. Who do you think will take the win? I'm banking on our olympic champion.

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I always wear sari but then again I am Indian. I leave my one leg bare underneath and do not wear a leg as I am HD. I have had a few falls putting on a sari and once managed to rip half of it off when in a wheelchair!

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Saris are beautiful and can hide a multitude of sins, but putting one on when you are in a wheelchair must be a nightmare!

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Thank for the welcome Kate.

I put on my sari standing on my good leg. To be honest, I have lost my balance a few times! The hard part when in wheelchair is keeping it out of the from castoring wheels. I have had a couple of very embarrassing moments with that one!

I have always worn sari so it is something one gets rather expert at. I am considering wearing western clothes as well as I am in a university. I have no chance of finding an Indian gentleman but I do get a lot of attention from white English men.

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However you dress, whatever your culture, whatever your abilities or disabilities,a good man will love you for who you are. I have been married for a long time, so losing my leg at 52 was not so hard on me because my husband loved me before it happened and even more since. I know it's hard for younger women but there are MANY people on the forums who have met their partners since their amputations and have gone on to very happy and fulfilled lives - and you will too. So don't be despondent!It won't be easy, but get out there and start meeting men from other cultures who are kind and loving (assuming your religion permits it). Western clothes are very practical (well, the trousers are)and comfortable, easier to put on than a sari (if less beautiful).And perfect for Uni. There is no rule to say you can't mix it up and wear either is there? Go shopping with your friends for practical wheelchair stuff - it needn't be frumpy, there's plenty of pretty clothing out there which is fashionable but modest. Seven yards of sari entangled in the spokes of a wheelchair is NOT something I'd want to deal with....BTW any man who dismisses you just because you have a disability would make a lousy partner and should be avoided! A lot of attention from Englishmen? Fabulous! Go get 'em.....you only live once - just be careful of course.

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However you dress, whatever your culture, whatever your abilities or disabilities,a good man will love you for who you are. I have been married for a long time, so losing my leg at 52 was not so hard on me because my husband loved me before it happened and even more since. I know it's hard for younger women but there are MANY people on the forums who have met their partners since their amputations and have gone on to very happy and fulfilled lives - and you will too. So don't be despondent!It won't be easy, but get out there and start meeting men from other cultures who are kind and loving (assuming your religion permits it). Western clothes are very practical (well, the trousers are)and comfortable, easier to put on than a sari (if less beautiful).And perfect for Uni. There is no rule to say you can't mix it up and wear either is there? Go shopping with your friends for practical wheelchair stuff - it needn't be frumpy, there's plenty of pretty clothing out there which is fashionable but modest. Seven yards of sari entangled in the spokes of a wheelchair is NOT something I'd want to deal with....BTW any man who dismisses you just because you have a disability would make a lousy partner and should be avoided! A lot of attention from Englishmen? Fabulous! Go get 'em.....you only live once - just be careful of course.

Hi Charu, Welcome to the forum, I am really with Kate on this one, both with the clothes and also with the men. Although now older with grown up children of my own, I was one of those younger people Kate mentions who met their partner after their amputation, in fact I did all my dating post amp. and at that time I never actually thought about it being a problem .... and hopefully that will be the same for you as time goes on. Everyone is different though and have our own experiences, I think I was fortunate to be younger when it happened to me and still at school so had those years without the pressures which sometimes come later, but there are really some great guys out there. And, am prob sounding like a mum now, but maybe concentrate on yourself a bit, losing your leg at 18 must have been really difficult and I imagine put things on hold, so maybe now need to make up that time .... enjoy uni and have fun.

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