A Boudoir Shoot Transformed This Woman's Self-Confidence After Her Abusive Relationship

Many women shoot boudoir photo sessions as a gift for their significant others, but this woman decided to take the photos for herself. After getting out of two consecutive abusive relationships — one mentally damaging, the other emotionally and physically — she began to believe the horrible things about herself that were fed to her by former partners. She shared that she didn't always have the ideal body type, and growing up in Southern California didn't make body confidence come easy. She had previously tried therapy before for family reasons and her own body image, but unfortunately, it didn't have the lasting impact she needed.

She had seen all the loving comments on the works of photographer Alyssa Michelle, who specializes in intimate portraits for women, and wondered what it would be like to be the one getting photographed. "I trolled the page for a year or so and thought 'one day, one day' and then finally in September 2016, I had had enough of the lies I was hearing from myself and from past people and thought 'No, I refuse to turn 26 in March without erasing this BS,'" she said. So she finally took the leap and booked a session with Alyssa for right after her birthday in 2017.

Many thoughts flooded her head leading up to the day, from what would everyone think of her stretch marks to what if people didn't think she was pretty or small enough. "But because of the need for the truth of myself, I dug really deep to find the confidence to eventually not care what other people think," she said. "I was doing this for me and that's all that mattered at the end of it."

The shoot ended up being a positive and eye-opening experience from start to end. She looked and felt incredible and was surprised at how empowered she felt through it all. "I didn't know I was capable of looking that way," she said. "And as the girls reminded me, even if I'm not made up every day like I am for the shoot, that's still me. That girl in those photos is still me and is in me every day. I'm sexy, fierce, sassy, playful, lioness, powerful."

She recommends all women try a boudoir shoot for themselves for a boost of confidence and promises you won't have any regrets. She left the shoot feeling completely transformed and doesn't plan on ever looking back.

"EVERYTHING CHANGED," she said. "I have so much confidence in myself now, I strut instead of stroll, I check myself out instead of judge myself. I talk to myself in such a positive way now and can't believe someone could ever tell me that I am any other than the gorgeous sexy woman that I am. F the haters."

See her gorgeous photos ahead!

Additional reporting by Lauren Harano