Karen Woodman

Published: 22 February 2017

I didn’t have the nicest of childhood, my dad is very much of a bully. Through my teenage years he would constantly look at me and come out with horrible comments about my body and make fun of me. I was also bullied at school.

I left home at 20 and somehow I ended up going into a very abusive relationship. Things were all fine and rosy when we first started dating but quickly changed when we moved in together. Things got very physical and the police were called by neighbours on several occasions. I was also mentally abused, constantly being called ugly, thick and stupid and how I should have never been born. He also threatened to end my life if I went to the police.

I lost nearly everything, my friends gave up on me and most of all I lost my courage and self esteem. I believed every word he said and that I was totally worthless and no good for anything!

One day I eventually plucked up the courage and left, I was scared that if I didn’t I would end up dead.

12 years on I met my husband Tony, all he’s ever tried to do is repair the damage of what the mental abuse had done to me. I hate nearly all of my body except for my eyes, I love my eyes. Tony loves everything about me, all my mental and physical scars, all my little flaws, the way I nag him and the way I am, expect for the way I am so negative about myself. He keeps telling me that I am beautiful but I refuse to believe him. I keep thinking he is saying it just to please me and maybe that’s what I want to hear.

Somehow Kensa kept popping up on my fb page and I became curious and then liked the page. I was so envious of all the gorgeous women, they all look so stunning and I wished I could look half as good as they do.

On the spur of the moment, something came over me when I saw the promotion they were doing to help with “Women’s refuge” a wave of emotion came over me, I had mixed feelings and had past hurt come flooding back. I had to do something! I couldn’t help but think how much my husband Tony had helped me through things and with his birthday coming up in October I wanted to give him something back!

Next thing I knew I had booked my session, there was no going back! I had so many panick and anxiety attacks leading up to my big day. I told Karen how I was feeling and she was lovely and helped reassure me that a lot of women also feel the same and how much she would prove to me that I am beautiful.

I walked in with my suitcase and I felt like a bag of nerves but I tried my best to put on a brave face. The lady who done my hair and make up was amazing, she made me look dare I say it beautiful. The whole experience was amazing and Karen was so patient and understanding.

My husband came with me to choose our photo’s. I wanted him to pick them as it was for his birthday. I was absolutely amazed with the way I looked and posed. Surely this couldn’t be the same person. I loved them all and it was so difficult to pick the ones I wanted. My husband wanted them all. I have certainly impressed myself and I couldn’t believe seeing on the big screen that I did in fact look gorgeous.

Such a big thank you to Karen and the team, you have done an amazing job.