IE141-043Hooters, tatas, chi-chi’s, boobs, titties (or as Mr. Chappell would say, ‘tit-tays’), fun bags, lady lumps (shut up, Fergie), tiggo-bitties (thanks Mr. Kelly!), ninnies, jugs, milkshakes, pillows, melons, tee-tees . . . the list could go annoyingly on and on. So what is it about these fleshy mounds that seem to drive people wild? How is it that a part of the female anatomy that was given to us solely for the means of nourishing our babies can spark so much controversy and conversation? Since we know what the breast is and what it’s meant for, we can move a little further and talk about a different hot topic: “Is bigger better?” Aaah America, my home, land of the free, home of the brave, the place where you can get your burger triple-pattied, your fries super-sized and your mobile home double-wide, with this mindset it’s hard not to slip into the belief that the bigger something is the more fun you will have with it, but anything in excess can be a bad thing, ever heard the term “more than a handful and you’re in trouble?”

When I decided to write this story, I tried so hard not to make it personal, but being well-endowed myself, it was hard not to. I was at a point where I had been thinking about and researching breast reductions and from that day on I wanted to know if there were other women out there who struggled with the same issues I had on my plate, or should I say chest? Well either way, for the past year I randomly walked up to about 100 different women from many different backgrounds on the streets of New York, Seattle, Atlanta and Florida (tried not to scare them) and kindly asked them one simple question, “Can we talk about your breasts?” I never thought that women would be receptive to a stranger, but once we began talking and they saw that I dealt with the same things, they were totally open. The responses that I received from most of them I was all too familiar with already and they only led me to believe what in my head was already confirmed, that there is a flip side to having large breasts.

One young lady I came across while riding the train instantly caught my eye, a 29-year-old hair stylist from New York. Naeemah was very pretty, had a very small frame and very large breasts and she was the last woman that I would harass (clearing throat) I mean interview. Currently a 36 F she developed at a very early age, by the time she was in high school she was already a DD cup and when I asked her if she ever felt uncomfortable with her breasts it was as though I asked a fat kid if he likes cake. “I feel self-conscious about my breasts in professional, formal, and family settings. I feel like no matter what I wear I come off looking like I’m trying to be sexy, when usually all I can think about is how I wish my breasts were detachable because I would have left them home today,” she said. We also spoke about the unwanted attention and how annoying it can be. “A lot of men talk to my breasts, some women look at me like ‘does she have to walk around with her breasts so big?’ God gave me these…it’s not a fashion decision that I made while figuring out what to wear today.”

Society also has a way of making you feel that you should be grateful for certain things, large breasts being one of them. If you turn on the TV at any given moment you can see a woman with breast implants or one saying that she wants larger breasts. Many of the women I spoke with developed at a very early age and being a 12 year old with a full D cup can make anyone feel self-conscious. Later in life they were all told that they should be happy with what God gave them, and I’ve heard it all before from my smaller-breasted friends who tell me I should be out shaking “the girls” in people’s faces or donating some of it to them or having cleavage spilling out for everyone to see, but the attention comes no matter what, so drawing more attention to something that people already fixate their gaze on is not my intention.

Larger breasted women have different things to deal with: back pain, trouble finding clothes, bras, pretty lingerie, not feeling comfortable exercising and feeling like you look too buxom or that you’re trying to be sexy in just about anything you put on are all very frustrating things. Another thing that stood out was the fact that every single woman mentioned that at some point in her life she considered having a breast reduction, which is a very common procedure in America, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), breast reductions fall in the top 5 cosmetic procedures performed annually. On top of that, there is always the attention that you receive from both men and women and while I don’t really blame either, it still can be an uncomfortable situation.

I myself will still look at mine as sort of a gift and a curse, because we are like old cousins who get on each others nerves from time to time. I would love to be able to frolic on the beach in my bikini top without the fear that I will get a black eye or give someone a heart attack, but that’s not my reality, however, I have grown to a point where I am much more confident in myself inside and out and I know that I am more than just a pair of tiggo-bitties (damn you Kells!), I’m a woman who has the right to make herself happier and more comfortable in her own skin if that’s what she chooses.

With all this being said, I also want to make one thing known, there are women out there who adore their large, voluptuous breasts and when I come across them it makes me happy to know that they love what they have and feel 100% comfortable with who they are. I have friends who are AA cups, have implants and who are G cups, as women we come in all sizes, shapes and colors and that’s why the world loves and appreciates the female body the way it does. Now everybody, together, lets burn our bras! (But can I save just one?).

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