Devin Dearing Preston: NYC writer, playwright, and storyteller

Should I be embarrassed?

December 23, 2011

I don’t wear a bra. Ever. I gave up that fight a long time ago.

When an A cup is too big, putting one on, daily, is an act of self hatred. Every morning I get to remember that somebody somewhere failed to let my breasts grow. 14 came and went, and left me with a little more than nipples to compete with all the other blossomed girls my age. My mother and baby sister have enormous breasts, and like some cruel joke, I have none. For a while, I stuffed or used “cookies” (gelatin inserts that are suppose to feel and wiggle like the real thing) Even duct tape was employed to create an illusion of an ample, over flowing bosom. But even all that effort only succeeded in making them not appear absent, which they unfortunately are.

About a year or two ago, I decided to end the charade. Embrace the perk that well endowed woman can only dream of. The ability to walk around, in real life, with no support at all. Fuck that fancy waist of a 40 dollar brazier, and just be the flat chested woman I am. This was a huge step for me, and an act of self love: even though I have no breasts, I love and accept myself completely.

A bra has only ever succeed at digging into my skin and leaving a thick unsightly red mark behind. The straps never stay on my shoulder and always give me away because there is nothing in the cup pulling them taunt leaving their service unnecessary, and their presence visible to all . These aren’t excuses, just facts. I don’t need a bra, so I don’t wear one. Its never been a problem and it seemed like the perfect solution to what would otherwise be a painful admission of defeat to my never fully realized womanhood.

My new most favorite boss, who due to cultural differences has it in for me. Nagging is her people’s favorite form of communicating. That’s not fair. I’m certain she is a pleasant person, if she likes you. She just happens to be a perfectionist, and in a perfect world, everyone wears a bra. In a perfect world, I have breast in need of one. She told me this “rule” plainly, yesterday. Woman to woman, put those bitches away.

I must admit I was mortified. I had a flash back to gym class, eighth grade, when the tissue paper I had wedged into my training bra came loose and a gaggle of girls gawked, pointed and laughed their asses off. To say I’m still sensitive about my minuscule breasts, might be an understatement.

Ill admit, that the hint of a recognizable nipple could be unsettling or surprising. We as a culture have been pretending for years that nipples aren’t in fact the only useful thing on these glands that hang seductively off of our chests. I suspect that hiding said nipple is the only universally unspoken purpose of these torture devises we’ve been willingly shackled in for decades. Well the only purpose for me, because mine don’t hang, bounce or wiggle.

But, I refused to be ashamed of my femininity. Or my bodies ability to feed a small infant. Why we all go along with this embarrassment, I’m not so sure. Boobs can be big and round, but good forbid they resemble their natural form and life giving purpose. Mine are hardly sexual. They resemble a chubby 13 year old boy’s, at best. And they aren’t literally out. I’m wearing a shirt, for crying out loud.

Who decided that nipples were unprofessional?Some man. Who can’t help but be distracted by anything remotely reminiscent of the female form and the unspoken strength present in it? If women can work, so too can their nipples. My inner feminist is a little riled up, forgive me. And livid that I must dawn one of the most uncomfortable and unflattering garments for my figure. Why? Because a loose boob or two, however small, could be cause for termination?

I think I dress in very tasteful manner, the loose baby boobs are just hinted at, and all us small chested ladies have. Because cleavage is never going to happen. Believe me, I’ve tried. Duct tape.

More frankly, it never occurred to me that anyone would want to look at my chest when the option of full luscious boobies surround me. On all sides. Or that someone would be offended by them not being hidden behind inches of padding. This lady is. Wear a bra, she says to me. And again, I’m concerned by her making a huge deal out of it. That somehow, my breasts staying in place, under only one layer of clothing, will effect business, the state of the economy or endanger some innocent bystander’s life. I think my tiny titties are sweet. At best. And at worst, offensively small.

Why are you embarrassed if I’m not? Why do you want me to be as embarrassed by my body as you are.

I don’t want to wear a bra. Not for you, not for anyone. They are my boobs, and they are comfortable just the way they are. But I sit here writing this post, in an undergarment of your choosing. Tightly held and homogenized into a puny boob shelf, with a constant uncomfortable reminder of just how much I can’t stand working for you.

Because if my boobs aren’t outside of your control, what is?

Categories: Waiting is the Hardest Part

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