Hey! It’s Monday. Let’s talk about tits.
Let me first dispel any suspicion that I am actually a 15-year-old boy masquerading as a female columnist just so I could write about tits. I’m not.
I’m writing about tits because I’m tired of reading, talking and thinking of them exclusively as “man magnets” or “baby feeders.” I value my breasts’ ability to both sustain and seduce, but they’re more than that. My breasts are mine and so help me god, I love them and I want to talk about them!
So let’s talk about tits, about taking ownership and pride in our bodies and about how damn hard it is to actually do all that.
First, a secret: women are obsessed with breasts, perhaps more than men.
From big to small, women worry about their size, shape and perkiness. With so much of a woman’s femininity and sexual identity riding on the size and shape of her breasts, it’s no surprise that some are particularly fixated. I’d know.
When I was 14, my aunt pulled me aside one day to warn me of the difficulties my unusually large Asian boobies would give me. “Make sure you study hard and become smart,” she said, “or else men won’t take you seriously. And always be sweet, otherwise women will hate you for them.”
Following that comment were years of serious self-consciousness and paranoia. I was afraid of my own breasts, certain their hypersexual traits were uncontrollable, undesirable. Little did I know then that I was a victim of the idea that a woman’s sexuality had to be restrained. (Otherwise it would escape in the night and eat a kid or something. I don’t know.)
Like others who disliked their larger breasts, I had trouble finding comfortable clothes to fit me. Unwanted attention embarrassed me and I worried no one would take me seriously. Jogging was painful, my lower back constantly ached, and during the summer months, I got to deal with something awesome called under-boob sweat.
Women dissatisfied with their smaller bosoms also reported difficulties in finding clothes that fit correctly. They expressed the same fear of not being taken seriously due to their “child-like” appearance and worried about attracting others. But most commonly, women who were unhappy with their smaller breasts reported feeling less sexy and feminine.
This dissatisfaction leads many to surgery. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, over 350,000 breast augmentations were performed in 2008, making it the most performed cosmetic surgery of that year. In that year, almost 140,000 women had breast reductions.
Despite the number of women who are unhappy with their breasts, very little is ever heard from them. The silence could be a result of the taboo surrounding cosmetic surgery, or even the fear that airing such insecurities would garner them jeers instead of help or understanding.
So what can we do? If you’re unhappy with your breasts, how do you change?
There’s no one right answer. For some, it’s surgery. For others, I believe it’s a simple philosophy, one that got me through my own tough years. What is it? It’s called “not giving a fuck what other people think.”
Have smaller tits but want to wear a plunging v-neck top to highlight your girls? Wear it. Got tits as big as a Pillow Pets but want to wear a low-cut top out tonight? Do it.
Whatever you need to do or wear to make you feel comfortable, beautiful and at peace with your breasts, do it. Wear it. Don’t apologize for it. Take as long as you need.
Upon following this philosophy myself, I discovered two things. One: If men looked down on me or if women disliked me, it was because of what I did, never because of my breasts.
Second: Tits are multi-talented. They’re functional and cosmetic, smart and sexy. They feed babies, make lots of people happy and are a nifty part of our bodies. It’s high time we appreciate them.
Therefore, I, Katherine Tang Ngo, on behalf of the Davis Titty Committee, an imaginary group advocating the appreciation of healthy, beautiful breasts of all kinds, tip my hat to titties everywhere.
Here’s to itty bitty titties, medium, large, silicone and saline titties. Breastfeeding, man-eating, BAMF-ing cancer-surviving titties. Titties with inverted nipples-heck, titties with nipples of all kinds!
Cheers, especially, to titties whose owners are still trying to figure out how to love them.
(Also, a special shout out to mantitties. Don’t think I don’t notice ya’ll peeking out of those v-neck tees at me.)
KATHERINE TANG NGO wants to know what you’re gonna do with all that junk – all that junk inside that trunk? Tell her at email@example.com.