"...padded bras in my size did nothing for my chest but protect it from flying objects."
August 31, 2002 10:51 AM   Subscribe

"...padded bras in my size did nothing for my chest but protect it from flying objects." One woman's humorous and touching story of her decision to get breast implants. For the record, I like boobs, but the idea of having pieces of plastic stuck under one's skin creeps me out no end. To implant or not to implant, that is the question....
posted by BGM (49 comments total)

 
Breasts do make a difference. And women know this intuitivley. It is all a part of sexual selection/fitness (the right or "best" ) size is viewed by potential mates (for childre) as fertile and signifying a good potential mother. All this is a part of evolutionary background and insights. Girls with small breasts know they are "shortchanged" and those with very large or hanging (age) breasts know they are sending out an other kind of signal. Then thgere are young women with overly large breasts who also feel ill at ease and often will have breast reduction the better to fit in as a full woman rather than an object of curiosity.
It may be vain, then, to think about augmentation, but there are reasons for this.
As for penis size: see your daily spam.
posted by Postroad at 11:09 AM on August 31, 2002


You mean beauty's skin-deep? All ppl with pear-shaped physiognomies and other DNA deficiencies wince...oh all is vanity!
posted by eatstatic at 11:14 AM on August 31, 2002


"With the advent of self-help books, I vowed to date only men who loved my body—flaws and all. Which was ironic, because I didn’t love my body at all."

I can only speak for myself, of course, but I find that a woman who is comfortable with her body (regardless of its size or shape) is always more attractive to me than a woman who isn't, even if she doesn't have the traditional "hourglass" figure. It's all about the attitude.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:17 AM on August 31, 2002


I admit that big boobs, spice racks, headlights, hooters....catch my eye. But I can't see myself really going out with a girl who has implants. From what I've seen, women with implants (other than playmates and pornstars) are subjected to ridicule and under-the-breath comments in every day life.
posted by LexRockhard at 11:19 AM on August 31, 2002


i don't find her article especially humorous or touching. she just seems like a vain dimwit who knows a few equally dimwitted men and one jerk of a surgeon (and they're lopsided too! gotta ensure that sale dontcha know). i know there's all this so called pressure to conform to a certain beauty standard in north america, but holy cat, spending your entire life focussed on the perceived shortcomings of a single body part...? this sort of low self-esteem/skewed vanity really encourages my unsympathetic side.

i have a friend whose small boobed wife recently got implants and now he has to spend the rest of their relationship pretending they feel as good as her originals did. meanwhile she's all "tracy, joe hardly never touches me there anymore! what's wrong with him?!" stupid girl 8-)
posted by t r a c y at 11:32 AM on August 31, 2002


Breasts do make a difference. And women know this intuitivley.

Check out this article about the Maasai, a traditional society living in South Western Kenya and Northern Tanzania.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 11:33 AM on August 31, 2002


After my sister had been suckled by three kids her breasts had completely deflated. She found this very depressing over the long term. Eventually she had implants and is very happy with them and having her breasts back to the way they were before the kids came along.
posted by filchyboy at 11:39 AM on August 31, 2002


The Massai like adornments? Sure. AndDarwin wrote about the long feathery tails of the peacock that were an inpediment to survival but seemed a very useful item for sexual selection. The Massai guy has written a rant to push a notion he has. But one example: Massai find morality and truthfulness atrractive. Nice. But when one person looks at another, what do these non-physical characteristics have to do with anything. Certainly not with a quick glance at what is or is not attractive. In passing: all consider themwelves attractive. In the U.S. women (a study carefully done) are seldom satisfied with their looks but by contrast men nearly always are. Thusit is nice to know of the equality that exists among the Massai. Anyone for going there?
posted by Postroad at 11:56 AM on August 31, 2002


Now here's a touching story:

"My name is Dean, I'm 33 and just like you, I find myself very interested in natural penis enlargement. I've always been embarrassed about the size of my penis.

In the past I would go to the 'Men's room' and wait for a cubicle before I could take a 'pee' because I was so scared that the man next to me would laugh with his friends if he caught a glance of my tiny penis.

If I was lucky enough to find a partner willing to have sex with me, I would shy away from the encounter, saying 'No' to sex because I was too scared that I would either not 'fulfil' her, or she would talk about me with her friends and make me look like a joke.

There was a hundred other things like what I've just mentioned that were making me very unconfident and generally depressed with life. Who would have thought that a small penis would make such a negative impact in almost every other area of my life???

I should say at this point, that those days of unhappiness are long gone… I now enjoy a relatively large penis size, that I am truly happy with and entirely confident about. I can go to the toilet whenever I want to and stand proud with my penis out - almost hoping that others will notice how big I am now. I can happily thrust my penis into women and give them total satisfaction!!!
In certain female circles, I am known as Big Boy!!! I love it!!!

Life is so much better now!!!

I truly am a new man, the bigger penis has given me more confidence around both women and men, more confidence in the workplace and a general great feeling about life! I make women happy and they make me happy in return. Hell, a few weeks back I even had my first foursome!!! Not two women and two men, that was 3 women and me!!!"
posted by ericost at 12:01 PM on August 31, 2002


For the record, I like boobs

Me too, so I spend a lot of time on Slashdot.

:)

Seriously, I like boobs, moderately big ones, but natural is essential. I've never touched a fake boob, and sort of hope I never will, since I suspect I would noticably wince, or become scientificaly engrossed to distraction.

In Snottsdale, er, I mean Scottsdale, AZ, fake tits are quite common, along with fake tans on the fake people. It's pretty entertaining; I mean, boobs are supposed to *move* a bit when someone walks, right?
posted by Ayn Marx at 12:02 PM on August 31, 2002


Not two women and two men, that was 3 women and me!!!"

I must have seen that movie once
posted by matteo at 12:41 PM on August 31, 2002


The picture of the jug of milk made me laugh out loud.
posted by TurkishGolds at 2:02 PM on August 31, 2002


I've got no problem with small boobs. I like big boobs too. Medium ones I like as well. In the depressingly small chance that the owner of said boobs is willing to hook up with me, what right do I have to complain? Unless you're Adonis, we men should all just be happy that we get to see boobs once in a while.

As long as they're real, and have one (1) nipple each, that's fine by me.

I find fake boobs to be a real turn-off. I wish the ladies like the one in the article would realize that there are a lot of men out there who don't care about breast size. It's whether you put out or not that really matters (just kidding, sort of).
posted by Samsonov14 at 2:12 PM on August 31, 2002


I am surpirsed that no one has as yet mentioned the mastectomy issue. What happens if the woman you love, are married to, has to have a breast removed. How might she feel during sex? Would you as a non-fake boob lover approve of a fake boob for the removed one? Or are you just oo pure for that?
posted by Postroad at 2:16 PM on August 31, 2002


Postroad: No, no, of course you've got a great point. I agree wholeheartedly with implants in certain situations. I just don't like the idea of breast enhancement for purely cosmetic reasons. A prosthetic breast might help a woman to feel like a whole person again. There's a gray area in there somewhere, of course - maybe it's a good idea to look into implants if you have one c-cup and one a-cup or something, or if your breasts have just taken too much of a beating like filchyboy mentioned above, but in general I disagree with cosmetic surgery for peopole who are not in some way disfigured. It just seems so disingenuous.
posted by Samsonov14 at 2:31 PM on August 31, 2002


Postroad: In the U.S. women (a study carefully done) are seldom satisfied with their looks but by contrast men nearly always are.

Yeah, and that's terrible, just terrible. But how can we make it not so?
posted by soundofsuburbia at 2:36 PM on August 31, 2002


I really found that article depressing but I'm trying to figure out exactly why. I would never get cosmetic surgery myself, but why do I care that other people want to? Why is it particularly different from people who get laser eye surgery instead of wearing contacts, or even, wear contacts instead of glasses? Or dye their hair? People enhance the way they look all the time, and making it permanent instead of illusory is just an additional step.

I have small breasts myself but have never felt the least bit unhappy with them - it's nice not to need a bra and I think they're cute. If people are less attracted to me for that reason, who cares? If breast size is gonna be a deciding factor, I really doubt that's a relationship I'll miss. So there are less construction worker whistles - who really considers that a bad thing? I do notice the change in numbers of propositions when I go out in a skirt or with make-up vs. without, and you know, that's a reason I don't wear make-up / skirts very often.

But still. Why do I care that she wants that? I guess just embarassed for my gender or something...

re: masectomies, I would think at that point that the question of implants would be among the less important issues. Your wife almost fucking died. Celebrate her being okay and don't be freaked out by her chest. If she ultimately wants a prosthetic, fine, but she shouldn't feel like it's necessary to make her husband comfortable.
posted by mdn at 2:45 PM on August 31, 2002


"What happens if the woman you love, are married to, has to have a breast removed. How might she feel during sex? Would you as a non-fake boob lover approve of a fake boob for the removed one? Or are you just (t)oo pure for that?"

I'd be quite happy she was alive at all, thank you very much.

Once it was clear that she was going to survive, then I would defer to her wishes as to what type of (if any) reconstruction she wanted to have. I married a woman, not a pair of breasts (those were just a fringe benefit).

It is an interesting question, though. I'm not sure my answer would have been the same fifteen years ago when I was a young, dumb, sex-crazed lunatic. Now that I'm an older and hopefully wiser sex-crazed lunatic it's easier to keep things in perspective.

Also, Samsonov14, I dated a woman for a while who had two very differently-sized breasts, much as you describe (one a B-cup, the other a D) and I found it indescribably erotic, much the same as another woman I dated who had one green eye and one blue eye.

I'm a freak. :)
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:04 PM on August 31, 2002


I'm a freak. :) posted by mr_crash_davis

but you're our freak and we love you for it ! hehe

it worries me that women who have had a mastectomy may be making themselves vulnerable to more disease or medical issues by getting implants afterwards. immune system issues etc... i dunno... i'm just completely on the side of leaving well enough alone.
posted by t r a c y at 3:45 PM on August 31, 2002


Ask Vera Little about the medical risks of invasive major surgery involving foreign objects.

(warning: here there be flash)

Or, if you need only a mildly cautionary example, interspersed with encouraging voyeur opinion, rate their implants.

(warning: here there be flesh)
posted by Sallyfur at 4:37 PM on August 31, 2002


Interesting...I'm waaaaay on the other side of the spectrum as this woman, and I have just as many issues with my breasts. I think it's great she's happy with her implants, though. Although, I think Gwen Stefani (from No Doubt) is a wonderful example of how women with A-cup breasts are still very nice to look at :-)
posted by Zulujines at 4:45 PM on August 31, 2002


Note to all women with small breasts: feel free to call me anytime.
posted by 4easypayments at 5:31 PM on August 31, 2002


TO THE GIRLS:

Implants are like toupees - obviously fake and kind of creepy. Don't believe the hype. My girl is an A cup and she works it like Gwen Stefani and Pink. Independence, confidence and you're own sense of style - that's what the guys you really want like.
posted by Zombie at 6:08 PM on August 31, 2002


Actually, I think if men's "sexual endowments" were visible for all the world to see everyday, every minute of their lives, they would be singing a very different tune.
One question...would Brittany Spears be who she is today had she not gotten implants? I am not saying I particularly care for her one way or the other...but honestly had she not done it what kind of career would she have today?
We women of the small sect know full well how often we are judged and often dismissed based on our diminutive dimensions. I also have a unique perspective on this issue having once for a brief period of time, worked at a very upscale "Gentleman's Club" . Based on that experience...all I can say is the men in this thread of full of it...Men say one thing and do another...I only hope one day a fashion trend develops and men find themselves compelled to wear "padded pants".
posted by SweetIceT at 7:46 PM on August 31, 2002


I respect this woman's decision even though I don't agree with it. Obviously she has a poor self-image, and anyone who would consider a part of her body "flawed" to the point of apologising for it has bigger problems than a set of C-cups can fix.

Postroad, out of curiosity, what signals do women with large breasts send out?
posted by Andrea at 7:52 PM on August 31, 2002


I also have a unique perspective on this issue having once for a brief period of time, worked at a very upscale "Gentleman's Club" . Based on that experience...

Have you considered that that is a biased sample of men?
posted by vacapinta at 8:03 PM on August 31, 2002


Andrea: Forgive me for interjecting, but I had to respond...I think the signal we send out is 'maternal'. I always seem to attract men who want a combination mother/girlfriend. (Note: not a good thing.)
posted by Zulujines at 8:15 PM on August 31, 2002


my girlfriend has fake boobs. i'm not complaining.
posted by aenemated at 8:54 PM on August 31, 2002


Speaking as one of the naturally "big boobed" crowd...I can't for the life of me imagine why anyone would want the extra hassle...I mean, your back hurts, you find that people often talk to your cleavage instead of you, you can't wear button down shirts unless they're custom made, suit jackets can be a bit of a hassle, again unless they are tailored for you. I don't think I'd consider reduction surgery, because I'd like to avoid anything with the word "surgery" period...but I tell ya, given the choice between a b cup and a dd cup, I would have chosen the b cup.

Dolly Parton was once on Johnny Carson, for her 5th or 6th appearance, and she realized that Johnny was talking to her boobs...as most men did. She asked him to close his eyes and tell her what color her eyes were. He couldn't.

I married the guy who could tell me. ;) (He got bonus points for noticing that the color changes depending on my mood.)
posted by dejah420 at 9:36 PM on August 31, 2002


One question...would Brittany Spears be who she is today had she not gotten implants?

I'm not sure, but it doesn't seem as though the lack of implants has hurt Gwyneth Paltrow much.
posted by triggerfinger at 9:49 PM on August 31, 2002


Based on that experience...all I can say is the men in this thread of full of it...

I have to go with vacapinta regarding that comment. Uh..do ya think the men who went to that Club were predisposed to prefer large boobs?
posted by HTuttle at 9:55 PM on August 31, 2002


Would you as a non-fake boob lover approve of a fake boob for the removed one? Or are you just oo pure for that?

Since you ask, I'd prefer it as it was, without replacement. So go ahead and call me whatever arrogant asinine idiotic name which blows hot air up your ass.
posted by HTuttle at 10:03 PM on August 31, 2002


I enjoyed the article.

Being dissatisfied with one's appearance is natural. I would actually rather have people campaign on the side of changing what can be changed for the sake of improved self-esteem than the patronizing, "Learn to love yourself as you are," which for many women means learning to deal but never being truly content. Why foster that sort of complacence?

I'm a strong proponent of doing what you have to do to improve your self perceptions. Personal preference? I'm not dissatisfied with my breasts enough to spend that much money or take that much risk, although I've been losing a lot of weight, and part of me worries/wonders how the twins'll fare the next 30lbs dropped, and the 30 after that. I can't say I wouldn't, especially as the risks decrease.

Besides. I think the natural/fake debate is too often just another way for women to feel better about themselves by looking down on other women. If only I had a nickel for every catty comment, or the ever-amusing, "I'm ALL natural!" Even if it weren't usually from women wearing layers of make-up, hair extensions and acrylic nails, it's still funny that they expect a pat on the back for something that almost anyone can pull off from just being born.
posted by precocious at 11:31 PM on August 31, 2002


for many women means learning to deal but never being truly content. Why foster that sort of complacence?

Your body is just a vehicle for carrying your brain around. One can take pride in keeping it in good condition, but it should matter not a whit what kind of bumpers you've installed on it.
posted by kindall at 1:23 AM on September 1, 2002


I have to go with vacapinta regarding that comment. Uh..do ya think the men who went to that Club were predisposed to prefer large boobs?

So you are saying men who like "small boobs" never go to Gentleman's clubs? If so many men do not care about breast size how can you justify the preponderance of evidence surrounding women from the general media to mens magazines telling us otherwise? Like I said the day you have to start having to wear padded pants to measure up will be the day you understand.

.but I tell ya, given the choice between a b cup and a dd cup, I would have chosen the b cup.

This is the whole point....the woman in the story was not the average "B" cup so often spoken of. For the life of me I cannot understand why so many object to people changing their appearance to suit their own mental image. People diet to change their appearance...people get nose jobs...People get tattooed and pierced to change their appearance.... While I am sure many men would "prefer" a woman with nice natural size B or C breasts... I bet there are many more that would also not care if I increased my breast size because it made me happy and self confident.
posted by SweetIceT at 7:46 AM on September 1, 2002


If so many men do not care about breast size how can you justify the preponderance of evidence surrounding women from the general media to mens magazines telling us otherwise?

The general media being, of course, a representative sample of the opinion of the entire male population? I'd say by arguing otherwise even the small sample of men here have shown your view to be less than universal. True, there are people who make judgements on the basis of a woman's figure or bra size. That doesn't mean that there aren't those of us who really couldn't care less.
posted by zygoticmynci at 12:05 PM on September 1, 2002


I would actually rather have people campaign on the side of changing what can be changed for the sake of improved self-esteem than the patronizing, "Learn to love yourself as you are," which for many women means learning to deal but never being truly content.

what's patronizing is assuming that a woman with esteem issues isn't capable of finding value in herself beyond her tits, and should instead go for the quick superficial fix. oh that's ok mary *pat, pat* don't bother with time consuming self discovery and an upgrade in the type of men you choose, get big tits instead! mind you, implants are a personal choice and you wouldn't catch me trying to talk someone out of it. you'd catch me nagging to make sure they'd seriously weighed all their options and were absolutely sure of their choice.

I think the natural/fake debate is too often just another way for women to feel better about themselves by looking down on other women. If only I had a nickel for every catty comment, or the ever-amusing, "I'm ALL natural!"

i take umbrage with the catty reference. i've never met a cat who cared less what humans look like. that's one of their best qualities. but yes anyone who feels superior over others because of a physical attribute is a complete numbskull. however, i don't come across many women like that... mostly just a few teens who will likely outgrow their shallow tendencies, once they become more comfortable with themselves.
posted by t r a c y at 3:35 PM on September 1, 2002


what's patronizing is assuming that a woman with esteem issues isn't capable of finding value in herself beyond her tits, and should instead go for the quick superficial fix.

I agree with you entirely, I'm glad we share the same sentiment on that.

From breasts, to weight, to eyebrows, to toenails, to body hair, women are constantly bombarded with these perceptions of what looks good, and how anything that doesn't fit this in some variation doesn't. Not only from books, magazines, radio and television. Often from family, peers and perfect strangers, from adolescence (younger, in some instances) right on up through adulthood. It would be lovely if there weren't all sorts of emphasis on these things. But there is. And although there are forces working against this, they're nowhere near being in the majority yet.

If you are a woman who hasn't experienced this, you're one of the blessed ones. If you're a woman who has been able to come to happy terms with herself despite this, then hurrah for you (meant in all seriousness). There are some women who struggle for years to reach that level, and find themselves many years later still discontent and still plagued with the same insecurities.

You may find the idea of spending a significant portion, if not the majority, of one's life struggling to accept perceived flaws noble. But then, that's you. And, apparently, many other people. More power to you. I would rather a woman get a surgery which will allow her to finally smile at herself when she looks in the mirror, than for that woman to spend what could be the rest of her life in perpetual discontent.

however, i don't come across many women like that

I do.
posted by precocious at 4:31 PM on September 1, 2002


I'd just like to throw in the obligatory "men suffer under the burden of as many impossible expectations of physical and social requirements as well" comment. I believe, in general, that women are far more superficially concerned than are men, judging each other and men on their physical appearance more frequently and harshly than men are wont to do (including but certainly not limited to the "catty" behavior women have towards each other).
posted by hincandenza at 6:59 PM on September 1, 2002


Grandiose stereotypical wide paintbrush comment:

Men obsess over women. Women obsess over each other.
posted by Stan Chin at 7:06 PM on September 1, 2002


You may find the idea of spending a significant portion, if not the majority, of one's life struggling to accept perceived flaws noble. But then, that's you. And, apparently, many other people. More power to you.

If only you meant that. Do you really think that once the woman's had the surgery she's going to be happy? The problem with giving in to your own insecurities is that this is a war that can never be won. If you're so concerned about how others perceive you that you will willingly spend your own money on an act of painful self-mutiliation then you are never, ever going to be happy. There's always going to be something. It'll be the nose or the thighs or the chin.

I would rather a woman get a surgery which will allow her to finally smile at herself when she looks in the mirror, than for that woman to spend what could be the rest of her life in perpetual discontent.

That's if the surgery works out as planned. Quite often it doesn't. And don't think getting yourself 'corrected' is going to stop the catty comments. Just as much pity and bitchiness is directed towards the victims of bad plastic surgery as towards the flat chested or ugly. More so, because you've done it to yourself.

My advice is stop reading women's magazines, stop looking in the mirror, stop looking at other women and remember that the people you see on TV and in films spend their lives on starvation diets and in surgery - and those are the ones who were beautiful in the first place. Give men the benefit of the doubt - many aren't as shallow as you think they are - and fuck the people who want to judge you. They're victims too.

Part of the problem is that we don't use other women as our standard of beauty, we use young, well-lit, artificially tanned and over made-up models. The bar is set too high, ordinary women can't compete. If you try you're a victim of the whole ridiculous circus.

If everyone had the means and inclination to correct every part of herself she didn't like through surgery, then something else would have to be invented to separate the wealthy and fashionable from the proles. Maybe people would start laminating themselves. Or growing clones and replacing their entire bodies every five years. Who knows. And no doubt some idiotic tabloid columnist would claim it as an act of empowerment, not desperation.

If you were to believe the media you'd think ordinary-looking women weren't able to lives happy lives and attract male attention. But look! They do!
posted by Summer at 2:50 AM on September 2, 2002


The problem with giving in to your own insecurities is that this is a war that can never be won.

Indeed. After he retired, my dad kept moving from one place to another (dragging my mom along with him, of course). No matter where he was, he thought he'd be happier somewhere else. Naturally, it wasn't his surroundings that needed changing, but rather his outlook. Finally my mom (a RN) got him to see the doctor, who put him on Zoloft, and he's taken his latest house off the market and decided to stay where he is.

I can't help thinking that a lot of people who have tied up their happiness in externalities like the appearance of their body would do better to spend their money on cognitive therapy and some SSRIs than on a boob job.
posted by kindall at 9:56 AM on September 2, 2002


You may find the idea of spending a significant portion, if not the majority, of one's life struggling to accept perceived flaws noble

no, that's not the average semi-well adjusted woman. that's someone in need of help that's non-cosmetic and i maintain that implants are not going to fix what's broken in that case. the average person does not need to spend a lifetime in anguished struggle to figure out that they're good enough. but it may be that some are in too much of a hurry, too much a victim of instant gratification that anything more than overnight seems like a lifetime.

From breasts, to weight, to eyebrows, to toenails, to body hair, women are constantly bombarded with these perceptions of what looks good, and how anything that doesn't fit this in some variation doesn't....If you are a woman who hasn't experienced this, you're one of the blessed ones.

i've been in the entertainment industry since the age of 5, so i've been less blessed than most when it comes to escaping superficial judgement. the average female of any age will never experience even the smallest fraction of the judgment and sometimes attendant rejection that i have.

Give men the benefit of the doubt - many aren't as shallow as you think they are

amen. my female relatives, friends, and colleagues come in wildly varying shapes, sizes, looks, colours, etc. and they don't have problems finding guys who love everything about them. maybe it's different in canada, since we don't have that psycho hollywood beauty standard shoved down our throats to the same degree americans do, but i don't think it's that huge of a cultural difference. my male relatives, friends, and colleagues are not shallow jerks and tend to look for and offer the same things women do; understanding, acceptance and a little fun on the weekends.
posted by t r a c y at 10:49 AM on September 2, 2002


here are some women who struggle for years to reach that level, and find themselves many years later still discontent and still plagued with the same insecurities.

is surgery really the way to answer that though? I mean, that's just affirming that your insecurities were warranted. I understand if a part of your body doesn't work right, that you'd want to fix it, but to alter your body just to look more like some fat bald guy's dream date makes no sense to me. Sadly unattractive men seem to do okay, while unattractive women get all self conscious and anorexic and spend their savings on implants... I guess testosterone boosts confidence (not uncommonly more than is useful or warranted). I s'pose people can't choose what they obsess over & I can't really claim it's inherently better to be worried about achieving artistic success than achieving a C cup, but ... well, I'm just glad I'm me & not her today.
posted by mdn at 5:09 PM on September 2, 2002


I can't help thinking that a lot of people who have tied up their happiness in externalities like the appearance of their body would do better to spend their money on cognitive therapy and some SSRIs than on a boob job.

lucky me </sarcasm> got to live the reverse scenario: mother nature hit me too many times with the female endowment stick so that, by college, i had given up running, front-closure bras, and the majority of men that didn't get the concept of a woman having both boobs and a brain. perish the thought!

but rather than using the power of my clevage for good or evil, i decided to give it up all together. for every time i tried to zip up a dress, my typically sturdy self esteem would take yet another hit. after witnessing yet another demoralizing attempt at bikini shopping, my parents suggested i think about the possibility of my getting a reduction. so the summer after graduation, some insurance adjuster-type guy saw my neck-down pics and decided that my case was indeed "bad" enough that his company would cover the cost of the surgery.

after six years of scars, shooting pains where the nerves are still regrowing, and the lingering possibility that i won't be able to breastfeed, i have never regretted my decision. but because of my choice to surgically alter the body that i was born with, i've never felt comfortable throwing stones on the off chance that i live in a plastic surgery glass house of sorts. after all, who am i to criticize a woman's pursuit of happiness?

i do question the wisdom of such a choice if a mother allows her daughter go under the knife before she has had the chance to fully grow into her figure, if a single mother of two puts implants ahead of her children's well-being (true story), or if a size four girl is getting boobs better fitted for a 5' 10" size 10 woman. i suppose it's important to know a person's motivation behind their desire for surgery to be able to fully appreciate their situation. it's unfortunate that pre-surgical counseling—and i'm talking several sessions with a licensed therapist—isn't a prereq for -plastys and -suctions.

Not too long after the birthday fiasco, my boyfriend and I got back together and fell even more in love. All four of us—my breasts, my boyfriend, and I—have softened and settled into a quiet lifestyle. He’s a big fan of my implants. “Real breasts this size are floppy, unless they’re on an 18-year-old,” he says.

plastic is as plastic does.
posted by brigita at 6:54 PM on September 2, 2002


it's unfortunate that pre-surgical counselingÂ?and i'm talking several sessions with a licensed therapistÂ?isn't a prereq for -plastys and -suctions.

Like the counseling they used to "suggest" women get before they got their tubes tied without "good reason?" Y'know, because something has to be wrong with a woman who feels so strongly about not having children that she'd be willing to get a completely unnecessary and quite risky surgery. They suggested every alternative in the book to my mother including celibacy, until she told them that the most recent child was her sixth. That was fifteen years ago. Pissed her off so much that it's still in her collection of anecdotes.

I'm just thankful that it's much more acceptable today for a woman to do with her body as she sees fit, without having her sanity or reasons questioned. There are still some unfortunate stigmas and biases and projected insecurities, I know, but given that it's okay for oh say, accident victims to get potentially risky surgeries to repair superficial damages so they can feel better about themselves (that's still okay, right? Phew! just checking) then apparently there's hope yet. Maybe one day the acceptability of cosmetic alterations won't hinge on prerequisite accidental disfigurement.

A toast to the undying self-evident inalienable right to pursue that eternally ephemeral thing known as happiness, and a whole-hearted, "You go girl!" to the article author who found herself some. Whether through soul-searching or a shiny new pair of boobs, here's hoping we each find (and keep) it.

*downs drink, moves on*
posted by precocious at 12:55 AM on September 3, 2002


I'm just thankful that it's much more acceptable today for a woman to do with her body as she sees fit, without having her sanity or reasons questioned.

But what about the people who need to have their sanity or reasons or perceptions challenged? What about the women who firmly, truthfully are convinced, nay, deluded that whatever cosmetic change they are making is a panacea which will cure every problem that they have in their lives? Is it or isn't it in someone's best interest to disabuse them of such ridiculous notions? Isn't it better to try to make sure that they're firmly reality checked first, so that they don't go over the edge when all of their hopes and dreams don't come true after they've spent thousands of dollars and days and days of pain to make changes that are often irreversible?
posted by Dreama at 5:26 AM on September 3, 2002


Like the counseling they used to "suggest" women get before they got their tubes tied without "good reason?"

considering the fact that tubal ligation is rather invasive and irreversible, they were no doubt making sure that your mother knew what she was getting into while covering their @$$ at the same time. i would think that that's still standard surgical operating procedure today.

as for the whole counseling issue, i just wonder if there's anything that the medical profession should do to try protect the patient's mental health along with his/her physical well-being. it makes me sad to think of a hypothetical woman putting all of her eggs into one basket, believing that her life will be better if she only had bigger boobs, a narrower waist, a slighter nose...

but as my libertarian friends would say, let her get the augmentation, lipo and rhinoplasty! just don't expect me to feel badly if things go wrong and/or she still can't get a man or a raise or whatever she had originally thought a little nip 'n tuck would fix in her life.

i think my problem isn't with plastic surgery so much as what the dramatic increase in procedures says about society, the US in particular. the mantra for too many seems to be "life will be better when ____..." i lose 20 pounds, get a boyfriend, get married, get promoted, buy a house, have kids, et cetera ad nauseum. the more we learn to live in the now, the happier and more satisfied with our lives we will be.

</blahblahblah>
posted by brigita at 7:02 AM on September 3, 2002


but as my libertarian friends would say, let her get the augmentation, lipo and rhinoplasty! just don't expect me to feel badly if things go wrong and/or she still can't get a man or a raise or whatever she had originally thought a little nip 'n tuck would fix in her life.

Well quite. No-one's saying plastic surgery should be made illegal, just that we think it's largely misguided in our opinions.
posted by Summer at 7:44 AM on September 3, 2002


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