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Women Have Boobs -- Get Over It

Mine are really big -- and they're a burden. They come with the label "airhead" and "slut." Will we ever end our collective obsession with boobs?

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My classmate’s "a handful is enough" comment succinctly demonstrates the phenomenon of people thinking that women choose the size of their breasts, or at least treating them as if they do. Sometimes I feel as if I have the words ARROGANT SLUT tattooed across my forehead. Given what men seem to think about my sexual availability and the judgments that women seem to make about my "morals" and self-image, it really does seem that having big breasts is equivalent to this.

I think that the crux of all of my breast-related problems was very well summarized by a perceptive comment made by a friend when I was 16: "The problem is, your breasts just don’t suit your personality."

She was right: People had gone from seeing me as I really was -- just another shy, geeky teenager who spent entirely too much time in the library -- to seeing me as a bimbo who would definitely want to suck their dicks. My breasts were a mask that seemed to prevent people from actually bothering to get to know me.

It seems that often women have the biggest problems with their breasts when this happens, and when the treatment that they receive from other people is related to their tits rather than to who they actually are as a person. All people are to some extent judged on their looks; this is unfair. Women are judged on their looks much more than men; this is even more unfair and makes looks-based discrimination very much a feminist issue.

Women with big breasts are in my opinion subjected to many more negative snap judgments than most, perhaps even on a par with fat women and women who explicitly fail to comply with society’s standards of beauty by doing horrific things like failing to remove their armpit hair. This is horrendously unfair, not to mention bloody stupid.

I’m not saying: "Boo hoo, look how difficult life is for gorgeous women, don’t hate me because I’m beautiful!" Being regarded as attractive generally makes life much easier and puts one in a position of privilege, an unfair and wholly undeserved privilege that I am aware of having. But being seen as extremely sexually attractive is massively problematic for the individual in question. In such a deeply sexist and heteronormative culture, looking like the personification of "sluttiness" is seen as an invitation for sexual harassment.

It’s bad enough when people think you are inviting sexual harassment because of how you happen to be dressed that day, but at least mini skirts and high heels come off. Breasts do not. The size of a woman’s breasts, surgery notwithstanding, is not a personal choice. Forget "This is what a feminist looks like" -- I think I need a T-shirt that says, "These came with my body."

For any girls or women who think that they would like to look like a glamour model, I would like to say that you are fortunate not to. Not because there is anything at all wrong with being petite with big breasts in itself, but because a woman who looks like a Nuts pin-up is constantly assumed by most people to be an airhead. Your life will be much easier if you have a more average figure. Consider how healthy your self-image would be by now if you had endured being groped, being automatically regarded as unintelligent, being seen by other women as the enemy, being regarded as nothing more than your body, every day of your life.

You can’t take the breasts off. They’re not like accessories that you can choose to put on when you feel like having lots of attention and take off when you feel like being respected or just simply able to run around without having to wear a sports bra made of reinforced concrete. For the love of God, why would you wish that upon yourself?

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