Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Give Me Five (+ What NOT To Say To Flat Chested Women)

I’ve long been a card carrying (shirt carrying?) member of this club:

I wore this shirt proudly in middle school, and my mom even gave me a spin-off of this shirt when I turned 40, just for old time’s sake:

P1130535 

I know some women take it really personally that people consider them small breasted. I am not one of them. It really doesn’t bother me. The only – and I mean the only – time I wish my boobs were bigger is when I am getting in a bathing suit or party dress and would like cleavage for an hour or two. Maybe I will go on Shark Tank with an idea called “Rent-a-Cleavage” and make a million dollars. Or, get yelled at by Mark Cuban.

Yes, I remember being taunted by the boys in middle and high school for being so flat. Funny thing is, I found it kind of endearing. It made me feel like their kid sister or something. I was also a gymnast, so having little to no boobs was considered a bonus. Who wants to get hit in the face with fleshy melons when you’re trying to do a bar routine?

Now that I am older and athletic, call me crazy, but I still prefer the no-boob thing. Yes, every once in awhile I’d like to turn someone’s head and have them think I have a rockin’ body (based on cup size). But, I suppose I’ve made peace with that now that I’m almost 46. Ain’t gonna happen. The best I can do is make my body the best it can be given what I was given, right?

Why all this boob talk? Yesterday in the Huffington Post there was an article about what NOT to say to flat chested women.

image

Let’s see. How many of these have been said to me before? Every.single.one. And, then some. Guess, what? I don’t care one bit. I work hard to take care of my body and to keep it healthy. I work hard to build muscle and endurance. I work hard to be getting older and to still wear a bikini (whether I should or not – according to this I should not).

I was really struck by Francelina this week when she got voted off The Biggest Loser. I LOVED how confident she was in herself. I loved how she made you feel like YOU would be lucky to know her. Somehow she did this without the slightest bit of ego or big-headedness. I like a girl who can get behind herself and say “I deserve that. I’m good at that. I’m worth it” without worrying that others will think she’s a bitch or entitled or conceited.

In my job I do interviews with people and gather their personal histories. I am trying to gauge how their experiences have affected them over the long term. I ask literally 5 million questions during these three hour sessions. Want to know what the most difficult question is for people? Not if they were abused or had an alcoholic parent or got pregnant when they were 15. The toughest question is “Can you please give me a few adjectives to describe yourself?” Everyone freezes. Most people literally cannot give me more than one or two words, and usually these are things with negative connotations like, “I am a worrier” or “I am controlling.”

I think it’s hard for people to describe themselves (although in one second they can give you 20 adjectives about their spouse or kids) because:

  1. We’re hardly ever asked to do it
  2. We think far more about the qualities we like in others than those we like in ourselves
  3. We don’t want  to appear full of ourselves.

Seems we’ve forgotten how to build ourselves up, to really like ourselves for all of the positive qualities we possess. We spend so much time focusing on self improvement and what we think we are lacking, we forget to pat ourselves on the back for all of what we are.

Go ahead ask me to describe myself. Today I’d say I’m:

Determined, smart, funny, a good mother, dependable, a decent writer, an athlete, organized and compassionate

So what if I’m flat chested?

Tell me five words that describe you. And, don’t say you don’t know.

SUAR

74 comments:

  1. hard worker, kind, humble, smart, caring and also a member of the IBTC

    ReplyDelete
  2. Badass. Strong. Loved. Determined. Blessed. :)
    Sarah
    (Blessed especially because my kiddo has his three month post cancer checkup today and he's doing fantastic! No sign of cancer!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Sarah, so so happy for you and your family. That is wonderful news!!

      Delete
    2. Congratulations! That's fantastic news!!

      Delete
  3. tenacious, positive, strong, motivated, healthy, smart, confident :) Great post! I'm also a member of the IBTC and thank my lucky stars!

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  4. Happy, determined, devoted, reliable and BBBC (Big Bought Boob Club) only because they were so screwed up and flat after child birth. Did I mention I only have 1 child.

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  5. Oh my gosh. I just love this post!! I am the opposite of flat. I have "big fleshy melons" and you are absolutely right - they are a pain the arse!
    My five: determined, a good mother, a writer, positive, and an encourager.

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  6. Resilient, resourceful, smart, enthusiastic, busty.

    I was teased mercilessly in school for being flat-chested. Kind of funny running into those teasers after they "blossomed." Based on your blog, I think you described yourself well :)

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  7. I love being small breasted. It makes me feel freeing! Especially during running and/or other exercise. I love not having to wear a bra if I don't want to. (I do at the office, but sometimes I don't on weekends.) I used to have C's in high school, then had babies and went down to B's. Love it!!!! Wouldn't trade it for anything.

    Amy

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  8. I am flat, fidgety, determined, selfish, controlling, enthusiastic, and cute. Kind of like a demented, manipulative puppy.

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  9. Organized, logical, compassionate, fierce and loyal.

    I am a member of the IBTC but I don't hold any disdain for the Wonder Bra. Some clothes just look better that way. And as long as my husband knows the truth, the rest doesn't matter.

    The Kidless Kronicles

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  10. Mine wiuld be loyal, helpful, political, outspoken, sassy and awesome! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Would trade my melons for lack of melons any day...seriously!

    Tenacious, kind, lovable, compassionate and balsy at times.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Until I lost some weight, I had some man boobs that I could have used a sports bra on some runs. Now for 5 words:
    Funny (in a 8-9 year old boy kinda humor), compassionate, kind, solitary, family man

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  13. AMEN to this entire post.

    [Except the padded bra part. I actually don't mind a lightly padded bra. In fact, even my current workout bras of choice have some padding. Especially good when things get chilly.]

    5 adjectives: High-energy, Compassionate, Athletic, Independent, Non-Conformist.

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  14. I'm not QUITE flat chested but what I have is not as pretty as it once was. Vicky has become my new BBF.

    For my job at one time I had to list some postitive things about myself. It's true, it's hard! Now I just copy and paste it every year into my new review.

    5 things about me: motivated (most of the time), loving, devoted, hard working (mostly), and lately I've been told inspirational (I'll take it!)

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  15. It works both ways, getting tired of the stupid comments about boobs! My mom once called me Busty Betsy. I have had, in the past, to cross my arms when talking to middle school boys. Not all of them, just a select few who had the maturity of a fruit fly when it came to a teacher with breasts (wearing a very modest top!)

    Now, five words. I am...

    Strong. Shapely. Smart. Sweet. Sassy.

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  16. Padding helps keep the headlights down, so I'm in favor. I used to be bigger, but then I nurses two babies, lost weight & took up running. Now I'm a charter member of the Flat As A Pancake Club.

    My five words: tenacious, curious, optimistic, affectionate, hilarious, bookworm, and a good cook. (I'm a good momma, too.)

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  17. I love these self-love posts. :) This is an awesome exercise. I am caring, intelligent, organized, thoughtful, and compassionate. I feel like I need to write that on my mirror.

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  18. Strong, smart, thoughtful, loving, positive.

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  19. I lost 60 pounds over the last year and with it went my boobs. I dropped from a 36DD to a 34B/C. I don't mind one bit! I can get away with target sports bras now and my chest and back doesn't hurt after a run. Nor do I have red marks digging into my shoulders.

    Today I am strong, worthy, determined, a good mother, and hopeful.

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  20. Took me a bit to make the connection between being flat chested and describing myself, but I saw the circle completed at the end. One thing I had a life coach tell me one time was to focus on attributes about myself (either that I possessed or wanted to) that were outside of what my "roles" are - that I wasn't allowed to describe myself based on being a mom, daughter, wife, engineer, friend, etc. I came up with a few (and yes, it was hard): trustworthy, thrifty, family-oriented, friendly, and smart.

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  21. Great post!

    Description of myself: I try, humble, responsible, empathetic,and loyal.

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  22. This might be my favorite blog in a while. Awesome work. And I kind of needed it.

    Determined, Strong, Healthy, Fast, Better

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  23. Interesting topic on choosing words to describe yourself. I had to ask my husband what he thought of himself just to see. :)

    For me, I think I am: determined, strong, positive, athletic, and organized

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  24. I needed this post. I've lost almost 100 pounds in the last couple years, and after being heavy most of my life (and always being "ample breasted" as my husband would say), I went from a 42D to a 34B, and yes, I can now say I belong in the IBTC, though at times I've really struggled with it. I'm glad I've lost the weight, but not always so glad that ALL of my chest had to go. But yes, I do see the value in being flat-chested as a runner (I have run several half marathons and a triathlon, and plan to register next month for my first full).

    As for my description: Strong, smart, generous, caring, loving, optimistic, determined

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  25. You are so funny,dear!What you describe is so true and has happened to me so many times!I totally agree with you. I try to make the most of what God has blessed me with, run, eat real food and don't give a damn about my small breast.
    I am a funny, optimistic, funny, smart runner from Greece!
    I am also a new follower that enjoys your posts.
    Many kisses from Greece!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Lenia - welcome!! You know how close Greece is to my heart - I lived there for 4 years - ages 12-16 and lived in Kifissa. I miss it so much. Hoping to return for some island hopping someday.

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    2. What a coincidence!I had no idea you have lived in Greece! You should definitely come back and visit our wonderful islands! A run along the sandy beach under the warm greek sun is sheer magic!
      I also have a food blog with my sister.Visit us if you want to remember greek cuisine!
      Many kisses and happy birthday!

      Delete
  26. Happy, optimistic, introvert, quiet, runner with a flat chest and happy to have it also

    ReplyDelete
  27. Oh, I am so sorry, I would have been one of the ones to say "You can have some of mine"! I was teased in middle school for the opposite problem!
    I am: dedicated, strong, humble, funny, genuine.

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  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  29. Unfortunately, I'm not a member of the IBTC

    Happy, optimistic, determined, fair, aunt

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  30. i actually got implants and am so happy with them but also don't ever recommend them to other women. I admire a woman who is comfortable with no boobs. I admire your attitude with yours. But you also are very proportional. You are a slim woman. small framed so a small chest looks right for you. I am 5'9 with a curvy bottom half and had an A cup before surgery. I was so disproportionate. and the more I ran the smaller I got on top. so i got a C cup and my body is balanced now. I much prefer natural boobs but when you weren't born with them surgery is the only real option if you want a more balanced body.

    I am strong, courageous, stubborn, outgoing, and determined!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, I can see where body type/size/proporition figures in. Sounds like it was the right move for you!

      Delete
  31. I've been asked if I could wear my bra backwards - why would I?!
    I have a friend who hates having small boobs and when I asked her why it bugged her so much she said because her stomach sticks out more than her boobs - oh, I could see why she might not like that.

    5 words: focused, content, athletic, family-oriented, unique (cause who isn't??)

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  32. I also have small tits. really small. haha. While they do have their perks I would definitely love to have them just a bit bigger! I want to get implants one day but people always say that running won't be as easy as it is now. Probably true, but I don't think running with a B would be all that hard.

    Funny, giving, light-hearted, determined, crazy.

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  33. 5 words, hmmmm.
    How about 'demented and sad, but social'. Something us old folks can remember from one of the best movies ever made.

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  34. Funny, how right you are that people can't think of adjectives to describe themselves...I had to scroll through for ideas before I could think of more than 2...Might put this exercise on my facebook page someday ;).
    My words ... organized, determined, strong willed, helpful and reliable...Wow that was hard!

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  35. Before I started running again just a few shorts years ago, I wouldn't have been able to answer this much better than those you interview. Now I can say that in my own ways that matter to me... I'm happy, athletic, inquisitive, resilient, and hungry (for both food and knowledge).

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  36. First of all I loove that your mom made you that shirt! My sil and I are card carrying members too and make jokes about it- may as well find humor in things you can't change. Besides there are plenty of other attributes that make us beautiful!
    My five words are: caring, loving, trustworthy, frugal, fun!

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  37. I am the exact opposite of this post and often wish I had no boobs (I hate them for many of the reasons listed in the Huffington Post article + a few others). However, I also know that if I didn't have boobs, I'd probably wish I did...

    Anyways, great post and happy to hear you're happy with your body!

    5 words that would describe me would have to be caring, giving, determined, hard-working, and helpful!

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  38. After I started running (just over two years ago), for the first time in my entire life I was thankful to be flat-chested. Now, I'm not one to turn up my nose at a decent push-up bra for special occasions and low-cut shirts but most days I'm good with my bandini (or whatever it's called).

    5 words...Huh. Compassionate, silly, friendly, smart, and strong.

    5 PMS-type words - bitchy, doubtful, worrier, loud, anxious.

    Great post!

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  39. My five words: happy, determined, generous, realistic, reader

    I would so love to be flat chested. Have you tried to find a supportive sports bra to fit a G cup? Not fun. And it doesn't come in fun colors or pretty patterns. You can always add cleavage with cutlets. There is no miracle bra or apparatus that will take away cleavage.

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  40. Before my breast reduction surgery I was coined BTC, Big Titty Clair, by an old boyfriend. Seriously?!?!? I hated my bodacious ta ta's. Now I have what God should have given me all along. Nice bouncy "B's". I could never have run marathons without my surgery. I was so jealous of the IBTC, I wanted in!!!

    5 words: tenacious, lively, fun, open-minded, talented

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  41. Love this post!

    I am grateful, positive, strong, hardworking, and courageous.

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  42. Determined, strong, loving, joyful, organized, and caring. As for the boob issue. I would have rather had small breasts than large breasts that have lost their cushion over the years. I get asked all the time about where they went. Funny thing about breastfeeding 3 kids - they actually sucked the boob right out of me! not to mention that when i lost 15 pounds 10 of it must have been from my breasts lol. But really who cares! I am happy , healthy and so are my kids

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  43. I am: hard-working, loving, giving, independent, happy.

    When I was pregnant I ended my breasts got enormous. They drove me crazy because I played a lot of tennis then. That was 16 years ago. I went back to a 36B and stayed there until I lost 20 pounds this last year or so (intentionally) and now I am a 34A. No bouncing or chafing when I run (which has replaced tennis.) I feel great, I think I look great, and the guy I'm dating thinks I am luscious. And those little tiny lacy bras are so fun to buy!

    ReplyDelete
  44. I am: hard-working, loving, giving, independent, happy.

    When I was pregnant I ended my breasts got enormous. They drove me crazy because I played a lot of tennis then. That was 16 years ago. I went back to a 36B and stayed there until I lost 20 pounds this last year or so (intentionally) and now I am a 34A. No bouncing or chafing when I run (which has replaced tennis.) I feel great, I think I look great, and the guy I'm dating thinks I am luscious. And those little tiny lacy bras are so fun to buy!

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  45. Oh yes, being blessed in the chest. Love wearing 2 sport bras to run, I have yet to find the "perfect" running bra. If I'm not careful, each boobie gets going on it's own and I can almost hear, "ba-doinga, ba-doinga, ba-doinga" over my heavy feet and breathing.

    My words are: God-Loving, Kind, Good listener, Trustworthy, Determined.

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  46. I am not itty bitty, but not far from it, and I like it. I most definitely would not want even a tiny bit more, I'd rather have less.

    CHICKEN CUTLET! brilliant. As long as it isn't like, 90 degrees out. That probably wouldn't work for more than 30 minutes before it started to smell.

    Intelligent, Nice, Athletic, Encouraging, Humourous, Well-Read, Good Photographer

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  47. Love this post! I'm a life long member of the IBTC! And if they weren't small enough to start with, they got even smaller after nursing my 3 boys! I've been running since I was 17 so I've always liked being small chested! At 51 I'm very comfortable with my body and my husband has always told me that more than a mouthful is wasted!!
    My 5 words are: happy, positive, confident, friendly and strong.

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  48. Love this post! I'm a small chested gal as well. Back when I was in my 20's and weighed about 40 lbs. more I rocked a C-cup, but since nursing 2 kids, losing a bunch of weight and becoming a runner, the chest shrank to a 32A. I much prefer having small boobs but maybe it's just because I feel so fit now...The only time I wish I had a little more cleavage is during mammogram time. Seeing that machine clamp down to an almost closed position while the tech. struggles to keep my tiny little flaps of skin from sliding out of the machine is always a bit harrowing!

    I would say that I am quirky, curious, athletic, empathetic and humorous.

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    Replies
    1. Oh my gosh so freaking true. Mammogram time sucks.

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  49. You don't give yourself enough credit. You most certainly have a rockin' body and I'll bet you turn heads quite often :-) It's obvious how much work you do to take care of yourself and that is most definitely very attractive.

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  50. I have been a card-carrying member of the IBTC my entire life... Oh, well... less wind resistance when I run...
    I m strong, courageous, determined, compassionate, Christian.

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  51. Working as an OT in a nursing home, I have untucked many breasts from inside their pants while getting them dressed (the pants are at the waist, the books are way below)!!! Anyway, I'm glad to be a 32A!!!!

    Compassionate, athletic, fun, great-friend, passionate!!!




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  52. I am a thinker, strong, giving, a hard worker, and loyal.

    That was hard...

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  53. I am also a card carrying member of the IBTC and damn proud of it! I can't even imagine running with actual boobs. That would hurt (and suck)! I've never been embarrassed or ashamed of my barely-there chest. I actually embrace it. Who says boobs are sexier than a visible sternum? Not this girl!

    Okay 5 adjectives:

    passionate, impulsive, compassionate, energetic, down to earth (ok, that's 3 words).

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  54. creative, smart, sensitive, good listener, stubborn :)

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  55. Encouraging, enthusiastic, determined, active, interested :)

    Thanks Beth - this was a nice time out to remember the good things and not stress about the negatives!

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  56. Determined, impulsive, literate, shy, silly.

    I am not a member of the IBTC, I have a several great sports bras (thank you Moving Comfort) to strap those bad girls down--and just get out and go. My mother, on the other hand, is a member--and damn it, looks awesome in anything. I think it's fun that there is so much diversity in the way women look. I'm glad to see that out there.

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  57. Yeh! ITBC club...loyal, funny, empathetic, creative, fearless and resourceful :). Happy Birthday!

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  58. i love everything about this post. i finally came to terms with being a member of that club a few years back, before I gained 15 lbs and got some boobs (not enough to match up with the girth elsewhere though). they're a PITA and I would love to get rid of them and go back to being ultra flat-chested. what I love about having small boobies is that you can fake it and have bigger-looking ones if you want, but don't have to deal with them being a pain in the ass on a regular daily basis. I never wear a bra, except when I want to look like I'm busty, OR (the obvious) when I'm working out / running.

    Happy birthday, Beth! Hope it's a good one. If it were me, I'd go for the 46 reeses eggs. Or cadbury eggs.

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  59. You know what they say:

    "More than a mouthful is wasted"

    8)

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  60. Love this!! I wanted to die in high school when the boys teased me about my "mosquito bites" but now, like you, I am happy those things aren't in my way. (Especially when running!) Thank you for this empowering post!!!

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  61. Oops! Forgot my 5 adjectives: loving, funny, adventurous, empathetic, dedicated

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  62. I had to ask my husband what he thought of himself just to see. :) This might be my favorite blog in a while. Awesome work. And I kind of needed it.

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