The Busty Bride: How I Emancipated the Girls from the Burden of Breast Shame…

My breasts started growing in the 4th grade. By the time I was in Junior High, I probably was a 30C. By High School, my bosom-cup runneth over, so to speak, into a D cup. By the time I was an adult woman, I entered in the “Beyond D” category in bust size and have been there ever since. But life with Tig Ol’ Bitties is no cup of tea. I’m not complaining about my body, because I have grown to accept and love most parts of my physical appearance and my bust line is no exception. The only issue I have is how society views Busty Women and how you are treated simply because of the way the genetic cards fell. 

“The way my body looks is offensive and I should shamefully cover up.”

I realized something: My breasts gave a message to the world that I did not ask or co-sign for–that large breasts meant you were inherently more sexual and that because of that, displays of your body are: A) Invitations for sex and sexual advances, B) You are “showing off”, and C) The way my body looks is offensive and I should shamefully cover up. 

My family affectionately calls it the “McBean Curse”. My paternal lineage is full of big-breasted women with big personalities. My parents were very good at helping me establish a good self-esteem when it came to body image. When I was young, society and the media had a huge influence on how I felt about myself. No matter what my parents told me at home, it didn’t erase the pain of being called a “Slut” just because of the way my body looked. I’ve been sexually harassed at school, work, and by people I don’t even know because of my breast size. I fought hard to not let the size of my chest become who I am, although many times in my life, it has been a focal point. The funny thing is, I didn’t ask for these breasts. I didn’t sign up for this, but I live with it. I gain weight in my chest and stomach, like a man. My hips are narrow and my

physique is athletic. Whether I exercise or not, I always have rockin’ hot legs and a full bra. The only thing that has helped me control the size of my breasts is rigorous and unrelenting exercise and a super clean diet. The smallest my boobs have ever been as an adult woman was a 34D when I was a very fit marathon runner. In this picture, I was probably 16-18% body fat, biking 6-18 miles a day, lifting super heavy weights 5 days a week, and running up to 40 miles per week. But the truth is, I’ve fallen horribly out of shape in the last 3 years, and although I still haven’t even come close to my previous weight, I am now at a 34E. I don’t know if I could ever withstand the amount of exercise I used to do now, and I don’t know if it’s worth it just to go down a few cup sizes.

Divine as the Candy Fairy

“I was asked to cover up because I “had cleavage”. I really wanted to say, show me a girl with a 34E bust that doesn’t.”

The last encounter I had with feeling ashamed about my breasts was Halloween of 2013. We were allowed to wear costumes to work. I decided to be a candy fairy. I made little bags of candy to distribute to my co-workers and the children that came to shop there that day. I was super inspired by Katy Perry at the time, so I went full throttle and threw myself into character. I felt so beautiful and free. I felt fun and amazing…just as I always do when I’m in one of my costumes with full makeup and fantasy face paint. I was at work for over 4 hours until I was pulled to the side by one of my female managers and was asked to cover up because I “had cleavage”. I really wanted to say, show me 
a girl with a 34E bust that doesn’t. I was really upset and I really wanted to leave, but I had to tough it out and stay the rest of my shift, while I knew everyone else knew that I was asked to cover my costume. I’m not easily embarrassed, but this was easily one of the most embarrassing situations I’ve ever encountered at work. I understand that companies have their policies and they want you to be “modest”, but the problem I had is why did it take 4 hours for a management to “decide” that what I was wearing was offensive or inappropriate? The customers loved my costume and not one complaint was actually made that what I was wearing was inappropriate. What was appropriate during the first four hours that suddenly became inappropriate for the last three?The manager that pulled me to side told me this: “We don’t want one of the customers to get the wrong idea and complain.” I then asked the manager, “Did anyone complain?” Her answer was, “No, but we want to prevent that.” Prevent what? Someone being offended simply because I have large breasts? And if seeing me and my body type for who I am and what it is is the “wrong idea”, what is the “right idea”?

“I left from work feeling ashamed, belittled, singled out, and defeated.”

And the funny thing about this situation is the fact that the skirt of my costume was so short, I had to wear bloomers and tights underneath it. The fact that the skirt was short was never even brought up. And if there was any reason that I shouldn’t have been able to wear the costume, it should have been the length of the tutu…but taken into context of what the costume actually looked like in it’s entirety, not one customer had a negative reaction to it. Parents were actually coming up to me asking to take pictures. Little girls were following me around the store in awe. Many parents said that my costume was their child’s favorite. The bottom line is, no customer was offended or deemed what I had on to be inappropriate. I was forced to put on a tee-shirt over the costume I paid $90 for. I was hoping to win a costume contest we were having. Needless to say, I wasted my money because I didn’t win and I won’t be participating in this type of dress-up day at work again…but in a way I DID win, because the whole point of me being a real-life fairy is to bring joy to the people that you encounter while you’re in character. And THAT, I did accomplish; however, I left from work feeling ashamed, belittled, singled out, and defeated. Sure, you could blow any of this off as needing to be compliant to company policies and rules, however, these rules are very rarely explained. Companies are often vague and ambiguous about their dress code regarding the amount of bust you can show at work, and not fairly enforced with people of different body shapes or bust sizes. Even if two women were wearing the same shirt, I can guarantee the busty one will be pulled aside, even if the two women are showing the same percentage of cleavage. I’ve seen them Booty Shame with other employees with large backsides by asking to wear different clothing even when other women with less ample posteriors are wearing the exact same thing. It’s discrimination no matter how you slice it up. If it’s a rule for one person, it should be a rule for everyone. 

“…My breasts are a force of nature. They show themselves off.”

There’s no way to justify this contorted thinking other than to objectify the person and look at the parts of them separate from the person as an individual. There is an unspoken societal rule that larger breasted and fuller figured women should “cover up” in order to try to hide what society views as overt displays of sexuality. The truth is, I’m not a slut nor do I dress with the intention to be identified as one. I have been with my husband for three years in an 100% a monogamous relationship. He’s the only one I desire or ever want to be with. I don’t purposely try to dress provocatively. When it’s hot, I wear shorts. I like to wear tank tops. I hate sleeves in general. I feel more comfortable in V-necks than other types of collars. 
I like to wear costumes. In society, I am told that I have to be uncomfortable and wear clothing that doesn’t make me feel or look good because it might be perceived by others as an overt display of my sexuality. 

“…it is often a fight to get people’s eye-contact or to get them to understand you’re actually smart, and not a bimbo.”

A long time ago, I had a female co-worker who would CONSTANTLY talk about my bust size ad nauseum. She would make offensive remarks and talked down to me and about me as if I wasn’t even there. It was a case of breast-envy. She would often make remarks that I, “Show myself off”. Sweetie, my breasts are a force of nature. They show themselves off. The most unsettling thing about  the nature of breast-shaming in the workplace (in my experience) is the fact that men are not generally the perpetrators. It tends to be other women. These women are “offended” by the way you naturally look and feel the need to control the way another woman dresses. I think some women believe that having larger breasts is automatically an asset and gives you some sort of advantage in life. For some, it may be an advantage; but I can think of 10 cons to being busty for every 1 pro. People automatically thinking you are a porn star because you got a new bra is not all it’s cracked up to be. People in the workplace always make jokes or ask questions about my breasts that I find to be highly inappropriate. For some reason, it’s okay because all Busty Women ENJOY negative attention that is directed at their bodies. One male co-worker (who’s old enough to be my father) asked me outright if my breasts have gotten bigger. Dude, that is totally a question you ask yourself in your head, and keep to yourself. Pervert. People are highly insensitive and will express fake “concern” about how sexual you might appear to others, when the truth is THEY are the ones looking at you sexually and it disturbs them. I have found that it is often a fight to get people’s eye-contact or to get them to understand you’re actually smart, and not a bimbo. And it doesn’t matter what you wear, if you have big breasts, especially on a small frame, people will notice and comment regardless. Putting a shirt on them doesn’t make them invisible and they cannot be “covered up” or minimized short of intensive and painful binding (which I actually resorted to in high school–wearing 2-3 bras at a time and huge baggy shirts to try to “hide them). 

Yaya Han as the Absinthe Fairy
Photo Taken from 

When I think of being a real-life professional fairy, it is a source of exhilaration and empowerment. I look up to costume designers like Yaya Han. And although I am not nearly at her level as far as costuming and colorful fashion, my creative spirit flows through the same vein as hers does. She’s my hero. She’s living her life being the fantasy in her own mind, and that is how I want to live too. However, in order to be the true life Peacock Princess that I am, I need to accept that the way I am shaped is beautiful and that I need not be ashamed of my body. She certainly isn’t. And when I see her bust held ever so perfectly in her custom-made costumes, a part of me feels validated that it is her creativity and acceptance of who she is and how she looks that has made her notable. Not just the size of her chest. 

So when it came time to picking dresses for my wedding, I started off with a mission to find  “bust minimizing” clothing. I was not looking forward to seeing my bust on display and knowing how some people might interpret my lack of cleavage-discretion as inappropriate. HAHAH! I laugh about this in hindsight now, because there was nothing bust minimizing about what I wore for my wedding and it was futile to look for something that was. After I found my dresses, I realized that what I needed was not “bust minimizing” but “bust accentuating clothing”. And guess what…NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON SAID A GOD-DAMNED NEGATIVE THING ABOUT MY CHEST, just like when I wore the costume to work.  I can’t let a few ignorant individuals make me feel like I should be ashamed of my bust size. I needed to shake off the notion that me feeling beautiful, even though I displayed cleavage, was wrong even on my wedding day. I decided to stop worrying about making other people feel uncomfortable and took comfort that for one day, I promised to myself not to cover myself up for other people. I decided to wear what I wanted and was determined to feel beautiful. I was naive to think I could minimize my bust, or that I ought to. Ironically, I got just as many compliments on my breasts as I did my dresses! Instead of being shamed, my breasts stole the show–as they rightfully should, because they are a totally beautiful part of me that is a gift. I have learned you have to own it.

This entry has become epic in length, but I wanted to say a word of thanks to Georgina Horne, the author of “Fuller Figure Fuller Bust” Blog for helping me gain the confidence in to wear two of the most beautiful garments I’ve ever had the honor of wearing. Without her tips about body-acceptance and how to clothe a fuller top, I can be confident that I feel as good insideabout the way I look on the outside.  I am never again going to apologize for the size of my breasts. And I will never attempt to hide them again in order to make others feel comfortable. 

I have learned that I deserve to see myself as I am

 and it’s okay to like what I see.