Home Opinion Editorials The nipples that broke through the glass ceiling

The nipples that broke through the glass ceiling

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I went braless for six months in order to protest societal norms regarding women’s clothing. I’ve heard countless stories of women protesting in a similar fashion, but last September I decided to make my own stand. This is my story.

Let me be clear: this was NOT an easy task, however, I persevered through the face of adversity for the sake of social justice. My act of female empowerment and heroism caused quite a bit of commotion at school, work, and even in the streets.

On the first day of my momentous societal journey, I was walking to my 8 a.m. class and the janitor in the hallway nodded hello. He immediately noticed that I wasn’t wearing a bra and became so enthralled that he seemed to forget where he was.

 

Boobs Not Bombs: Anna Bryson believes that society shouldn't put such an emphasis on the female body and that wearing a bra isn't mandatory. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Boobs Not Bombs: Anna Bryson believes that society shouldn’t put such an emphasis on the female body and that wearing a bra isn’t mandatory. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

As I walked past, he turned around to keep watching my breasts and his foot caught on the handle of the mop and he tripped over it, slipping and falling onto the wet floor. He slid across the hallway headfirst, and his skull crashed into the concrete wall on the other side of the hallway. I bolted away in a panicked frenzy, horrified by what I had just seen.

 

It all happened so fast that I didn’t see the severity of his injury, but I heard ambulance sirens later on, presumably for him.

I arrived to class, opened the door and immediately felt the presence of an entire room of peers, eyes wide in utter disbelief. I wanted to turn around and run away, to abandon my cause in order to preserve even a bit of my reputation. Yet I reminded myself that I was doing this for the sake of women everywhere

and that my clothing choice is demonstrating a point larger than I.

As I sat down in my chair, the girl seated next to me pensively leaned over and whispered, “I can see your nipples.” This was my breaking point. I tried to hold myself together, but a silent tear rolled down my cheek.

I hadn’t thought this experiment through. All of my classmates now know that I have nipples. They probably even know now that my left boob is bigger than my right one, oh what have I gotten myself into?

The professor that day was so distracted by my breasts that he faked a headache and dismissed the class early. He taught every subsequent class with a blindfold on. I think he was afraid that he wouldn’t be able to teach us because he wouldn’t be able to think about anything besides my braless breasts.

Day after day, incidences like this occurred. My heroic act of going braless caused car accidents, street fights, and even a forest fire. Despite all the disruption I caused to the Tampa Bay area, it was all worth it for the change that I made.

My one word of advice to my followers is to be prepared for how much commotion the natural shape of your breasts will cause. Six months ago I was a regular woman, and today I am a radical rebel in the face of society.

Opting to live your life braless is liberating and everyone who can do it and should. It might seem strange at first, but you will soon begin to wonder why you ever thought it was a sensible idea to wear an uncomfortable article of clothing with no practical use.

I acknowledge that there could be a physical necessity for some women to wear a bra, and don’t mean to discourage them from something that might be a health benefit. But I feel the majority of women are stuck in a cycle of discomfort forced on them by societal norms.

It’s  nonsensical to wear a restricting article of clothing that literally has a wire in it only to uphold an unrealistic, idealized image of what the female body should look like. At this point in time, going sans-bra isn’t a head-turning ordeal, and it shouldn’t be.

It’s not a novel idea to choose to be comfortable enough with your body to not restrict it into an unnatural shape. It’s time to stop oversexualizing the female body and accept it for what it naturally is.

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