Givers of sustenance to our children and pleasure to our lovers of all genders. They’re inextricably linked, yet distinct.
When my baby suckled it was a deep, rich pull from within. A surge through my nipple then a little release into obscurity. Looking down at that face I felt ancient and powerful, complete. This is what they were meant for first and foremost.
Or maybe that’s wrong.
Maybe they are there for pleasure, to lure in a man to create the life in the first place. A siren call to touch and suckle again and plant their seed deep in my body. A tidy circle.
The complexity between sex and nurturing confounds many, but they are a dual reality. I don’t understand why we fight against the truth: breasts are both sexual and non-sexual.
Want to know how to tell the difference?? Ask the woman.
A woman is sexualized throughout her lifetime for doing the most mundane of things. A woman who is breastfeeding does not intend to titillate, she’s feeding her child. Likewise, a woman who is wearing swimwear, a fitted shirt, a berka, a turtleneck, a plunging neckline all while having breasts is simply conforming to the costume of her culture. What’s the weather like? What’s her mood? What does her religion say? To assume she is attempting to excite is an easy excuse to react negatively towards her.
We’ve progressed to a complex system of arousal based on exposure that really does nothing to avert or slake a man’s lust. A woman’s body is not the tinder to a man’s spark. His imagination and power is. In this sense cleavage or a nipple is as tantalizing as an ankle or a lined eye; we can’t control it! A woman cannot ever in her lifetime avoid being the object of a man’s lust, nor is it her responsibility to do so; it is his job to manage it and behave humanely.
So here I am ranting on about breasts and why they are both sexual and non-sexual. Even without a babe to nurse I use my breasts in a non-sexual manner. I use them for warm, squishy hugs with children — I remember well the hugs from my mother with my face in her warm bosom. I walk proudly and with confidence so younger women may see that all shapes are beautiful. I discuss consent and victim shaming as they pertain to women’s bodies and bared breasts being an oft discussed topic.
In any case, this is by no means the end of this discussion, but just some things that have been on my mind. I will continue my little mission to defuse the negative aura surrounding breasts and bring a sense of autonomy to our bodies, but so long as people can’t find distinct places in which to categorize breasts and nipples they will always fall into the one — sex — and they (we) will forever be considered inappropriate.
No matter what we cover up we are sexualized and very often against our will. Hiding our bodies feels more like a capitulation than a solution. It’s why this meme means so much to me. Take it off, show it off, do your thing. Not only do you not have to look a certain way, but you’re also allowed to share whatever you please of yourself.
Perhaps it’s a sexual event for you or perhaps not. For me on these days there’s an allusion to sex — I’m often semi-nude, after all, and I hope to inspire — but it is not an invitation or even a proclamation. It is most simply a woman’s form, unadorned, and exposed. Both a sexual being and non-sexual. All woman. Interpretation is art, violence is choice.
Love you guys. Keep doing your thing. There is no shame in loving to show your body. Absolutely none. Nor is it a call to abuse you. It’s a beautiful place, this complex, tricky thing we call our body and the more we stand up for our rights to do with it as we please, the more it will feel normal to do so.
[Ed. Note: I changed a few words to better delineate my meaning. I know how confusing it is for some to see me expose myself and then seem to say “Don’t be aroused,” but that’s not what I meant and I hope my few word changes have cleared that up. To be clear: You may be aroused, but that arousal (of penis or ire) means nothing about me as a human being and is not an invitation to act upon whatever feelings you might have – be that violence or vitriol.)
Full Boobday Guidelines here.
One of two ways to participate:
1) either submit a pic to me via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) OR
2) submit a link below to your own blog post for Boobday.
Also, just as a reminder:
- If you send me a pic, be sure to tell me if you want to be anonymous or not and what your pseudonym is (if you have one or I gave you one)
- Tell me why you chose the photo you sent
And don’t forget to comment on everyone’s posts! This is all about spreading the love!
I chose this photo because it’s of a woman standing in front of her window. Nothing more, nothing less.
NOT my tits:
A lazy day.
Today when looking at my boobs, it appeared for once, they actually matched! Often lefty is bigger than righty, but today the girls were twins!!!
Click below for more of my sisters in this fight: