A Breast Identity Crisis
I have been a 34-C for about 5 years now. Oddly, but as I’m sure you will all – as women of a certain age – understand, I had come to really identify as such. I was a 34-C. I was of slightly-larger-than-average-but-nothing-unusual proportions. At 5’0″ (in shoes), I figured 34-C was more than adequate for my small frame.Cut to a few months ago when I start noticing that my bras don’t fit. The band is fine, but my breasts are literally spilling out of the cups. What gives?
I thought, well, my bras are all over a year old. Maybe they’re just…shrinking? Do bras do that? So I got myself to the store and lo and behold, none of the 34-Cs fit. Finally, I picked up a 34-D. Ha ha, I laughed. There is no way that 34-C me is suddenly a freaking D-cup. No way in hell.
And yet–I was. The 34-D fit perfectly.
I was hit with a weird and unexpected mini-identity crisis. I was…a 34-D? But I’m a 34-C! Or…I was. I called my boyfriend to complain, but as soon as I said the words 34-D, he cheered. I mean, he literally cheered. And then I hung up.
As soon as I got home, I hit the web. At what age do women’s breasts stop growing? Or is something else going on?
Well, it turns out there’s not too much information on this subject online. My first search yielded tens of thousands of big boob porn sites.
After refining my search, I found a lot of versions of my question (“At what age do a woman’s boobs stop growing?” “I’m 15 and I’ve just developed a chest. Will it stay this way or will it still grow?”) but not much in the way of solid answers. Several sites posit that breasts stop growing two years after puberty. Um, that would mean for me that mine would have been fully grown at the age of 13–when I was definitely still an A-cup. So, wrong.
Another bunch of sites say 17 or 18 is the end point. I was a B at 17 and a C at 18. And, again, now I’m a D. So I don’t think this is true.
Some websites say that weight gain is a culprit. This may be true, but I would like to point out that weight gain will cause your band size to go up in addition to the cup size. And, in my case, I’ve fluctuated within the same five pounds for the past 6 years. I don’t think that’s the issue.
Finally, a few sites say that breasts can keep going until your early-to-mid-twenties. Since I am a month away from turning 24, this seems like it might be more accurate.
I asked a few of my girlfriends when their breasts stopped growing and they were all equally confused about the cut-off point. One friend told me she’s been a B-cup since high school, but most of the girls I asked said that their breasts have grown at least until they were 20 or 21, if not later.
And when I asked them if this f*cked with their identity, every single one of them said yes. Are we really our cup sizes? …Census says yes.
After all, we are told certain things about our breast size every day without our even realizing it. For instance, fashion magazines say small-breasted women can wear very low-cut tops without fear of looking too sexy. This is terribly demeaning–are we saying you can’t be sexy if you have a small chest? I believe there are thousands upon thousands of men who would say otherwise. These same magazines are also always printing fashion pages on how to “minimize” a big bust. Is it shameful to have large breasts? Are we slutty by biology?
Breast size has so much bearing on our identity, but this is not surprising. Weight has a lot to do with identity; so does hair. Why not boobs?
So if yours keep growing, don’t worry. You’re not alone, and your identity will survive.
As for me, I’ll be in Victoria’s Secret praying I’ll stop at a D.
[Image courtesy of http://img.thesun.co.uk%5D