Nothing shines a spotlight on society’s whack perceptions of the human body like some of the reactions I get to wearing a tee emblazoned with hand drawn breasts.
Maurie and Eve top | Forever New coat | Quay Sunglasses | G Star jeans | Betts heels | Skinny Dip clutch
Photos: Kevin Clark
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Part of the fascination I had for this tee was in the reactions it would garner from the public. I have no issues in wearing a tee with breasts drawn on it. I own my own pair that I am proud of, so a tee with some hand drawings on it posed no issue to me. In fact, I feel it shows off both a tongue in cheek and powerful attitude towards the human body.
For many years I have maintained the opinion that the stem of a lot of societal issues comes from a lack of understanding about our bodies and sexuality. From a young age, we are told that our nipples are ‘mosquito bites’, our genitals are ‘moo moos’ or ‘pi pis’ and that we came to be by some divine miracle. Sure, we need to protect a child’s innocence to some extent, but continuing to beat around the bush and be bashful about our bodies into our later years only exacerbates issues surrounding them. You can’t avoid the reality of our bodies forever.
If there isn’t open conversation about the functionality and purpose of our different body parts, of course we are going to see undesirable results from this.
Now, I am not at all saying that this is the sole reason we see cases of sexual abuse or a lack of body confidence (and I in no way claim to be an expert on these issues), but when we grow up with a perception that our bodies are ‘naughty’ and need nicknames to be spoken about, it is no wonder they are mistreated. How are you supposed to fully understand and appreciate something that can’t be talked about normally?
And this brings me back to my tee.
I guess the appeal in it was also in the fact it makes a statement about how we should be approaching our bodies. It doesn’t exploit the body, it isn’t vulgar and it isn’t embarrassing.
I wore it out for one of the first times over the weekend. For the most part, no negative comments were made, nor eyebrows lifted. And that is just the reaction I would hope most people would have about a lady wearing a ‘breast’ tee. What did shock me, was the reaction I had from a few young men. There was no hiding the shock on their faces. They were shocked and fascinated in a few hand drawn lines in the shape of breasts, on a tee. If that reaction doesn’t highlight an issue in the way in which society perceives the body, then I don’t know what does!
To be honest, I did expect a few of those sorts of reactions. But the more we are forced to accept and be ok with the human body, the less we will see the human body as shocking!
I am interested to hear your thoughts on the breast tee! What do you think of it? Would you wear one out?