I’ve always felt uncomfortable about my boobs.
While all the other girls were developing curves at high school, I remained as flat as a board.
Kids teased me at school that my lack of boobs and hips made me look like a boy. I grew up feeling unfeminine and so self-conscious.
Now in my late twenties, I have tried not to let my flat chest get to me – and to enjoy the benefits of my androgynous figure, such as being able to wear almost any clothes I want – except for low-cut tops, which made me look ridiculous.
I’m tiny, and I try to enjoy that, but deep down I still feel like I have the figure of a boy.
Last year I met a guy who didn’t seem to mind my lack of breasts – someone who liked me for me.
As with all my previous relationships, I felt uncomfortable the first few times Michael and I got naked together but he seemed to enjoy himself and he told me he thought I was beautiful.
Michael was smart, funny and well-travelled. He had his own café and was passionate about art and coffee and music. He was also hot as hell and I was hooked.
I started thinking ahead to what it would be like to live together, get married, and even have his babies. I was absolutely smitten.
About six months into our relationship I inherited some money when my grandmother passed away. She and I had always been close and she had been sick for a long time.
Before she died, she said to me, “I don’t want you to do anything sensible with the money I leave you, do something fun and irresponsible – something that’s just for you.”
When she died, I knew exactly what I was going to do. I booked my breast augmentation surgery for the following month. I didn’t tell a soul.
I finally looked like a woman.
I was nervous the day of my surgery but the doctor was wonderful and when I woke up and saw the results, I was thrilled.
I didn’t do anything over-the-top but the fact I could now wear a B-cup was thrilling to me. I was so happy with my new shape.
I laid low for a couple of weeks, telling Michael I had the flu, before we saw each other again. When I turned up to his house, just wearing a t-shirt and jeans – I could see he was shocked and confused.
I told him what I’d done, and apologized for lying to him. I said it was something I just had to do for me. Michael gave me a hug and told me I looked great, but that he thought I looked beautiful before too.
Michael seemed ok with my new boobs at first.
He said he was never concerned about my flat chest or gave it a second thought, and that he had been attracted to me as a whole person. He also said he felt sad I thought I had to do that to feel like a real woman.
“But if that’s what you needed to do to be happy, I’m happy for you,” he said.
We hung out that night and watched a movie, and then we went to bed. I was still feeling tender and Michael said he didn’t want to hurt me while I was recovering, so he didn’t want to have sex. I thought he was being considerate, but I could also tell something was a little bit off.
Something had changed between us.
We saw each other a few more times after that but I could tell something had shifted between us. There was a distance that wasn’t there before. I dreaded bringing it up because I felt like I could sense what was going to happen, but eventually I asked Michael what was going on.
Michael said he’d been putting off talking to me about what was bothering him because he was hoping he could get past it – that if he just waited everything would magically be all right.
“I just can’t seem to shake this feeling though,” he said. “I thought you were this strong, confident, kick-arse woman who was comfortable in her own skin and unapologetic about who she is. That was what attracted me to you in the first place.
“The fact that you needed to surgically alter your body in order to feel acceptable to the world – who, by the way, couldn’t give a shit what you look like – tells me you’re not the woman I thought you were and I wish I could but I just don’t think I can get past that.”
Michael said he wished I hadn’t got the implants in the first place and things could go back to how they were before, but that maybe this was just showing us early on that we’re different people.
I joked that there are thousands of guys who wish their girlfriend would get implants, and he kissed me and said he wished he was one of them.
I was gutted but there was nothing I could do.
I never considered having the implants removed or trying to convince Michael to stay. This was clearly a deal-breaker for him and I don’t want to be with someone who doesn’t accept me and the decisions I make about my own body, but I do sometimes wonder what would have happened if I had used Granny’s money for a nice holiday somewhere.
But I made my choice and I’m standing firm (pardon the pun). The wounds have healed and I’m still thrilled with my new body. As soon as the emotional bruises abate I’ll put my heart back out there too.