BRAS ARE OPTIONS…NOT REQUIREMENTS

Going bra-free has nothing to do with revealing my anatomical body parts or “getting attention”. But it does have everything to do with freedom. Freedom to stand apart from societal norms of  feeling forced to wear bras  vs. having the choice to wear bras. Research has shown that bras aren’t necessary for a woman’s breasts but  more so for cultural/societal reasons. Common reasons most women wear bras are because they “don’t want their breasts to sag“, “feel immoral or indecent without a bra“, “it is the unspsoken rule of society“, “to hide nipples that poke through clothing“,etc…I have news for you, breasts are gonna sag based off of hereditary genes and well, gravity. As for feeling “immoral” or “indecent” that is all psychological and in my opinion the conditioning of our mindset taught to us from society. From a young age women are taught to “cover up” and hide themselves, to be ashamed of their bodies, and seen as the “initiator” for “tempting men”. *insert eye roll here*. Is morality really dependent on the type of underwear you wear (or don’t wear) though? Most women who  feel this way have been conditioned to believe that their breasts are “dirty” body parts that need to be “hidden” or “tucked away” from sight believe that their bras fulfill this thought process. Considering that breasts are baby feeders and do NOT have to be considered as a special sexualized body part (such as genitals) can,will, and DOES liberate women from the mental bondage that says that female breasts are “obscene”. Knowledge is power here ladies. Do not run or

be afraid of your body. It is a special gift sent from God that we should cherish and love. I really don’t think I need to explain being responsible with your body but for those smart alecks, I am in NO way advocating to be reckless with your body and medicating yourself with sex or using your body as a sexual tool. Society has taught us that bras give us a “cleaner” look but I ask you, what is so “unclean” about breasts? Society has taught us that as women, having our breasts unbounded is disgusting or dirty or worse..it brings about too much sexual attention. *again insert eye roll* When this kind of thinking has been ingrained in people since day one, it is obviously very difficult to overcome. Hopefully one day society will just get over it and see that bounded breasts aren’t the only way for breasts to look beautiful or seem normal. This notion is just as silly as women being unclean because they were on their period. I’m hopeful that one day we can rewrite societal norms and generate an alternative way of thinking and viewing the world. Can we just please kill this xenophobic mindset? I will state this though. As supportive as I am of women embracing themselves and going bra-free, there are three places/distinct times that I most likely would not go bra free which are: In front of my dad:|, at church, or at work. Other than those three places (and maybe working out–whenever that happens lol) everywhere else is fair game. The single most common reason that I hear for women wearing bras is for the protrusion of nipples through

clothing. Society views nipples that are semi visible through clothing as something that is indecent or inappropriate, but this is just ridiculous because no one feels that way about MEN’S nipples when they poke

through, now do they? Nipples sticking out does not indicate sexual arousal  and I think it is fair to say that most if not all of us know that. Most nipples protrude because of their natural state or climate. It is a natural part of our bodies. The choice to bra or not to bra is just that. Bras are options. Not requirements. If it is hot outside and I’m sweaty and feel bounded because of a bra, then why should I be in discomfort or kill myself because of other people’s comfort level? I don’t care if my breasts make you uncomfortable. My anatomical body part should not offend people but it does. That is other people’s

issue, not mine. Societal norms are devised to control, dictate, and confine women into this imaginary bubble of “perfection”. Instead of women being celebrated as individuals, society tries to mask us as one to make us more “acceptable”. I have taken my stand as not only a woman but a person. I refuse to be controlled

anymore. Whether it’s through the Nigerian culture or by Western society, I. Refuse. If my boobs want to

roam out and be free, even engage in a little nip poke then sobeit. If they offend you, great. If they shock

your or disgust you then that’s even better. Embarrassed by them? Then by all means — AVERT YOUR

EYES. Either way whether people gawk, stare, “thirst”, blush, or laugh — I am no longer going to be trapped by anyone’s opinions or ridiculous standards. I am my own person. I have my own thoughts. I am not a caged bird, I. Am. Free.  Not attacking bras or women who wear them, but don’t impose your standards on me. TO BRA OR NOT TO BRA? Ultimately the decision is to be left up to ME. This all boils down to knowledge of power, freedom, and rights. Gone is that mental bondage of feeling guilty because I am a woman or because I have breasts. I dress according to my body comfort levels and not the comfort levels of others. Others choices of what I wear or how I look is up to them — “your opinion of me is none of my business” — feel free to judge but don’t think that you can condemn me. If you choose to feel some type of negative emotion towards my body then that is your right, but I will not conform to societies expectations or desires in regards to my life any longer.

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