My Breast Battle - Barnsley, UK

I am 26 years old, turning 27 this year. I am...

I am 26 years old, turning 27 this year. I am roughly a size 12/14 on my hips but a size 12 normally as i have put on weight recently due to depression. On top i am a 34G in the morning but this doesnt fit by about 4pm I have noticed so need to get measured on an evening coz i think i will be a size bigger (apparently that is because the weight stretch and deforms the muscles - nice eh?) Of course there are the nomal things - clothes dont fit, i look slutty no matter what, people, especially men stare, bras are more torture devices than something to seduce your partner with. I could go on of course. There are the physical things - i stopped all sports when i got them as they bounce like too massive watermelon attached to me and even if people dont think thats worth laughing at I sure think they do (i just have to laugh sometimes as it is funny but coz i know how much this also hurts and makes you feel so small and ridiculed it more often turns to tears) I can do water sports like i used to because if you put a life jacket on me i become a big block and can not bend at all, so doesnt work. I have recently decided I can let them stop me and have taken up running again but still i hate if anyone else is there. Not only that but the general pain is maddening with rashes, digging straps, back pain, heachaches, shoulder pain... Honestly tho the worst thing is i feel like less of a woman because of them, i feel like a man who wanted to be a woman so bad he had massive implants in. I dont feel attractive in any way with them and it feels like i attract all the losers who are just want to sleep with someone with big boobs - urgh I have only been to the doctor once so for (i am in the uk) and they said loose weight. Now i dont think im that fat, im not skinny either because if i was i would just topple over all the time. And its really annoyed me for them to say that, I weigh less than the average in my town admittedly this is nearly 13st but they want me to get to under 11st and I dont think there will be much left of me. So so fair its not been a pleasent experience but I hope it will get better. tho how i am meant to loose weigh when exercising is a joke i do not know.

Ok one month in since really taking the idea of a...

Ok one month in since really taking the idea of a reduction seriously. My doctor here in the UK said lose weight (grrrr) but I do have a BMI of 27 but thats actually not that bad and lower than the average in my area. Anyway i have taken up running, swimming, walking and going to the gym and have actually gained weight!! I have kept a food diary and apart from a couple of slip ups I have eaten less than 1500 kcal in the last 14 days. Maybe that will suddenly hit me and I will lose some weight, so my doctor actually has to do something. I will be going back the week after next to see what she says.

I have actually gone up a cup size which makes no sense but the bra does fit better so im grateful. So im not a 34GG which means those sexy 3 clasp bras and the loss of any sex appeal whatsoever. Oh well eh?

I am getting really stressed by this whole experience and the negative view people have of it like i want my chest reduced to simple look better, yet we live in a world which would say the exact opposite is true. So i am being both vain and stupid in their opinion. And if you think about it people have their teeth done all the time with no question and that is purely cosmetic but noone is saying to children no you cant have that you vain person! I do know there is a small chance of something serious happening with surgery which could make it different but there is a risk getting in your car everyday which is way more likely to kill you so i cant see how that can be the reason they are so against it.

I swear people just think i am weird for not liking having big boobs coz 'it cant be that bad' I wish i could put to massive weights on their cheast let them carry those around for a day or so and see how they feel. Oh and of course give them the absolutly sexy as hell leather jacket, perfect and you can afford and let them put it on and think wow this fits amazingly on my waist and then try and zip it up and it wont . Not even close and therefore you cant wear it. oh and then reapeat that for all fitted item of clothes until they too are force to wear what looks like a bag or a t shirt and see how they like it.

Its just so upsetting that people arent supportive, which is why its good to have a place like this to get support. Coz i am terrified by the whole thing and what will happen and it isnt helped by people acting like i am vain. I am so far from vain and I have no false belief i will suddenly be super confident after having it done. I will just be able to wear the clothes i like, not get stared at and not be in pain. Its not fair i have to spend more, feel worse and be in pain when i dont have to be.

Hmmm my update is more of a rant, so i apologies. I guess its just the emotional conflict. Any advice to how to deal with all this would be fantastic. Thank you

Also, for you UK girls out there I am trying to...

Also, for you UK girls out there I am trying to gather some specific info and experince that happen in the UK especially related to the NHS. So if any of you have a spare moment could you have a look at http://forum.movingforward-together.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3. Its nothing to comapre to this site and I do not wish to take away from here at all not!! but think we need to get the word out here in the UK about the whole NHS process to stop people being hurt and upset by the system. Thanks
Was this review helpful?

Comments (20)

Sort by

Hey babe you don't seem to be having a great time of it. I am due to have a BR on the NHS in 2 weeks. It did take me a couple of trips to the doctor and standing topless infront of many people before I was given the go ahead. Weight loss is a pain in the ass but if u stick to it it means they'll be able to give u awesome perky boobs on fitting with ur body shape. Feel free to give my profile a read for a bit more nhs info xxx
  • Reply

Hi Missy!

Regarding your exercise, I wanted to share that I started running for the first time in my life in February of this year. I was on the treadmill daily and had given up soda. I thought the weight was just going to slide right off of me! But I found that like you, I actually gained some weight. Talk about being disappointed! But everyone kept say, "You're converting fat to muscle!" All I know is that I was heartbroken about the pounds I was putting on. But then...guess what?...all of a sudden at about 12 weeks after I started the running I did have 8 pounds just droppred right off! Talk about motivation! Made me more excited to keep getting up thirty minutes earlier every morning!

And while I've shared many ways that my life has changed on here, I had something that happened yesterday that I found to be amazing! Our house sits on about 10 acres, we do have out buildings, a barn, machine shed, silos, etc. I use to never mow very often because bouncing around on that mower was very painful on my back especially, but also on my chest wall.  Before if I spent even two hours mowing I would be quite sore from all of the flopping but yesterday I was able to zip right through it without even a twinge in my back, and I didn't even come close to a black eye!

 
  • Reply
This does give me some hope it is soooooo hard doing so much and eating so well to feel like you are gaining nothing. So hopefully it will happen to me also, fingers crossed.

And its amazing isnt it how much it affects and alters your life. I really dont want to spend more that 40 more years (touch wood) with the same problems i have since my teens. I just wish more people could get it. Coz its so hard to make the choice anyways, let alone then venturing out and meeting so much resistance

Thanks for the support its been really useful !! :)
  • Reply
Hi MissyCT,

I fully sympathise with all you say. Its a nightmare system and a real pain in the neck (for real unfortunalty) to put up with big boobs. There is nothing 'vain' about your wanting this op. Do it while you are young. People who dont understand about big boobs havent got a clue. They see celebs on TV getting them done (god knows why!!) and how (again on TV) that men stare and women get attention so the message is big boobs = lots of attention. But as we know its very unwanted and not nice at all. Just incase you want to see a Dr and as you live near me in Derbyshire.... if you want to see a really nice, decent, caring and excellent surgeon who is an expert in this field and decent here are the details.
My PS -
(Dr John Daley- Nottingham City Hosp - NHS Plastic Surgery Consultant and Nuffield Private Hosp Derby)
Said it all for me.
I too am a BMI of 27 as i weigh around 13 st to 13st 5lbs if i have PMT which i have at the moment.
Even though i fulfil the criteria for BR on the NHS (which for anyone out of the UK means its free) i would have to have a 'body contour scan'. This deermines my fat level and if its above a certain % it determines whether i qualify. If i do qualify, I have to wait for 2 years from the scan results and then an NHS panal of experts to 'approve' its a 'cosmetic' procedure!! So i would wait around 5-6 months for that 'approval' and then 2 years for the op. Great eh? Its all about money... so i am going private despite my Consultant saying i would indeed qualify and benefit and its to reduce pain/relieve unpleasant symptoms AND its NOT cosmetic!!!
He also has written a letter to HR as my workplace as they have said i'll have to take unpaid leave and /or holiday to recover! So my PS (bless him!) has sorted that by saying its 'reconstructive surgery to relieve pain'. At least i wont miss our financially as its costing me alot to go private. If i had done this years ago i would have got it free on the NHS but since the rules changed i've missed out... never mind.
I too have all the symptoms you have and my life is restricted alot. I'm not sporty but i love to dance and want to learn Tango. I can salsa etc but it looks terrible as i cant get as close to my partner as i wouod like because of these - (yes, its a good descriptive name) watermelons, the great big green ones! I too consider my 'bra's' a straight jacket because they are sooo uncomfortable and as soon as i get home the bra is off and i wear a loose top indoors. I tend to walk when outdoors to prevent too much 'bounce' because if i ran i would be sore. At 48, my back (thoracic spine = the area between the bottom of your neck to the end of your ribs) is stiff, slightly bent and i feel like i could bend backwards and if i could only 'click' it to stop the ache- it hurts!!
Missy, if you want to PM me please do. If you can get it done privately and you wont have to wait too long. I have listened to my work colleague and followed her journey from her BR in Jan. I have 'listened' to Kimmers Iowa and all the other brave and wonderful girls on here who are post BR and i believe them when they say its sore and a buring sensation for a short while and its controlled by medication. That is keeping me from being really scared. Yes i have the anaesthetic issue (its my fear) as i will be scared of being put to sleep but i want his done so much now i am being impatient! I agree with Aimee about pilates and walking. (I walk my dog)
I find that easier than anything whihch means i have to wear those horrible bras to try) and keep the boobs firmly in place. (Doesn't happen i think i need scaffolding and a concrete bandage...!) I dont like to swim as my boobs float like 2 boyancy aids which kids hold on when they learn to swim. Again its about feeling nice and looking nice- how can you with these breasts???
Hope you find a solution soon. You will look fab when they are done as you -like me are not heavy, nor are you a stick you are womanly and as your figure sounds like mine in terms of size, i keep looking in the mirror with my boobs held up and i know i will look great. It will also give me the incentive to lose a stone or so and tone up. Of course i (you too ) will be able to look at clothes which are lolvey. I was on line last night looking at Zara, Coast, Monsoon DRESSES and TOPS!!! when 'usually' i would avoid them and say to myself 'i'll never fit my top in those... so i never and i mean NEVER looked at dresses. I am not buying clothers or bras until afer my op. So i look a bit boring at the minute but why waste money on saize 18-20 tops when i'll be able to wear 12 - 14 ones? Rant away MissyCT! I do and i thank everyone for letting me air my feelings on here as everyone understands what we are all going through. Can any of he post BR ladies post about how lovely you feel post op? I am waiting to wake up and not have to feel heavy boobs each side of my arms and no neck or shoulder ache. Kimmers said she felt 'lighter' as soon as she woke up from the anaesthetic. I will have her words in my ears when i wake up!! Cant wait.
Love to you all Debs UK x x x x
  • Reply
I think its partly why we have so much trouble most people are either tiny and all boob, or larger and hence if lose weight will lose some of their chest. But yet our pain and struggles are no less.

I am going to keep at the NHS for now and be annoying and pushy and see what happens but i will bare it in mind coz although i have the secret weapon of my parents i may well give up and go private if i can ever raise that kind of money :S

Thanks for the support! and good luck with everything
  • Reply
I cant believe that i'm reading ur comment missy CT and thinking 'this is exactley what i'm going though', every single word you've wrote is whats happening to me! I've been to the docs and got refered on the NHS, it took 6 months to get a consultation and was told not to panic and that I was on the list but I did have to loose weight, I thought great until I rang up last week to see where I was on the waiting list, thats when I was crushed to be told I couldnt have the op done because my BMI wasnt under 25!! My BMI is 27!! Ive now go to be refered back to this surgeon, I now have an appointment with my GP to arrange this but I'd rather go private after all this crap that they've told me. I find it hard losing weight because of my underactive thyroid but it wont stop me, im joining weight watchers tomorrow so fingers crossed. Im also searching different private clinics to go for a consultation so thats gonna be my next goal. I'd rather have the surgery and then loose the weight and keep it off because they can grow back unfortunatley. Oh im also starting kettlebells on wed!! God help!! lol,
Thanks x
  • Reply
I think its a joke and having GPs as parents they can understand why it happens but dont think its fair especially as im not sure that what the guidlines actually are and the time scale is meant to be short. I have every intention of pushing and complaining until people listen. Mainly coz i cant afford to go private really im 26 and dont have a job at the moment and a massive student debt but im not going to spend years of pain, not a chance.

Good luck with weight watchers and kettlebelling I am sure it will help!
  • Reply
HI Missy! So sorry you have so much to deal with. Is it possible to search for another Dr? For weight loss I really liked Curves. Here is the link, not sure if any of these are close to you but you can do another search to see.
http://www.curves.com/locations/results.php?country=ENG&searchType=postal_code&postal_code=&searchbyzip=Search

It is very low impact and worked for me with the big boobs. They offer a lot of support and have a weight loss plan that is not aggressive but I had great results with it. All the staff and members are very supportive and that is the company model so I am sure it is the same there. I can't wait to get back when I am cleared to exercise again. Good luck to you and keep us posted!
  • Reply

Welcome to RealSelf, Missy! Thanks for sharing your story. I was a 34H and had my surgery last August. I'm still a bit larger than I had hoped but am working with the surgeon with some lipo and that will hopefully bring me down some more.

I give you lots of credit for exercising before surgery. I had never exercised much in my life. It was just too embarrassing to do around others and used that as an excuse not to do anything. Since surgery I have started to run and like you have been frustrated that I've put on weight...and I even gave up soda too...but I'm sticking with it. One of the ladies on this site said to give it about 12 weeks to see real change, so I'm going to trust her on that :-) And I'm glad I read this thread.  Aimee has inspired me to maybe work some pilates in!

I wish you the best of luck with getting approved for your surgery. Please keep us updated on your progress!
  • Reply
Yes, try pilates! It's so gentile, you won't even feel like you are working out if the instructor is good... Then in about 6 weeks you will notice a difference in your whole midsection :)

RE going up in weight... This will happen if you add vigorous exercise without calorie control. The good news is it's NOT fat. It's muscle gain, and muscle takes more calories to maintain then fat, so it will eventually even out. The bad news is you're not losing enough fat right now to keep pace with the muscle you're gaining (which does not mean you aren't losing any fat, since muscle weighs more then fat). This is actually exactly the issue my old trainer would speak of-- your body knows it lost calories from the run and will try to get them back... making you hungry for a few extra bites of dinner, or a tiny indulgence you would have otherwise skipped, etc. This is why he was such a big fan of tricking your body into burning calories with slower, longer duration workouts. Still though, even with that, a lot of weeks I would break even with my weight on the scale, then when hooked up to the electro current body fat detector I would find I'd lost about 3lbs. of fat. I really wish a home version of this super high end machine would become available. Sadly the ones in most scales are totally worthless. I guess my whole point is don't trust the scale! If you were only dieting it would be a good barometer but with dieting and exercise, where you are losing fat AND gaining muscle, all it can really do is give you a rough idea where you stand.
  • Reply

Thanks for the encouragment, Aimee! I am terrible with diet control. That is something I'm trying to work on. I quit smoking over a year ago, and soda over Lent, so you think giving up some of my carbs and sugars would be easy breezy, but that is certainly not the case!  But I will keep plugging along!
  • Reply
Ugh quitting smoking is THE WORST! I quit about a decade ago now, and I was the weirdest smoker ever I guess because one day I just sort of got sick of it and put my pack down... I felt like I had grown up to age where it wasn't cute anymore and was sick of feeling like crap so I just put it down, easy peasy. no cravings, no fuss, I just sort of outgrew it... or so I thought. My body had other ideas!! I gained 10 lbs. which really stayed with me for life so far. Nothing will keep those suckers off. I have lost them a few times and they always creep back. They are trying to creep back right now during my recovery while I can't exercise! I am fantasizing about hitting the gym again. Three more weeks if all goes well....
  • Reply

I quit because I had always said I wasn't going to be a 40 year old smoker, and it was February 2011 and my 40th birthday was March 2011, so I had little choice. It wasn't the cancer that worried me, but the patients that came in the office wheeling their oxygen who couldn't breathe...they were the miserable ones! And I was determined not to be that. For me it was horrible! But I determined I was never going to have those cravings and feel that miserable pain again and if I started smoking again I was just going to have to try to quit later and I wasn't going to put myself through that...NO WAY! And I gained the dreaded 10#. I can't stand it. I wonder if that is some of the reason that I'm still the DD, because even though I quit in Feb the weight didn't start coming on until Sept. I think when I first quit I was hyper-focused on not substituting with food, but as it got easier not to smoke I became less conscious of what I was stuffing in my mouth. And I never smoked in the house, only outside, so I avoided going outside like the plague, because that was just too much temptation!  Though I have to admit I am one of those sick-o's that loved to smoke and would do it again today if my boys wouldn't gripe about it the whole time and if I weren't already 40...make that 41 now :-(   LOL

Do you have a Pilates video or program that you would recommend? I live in no-mans-land here and the nearest towns are just small ones with only a little over a 1000 people or less, so the nearest gym is about 60 miles away and really isn't feasible for me. But if there is something I could do at home maybe I could alternate my running days with Pilates. Thanks for all of your help and support...and for letting me use you as therapy to talk out my smoking addiction...WOW :-)
  • Reply
I hope you can get approved i know how slow the UK can work, i too am a 34G and im normally a size 12/14, iv just started looking into this, i exercise a lot but im always aware of how much i bounce in the mirror, its very distracting and often hurts.
  • Reply
yea my docotr is already say it will be fine when you loose weigth... annoying but my parents are doctors so at least i know the system. So can give any pointers they suggest if you or anyone needs them. But yea bouncing is the worse part i find not only painly but makes me so embarrassed! the panache sports bra is the best bra i have found there is actually a lot less bounce, might help until or if you dont have the surgery :)
  • Reply
Hi and welcome to RealSelf! This is a great place, because most of us here have had similar experiences while being 'top heavy'. There is also plenty of good advice here and we can all empathize with your situation, having been there ourselves.

I know exactly what you mean about bras being torture devices! I have not been comfortable in ANY bra for at least the past three years, and, if I really thought about it, probably longer. I have finally decided that I have had enough, and have started seeing doctors for consults. Hope to see you around the forum!
  • Reply
Thanks :) glad to know it isnt just me
  • Reply
Hi! I am so sorry for the trouble you are having. I don't think you particularly need to lose much weight either, but hey, since you have to maybe you can try to focus on how amazing your body will be once you are quite thin and have had the procedure. I just wanted to drop by and say I went through all the same emotions-- I felt matronly rather then womanly, the pain was maddening, etc. You will get through it! I also wanted to give you some exercise ideas. I used to be a fitness instructor (WITH UK H CUPS!) so I have the exercise with huge breasts thing on lock.

Hands down the best thing you can do is walk yourself silly. For about a year I worked with the best weight loss "expert" in Los Angeles, and he highly recommended against vigorous exercise for weight loss. He claimed it "stirred the body up too much", then you were hungry and simply took all the calories back on later. His approach was to trick your body into burning calories. His model was something like an hour long power walk in the morning and evening three days a week, then two days where you did the power walk in the morning then lifted weights in the evening. I saw this work time and time again to let clients lose between 3-5lbs. a week.

I also taught and did pilates. It is great! You won't find anything in a pliates studio that is going to make your boobies bounce, and it is gentile and good for aching backs.

lastly, when I was bored out of my mind with all of these things I joined a gym with a lap pool and did laps. This let the water take some of the weight of my breasts off my body!

By doing all of these things I was able to stay very active and at a healthy weight (5'3", 120lbs. and an H cup) even once the serious back pain set in from years of lugging these things around.

I know it is frustrating, but you can find ways to exercise and get that weight off and get your surgery :) You will find a lot of great support around here in the meantime!
  • Reply
wow thats really helpful, I have started trying to run and have been for 3 weeks now and i have gone up in weight which is only baffling to me.
I do try yoga once but did a shoulder stand and neary smothered myself :s but id love to do something like that so I will try pilates.
I definately like walking and have a dog so that's something i can easily do more of so that might be the best and less strain on my back from the bouncing running causes hehe.
thanks again for teh really good advice and support. It is much appreciated!
  • Reply
Also, a friend of mine who is a competitive runner told me that when women run their bodies retain water to protect their internal organs so we actually gain water weight when we run. Lower intensity cardio is good for weight loss. And I do fitness yoga, you can adjust the poses for your needs, it builds lean muscle which burns fat and there is a flexibility/meditation at the end. I'm rarely sore and always feel much more positive afterwards. Keep moving forward, it will happen for you!
Also, people really don't understand the emotional and physical problems large breasts cause. I always try to remember that when people tell me something I don't understand and try to just validate their experience instead of judging. This will make you a better person. And know that we get it on this site. Blessings!
  • Reply