My #Afrifem sister @Zawadi Nyongo wrote ‘Is it time for a nipple revolution‘ and that’s set me thinking about my own nipples and the breasts they are attached to. My nipples rarely give me sexual pleasure, they feel too sensitive. Sometimes its bearable to have them suckled. Sometimes that feels pleasurable. More often than not I would rather my nipples were not touched. Feel free to skip the boobies entirely in any ‘main play’ action. Yet my boobs have often been the part of my body that has been the most sexualised in my lifetime. I remember walking through the market as a pre teen and someone carelessly touching my breasts and saying ‘bobby stan up’ (a reference to upright breasts), in the past I have had older male work colleagues grab my breasts in passing (whenever occurrences like this took place I was often too surprised to react). In more recent times when men have grabbed a part of my body I grab their penis – my reaction really depends on my mood, but still this ability to just reach out and invade someone’s body without invitation always surprises me, and my reaction is often not satisfactory to me.
So back to nipples and boobs. Today I’m wearing a light summery dress and underneath that no bra. I feel very comfortable. Yet if I was to walk to the shop next door to buy a packet of milk I will instantly feel uncomfortable. I know that the guy next door who looks at me a little too long will look at me even longer. The shop owner next door might do a harumph – I can’t forget that after the night I got burgled her reaction was, “oh, I heard them open the gate o, but I thought it was one of your visitors”. And then there are my own issues. My G cup boobs are no longer booby stan up. It’s more bobby lying down – the left one lying down further down my chest than the right. I have sometimes paradoxically been envious of women with small boobs who can wear backless outfits, and simultaneously pleased with my huge mammary glands because its one of the parts of my body that corresponds to what society says is desirable in a woman. That’s all kinds of fucked up isn’t it?