‘I would like to put forward a motion for 2021,’ my friend Megan* texted me.
She continued: when we, as single women, decide we looked really nice in our bras and take a picture, we should be able to send it to each other.
I don’t recall ever agreeing with a statement more – I replied telling her I was absolutely on board.
It had never occurred to me to take a photo of myself in my bra without the natural (or so I thought) follow-up of sending it to a romantic partner straight after.
As a single straight woman, I have previously only sent selfies and photos of myself in a bra to men I’ve been romantically involved with. One man, to be exact – my boyfriend at the time, six years ago.
But I can’t count the number of times I’ve felt a thrill of excitement putting on a brand new, beautiful bra that I bought because I loved the intricate design and delicate embroidery.
Plus there’s numerous occasions I’ve casually looked in the mirror while getting dressed or undressed, and thought, wow – this is a great bra (as a lifelong 32B, push-up bras are one of my favourite inventions on this earth).
Megan responded that she had zero issue with her girlfriends seeing her bra pics and vice versa. She simply wanted any opportunity to tell us that we looked amazing.
Since her message, my previous way of thinking about bras – and who gets to see me in them – suddenly feels utterly bizarre to me.
I had an epiphany that manifested in me sitting, motionless, clutching my phone and staring into the middle distance while thoughts whirled around my head.
Bras don’t exist solely to tantalise, excite or impress the heterosexual male gaze. They can ignite a sexual spark between two people – I’ve certainly enjoyed sexual excitement with partners that began with the appreciation of a particular bra I was wearing – but that isn’t their only function.
Bras are a whole section of the fashion industry, in and of themselves. When I buy a lovely bra, I don’t do so thinking, ‘I’d better buy this piece of clothing to serve any future sexual partners I may have.’ I buy it because I absolutely love it and I can’t wait to wear it. I pick a design that speaks to me.
Furthermore, bras don’t need to be sexual. They can be, of course, but they can offer so much more than that. Megan and I always want to celebrate each other: our bodies, our fashion choices – everything. Bra selfies are a great way to do just that.
And we’re not only going to salute our impeccable, brand new bras, either. I insisted to Megan that I wanted to include my old one with holes in because we should celebrate those too. ‘Yes, yes, YES,’ she replied instantly.
My friends often laugh at me because I actually like my clothes that have small rips, or tears, or holes. For me, a small tear doesn’t diminish the value of a piece of clothing.
It means I have a memory associated with that dress, or jacket. My dog jumping up at me because she’s so happy to see me; catching the sleeve of my shirt on a nail as I put up artwork in my new home.
These small holes and rips bring back an experience just as evocatively as my sense of smell; I’ve got a kaleidoscope of memories readily available at all times in my wardrobe. Bras are no different.
Megan and I have already put our joint New Year’s resolution into practice and it’s one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done.
I opted to send a photo of myself in my favourite black, lacy bra – with a small hole in the left hand strap. ‘You beautiful lady,’ Megan messaged.
When Megan sent me her first picture, I felt elated to see one of my best friends being so happy in herself. I have no doubt that our friendship will become even stronger because of this.
I wasn’t concerned about us comparing our bodies – I have experienced body comparison countless times before with female friends – but this was different. It’s not about comparison, but celebration. In fact, I can feel my confidence soaring since swapping bra pics with Megan.
Sending intimate photos of yourself can be risky – but yet another joyful thing to come out of our endeavour is that I’ve never trusted another person more.
I feel entirely comfortable sending these photos to Megan, because I have complete faith in our unshakeable friendship.
Bras and breasts can be sexual, sure. But they don’t need to be. I can’t wait to move my own personal mindset around my relationship with my bras away from male endorsement, and towards a celebration of fashion, female empowerment and love for myself and my friends. Happy New Year.
*Name has been changed
Source: Read Full Article