Author Topic: Gynecomastia persisted after puberty  (Read 2238 times)

Offline chifer

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Although I am a new member of this forum, I am actually a returning member from long ago, when this website was run by Merle Yost. I was also one of the respondents in the questionnaire he used to gather information for his book. There were two mailing lists at that time. I joined the general mailing list, but not the one for those planning to have or having had surgery, as I was not yet planning to undergo surgery at that time.

By the time I write this, I have undergone surgery. And basically this is also my main message to anyone reading this who has severe youth gynecomastia (breasts that stand out for 5 cm): it is very unlikely that your breasts will disappear after adolescence, so get the money to have surgery. The surgery is very bearable, and it will improve your life, so the sooner you get it, the better.

My story is probably very similar to many others with youth gynecomastia. As a child I was very skinny; one could count my ribs. Near the end of primary school, I suddenly started gaining weight (along with breasts), although we continued to eat healthy at home and I exercised (especially cycling and swimming).

My abnormal physical appearance strongly influenced my time as a teenager. Name-calling and remarks made me insecure. Attempts at hiding my disease made me very inventive. I preferably wore black clothing that was two sizes too large, and perfectioned a technique to wear my T-shirt in such a way that the curve between my breasts and belly could not be seen. The downside was of course that I continuously checked whether I properly hid my breasts when walking (especially in the summer). It also made me sensitive (to a fairly paranoid extent) to strange looks and whispers of people who might be pointing out to others that I have breasts. Despite my four swimming diplomas, I completely abandoned swimming (including in the private pool of my in-laws) and shunned any topless activity such as sunbathing or visiting a spa. This also impaired me socially: if friends went swimming, I always sought for an excuse not to come with. And I can’t even walk through my own apartment without the fear of having others from across the street notice my breasts.

I knew nobody else with gynecomastia and first learnt about it being called “gynecomastia” in a teen magazine where a 14-year-old boy described his problem and asked what he could do about it. The response included a remark that usually, youth gynecomastia disappears after the age of 18, which gave me (false) hope that this would happen to me one day as well. This is also what the people on the old mailing list told me, and they (unfortunately) were right. In later years I did start wearing compression shirts (see my recommendations here), and after a long time of trying to get my health insurance to bear the costs (read about my experiences here), I underwent surgery with Dr Marta at the Noa Clinic in Poland (read my report here).


Offline Paa_Paw

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Welcome back. Merle and I are very distant cousins, one of my great-grandmothers was a Yost.  I was one of the site moderators when Merle owned the site and I do that again. 
Unlike many who come here, I have never thought of myself as anything other that a perfectly normal male.  Gynecomastia is so common that I could never think of myself in any other way.    The condition can be an embarrassment, I'll give you that, but nothing more. 
Grandpa Dan

Offline chifer

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Welcome back.

Thanks ;)

Unlike many who come here, I have never thought of myself as anything other that a perfectly normal male.  Gynecomastia is so common that I could never think of myself in any other way.    The condition can be an embarrassment, I'll give you that, but nothing more.

I guess the way other kids would point it out means I was basically "taught" through the school of life that it wasn't normal. Of course, now I see that it is common, but mainly among adults. I have not known other kids with my condition and I have rarely seen any since.

The teenage age was also tricky. One is searching for an identity and in my case, I was okay with my sexuality and convinced that I am male, just with something that doesn't completely fit that picture, and that added to the uncertainty, embarrassment, and hence, self-imposed restrictions, but which were basically all borne out of self-protection.

I am really curious (and optimistic, I might add) how this will change in the future. I wonder if there are certain behaviors, thought patterns and movements that I will have to learn to change.


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