Author Topic: I feel like I can't talk about this with anyone  (Read 3184 times)

Offline VonJost

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I've never done anything like this before, but I'm so tired of feeling like this...I needed to share this with someone and I don't feel like I really can.  This is probably the only place I feel like I could talk about this and other people would really understand.

When I was around 9, I started to put on some weight.  I wasn't obese by anyone's standard, but I started to get a bit pudgy.  In addition to the obligatory lovehandles and belly, I noticed that my breasts and nipples were getting larger and were pointing outward. By age 11, my peers and father had begun to notice and started making fun of me.  My father mostly made fun of my weight in general, but definitely made references to my "flabby boobies" on occasion.  My peers were a lot more vicious.  I have searing, sharp memories of being pointed at and laughed at, talked about, and instulted to my face.  Humiliation was most of what I felt in 6th and 7th grade.  Even my best friends at the time would make fun of me about my "breasts", but what I remember most vividly is the unrestrained laughter.  By the end of 7th grade, I hated myself so much that I often considered mutilating my chest with knives or scissors.  By the summer after 7th grade, at 5 feet 8 inches and 156 pounds, I decided that I should lose weight in order to lose the breasts.  I ate as little as possible for about a year, and by my 14th birthday, I was 6 feet 1 inches tall (my current height) and weighed 134 pounds.  Everyone who had mocked my weight previously now told me how hideously skinny I was.  I was determined to lose more weight because no matter how skinny I got, the breasts remained.  I did the best I could to hide them, wearing two shirts, never taking my shirt off in front of others, and slouching, which eventually resulted in scoliosis.  I was able to hide them for the most part, and I began attracting the attention of girls.  Filled with shame about my body, I didn't let any of them get close, because I knew that if they saw my breasts, they would be disgusted, laugh at me, and instantly find me unattractive.  Even with my first girlfriend, I waited a long time before she ever saw me with my shirt off.  I felt completely insecure in her attraction to me and our relationship was dysfunctional as a result (of course, we were also dating from age 14 to 16, so it was bound to be dysfunctional anyway).  My self-hatred progressed to such a point that I was put on various antidepressants from ages 15 to 19.  These caused my weight to fluctuate greatly, hitting 185, then down to 154, then up to 175 again.  With my weight out of control, I decided that weight-lifting might improve the appearance of my breasts.  I worked out to the point of being able to bench-press 235 pounds, but my breasts remained (enhanced by large and developed pectoral muscles underneath).  By my last year of college, free of antidepressants and their weight-altering side effects, I decided to try to lose weight again.  From a weight of 205 pounds in March of 2003, I lost approxiamtely 50 pounds through diet and exercise over the course of a year and a half, but the breasts remained.

I'm 24 years old, 6 feet 1 inches tall, and I weigh 153 pounds.  I run 8 to 12 miles a week, lift weights several times a week, and do a pushup and pullup regimen several times a week.  I eat a high fiber, low fat, low processed sugar diet that amounts to approximately 2300 calories a day.  I am as dedicated as I am to health and fitness mostly because somewhere in the back of my mind, part of me thinks that eventually my breasts will disappear, but I know they won't.  After about 4 or 5 days of fitness, I usually get disillusioned and start drinking heavily, eating poorly and making bad decisions - usually for 2 to 3 days.  After those few days, I start to feel guilty about my self-destructive behavior and get back into my fitness mindset and start over, but ultimately I feel like I'm just running away from this terriboly painful thing because I feel so helpless to do anything about it.  If I face it, it just crushes me.  My overwhelming feeling is that no one will ever love me because my body is unacceptable.  What is perhaps worse, I have some hope that some woman will excuse what I see as a terrible deformity and love me anyway if the rest of me is desirable enough.  If I am a good enough person, if I am smart enough, if I am funny enough, if I am handsome enough, if I am good enough in bed, if I am talented enough, etc...  But, in my mind, no standard of perfection that I could realistically set for myself would begin to outweigh the disgust I feel for my own body.  I can't even stand to have my shirt off when I am alone because I am so disgusted.  I don't even like to wash myself in the shower because I touch my breasts and it feels like knives are cutting into my gut.  I feel like I can't talk about this with anyone, and I'm so tired of feeling so alone with it.  I hope this wasn't too long or boring, and maybe no one will even read it, but I just needed to talk about it.  Thanks.

Linkback: https://www.gynecomastia.org/forum/index.php?topic=11118.0

Offline VonJost

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The pain i referred to is emotional pain, not physical.  I guess "knives in my gut" isn't the best metaphor when talking about a physiological condition

Offline normexcept

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Maywest's remark can be applied to emotional pain as well.  When I went in for my consultation at the plastic surgeon's office the other day, the nurse was interested in my emotional pain as a way to solicit my insurance to pay.  Emotional pain can be and often is more debillitating that physical pain.  She said that the insurance companies are starting to recognize this.  Even if insurance will not pay for it, ask about payment options.  I was handed a pamphlet on financing operations.  You won't believe the burden that pamphlet took off my mind since I really thought having my insurance pay for it was the only option to my being able to afford getting the surgery.
By the way, we all understand your pain.

Offline LMC1307

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I feel for you, having such a painful story to tell. You must be very motivated, and a perfectionist at that. With that said, I can't help but ask, why don't you just get surgery?
Went under the knife on 7/27/07 - Revision 5/22/08 - Great results this far.
Surgery performed by Dr. Placik M.D. F.A.C.S. in Chicago, IL

Offline omega

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I feel what you are going through. Most people here ether went throught, or are going through the same thing. Man the best solution is surgery. I had mine just yesturday, and im realy happy about the results. I cant wait for it to heel and get back to the gym. Get surgery done, its the only way. U wont regret it one bit. ;) Ur not alone btw...

Offline headheldhigh01

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pretty much everything you said is normal for gyne.  glad you found the boards. 
* a man is more than a body will ever tell
* if it screws up your life the same, is there really any such thing as "mild" gyne?

Offline Mark8

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I felt the exact same way you did.  After a few years of being made fun of I walled myself off from everyone else because I was afraid of the ridicule.  It has taken a long time to come out of my shell, but I have.  Like you, I tried to hide my gyne by wearing two shirts.  For me the price of "fitting in" was not participating in any sports, slouching, poor self image, etc...

 ???Some people don't understand why everyone just doesn't get the surgery.  I just had surgery two weeks ago, but I remember feeling that the price of the procedure made it out of reach.  My surgery was $3750.  Who has that money just lying around? Insurance companies should begin covering this procedure.  My girlfriend brought up a good point before surgery: Gynecomastia is a medical condition.  It isn't a breast enlargement.  For the life of me I can't imagine someone putting plastic in their chest.  Their are many surgeries that are purely optional.  Gynecomastia, on the other hand is a medical condition that should be treated. 

It's kind of ironic.  By the time I finally had surgery no one around me noticed my man boobs.  I actually had to take pictures before the surgery so that I could prove to my girlfriend and mom that I had gynecomastia.   

If you're looking into surgery I have some advise.  Love yourself for who you are first.  Don't make a plastic surgern necessary for you to see your intrinsic value.  Second, open up to your family/ close friends about the situation.  Keep telling people close to you about the gyne. until you find someone who will support you leading up to and after the surgery.

AND FINALLY: GET THE DAMN SURGERY   :o   (the procedure is minor compared to most of the stuff plastic surgeons do  :)  My doctor specialized in giving boob jobs through the belly button.  That helped me put my minor operation into perspective.  8) )   

Offline namast

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Hey, feel at home. alot of us here are in the same boat with you. You are probably even luckier because you are probably in Europe, and could probably arrange a surgery soon enough. Am an African, in Africa, and have only discovered the name of this condition this year - am 39! and have seen many doctors along time ago, who always told me it will go away. so, am with you, farewell brother, identifying the problem is half way to solving it. welcom to the real world!


 

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