Author Topic: Sharing My Pictures and Story  (Read 2480 times)

Offline treetown8

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Hi all, wanted to share my pictures and my story.

First, let me say I love this website and other sources of information about gynecomastia. It's great that you can find a community for this type of thing. When I was younger I visited this site and others a lot, reading about the condition, looking at people's pictures and reading other's stories. It helped me to see that others had it too and were discussing it, since I've never met anyone in my life who had it and could relate.

I'm 24 years old. Looking at my old childhood bathtub photos recently, I noticed I had a very subtle growth around my nipple area even when I was roughly 3 or 4 years old. My older sister by 4 years is in these photos too, and you can tell by comparison that around my nipple area it is slightly puffy, while her's is totally undeveloped at all. This revelation only came to me recently, as I looked at childhood pictures I hadn't seen in forever. Obviously I'm not going to share these but I found it strange.

It became an issue around 3rd and 4th grades (9 or 10 years old). This is when I believe I began puberty, and I noticed that a small circular growth was forming in the center of my breast under the nipple.

At the time, I was very confused. My breasts weren't huge or anything yet, but the growth disturbed me, as I thought it may be cancer or something else. Visibly the nipples were beginning to get 'puffy' and protrude due to the gland growing. At this time it was very easy to conceal. They were tender and hurt slightly.

We visited our pediatrician who told us that it was simply part of puberty and that it would go away on it's own. That's true for some people, but it wasn't true for me. I believe a lot of children's doctors weren't as educated on the condition as I hope they are these days.

From the 3rd grade to the 5th grade (around 9 to 11 years old) they were developing rapidly. Most of the growth was in the gland, which began to grow outward, but not so much spreading in diameter. This was the puffy nipples stage for me. It began to show through t-shirts that I had some type of lumps under my shirt. I had hopes it would be going away shortly, like my doctor said.

I truly thought that it was not a big deal. I knew it looked weird, and that I was different. I knew people would probably make fun of it. But in my mind as an 11 year old 5th grader, I thought I could blend in and that it wasn't an uncommon thing.

I had gone to the pool as a kid before, and never thought I had a problem with my body. But in the 5th grade, my class had a pool party, and this would be my first time at the pool with my classmates, as I wasn't much of a swimmer. I didn't think my gynecomastia would be unusual, so I did just like all the other boys, took my shirt off in the locker room, and this is the exact moment I became embarrased with my gynecomastia.

Many of my friends were actually supportive of me and didn't make fun of me. But I got plenty of comments and questions from other kids on my puffy breasts. On top of that, I got a whole lot of stares, and truly felt isolated from everyone else. I went from fully confident and happy to go to my first pool party to devastated and sad.  After I got home, I knew that I had a problem. I'm sure many of us can relate to this feeling.

I haven't taken off my shirt in public since.

Lucky for me, outside of jokes and rumors I didn't face the harsh treatment that many others did for the rest of my school year. But it was obvious to me that everyone who saw me knew I had this condition, and they told other people, and the whole incident awakened me to the fact that I had to conceal it.

I would grab the bottom of my shirt and pull it down and forward slightly to remove the imprint of breasts in my shirt. I did this a lot, and still do it today.

From the puffy nipples stages in 4th and 5th grade, my gynecomastia really started to develop from 6th to 8th grades (12 to 14 years old). The glands continued to grow. I always found it unusual that growth in my left breast was happening faster than the growth in the right one. The glands were spreading, growing 'layers' through the years and adding fat around the breast area, making it harder to conceal.

This was a very tough time in my life, as everyone else was going through puberty too. I couldn't wear any clothing that might show the gynecomastia so I took up wearing baggy shirts and avoiding people unless I could conceal it somehow.

I'm very lucky that I never experienced the bullying that some people on here had to experience. Maybe it was because I tried to hard to conceal it and avoid having to show it. But, even though I wasn't bullied hard, I absolutely felt like most people knew. I was different, nobody else did what I did, people probably saw the breasts poking through my shirt. I had good friends luckily, but most of grades 6-8 were hell for me, an extremely self-concious teenager just trying to fit in.

People made jokes about my breasts from time to time, but I became sort of numb to it. For the most part I was able to wear clothing baggy enough it wasn't a subject for people to immediately talk about if they saw me.

If someone did make a joke about it, I thought to myself "it is what it is" and I developed an attitude that I was screwed with the condition, so no sense in getting angry or sad, I was going to have to live with gynecomastia and deal with it.

What really made me sad was the fact that I couldn't act how I wanted to act. I couldn't take my shirt off in public, I couldn't even move my body in ways that would show off my gynecomastia. I avoided tighter fitting shirts, avoided many different scenarios where my concealed gynecomastia could be exposed.

Surprisingly in high school, I didn't have many problems with gynecomastia. I didn't play any sports (partially due to gyne), so I was safe from having to be shirtless in front of people. In gym class, I developed a technique to change shirts without totally exposing my gynecomastia. Sure people made comments about it from time to time, but at that point I was able to take the bullying. Girls were into me, I was a social guy in high school, but the gynecomastia issue was ever present and tearing me apart inside.

Since then I put on a little weight (maybe 30 or 40 pounds) and of course the gynecomastia got worse from it. I noticed the gland growth mostly stopped around 9th or 10th grade for me, with the enlarging being due to the added weight and myself working out.

I notice that when I work my pectoral muscles a lot, the muscle seems to grow behind the gynecomastia and further poke it out due to the muscle growth.

I honestly wish I could help EVERYONE affected by this terrible condition, but sadly the only thing I can do is share my experiences and give you my own words of encouragement.

I'm broke and come from a family that's broke as well, so surgery is out of the question for right now. At this point in my life I realize it's on me to save up and get this procedure for my own sake. Prehaps I've been too greatly affected by gynecomastia, it made me a very unhappy and self conscious person. To those who read this, I hope I was able to make a little connection from all of this to you. It is a very troubling condition, but above all, you have to stay happy with your life and be positive.

I realize I have gynecomastia pretty much every minute of the day, but at this point in my life I'm use to it. At one point in my youth I walked with my head down constantly, but these days I walk as proud as ever, and still do even with gynecomastia. My view has been that I should try to be happy and not be as concerned with how society sees me because dwelling on that will only drag you down lower and lower, and life is just too short to waste your youth and freedom away, even if you have gynecomastia.

For the record, I purchased a compression vest last year and I love it. It does a nice job of concealing the gynecomastia though it is uncomfortably tight.

For those concerned with their sex lives, I'll admit, I'm a virgin at 24. I've had plenty of chances to have sex, but I never felt comfortable compromising my gynecomastia secret.

I know I'm quite out of shape, I haven't been working out and have been eating shitty for the past 4 years. If I worked out, I'm sure they wouldn't be as big but they would still be quite noticeable even if I did.

Thanks for reading.








Linkback: https://www.gynecomastia.org/forum/index.php?topic=25373.0

Offline Paa_Paw

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I have never been a fan of gymnasiums and "working out" has never been a part of my normal vocabulary. In spite of that I have been in pretty good shape for most of my life. My favorite forms of exercise were walking (including some seriously long hikes and backpacking trips) and cycling. Not cycling around in circles on lightweight bikes while wearing funny skin tight outfits; but actually going places on a sturdy bicycle where I would camp overnight before heading home.

Losing some weight and getting into better condition will probably not get rid of the Breasts, but it will reduce them some just as your whole body will reduce. When you reach that point you can decide if surgery is for you or not. Meanwhile, Getting into better shape has more to do with not only how long you might live but how great that life will be.
Grandpa Dan


 

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