Saggy Breasts

As a 20 something I would have never thought saggy boobs represent some sort of canonistic experience for women of all ages regardless of social-economics, and or demographics. See unless you saw me naked, you would never guess I have saggy boobs. Yes I said it. I have saggy boobs.

It’s like one morning I woke up, rolled on my back and my boobs just didn’t follow with the rest of my body. I’m not kidding, when I lie down, 80 percent of my breasts fall into my armpit. It’s really cute.

At the ripe age of 23, they’re completely deflated. I thought boob sag would only come after pregnancy, but I was wrong. Gravity is a law. My body has abided.

Sometimes I wonder what I did to gravity to deserve this boob sag. Sometimes I’ll lift them up, look in the mirror and gawk at how much of my body they cover up. My upper ribs are constantly in the shadow of my under-boob.

When I hit puberty, my ta-tas were a size D. I even had stretch marks in high school because my chest was #blessed. But at around age 20, my overwhelming D-cups deflated to modest C-cups.

Another thing I noticed my boob sag is my biggest insecurity when it comes to hooking up. They look great when they’re tucked up into a bra, but once that comes off, they’re just going to flop out. It’s like opening a bag of chips only to find more air than chips.

Then there’s the gym… OMG!!! Has anyone else gone to the gym, attempted to do some crunches and all of the sudden notice half your boob is leaking out the side of your sports bra? Just me? OK.

If you have saggy boobs, sports bras work their magic by reinforcing everything, but your boobs just get flattened against your chest in the most unflattering way. They do this droopy, separation thing as you run on the treadmill. It’s just not cute.

No matter what bra cup size you have, you probably struggle to find bathing suits that fit well. I laugh when I look at string bikinis because they’re just something I’ll never be able to wear. Ever since I grew these damn things, bikini tops have been my worst enemy. Either I’m busting out of them, forming an attractive quad boob (when they spill out the top) or there’s no support whatsoever. That’s when I contemplate just avoiding beaches altogether.

My cleavage used to be difficult to cover up. Now, I can only create Victoria’s Secret-worthy cleavage when there’s a gravity-defying push-up bra involved.

So I wrote all of this to say, you are not the only woman to deal with boob sag.

Question: Have you ever experienced boob sag?

Leave a comment below…

SurveyStud: In the App Store

Accepting Yourself Being Happy

The most dominant feeling I carry around with me is one of extreme social awkwardness. Which is strange, because most people who know me, would described me as a confident woman.

I’m aware that outwardly I am very skilful at presenting a positive and socially pleasing demeanor, while on the inside feeling anxious and exhausted from keeping up the act. Not just at work or at parties, but in my closest relationships too—with my friends, my family and, most bizarrely, with my fiancée.

Perhaps the reason I am/was so well liked by so many is because I would agree with just about everything anyone said, so I was no bother to them. In disputes, I’d take both sides. I was always the first to offer a hand when someone needed help, but not because I felt charitable; I just wanted them to like me more.

If I got angry or frustrated, which I did often, you would never have known it. You would have seen someone who appeared unflappable, regardless of the circumstances. If I was hurt, let down or disappointed, my lightening reflex was to smile and say, “That’s okay!” Somewhere along the line I had developed the philosophy that my happiness was dependent on the approval of others.

This meant that my level of contentment was proportionate to how pleased I thought others were with me moment to moment. Of course, the problem was that I rarely thought they approved of me enough, so I was rarely happy.

Now that I think about it, some of my earliest memories involve me trying extremely hard to be a “good girl,” to do what I was told, and how lonely it felt to fall out of favor with my parents. I never thought about what I wanted from life, only what would make others want to have me around.

The ultimate price I paid was my self worth, which I now know is fundamental to a truly satisfying and fulfilling life. Not only is authenticity vital for your relationships with others, but more importantly for your relationship with yourself.

Isn’t it funny how the strategies we use to protect ourselves from our deepest fears are often the exact same strategies that manifest our fears into reality?

Anywho I want to share with you three of the most important principles that I’ve learned about authentic happiness. I hope they inspired you:

1. We live the feeling of our thinking.

As William Shakespeare famously wrote, “Nothing is either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” Being authentically happy starts with the realization that you are both the source and the cause of your own well-being.

We never get to experience the world as it really is; we only get to experience our thoughts about the world. It wasn’t actually other people’s disapproval that made me unhappy; it was my mistaken belief that happiness is something that comes from outside of me in the form of approval. Even when it looks as though your emotional state is being dictated by your circumstances, that is never true. Your thoughts are the root of your emotions. Just get curious and ask yourself, “If I weren’t thinking this way, how might I feel differently?”

2. Everything good is inside.

We each walk around with two versions of ourselves. One is our unconditioned self, which is innocent, flawless, and untouched by any trauma, criticism, or injustice we may have faced in life. The other is a learned self, more commonly known as the ego.

The primary role of the ego is to separate you from the truth of who you really are—a human being who is already complete, whole, and mentally and spiritually healthy. The ego believes that happiness is attained through material success, achievement, striving, earning, and deserving. I’ve often heard it described as “everything good outside.”

But your unconditioned self is the much bigger, wiser you. It already knows that you are what you seek; that real happiness is what naturally happens when you dare to show up unedited.

All the happiness you have been looking for outside of you can finally be yours when you stop chasing and start choosing.

3. Our relationship with ourselves determines our relationship with everything else.

One of the standout moments on my journey of self-discovery was hearing Dr. Robert Holden say, “No amount of self-improvement can make up for any lack of self-acceptance.”

Think about it…

SurveyStud: In the App Store

Am I Petty…

There’s no class in high school on how to not be a shitty boyfriend or girlfriend. Sure, they teach us the biology of sex, the legality of marriage, and maybe we read a few obscure love stories from the 19th century on how not to be.

But when it comes down to actually handling the nitty-gritty of relationships, we’re given no pointers… or worse, we’re given advice columns in women’s magazines or this blogg. Yes, it’s trial-and-error from the get-go. And if you’re like most people, it’s been mostly error.

But part of the problem is that many unhealthy relationship habits are baked into our culture. We worship romantic love — you know, that dizzying and irrational romantic love that somehow finds breaking china plates on the wall in a fit of tears somewhat endearing — and scoff at practicality or unconventional sexualities.

Men and women are raised to objectify each other and to objectify their relationships. Thus, our partners are often seen as assets rather than someone to share mutual emotional support.

A lot of the self-help literature out there isn’t helpful either (no, men and women are not from different planets, you over-generalizing prick.) And for most of us, mom and dad surely weren’t the best examples either.

Fortunately, there’s been a lot of psychological research into healthy and happy relationships the past few decades and there are some general principles that keep popping up consistently that most people are unaware of or don’t follow. In fact, some of these principles actually go against what is traditionally considered “romantic” or normal in a relationship.

Below are tendencies (based on research from the folks at SurveyStud)in relationships that many couples think are healthy and normal, but are actually toxic and destroying everything you hold dear.

THE RELATIONSHIP SCORECARD. What It Is: The “keeping score” phenomenon is when someone you’re dating continues to blame you for past mistakes you made in the relationship. If both people in the relationship do this it devolves into what I call “the relationship scorecard,” where it becomes a battle to see who has screwed up the most over the months or years, and therefore who owes the other one more.

You were an asshole at Amy’s 28th birthday party back in 2010 and it has proceeded to ruin your life ever since. Why? Because there’s not a week that goes by that you’re not reminded of it. But that’s OK, because that time you caught her sending flirtatious text messages to her co-worker immediately removes her right to get jealous, so it’s kind of even, right?

Wrong.

Why It’s Toxic: The relationship scorecard develops over time because one or both people in a relationship use past wrongdoings in order to try and justify current righteousness. This is a double-whammy of suckage. Not only are you deflecting the current issue itself, but you’re ginning up guilt and bitterness from the past to manipulate your partner into feeling wrong in the present.

If this goes on long enough, both partners eventually spend most of their energy trying to prove that they’re less culpable than the other, rather than solving the current problem. People spend all of their time trying to be less wrong for each other instead of being more right for each other.

What You Should Do Instead: Deal with issues individually unless they are legitimately connected. If someone habitually cheats, then that’s obviously a recurring problem. But the fact that she embarrassed you in 2010 and now she got sad and ignored you today in 2013 have nothing to do with each other, so don’t bring it up.

You must recognize that by choosing to be with your significant other, you are choosing to be with all of their prior actions and behaviors. If you don’t accept those, then ultimately, you are not accepting them. If something bothered you that much a year ago, you should have dealt with it a year ago.

DROPPING “HINTS” AND OTHER PASSIVE-AGGRESSION. What It Is: Instead of stating a desire or thought overtly, your partner tries to nudge you in the right direction of figuring it out yourself. Instead of saying what’s actually upsetting you, you find small and petty ways to piss your partner off so you’ll then feel justified in complaining to them.

Why It’s Toxic: Because it shows that you two are not comfortable communicating openly and clearly with one another. A person has no reason to be passive-aggressive if they feel safe expressing any anger or insecurity within the relationship. A person will never feel a need to drop “hints” if they feel like they won’t be judged or criticized for it.

What You Should Do Instead: State your feelings and desires openly. And make it clear that the other person is not necessarily responsible or obligated to them but that you’d love to have their support. If they love you, they’ll almost always be able to give it.

BLAMING YOUR PARTNER FOR YOUR OWN EMOTIONS. What It Is: Let’s say you’re having a crappy day and your partner isn’t exactly being super sympathetic or supportive at the moment. They’ve been on the phone all day with some people from work. They got distracted when you hugged them. You want to lay around at home together and just watch a movie tonight, but they have plans to go out and see their friends.

So you lash out at them for being so insensitive and callous toward you. You’ve been having a shitty day and they have done nothing about it. Sure, you never asked, but they should just know to make you feel better. They should have gotten off the phone and ditched their plans based on your lousy emotional state.

Why It’s Toxic: Blaming our partners for our emotions is a subtle form of selfishness, and a classic example of the poor maintenance of personal boundaries. When you set a precedent that your partner is responsible for how you feel at all times (and vice-versa), you will develop codependent tendencies. Suddenly, they’re not allowed to plan activities without checking with you first. All activities at home — even the mundane ones like reading books or watching TV — must be negotiated and compromised. When someone begins to get upset, all personal desires go out the window because it is now your responsibility to make one another feel better.

The biggest problem of developing these codependent tendencies is that they breed resentment. Sure, if my girlfriend gets mad at me once because she’s had a shitty day and is frustrated and needs attention, that’s understandable. But if it becomes an expectation that my life revolves around her emotional well-being at all times, then I’m soon going to become very bitter and even manipulative towards her feelings and desires.

What You Should Do Instead: Take responsibility for your own emotions and expect your partner to be responsible for theirs. There’s a subtle yet important difference between being supportive of your partner and being obligated to your partner. Any sacrifices should be made as an autonomous choice and not seen as an expectation. As soon as both people in a relationship become culpable for each other’s moods and downswings, it gives them both incentives to hide their true feelings and manipulate one another.

Let me stop because my bath water is getting cold, and I realize Im really talking about myself. Am I petty?

Question: Are you petty?

Leave a comment below…

SurveyStud: In the App Store

The “Thigh” Gap

I’m a girl with a slim build, I have small boobs and so on. But I have a thigh gap, which I’m kind of proud of because it is desired by girls to have one. But I’m often told that guys don’t actually notice or find it attractive.

Truth is the “thigh gap” has taken the nation’s female population by storm. It’s an unhealthy obsession with thinness that’s causing women to seek often unrealistic standards, fueled by the never-ending stream of social media that puts the coveted thigh gap on a high pedestal.

What is a thigh gap?

You’ve probably seen it all over the web—there are Tumblr accounts devoted to photos of thigh gaps, Twitter accounts dedicated to Cara Delevingne’s thigh gap and even articles with step-by-step instructions on how to get thigh gaps. The thigh gap is a diamond-shaped gap between the thighs that is visible when a woman is standing upright with her feet together. The thigh gap obsession is an alarming new trend focused on achieving and maintaining this space between the thighs, and it’s particularly prevalent among females who are in their teens through their early 20s.

Why is it so popular?

Women on Twitter and Instagram use hashtags like “thinspiration” to post selfies of their thighs as inspiration for weight loss and dieting. Images of slim, attractive models and celebrities in shorts and skinny jeans flood mainstream media, promoting the idea that thinness and fun go hand-in-hand. Fashion trends such as high-waisted, high-legged shorts are causing the thigh gap obsession to become even more prevalent.

Some women are convinced that having a thigh gap is attractive to the opposite sex. When there are pictures of good-looking guys with women who have thigh gaps all over social media, “the implication is you’ll get him if you have the thigh gap,” says Amy Goldenberg, Consumer Research Analyst, SurveyStud, inc.

Given the normal fat distribution on the bodies of women of a healthy weight, achieving a thigh gap can be absolutely unrealistic. Women tend to carry additional fat around their hips, upper arms, buttocks and thighs. Fat on a woman’s body has always been distributed this way.

“Sadly, our standards of beauty involve being unrealistically thin in all of these areas,” Amy says. “There is a small, small proportion of girls and women who are naturally thin, and this kind of appearance is effortless for them; for the vast majority, maintaining this appearance can require dangerous caloric restriction and unhealthy habits. Women who live like this can actually miss out on life, so focused on food and appearance that they lag in their academic performance, job performance and ability to engage with other people and build relationships and friendships.”

Genetics and body structure play the biggest role in determining whether you’re able to gain a thigh gap in the first place. Many models are tall and skinny, and they have wide enough hips to have thigh gaps. Most women, however, have hips that are set too closely together to achieve a thigh gap even if they don’t have much fat on their legs. Many women can only get a thigh gap when they’re too thin to be healthy and there is muscle wasting in their legs due to restrictive eating behaviors. For someone with wider-set hips, however, a thigh gap is possible even with a healthy body weight.

But at the end of the day… [I feel regardless] if you have a gap or not, it really does not matter. Enjoy being you, not what society thinks makes a woman attractive.

Question: Do you think the Thigh Gap is attractive?

Leave a comment below…

SurveyStud: In the App Store

When You Say ‘I Love You’

Just like everything else, dating has a learning curve–Some people are fast learners. Others are slower. Some don’t gather too much data on dating; others have multiple anthologies on the subject. In other words, some are very timid, and others like to experiment. I’m not just talking sexually here, but certainly the two are related.

It’s really not about how many sex partners you’ve had; it’s about how many life partnerships you’ve tried to establish and how many years you’ve devoted to past partners. It takes time for people to get to know each other.

We start out knowing very little, usually allowing our imaginations to run wild and fill in the gaps. As we learn more, one of two things happens: We lose interest or we find that we’re even more intrigued than we were initially. The more often we feel the latter, the more likely we are to fall in love.

Ah, falling in love … I swear the only other experience that can compare to the rush of falling in love is falling out of an airplane. With a parachute, of course. The problem, however, is that you don’t want to be the only one jumping. But the truth is that someone always has to go first. It may as well be you.

You don’t need to wait until he or she tells you that he or she loves you. If you’re in love, you want to let the other person know. But you need to wait until it’s time. Here’s a few signs that’ll let you know when to say “I love you”:

1. You’re sure you love the other person.

You don’t need to be sure that this person is the one that you’re going to spend your life with. You should be certain that what you have is love. The truth is, you always know when you’re in love. I understand that when you look back, it may no longer seem like your previous loves were full of love.

But they were. A shallower love? Maybe. Definitely a less mature one — for with each failed relationship, we change as individuals. So if you’re questioning whether or not you love someone, it’s not time to jump the gun and tell that person that you do. Not even if it’s in reciprocation to his or her love for you.

Not hearing “I love you, too” is going to crush your partner — true. But as long as you explain that it doesn’t mean that you never will love him or her, things will be okay. Just don’t say “thank you.” That’s a bit fucked up. Be honest and let them process the information however they need to. If your partner really loves you, he or she not going anywhere. It would be impossible. When love is at play, free will fades to a memory.

2. You’ve been together long enough that you’re not afraid you’re going to scare the other person away.

Some fall in love faster than others. I believe most of us understand this, but when we find ourselves in love, we quickly move to convince ourselves that such a love must be reciprocated. Especially if the two of you are in what you believe to be a serious (or heading that way) relationship. You are both intimate, you want to spend time with each other, and you’re both very interested. But are you both in love?

That crossover to love isn’t always so simple. We all carry baggage, and sometimes that baggage slows us down. Sometimes we want to be in love but aren’t yet allowing ourselves. The worst part is when we don’t realize that we are the ones sabotaging things. Our past relationships define our present relationship. The past may define what a relationship is NOT supposed to be, but either way, those memories are sticking with us.

Until we allow ourselves decide to let them go, that is. We can let go of past pains without letting go of the lessons they brought with them. You don’t need pain to remind you; the memory of the pain you already experienced, the memory of the way you suffered, is enough. And that memory itself doesn’t need to cause pain. Until the two of you let go of that painful past, you won’t truly love each other. Understand that even if you’ve managed to let go, your partner may not have. Be understanding. Offer time and love.

3. You believe you’re capable of loving properly.

This brings us back to all that baggage you’re carrying. Loving is like hugging with your soul. Good luck lifting your arms with those 50-pound carry-ons under both your arms. Or maybe it’s not baggage; maybe you have too much going on in your life to make a real effort.

Some say that there is always time for love. Well, time should always be made for love, but I know plenty of people who keep themselves too busy to make a relationship work. If this is you, don’t lie to yourself and make promises that you won’t keep. With that being said, if you’ve found someone to love, then you’d better figure out a way to make time for that person. You’ll regret it if you don’t.

Maybe time isn’t an issue; maybe you’re too young. Maybe you’re not physically young; maybe you’re a little emotionally immature. It’s not something to be ashamed of — unless you’re 30 or older. Once you hit 30, you don’t need to get married and start a family, but you should be mature enough to truly appreciate a good thing when you see it. If not, then you must not be learning from your mistakes. If you love someone, say it. And give love only if you can do it fully and passionately.

4. You promise yourself that you’re going to stick it out when things get tough. Because they will get tough.

Things always do. I want to say that things get easier as we get older, but that isn’t always the case. Those of us who get wiser with age do find happy and healthy relationships more manageable. But of course, not all of us wise up. And by “wise up,” I mean, “come to the conclusion that no one is perfect.” People make mistakes. And the good ones — those that touch us and impact our lives — come in a blue moon.

Until you really understand all that, you’ll always have a few questions: What if? What if this person isn’t “the one”? What if I’m missing out on my true soulmate? What if I’m making a mistake? But loving is never a mistake. It’s all the stupid sh*t that we do when in love that’s a mistake. Don’t blame love for your indiscretions.

Relationships are easy until they’re not. They’re easy until rough times make it difficult for us to be happy. Until shit happens to us that rocks our little worlds. Until we stop putting in the effort that we once did. Until we stop feeling loved like we once did. Until we make mistakes…

If you can promise to ride things out for as long as reasonable, you’re ready to love. I’m not asking you to do anything that isn’t reasonable. When things get heated, just take a step back and reason out the best way to act. I’m asking you not to call it quits after years of happiness because you had a single moment of sadness or anger. 

Question: In your relationship(s) who said I love you first?

Leave a comment below…

SurveyStud: In the App Store

Drinking Alchol

How much is too much, you need realistic ways to keep to that number. “Pacing is really important to stay within your limit,” says Amy Goldenberg, Consumer Research Analyst, SurveyStud, Inc. Because if you swallow too much too fast, your judgment will be impaired to the point where you’ll probably say, ‘To hell with it,’ and just keep drinking.” If you’re the type who finds that those first few go down real easy, then there are two tricks that should help immensely.

The first is simply starting later. I always kick off a party night with two rounds of Diet Coke, then I order my first cocktail.The caffeine wakes me up and helps me to stay out until 2 a.m. without ending up or feeling wasted. Some people may think they need that first dose of alcohol to help ease into an awkward social situation, but they don’t. “Within 40 minutes of feeling anxious, your parasympathetic nervous system kicks in on its own and you start to feel better,” Amy says.

A second strategy is to alternate drinks with nice, tall glasses of ice water. I call it a pace car. You don’t think you want the water, but then you realize how thirsty you are and happily suck it down. Sometimes all you really need to feel like you’re partying is to be out with people you like and sipping something. Once the water glass is in your hand, you probably won’t care that it’s nonalcoholic. Another tip from Amy is not to completely drain your drink if you don’t plan to have another right away. “When your glass still has something in it, people aren’t constantly offering to get you a refill,” she says

You can also stick to beverages that pack the lowest mind-debilitating powers. Light beers have the least booze of all, at an average of 4.2 percent alcohol per bottle. Of all hard liquors, vodka contains the least alcohol at 40 percent. And on average, white wines (10 to 12.5 percent) have less than reds (13 percent). The differences may be small, but your liver will thank you.

All of the above may seem easy enough, but they’re things few people ever take the time to do. “Too often people without a drinking problem forget that alcohol is a drug that can be harmful, so they don’t give it any thought,” says Amy. If you need further motivation to examine your drinking style, just think of the worst thing that’s ever happened to you while drunk, and ask yourself whether you’d be willing to have it occur again and again for the rest of your life.

So lets look at warning signs:

If you answer yes to TWO or more of the following questions, you could have a drinking problem.

1. Do you black out when you drink?
2. Do you often have more than six drinks on one occasion?
3. Do you have trouble stopping drinking once you’ve started?
4. Have you missed work because you were drinking?
5. Do you often wake up feeling guilty after drinking?
6. Do you get upset when people tell you, you drink to much?

SurveyStud: In the App Store

“Come on, just the tip!”

Men are interesting creatures. They can be so adorable and sweet, you don’t even know what to do with them.

They can be thoughtful and caring in ways that make you fall so hard, you’re not sure which way is up. Quite simply, it’s in the female nature to love men.

Men and women are clearly very different, however; ladies often want things from men they aren’t willing to give in return. This is frustrating, since we’re the ones having sex with them, right? Like the saying goes, “A good man is hard to find.” Preach.

So many guys do things women not only hate but also don’t understand. Between dad jeans and weirdly misogynistic attitudes, there are certain things that make us girls want to run away and never come back.

– “Just the tip”

We’ve all been there: You’re getting all hot and heavy with a cute guy, but you’re not ready to “go all the way.” So, he pleads with you, “Come on, just the tip!”

Excuse me, sir? Just the tip? No! If your business makes contact with my business, — if there is penetration at all — that is sex. And, please stop making us feel like uptight assh*les from not allowing this to happen.

– Texting to say “What’s up?” and then not responding for three hours

Why did you start a conversation with me if you don’t plan to text me back? If you don’t have time to talk, don’t bother texting me. If you do this, I’ll assume you’re playing some kind of game because overthinking is what women do.

Just be respectful and mindful that we deserve responses, especially if you’re the one who initiated the correspondence in the first place.

– Not changing their sheets regularly

What is it with guys not changing their sheets regularly and also thinking it’s okay to re-wear socks? (See also: overdoing it with the cologne.) You smell like a Russian bathhouse, dude. Take a shower.

– Touching our phones

This one is easy: DO NOT TOUCH MY PHONE!

– Trying creative sex too early in the game

We all have our fetishes. But, nothing makes us go ice cold faster than you asking to do something out of the ordinary before everyone’s comfortable. Save your penchant for leather for another time.

– Tipping poorly

Ladies appreciate being wined and dined. Going out on dates makes us feel special, and it’s sweet when you ask us to dinner and make the effort to wear a button-up instead of your Bears jersey.

That being said, there is nothing less attractive than a bad tipper. It makes us uncomfortable, and you better believe it’s going to piss off our server. Frankly, it makes you look cheap.

If you don’t have the money to leave a decent tip, you clearly don’t have the money to be eating at a restaurant. If you don’t have the means to pay the tip, plan a romantic home-cooked meal.

– Asking to have a threesome with our hot friend, whom we would rather die than see naked

It just isn’t going to happen. Life is not a porno. Just because I watched porn with you that one time doesn’t mean we’re recruiting one of my girlfriends to join us for a romp. Mmk?

– Some bizarre aversion to belts

What is it with dudes not wanting anything to do with belts? Guys seem to think it’s attractive to let your (dad) jeans hang down your butt, where you constantly have to pull them up. That is not cute. Just get yourself a nice belt and call it day.

Question: What are something that guys do that drive you insane?

Leave a comment below…

SurveyStud: In the App Store