I recently shared a story from my middle school days on my Facebook page (shameless plug: if you like my blog, go check it out!):
A group of my friends went to a lake house. We had planned to just hang out and perhaps make s'mores there, but a couple of us spontaneously decided to go swimming. Everyone jumped in the lake after them with their clothes on. I did too, without giving it a second thought. As soon as we got out, the mother of one of the boys (whom I'll call "Jane Doe") marched up to me, pulled me aside, and absolutely lit into me, saying that I was "giving these boys the wrong idea" and "this isn't a wet t-shirt contest." I was 13 and among some of my best friends. None of the other girls got this lecture from Jane. I was mortified.
I was subsequently the only one wearing a one-piece (looked just like this!) at the end-of-year party.
A friend said I was "brave" for going against the grain.
I just thought, "Yeah. That's what I was going for. Brave.
Not 'Cover myself in blue material and hope no one notices me.'"
Having done some growing up since then, I'd like to put down what I wish I would have had the maturity (and sarcasm) to say to Jane:
I hate to be the bearer of bad news here, but... (deep breath)... if your sons are ever out in public, they might end up looking at a girl with large breasts. Oh, the shock! The horror! It's a pretty natural thing for a lot of boys, especially ones going through that wonderful time that is puberty, to do. Most men do have a genetic predisposition to notice certain things about women, one of which I'm sure is breast size. That's why you, the parent, teach them self-control. You teach them that they shouldn't "get the wrong idea"* about a girl because she has a big chest. You don't imply that there's something wrong with the girl for having it.
Singling me out from other girls at the lake- all of whom also had wet t-shirts at the time, I might add- was wrong. It made me feel like a freak, which I wasn't. I was a normal, shy, awkward girl with a larger-than-average chest for my age. You were basically telling me that because of that chest, my body was relegated to pornographic material. If you saw it like that, that was your problem and not a problem with my body. You made me feel ashamed of my body when it's the only one I'm ever going to get. Doesn't a 13-year-old usually have enough to feel insecure about?
I would say that I'm very sorry that my breasts offended you with their existence, but I'm not.
The Absurd (Now Enjoying Being) Curvy Nerd
*I still think this is a really strange euphemism. "I thought you were a Gemini," could be the wrong idea.