Why I'm Not Afraid To Free The Nipple
Start writing a post

Having my naked body plastered online for all to see has taught me a lot. Mostly, I've learned that nakedness and vulnerability are not synonymous with shame, and that revealing my body does not ruin me. It has not ruined me.

We live in a society where women's bodies are oppressed- considered obscene, lewd, and pornographic. Naked breasts are banned from virtually all social media and censored on our television screens. Breastfeeding mothers are often shamed from publicly feeding their children. We are taught that our nipples are inappropriate, indecent, and shameful. At the same time, we are told that women's bodies are sacred and inviolable. What should really be sacred is the shameless ownership of our own nakedness.

Female toplessness is accepted and praised in many countries around the world, however, in the United States, it is considered a felony. In thirty-five states, it is presently considered illegal for a woman to be topless- including breastfeeding mothers. In some states, toplessness can lead to arrests and fines of up to $2500.

At birth, male and female breasts are virtually identical, including a nipple and areola. Both male and female breasts contain connective tissue, fat, and muscle. During puberty, however, the female body begins to change- along with the societal mindset over what is considered publicly acceptable. At this time, female breasts develop milk-producing lobules, allowing a female to lactate. Lactation is the only differing feature between male and female nipples. This is not a indecently sexual or pornographic component- but is essential for providing food and bond between mother and child. Another difference between men and women's breasts is size. While women's breasts come in a variety of sizes, from relatively flat-chested to extremely busty, it is more common for men's breasts to remain relatively flat. However, male breasts are subject to enlargement due hormonal or weight issues.

At this point you may be wondering: Are we legitimately censoring female nipples because they produce milk? By this logic, should we censor the caps on milk cartons, too?

I next wanted to know WHY women's breasts are considered so sexually lewd. What I learned is that fat in the breasts signals high reproductive value and potential. What this means is that men intuitively view women's breasts as indicative of reproduction while women do not receive these same indicators from men's breasts. AKA- the size of a woman's breasts subconsciously indicates high reproductive value for men.

Women's nipples are considered indecent because they can produce milk and somehow subconsciously indicate thoughts of reproduction in men? This cannot be true. This seems too lackluster to be true. I was expecting to learn that the female nipple contains black magic that is simply too horrific to reveal to the public. Tell me we aren't being oppressed just because of a biological and hormonal difference. Unfortunately, we are.

Fortunately, the jailing of women's bodies is beginning to spark outrage and worldwide conversation about the price of shame. Women are realizing that we should not be degraded because of hormonal differences. We have just as much right to be topless as our male counterparts. Toplessness is not just the freedom to leave your shirt or bra in the laundry- but rather the freedom of knowing that women and men are equal and can freely display their bodies without shame or sexual stigma. By censoring our nipples, society is conveying the message that we do not deserve to be seen. That we must be hidden, covered up, ashamed.

In 2016, little girls deserve to grow up knowing that their nipples are nothing to be ashamed of. By merging the gap between men and women via our bodies, we take steps towards gender equality in all forms. Perhaps one day, we will live in a society where there is no gender gap. By freeing women's bodies, we begin to free the woman.

Free the Nipple is a women's empowerment and equality movement that has sparked an international dialogue about injustice over unnecessary censorship of women's bodies. It is a film, social media phenomenon, and grassroots campaign. I strongly encourage you to learn more about this progressive organization that is leading the fight for the freedom of women's bodies.

Presently, the nipple is stigmatized and over-sexualized. With short term progressive efforts, society will slowly normalize female toplessness. Eventually, the long term effect of female toplessness is the normalization of the naked female nipple and the end of unjust censorship .

We have been oppressed for centuries by those who think women should be ashamed for living freely in their own skin. I believe that owning our bodies and being unashamed of our nakedness is just the revenge WE women need.



Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

In an already unprecedented political landscape, things aren't looking so bright for mail-in voters heading into November's election. In 46 states and Washington D.C., post offices received a warning that mail-in ballots may not be counted on time to count on election day, according to a report by the Washington Post.

Keep Reading... Show less
FOX

"New Girl" is one of the best sitcoms of all time. Honestly, it is so much fun to watch, so much fun to relate to, just all around a great show.

Not only is a great show, it has so many different great settings, obviously including the loft. If you live by Nick Miller quotes and desperately tried to learn how to play "True American," you need to buy these things because you are a true "New Girl" fan.

Keep Reading... Show less

You know those items you've been pinning to your Home board on Pinterest for [insert amount of time]? Well, it's officially the moment to turn that wishlist into a married life reality, and it's going to be SO fun.

But, before you get to shopping and adding things to your upgraded bridal wishlist (sorry, Pinterest, it was lovely while it lasted), you'll first want to decide where you want to open your registry (or registries, if you want options). Here are 17 of the best websites and stores to consider saying "I do" to for your wedding registry, to have and to hold for as long as people are buying you wedding gifts.

Keep Reading... Show less

If you've ever been in the dating game, or currently are, chances are you've had a date gone wrong. These are often times super embarrassing, but they are always funny to look back on.

Keep Reading... Show less

I just recently got engaged and planning a wedding during a pandemic is actually kind of a nightmare.

A lot of venues are taken for 2021 because of corona brides and grooms who have had to reschedule their weddings and the same goes for other vendors and literally everything else.

Keep Reading... Show less

While promoting her most recent movie, "Work It," Sabrina Carpenter has divulged some of her favorite beauty products to interviewers.

Keep Reading... Show less

When I say we can't stop thinking about the relationship advice Miley Cyrus dropped on "Call Her Daddy" today, I mean it literally.

Her truth bombs hit me (and most who listened) like a wrecking ball and coupled with the release of her new song "Midnight Sky," we're going to need some time to process the greatness. In case you haven't listened yet (what are you waiting for?), here are 10 relationship tips Miley shared that we should all live by for the rest of time.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Founders Of Color: Rec Room's Dre Taylor On What Blackness Can Look Like And Not Working For Free

"It mattered to me that when we were depicting racial diversity for Rec Room, we showed the broad spectrum of what Blackness can look like."

Rec Room

The world of sustainable fashion is inundated with marketing gimmicks, false advertising, and large corporations cutting corners — Rec Room is the pure antithesis of that.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 At-Home Therapy Tips You Need, No Matter What Your Therapy Routine Is

Whether you're in a Zoom session or live-chatting, make sure your home therapy space is good to go.

No matter what stigmas you held about therapy before this year, I'm sure 2020 has affirmed that we could ALL use a nice long therapy session. Between wildfires that took over an entire continent, a global health crisis, and what's sure to be one giant circus of an election in the United States, we need help and we need it now.

The fact of the matter is, therapy has been a helpful, valid resource long before the world decided to become one giant dumpster fire. Having a safe space to discuss what's going on in your life, worries you have, and struggles you're facing has become a very normal thing for individuals' mental health.

Keep Reading... Show less

Dunkin' just announced that they'll be releasing their fall menu earlier than ever — set to debut on August 19 — and that it'll include new menu options this season, including a new signature pumpkin spice latte. Let me just say, Starbucks has some fall-menu competition now.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments