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  • Gynecomastia (male breast tissue)

    This is really nerve-wracking for me to talk about, but I have gynecomastia, or breast tissue in males. I am 6'0", 160 pounds, and have approximately AA cup size breasts. That may seem small but I am quite lanky/lean and they really are obvious on my frame. They emerged with puberty, which is common. Sometimes they go away soon after puberty begins, but they did not for me.

    Middle and high school were hell, in the sense that I got a lot of looks, comments, jokes, etc. that really really hurt me. I had/have anxiety attacks whenever we had to play "shirts and skins" in gym, at pool parties or the beach, or any other time I had to remove my shirt in front of others.

    My involvement in nude recreation has helped some: when in a nudist context I don't have anxiety attacks. I am however constantly aware of them and am very self-conscious of them. I usually drape my towel around my neck to cover them. I can't help but think others are looking at me and thinking how weird I look.

    This effects every area of my life. I am ALWAYS conscious of my breasts, and often wear an undershirt or a-shirt in order to compress them a little. I hate running because the wind causes my shirt to stick to my body which gives away the form, and they bounce which is incredibly embarrassing.

    I am HEAVILY considering cosmetic surgery. It is the only treatment. It is not covered by medical insurance because it is an elective and cosmetic procedure. It would only be covered if it was causing a health problem, but what about mental health? I personally cannot afford the surgery and my parents would not be supportive of cosmetic surgery.

    My fiancee loves my body and accepts me for who I am. She is an absolute angel. But even with that support it's still a personal thing that she could never fully understand. I try to tell her to imagine what it would be like to only have one breast or no breasts and go through middle and high school getting teased for it, to never be able to wear a cute swimsuit, how that would make her feel as a woman. She tries but she couldn't understand as she is a perfect 10 physically.

    The only ways I could finance the operation would be my wealthy grandfather who may understand my situation and be willing to support it, or else get loans.

    I am getting married in 14 months. I want to leave this burden behind me and start my life with my wife with no self-consciousness and shame. I know they say beauty can't bring happiness, but in this case it's just so oppressive for me. It truly would be a life-changing experience to be free of this.

    I'm not sure why I'm writing all this. Does anyone else have this condition or know someone who does, and how does naturism fit in?

  • #2
    Have you discussed this with your doctor? There may be some medication (hormones?) that can be taken. You need a medical opinion. Good luck!

    Comment


    • #3
      Just some quick thoughts... it seems naturism can help people accept their own (and others') bodies. Maybe it helps by dealing with the sight more directly, not hidden by clothing. I'd say most nudists/naturists get some degree of "therapy" from experiencing social nudism, healing from the ruthless and unrealistic conformity the American mainstream tries to impose.

      While, I can't say what I would do for sure... do what you feel will make you happiest. There is a tremendous natural variety of male and female shapes, sizes, etc., as you know as a nudist. My thought is that people should not feel inferior or somehow "wrong" because of how you look. Rather, others should accept the true diversity of body types and not judge others so barbarically. Nudists approach this ideal much more closely than the mainstream, of course, but then, even nudists are humans and may take notice of something not so common.

      I usually am against surgery for cosmetic purposes. As I mentioned, people should instead accept diversity. But, if you know that it is going to get you down in life, this may be reasonable. I don't what it's like to have that condition - maybe like how a woman with no breasts would feel? My brother had the condition in his teens, but grew out of it. Maybe it will still eventually go away? Otherwsise, if you want surgery, don't go broke - don't start life out poor. Maybe your grandpa could help... maybe explain the situation, and say that finances is the factor. If he couldn't loan money to you, maybe he'd have some good advice (maybe not the advice you'd expect, but maybe what you need to hear). There might be non-surgical solutions too (as mentioned by Waco, above). Maybe there is even a topical homonal cream that could help? I don't know, just speculating. I'm sure you've researched possible solutions on the internet. Now remember, I'm not saying go for the surgery for sure, but you must be happy one way or another. I'm sure the thought of the condition bothers you more than anyone at nudist resorts or elsewhere. There are many of us nudists that have things we're self-consious of to some degree. Nudism helps recover and ultimately may be the only "fix" you need!

      Comment


      • #4
        Von,
        I'm glad that nude venues have helped you feel more comfortable with your body. That is great.

        The fact is, you don't like your gynecomastia. My opinion: if you don't like it...research your options and do something about it. There will always be people that don't like your choice but it is YOUR choice and your body. Research and making informed decisions are the key.


        My mom helped me with financing my first surgery..it was a wonderful gift from her. There are also finance plans for cosmetic surgery. Above all, if this is something you really want, start a savings account specifically for it. Where there is a will, there is a way.

        Good luck to you! If you have any questions, feel free to ask!


        Dee

        Comment


        • #5
          Von,

          Believe it or not, a lot of men suffer from gynecomastia, some more than others. Some have a slight case of it and others have a bad case of it. Unfortunately, many men choose to suffer from by not doing anything about it because they are so embarassed.

          I too had slight case of gynecomastia. As a kid, I was chubby and had "b*tch ****" but after losing the weight in college and getting in top shape, I still had a bit of "b*tch ****." No amount of chest exercises helped. My junior year of college, I had plastic surgery to fix the problem and it was the BEST BEST decision I ever made. I couldn't have made a better decision.

          Was it costly? Yes..It cost me $4,000 but I do not regret it at all. I took a job in college, saved up 2,000 and placed the rest on my credit card. I then paid off the balance in couple months.

          To clarify a few things:

          WacoTx : There are no medications to treat gynecomastia. Only way to correct the problem is through cosmetic surgery.

          Big-Thinker: Generally, many men grow out of gynecomastia in their teen years but if the condition hasn't gone away after puberty, it is then a permanent problem that can only be corrected via surgery.

          Despite your views about cosmetic surgery, do note that it has helped A LOT of people. You may "accept" your flaws and they may not bother you all that much but do note that for some, it is a bother that they wish to address. I have had 2 cosmetic surgeries and they were the best decisions I ever made. Nudism isn't going to be the "fix" for gynecomastia. It really depends how much of a bother the condition is to some.


          Von, if you really want to do something about your gynecomastia, take the bull by the horn and make appts with surgeons. Many surgeons offer financing. Believe me when I say it, you'll feel like a new man once the procedure is over.

          Comment


          • #6
            Von,
            Since it troubles you so much and is quite noticably "weird", please go for the "surgery" which may be liposuction with local anesthesia.

            Please see the following website about this liposuction.
            http://www.drmelton.com/Chicago/Liposuction/Male_Liposu...necomastia_cost.html

            I have had this condition to a moderate degree for many years, but I swim at the Y each week and I really don't care who may notice it. My father had it too, and did not worry much about it.

            However, I wish I had a flat chest, but if I had liposuction, I would rid the fat on my suprapubic area.

            I do not know what size cup AA is that you mention, but hope that you have a proceedure to get rid of it, pronto!

            Comment


            • #7
              Hey Von, when I read your note I thought it was something I wrote years ago. I have big breast too but Iam not a little guy either. Losing weight would help me some but from talking to a doctor and everything I have read it will take surgery to remove them. Iam very aware of them too when Iam at a nudist resort but at the same time I feel like its only a problem with me and no one else. I feel more naked with my shirt off then with my pants off it seems. It really is something that a person who has never dealt with has no idea what its like. My wife isnt bothered by them either and as long as I wear a t-shirt there really isnt much of a issue in terms of what I look like. In a strange way I guess you could say Iam starting to accept them as a part of me that for what ever reasons I got them its suppose to be that way. They used to really bother me but not as much anymore. On that note, its up to you to do what you got to do to change things and make your life better. If they are consuming your emotions in a bad way do what you got to do to have them removed and I bet you will be a lot happier for it. Good luck my friend and keep us informed.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks for the replies everyone. I ordered a book about it by a doctor who specializes in gynecomastia. After I read through it I will make appointments to meet with cosmetic surgeons and see if there are financing options. If as you say Croydon it was only $4,000 then that would be very do-able. If I had the procedure early this summer I could pay it off by Christmas since I am working full-time until August and then part-time during the school year.

                I'll keep you all updated, thanks.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Some medicins cause it too. Specially medicins to adrenalin glands are guilty to it. You are not alone and I'm sure who has those will get rid of this.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Von:
                    Thanks for the replies everyone. I ordered a book about it by a doctor who specializes in gynecomastia. After I read through it I will make appointments to meet with cosmetic surgeons and see if there are financing options. If as you say Croydon it was only $4,000 then that would be very do-able. If I had the procedure early this summer I could pay it off by Christmas since I am working full-time until August and then part-time during the school year.

                    I'll keep you all updated, thanks.
                    Von, prices vary. I happened to had my surgery in NYC and in NYC, everything is more than it really needs to be.

                    Because you are in Michigan, I suspect the cost will be lower. I suggest just calling a few surgeons and set an appt for consultation. Some surgeons charge a fee for consultation. Don't worry, the fee is subtracted from the surgery cost if you choose that doctor. It is very important to see more than one surgeons before you make a decision. Lastly, DO NOT make a decision based on price. Make your decision based on how you feel about the surgeon

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Von, good luck to you. I think you've suffered enough torments and need to go ahead and do what you think is best for you.

                      I would suggest a couple of things though.

                      1. Any condition as long term as this has been, and with such psychological, effect really begs for you to include professional counseling before and after surgery.

                      Sometimes we perceive ourselves much more critically than do others, please take seriously your fiancee's reamrks that she has no issue with your "conditon".

                      2. I'd also suggest you find a number of people who have had the procedure you're contemplating so tht you have full awareness of what to expect, both pro and con.

                      Since this seems to be a congenital condition, is there a chance of the condition's return.

                      3. Fully check out whoever you're going to get to do the procedure. Even minor surgery is surgery, and invasion of the body, and people have died or suffered permanently from liposuction.

                      Make haste slowly, and get all the facts and fully understand all the risks and benefits.

                      Good luck, you've obviously had a tough time with this with. But, remember, we judge ourselves with more criticsm and higher standards than do others.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        My junior year of college, I had plastic surgery to fix the problem and it was the BEST BEST decision I ever made. I couldn't have made a better decision.
                        Croydon,

                        I just wanted to clarify a few things. I have a friend who developed enlarged male breasts. This was a result from taking medication for a liver desease problem. His doctor told him that he had to remain on the liver medications in order to survive. As for surgery, his doctor would not allow any unecessary surgery as he is a 'bleeder' and a very high risk candidate.

                        I think the only candidates for cosmetic surgery are those who are in good physical health and that the reasons for the male elarged breasts are understood in each patient. In the case of my friend, he has to live with the problem as he can not stop taking his liver meds and can not receive unecessary surgery of any kind as this would be life threatening in his case.

                        Von,

                        If, after a physical examination and consultation with your Primary Care Physician, you are deemed a candidate for this operation and are still having financial difficulties, you may want to consider what more and more Americans are actually doing. They are travelling overseas to countries with very reputable medical establishments and having operations performed at a fraction of the USA cost. For example, Thailand is one destination where many Americans are heading for heart operations. Several Thai hospitals have established a system where the patient and their family memebers are met at the airport, taken to a hotel nearby the hospital, and then all aspects of the surgery are coordinated. Other countries are following suit. If you dont want to travel so far, you might want to investigate costs in Canada. It may sound strange, but the astronomical costs of medical care including cosmetic surgeries in the USA are continuing to send more and more Americans overseas in pursuit of affordable health care.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Von;

                          If this is causing you that much mental distress, please get the surgery. Mental health is as or more important than physical health. The mental stress could undermine everything including your ability to form a proper emotional bond with your wife to be.

                          I want to recommend a few courses of action.

                          1) It was suggested that prices vary. Procedures do also. Please use the web to shop and find the best price / RESULTS option for you.

                          2) Read the health insurance policy and attachments carefully. There may be a way to get it covered. Perhaps a referral from a psychiatrist, etc.

                          3) Ask the sales rep for the company's health plan. I have done this several times and it has saved my family thousands of dollars.

                          Lastly, you have a right to be happy. If someone had a disfiguring birthmark on the face, all would agree it can be removed if it distresses the person.

                          If your chest distresses you so much, I would have the condition corrected. You deserve to be happy and be happy with yourself.

                          I wish you and your wife to be a long happy and healthy life together.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by walter05:
                            Von;

                            If this is causing you that much mental distress, please get the surgery. Mental health is as or more important than physical health. The mental stress could undermine everything including your ability to form a proper emotional bond with your wife to be.

                            I want to recommend a few courses of action.

                            1) It was suggested that prices vary. Procedures do also. Please use the web to shop and find the best price / RESULTS option for you.

                            2) Read the health insurance policy and attachments carefully. There may be a way to get it covered. Perhaps a referral from a psychiatrist, etc.

                            3) Ask the sales rep for the company's health plan. I have done this several times and it has saved my family thousands of dollars.

                            Lastly, you have a right to be happy. If someone had a disfiguring birthmark on the face, all would agree it can be removed if it distresses the person.

                            If your chest distresses you so much, I would have the condition corrected. You deserve to be happy and be happy with yourself.

                            I wish you and your wife to be a long happy and healthy life together.
                            Just to clarify something.

                            1) Do use the internet to research about the procedure and doctors in your area but do not choose or make decisions based on website and price. Believe me when I say this, some surgeons have the nicest websites you have ever seen but are not great surgeons. If you come across a website with surgeon that you may like, just call his office and schedule an appointment for consultation. In addition, do not make decision based on price. Cost should be a factor but should not be your sole factor. Decide who are the doctors you think you would like to do the surgery and then see the cost difference.

                            2) Cosmetic surgery is NOT covered by health insurance. Insurance companies do not even cover breast implants for cancer survivors who opt to have reconstructive surgery. Surgery to correct gynecomastia is a cosmetic surgery. Insurance do not see it as a medical condition and will not cover anything that falls under cosmetic and not health.

                            Von, keep us posted.

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