The Humanist Dilemma: My Husband Is Pressuring Me to Have Plastic Surgery

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A Real Boob: From the time we met, I knew the man who became my husband was a big boob man. I have perfectly fine (in my opinion) average-size breasts. After we got married, he started pushing me to do exercises he thought would increase my chest and monitored to make sure I was doing them daily and energetically. I really hated it, but I complied. Well, surprise, surprise, my dimensions did not change in any perceptible way. So now he’s on my case to do breast implants. I flatly (ha ha) refuse. Not only do I not wish to undergo cosmetic surgery, which has serious health risks, I don’t want a big chest. I actually tried on a padded bra and hated the way it looked. In fact, if I was going to do anything, I’d be more inclined to do a reduction, since I prefer that silhouette and think it probably holds up (ha ha) better with age.

The last time he came at me with this request, I told him, “If you like big boobs so much, why don’t you get implants yourself, and then you can enjoy them any time you like?” He did not take it well.

He knew my bra size before he married me, and he could have just kept looking for a more voluptuous (or obedient) woman. What do you make of this?

—Promised to Love and Honor, Not to Enlarge


Dear Enlarge,

What I make of this is you, not he, married a gigantic boob. I’m tempted to say this is an absolute deal-breaker, but I don’t know if you have children, have a great marriage aside from this (I suspect this is not the only issue), or have other compelling reasons not to just hold your head (and chest) high and walk out forever.

Instead, I will say run don’t walk to counseling, together or just you. Although it might be productive to understand where his obsession with large breasts comes from, a bigger (ha ha) issue is his sense of entitlement and ownership regarding your body. I worry about the possibility of him becoming dangerous—his demands are so phenomenally controlling, unreasonable and escalating. And even if I’m being alarmist about that, for argument’s sake, imagine what would happen if you ever needed a mastectomy.

Maybe I’m missing something here, but my gut is screaming for you to get away from this guy. And whether or not you take that advice, please, under no circumstances submit to doing anything to your body—or your psyche—you don’t whole-heartedly and autonomously want to do.