A singleton with 34HH breasts has been bombarded with requests from sleazy men offering to help fund the £4,000 reduction surgery op – but only in exchange for topless snaps.
Phoebe Rodgers, 24, from Spalding, Lincolnshire, says lots of her friends are jealous of her large chest without realising that they leave her suffering from back pain, aching shoulders, breast pain and rashes and sores that regularly bleed.
After asking her GP about reduction surgery, Phoebe was advised to lose weight so embarked on a health and fitness plan and dropped three stone.
Despite 5ft 6in Phoebe dropping from a size 16 to a slinky size 12, the housing association line manager is still not happy with how she looks and feels as she now suffers with saggy skin.
But after deciding to raise the cash to for the op herself, Phoebe says she gets seedy messages every day from rude Romeos offering to donate to her fundraiser if she sends private photos.
‘A lot of people say I’m “blessed” with my 34HH boobs, especially a lot of my girlfriends who are on the smaller side,; she said.
‘They always say “oh god I wish I had your boobs, I wish my cleavage looked like that”.
‘On my dating profile I share my Instagram, which is how blokes are finding out I want a reduction.
‘I’m always quite happy to talk to them about it because it’s good to share my story and help people understand it’s not always a good thing.
‘But from a guy’s point of view they’re not bothered about the ins and outs, they just want breasts.
‘I get messages every day from guys saying “your tits are amazing” and it’s so frustrating because I’m so much more than them.
Phoebe approached her GP eight years ago to see if she could get a reduction on the NHS – and has been suffering with breast-related issues since she hit puberty, but was advised to lose weight.
Not only did she deal with the physical pain but also the emotional hurt caused by cruel bullies who taunted her and branded her ‘Double D Phoebe’.
‘The worst bit is when you get people messaging saying “I’ll donate to your GoFundMe page if you send me a picture of your tits”, it happens all the time.
‘I had one guy say he would donate £1,000 if I sent him a before and after photo but otherwise it’ll be guys saying “if you send a picture I’ll donate”.
‘I also get a lot of people encouraging me to start a “limited-time-only” Only Fans account, it’s just horrible.
‘As soon as someone sees that you’ve got big boobs that’s what they expect – you to be selling them or be willing to send pictures.
‘At that point I think I hate them, so why would I want to encourage people to look at them? It’s so degrading.’
Phoebe, who regularly edits social media snaps so she appears to have smaller boobs, added: ‘When I was at school I was the first girl to get a bra and it was very noticeable from quite early on that I was developing faster.
‘When I went to secondary school it got worse. I was a Double-D. I felt I stuck out a lot more than the other girls.
‘I think that was the time I started becoming more and more self-conscious about them.
‘I got bullied quite a lot and people would accuse me of stuffing my bra, it was horrible. They used to call me Double D Phoebe as a little rhyme.’
It was an encounter with a sleazy stranger at the age of 16 that prompted Phoebe, then 13st 7lbs and a size 34FF, to visit her GP for the first time.
Phoebe said: ‘There was one time when I was 16 and had just finished secondary school and was on a day out with my boyfriend at the time.
‘As we were walking back to the car a guy looked at me and said to my boyfriend “oh god you must be really happy, look at the size of those things”‘
‘He was a middle-aged fat bloke with a bald head wearing a vest.
‘As soon as I got in the car I just burst into tears. No-one could really understand why it got to me so much but I think it was just the tip of the iceberg.
‘Getting comments like that from a total stranger made me realise I needed to do something about it.
‘I didn’t want to go through the rest of my life getting comments like that off people I don’t know, it was just a horrible feeling.
‘That was when I said to my mum ‘I want to do something about it, can we go to the doctors about getting a reduction done?”
Phoebe says she was advised to lose weight and was put on a 12-week Weight Watchers referral programme and lost 1st 7lbs – continuing her healthy eating habits when she went to Sheffield University.
The unwanted attention didn’t end there as Phoebe says she was groped on multiple occasions by blokes on nights out – something that took a major toll on her mental health.
Phoebe said: ‘In clubs, guys would just come up to me, grab my boobs and make comments, it just made me feel so worthless.
‘It got to the point that I would refuse to go on a night out unless it was with my male flatmates.
‘It was so scary because you never knew who you were going to get grabbed by and what they were going to do.
‘I got to the point I didn’t have any confidence. I just felt like an object and I ended up getting really, really depressed.’
After losing weight and still struggling with the physical and emotional repercussions of having such large breasts, Phoebe returned to her GP at home and at university on multiple occasions.
Each time she claims she was simply advised to lose weight.
Taking on board the doctors’ advice, Phoebe dropped from a size 16 to a size 12, but that has presented its own problem – saggy skin.
Phoebe said: ‘I’ve lost the weight but now I’ve been left with saggy excess skin, it’s really embarrassing.
‘Now because they’re saggier I get a lot of chafing underneath that can cause red sores that bleed, they can be really, really painful.
‘I can’t remember the last time I looked in the mirror and liked what I saw.
‘I think I was more confident when I was bigger because everything was in proportion and it was less noticeable but now I’m smaller they look even worse, it’s so frustrating.
‘I think what gets to me is I’m a size 12 and I’m still having to buy size 16 clothing because I can’t fit my boobs into anything.
‘I bought a swimming costume the other day and I had to buy a size 24 because my boobs just wouldn’t fit into any of them.
‘It’s heartbreaking because I’ve worked so hard and I feel I’ve got so much of a nicer figure but I can’t show it off because I’m still having to buy bigger clothes.
‘It’s an absolute nightmare finding bras that fit. The brands that go up to my size is never nice , you don’t feel nice and sexy in them.
‘I try and wear a sports bra as much as I can because you don’t get the cleavage and it flattens them down a bit.’
After dealing with the consequences of having larger breasts for years, Phoebe has decided to take matters into her own hands and is fundraising to get surgery done privately.
Phoebe said: ‘I think people just need to move away from the idea that having big boobs is the best thing in the world.
‘I’ve been thinking about getting surgery done for the best part of a decade and I just thought “I’ve had enough”.
‘I think losing the weight was supposed to make me feel better and more confident, it wasn’t supposed to make me want to hide under baggy hoodies.
‘When I moved back from Sheffield and started going out with my friends again it made me realise that this should be the best time of my life.
‘I should be going on holidays and going out and doing things not hiding inside because I’m too ashamed of what I look like and I’m too scared about what people are going to say.
‘I’ve always been researching surgeons and where to get them done.
‘My mum came home from work one day and mentioned she’d spoken to someone who had just had a breast reduction in Poland, and that’s when we started taking it more seriously and looking at the cost.
‘No-one just has £7,000 lying around unless you’re very lucky and I just thought ‘if I don’t ask I’m never going to know’.
‘A lot of people who are close to me know how unhappy I am and so many people have been willing to help.
‘Having this surgery would change my life. It would be such an amazing feeling to wake up in the morning and look at myself and be happy with what I see.
‘It’s just got to that point where I want to start living my life and being happy.’
A spokesperson for Lincolnshire CCG said: ‘We are unable to comment on individual patients but our policy is in line with the criteria for breast reduction to avoid operations that are unlikely to be effective.’
NHS England and NHS Sheffield CCG have been contacted for comment.
My first go at one of the grand masters of scifi and the beginning of the “Riverworld” series. It was… fine. Certainly the concept is arresting. Someone took the whole population of humanity and reincarnated them into new, young, naked bodies along the course of an endless river. Everyone who ever lived is there, scattered in quasi-random linguistic/temporal groupings. They get food (and booze, and weed) from magic lunchpails someone issued them, and other than bamboo and stone, there’s not much to make stuff with.
I emphasize that last bit because Farmer emphasizes it, a lot. Way more of this book than I would have figured is about the quotidian act of survival in this comparatively-easy-to-survive world. You’d figure given the sheer scope of the setup, Farmer would have jumped to the implications of their situation a little more quickly… but instead we get a lot of speculation about how much you can do with bamboo, rocks, and fish (and human!) parts.
Either way, we get our narrative viewpoint from the newly-reincarnated Richard Francis Burton, the Victorian traveler, linguist (he could supposedly speak twenty or thirty languages or something like that) and writer with many a legendary exploit under his name. Naturally, he takes charge of the surviving-and-organizing business of his little band, that includes the grown-up inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice (for whom Burton obviously gets horny), a Holocaust survivor, an alien, a caveman, some Italians, a know-it-all who provides periodic infodumps on Burton or assorted others, etc.
Burton had had a vision where he met with the organizers of the Riverworld, and is determined to find them again. He and his band make a raft and head upriver. Because this is midcentury scifi, naturally everyone has set to warring with one another, even though (because?) their material needs are basically met. One set of slaver warlords led by Hermann Goering capture Burton and his band. They escape, but it sets up a dynamic wherein Burton and Goering get killed and reincarnated time and again, generally in close proximity to each other. Burton is doing it because he thinks being randomly distributed somewhere on the river is a more efficient means of travel than trying to sail through the rival factions, so he kills himself over and over again, getting newly reincarnated each time. Goering does it because he’s addicted to both heroin and a special “dreamgum” issued in their rations and tries killing himself when he can’t kick successfully, even when he’s otherwise turned a new leaf.
Once it gets going the action is commendably out there, though with enough of that midcentury scifi flavor — the omni-competent ubermensch protagonist, the women and their hangups (Farmer was something of a pioneer in bringing explicit sex into science fiction), the faceless hordes fighting for no reason, etc. — to dampen the originality some. In all, good enough to have a look at the sequels.