A FATHER TAKES HIS YOUNG DAUGHTER SHOPPING FOR HER FIRST BRA
“This one does not look like it will be big enough to support your kinda big boobs.” Hearing those words when you are a 14 year-old girl wouldn’t be embarrassing if the comment were coming out of a female’s mouth. You know, a woman such as your mother, grandmother, sister, girl friend, or even hearing your PE teacher at school tell you that your breasts look too large to fit in a training bra would not embarrass (or humiliate) you. But, when the words are yelled across a fairly busy store by your own father, suddenly your face begins to turn beet red.
My dad is a very attractive man. I’m talking about the possibility of his being a model for GQ magazine handsome. I don’t say that because he is my fatherand it is a “pride” thing; no, I say it because I’ve seen the way women fumble whatever is in their hands when Dad walks in the room. Things are worse when he looks at them…especially, if he speaks to the woman. It is as if they forget they can speak, or if they are able to speak…the words are so mumbled or it sounds as if they speak in the language that a character from The Lord of the Rings spoke!
See, Dad has this velvety smooth voice that I’ve always heard as comforting…but, other women believe that he has a voice reminiscent of the soulful singer, Barry White (even my teenage girl friends and their mother’s have said this). Of course, Dad, being somewhat dense about his sexual attractiveness, believes that women are intimidated by his deep voice. He doesn’t understand that his presence is one that makes women act nervously ridiculous. I know he is my father, but even I, his only daughter, understand that he is an incredibly handsome fella.
He fell in love with my mother when they were both teenagers. They were high-school sweethearts and done the expected thing and married just after graduation. Their love for one another is why I am here. Obviously, my parents had s…se…S-E-X (ewwww).
The things my father has shared with me about my mother are the memories I cherish, because she found out she had cancer when I was only 2 years old…she died rather quickly. The memories I have of Mom are ones that my Dad has lovingly planted in my brain. They are so vivid, that I am not exactly sure that they are memories I have of Mom or simply ones of how I imagine the way my mother was because of my dad’s ability to paint a picture with words so well.
It has been 12 years since my mother died, and in those 12 years; Dad has went out on 2 very friendly “dates,” because he swears that he loves my mother even if she is no longer here on Earth. He believes that she is with him daily. But, that is not why I am sharing these things…I am not aiming to prove that true love never dies. I only wanted to explain why it is my father who is taking me shopping for my very first bra and not my mother.
My mom was an only child, so I can’t depend on her sister’s to take me. Her mother, my Gram, lives thousands of miles away. My dad is the youngest of 3 boys. His brothers are divorced so; I have no Aunt’s on his side either. This is why my good hearted (but awkwardly understanding) father is taking me to shop for my first bra; as if getting you first brassiere isn’t mortifying enough, it is humiliating to shop with your dad for such a BIG moment in what is going to become a normal part of a girl’s life.
Of course, my dad wanted me to feel confident about my first bra, so he took me to the mall 7 miles down the street from where we live in California. He thought that going into one of the high dollar shops where the women who work there all have implants, bleached-blonde hair, and spray-on tans would be perfect. You know, get me started on the “right track.”
The first place we went…the women who worked there were all thinking that Dad was shopping for a lady friend and his daughter tagged along. They were discretely pointing out edible thongs, negligées, and pasties when Dad finally caught on and said to the women that he was shopping for his daughter (and pointed to me). I thought I was going to die when he said matter-of-factly and not at all quietly, “Anna is growing little boobies, and needs her very first bra.” I was mortified!
One of the women looked at me with sympathy and said to him, “Um…sir, this is truly not the best place to shop for a training—” yes, she said that “—bra.” She suggested that we try a store such as “Macy’s” on the upper level of the mall.
Dad thanked her, and we both walked out of “Girly Things—For Women or Those Who Want to Be” with our heads down. On the way to “Macy’s,” we started to pass a ‘Victoria’s Secret’ and Dad pulled me into that store. It was so embarrassing to walk in that store too. Everyone assumed that my good-looking father was “robbing the cradle” because he still looked rather young.
No one wanted to offer their assistance to help us find a bra. So, Dad and I were left alone; looking at all of the lacy bras, skimpy thongs, It was already bad enough to be the last girl in my 8th grade class to need a bra…but, now I was in ‘Victoria’s Secret’ with my handsome and young father accidentally holding up “V-String” panties and believing that they were meant to wear as gloves or something even less understandable. Another lady that worked in a store that does not carry “training bras” walked over to us and said to me quietly, “I think you would be able to find a bra at a department store; like ‘Macy’s’.”
Finally, we took the advice of the helpful women and went to ‘Macy’s.” Their lingerie department was upstairs as well…but there was also a “juniors lingerie” section and I suggested to Dad that I look there, and he go to the “men’s” section. Relieved, he took my advice.
I went into the juniors lingerie section…marched over to the bras and quickly found a training bra that looked like it would fit. I tried the bra on and it did fit well. Carrying the box (training bras are boxed as opposed to hanging or lying on a table) to the men’s section; I found Dad and we went to the register where an older lady rung up the purchase. She looked at me, then at Dad, back at me and gave me a comforting smile.
This experience is one that I do not know if my Dad or I can ever forget. I’m proud of my dad and the way he chose to “man up” and take his little baby girl’ in to stores to buy a bra and tried to make sure that they were good ones…I do not like that he was embarrassed; I appreciate his effort, and I am so grateful to have a father who is aware of the difficulties that a young girl is going to face with being raised by a man. Although, I’ll bet that he will get a woman he works with to take me to purchase my first box of tampons.