When I was a little girl, one of my grandmothers was very opinionated about bras. At the time, I took everything she said as the "absolute truth." Over time, of course, I realized that what she said was not all true, and then later, I waffled back to understand she really knew what she was talking about on most things.
Anyway, when I was in fifth grade, I can remember her and my mother talking about training bras. She did not speak to me directly about this, but I used to eavesdrop on "the adults." I think they knew and used this to their advantage. Grandma thought that training bras were silly. She thought they were unnecessary. She could not understand why growing girls needed them. She never said this directly to me, and I loved her for it. You see, she knew even though it was not necessary, it had become a "right of passage," and she did not want to spoil that for me. Training bras were rare when Grandma was a little girl. Sure, Ida Rosenthal, was marketing them, but they were not popular like they are now.
Anyway, when I was a teen, I visited Grandma for a week. A week alone with my grandparents. Some time during that week, she was discussing bras. She said something about the importance of wearing bras because if you did not wear one, your breasts would stretch to your knees. For years afterwards, that conversation was attached to any thoughts of this Grandma, and I thought either she had breasts knocking her knees, or she had friends who had suffered this fate.
She also told me that if I wore slacks, I would not have to shave my legs because my hair would be pulled out by the constant contact with the slacks. When I asked if pantyhose worked in the same manner, she frowned and said that pantyhose were not strong enough to get the hair to break off. I actually tried this experiment in college, and it did not work for me.
Funny the things we remember about people who are close to us. The strangest small conversations are forever etched on our brains.
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