This week’s Quickie prompted the following e-mail from a friend:
I’ve heard a female friend of mine say to other women that one should always say “breast” and not “boob”. She finds the term “boob” demeaning….Since of course you *are* talking about breasts as sexual organs in your
postings, perhaps my friend’s comment is being over-cautious about the use of the term, or perhaps the term is appropriate only in the context of “breasts as sexual organs”. I don’t use either word “breast” or “boob”
enough to have any feel for what is “right” here. As a modern woman well-versed in the language of the day, are there times when “boob” is just not the right word?
When to boob vs. when to breast? Truthfully, I don’t have the authority or expertise to make that call. I kind of wish I did, though. CEO Of Sex Words would be the ass kicking-est job of all time! Clearly I don’t take offense to the word “boob” but some – like my friend’s friend – do. For those who want to err on the side of caution, saying “breast” is rarely seems inappropriate – unless you’re at a bar mitzvah or something.
A few weeks back, I wrote a post about sex slang wherein I mentioned that I like using the word “boob” in casual conversation and the word “tits” in sexual situations. I neglected to mention that I also use the word “breast” in casual conversation as well. I don’t have firm rules about using one over the other but there are general trends and I’m happy to break those down for you.
Now remember, I’m NOT the CEO Of Sex Words (durn), so none of what I’m saying here is “right”. It’s just how I roll.
I usually say “breasts”…
In workshops, seminars, speaking to youth at Insight Shows and any other time I have my sex educator hat on. I often use the word breast in relation to non-sexual activities like breast feeding or breast exams. I say breast cancer. I say breast reconstruction and breast reduction,
I usually say “boobs”…
When I’m talking about the esthetics of breasts. I say things like “that shirt makes your boobs look great!”or “Fasten your seatbelts, because my boobs have begun their descent”. I typically say “boob job” rather than breast enhancement/augmentation/enlargement. (Note to self. Why the discrepancy, self?). I also say boobs in contexts like Monday’s post, where I’m talking about breasts as sexy body parts.
I usually say “tits”…
In reference to my own breasts in sexy, dirty-talking situations. I’ll give an example separated by parentheses so that readers like my beautiful, supportive mother can avoid being scandalized!
Engaging smutty brackets…NOW! (E.g. I will “touch my tits”, “grab my tits”, “put your mouth on my tits”, etc).
I rarely, if ever say…
Hooters, knockers, honkers, ta-tas, titties, headlights, lumps, humps or boobies.
Which words do you use for breasts? Do you use different terms at different times? Or do you find breast slang altogether offensive? The comment section is yours!