1b783d54-9080-4c83-b336-2128a75df5aa.jpg_resized_Breast ironing also known as breast flattening is the pounding and massaging of a pubescent girl’s breasts, using hard or heated objects, to try to make them stop developing or to disappear. It is typically carried out by the girl’s mother who will say she is trying to protect the girl from sexual harassment and rape, to prevent early pregnancy that would tarnish the family name, or to allow the girl to pursue education rather than be forced into early marriage. It is mostly practiced in parts of Cameroon, where boys and men may think that girls whose breasts have begun to grow are ready for sex. There are also fears that it has spread to the Cameroonian diaspora, for example to that in Britain. The most widely tool used implement for breast ironing is a wooden pestle normally used for pounding tubers. Other tools used include leaves,  bananas, coconut shells, grinding stones, ladles, spatulas, and hammers heated over coals. 

Some ladies share their stories below:-

m6-1024x793Emmanuelle’s mum used driver ants to ensure her daughters breasts doesn’t grow more than the normal size. Emmanuelle who is just 23 years old narrated how her mum would call her and place this insects on her breasts all day long and she didn’t want to disobey her mother’s orders. 

m-2-1024x793Carole who is 28 years narrated how her Grandmother became very furious that her breasts were developing and decided to use hot rock on her breasts and she said the process went for so many weeks. Carole is very sad now because her breasts are no longer firm. 

m-1024x793Cindy who is just 14 years usually wear a wooden bandage over her chest everyday to school because her mother doesn’t want her breasts to develop. Cindy cries that wearing the wooden bandage is very sad and she wishes she could stop but her mother checks her chest everyday to make sure she doesn’t remove it. Cindy says sometimes she won’t be able to breathe properly with the bandage on. 

m4Cathy who is 27 years old narrated how her mother would use a Pestle that is used for grinding stuffs on her breasts to prevent it from developing. 

m3-1024x793Agnes who is 32 years narrated how her Grandmother would use hot rock to massage her breast when she was 18 years twice a day to prevent its growth.

Wow! I never knew stuff like this existed. For real? Small breasts do not stop women from rape or any other kind of abuse. Can they stop this already?

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