Due to the size/weight of my boobs I suffer from aching bones (from my ribs all the way up to my jaw) because the pain from their weight radiates through my bones, I have dents in my shoulders from wearing the wrong size bra for so long, I'm covered in scars and cysts as well as cuts, friction sores and rashes from my 38K bra, all of which constantly bleed and get infected, and recently I've started getting fat necrosis lumps and thickening and dimpling of my skin, both of which can be really scary because they mimic the main signs of breast cancer.
After 2 years of working with a trainer at Hellbent Fitness and a dietician at Talbot Medical Centre to try and fit the NHS funding board's 27 BMI criteria for breast reduction surgery I wasn't getting anywhere fast enough; my pain and symptoms are getting much worse and now stop me from exercising and living a normal life, and my already iffy mental health (particularly my depression and body dysmorphia) has taken a huge dip. So I spoke to a doctor I've never seen before about any of my boob issues and he immediately calculated that with my height, current weight and weight of my boobs it's physically impossible for me to ever have a BMI of 27 unless I were to become seriously underweight.
With that information he filled out an extenuating circumstances form and sent it off directly to a surgeon in the hopes that he'd be able to get me my surgery a bit quicker and be less likely to get rejected, but, despite my doctor explaining that I physically cannot ever meet their BMI criteria and to expect me to do the impossible is extremely unfair, my application was still rejected with no indication that I'd be reconsidered or that the CCG themselves would be in favour of me either unless I first had bariatric surgery... a surgery I simply do not need because I CAN lose weight on my own through controlling my food and exercise, I know I can do it, I've done it before when my boobs were less of an issue, I just need my boobs to be smaller enough that they aren't causing me constant pain so I can move correctly.
I've never felt so crushed or defeated or pessimistic about my future; it feels like I'm going to be stuck in this tired, sore, unhealthy, big-boobed body forever.
It feels like my only real option now is to go private and fund the surgery myself seeing as the surgeon themselves seem so confident that I don't stand a chance of getting one on the NHS, however I'm currently unemployed and struggling to start up my own wedding photography business thanks to Covid and reduction surgery is just so far outside the realms of what I'll be able to afford for the foreseeable future. It makes me feel really uncomfortable and selfish to have to ask people for such a huge amount of help... but I feel so drained that I'm officially desperate.
I know for a fact that once my boobs are a manageable size and I can buy a bra that fits and supports me I'll be able to do everything I currently can't do, but I need your help to get there.
I thank everyone who decides to donate so so much, no matter how much or little they can give; literally every single penny helps get me closer to living a healthy, happy and (most importantly) pain-free life.
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- Claire Entwisle
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