Readers Write




Surrounded By Youth and Beauty

6 comments | June 13th, 2012


(story submitted by Mirror Stalker, a Chestist)

I'm no Homecoming Queen but I used to think I was "cute".  Lately it's like I'm surrounded by youth and beauty and it makes me feel old and unattractive.  Every where I look, I see women skinnier thsn me, prettier than me, younger than me, and looking like they're having more fun than me.

I don't know if it's that I'm turning 35 in a few months, or living in New York, or working in the industry I do.  It's not about having a guy, it's about feeling pretty and confident when I look in the mirror or see my reflection in a store window.  I can't stand comparing myself to other women but I have been and not favorably.  I'm seriously thinking about cosmetic "enhancements" to look younger and feel prettier. {end story} 

How we feel about how we look can influence our happyness and self-confidence in so many ways (go ahead, you can quote us on that).  You find yourself comparing you to others?  You ever win that competition or is it alwys self-defeating? 

#lifestagesHow Deep Is It?

10 comments | June 12th, 2012

Screen Shot 2012-02-20 at 12.19.21 PM

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

We were 14 or 15 and spending the summer at the beach.  At least in my memory, it was one of those perfect-cliche summer nights, filled with moon, stars, the smell of the ocean.  

There were 4 of us, all school friends.  We rode our bikes over to the bridge in town without really knowing what we were doing or where we were going, just pulled there by something.  We get to the bridge and J says she's going to jump the 15 feet into the water.  Then G says she will and N says she will.  There were few things I wanted to do less than that.  I was scared of the jump but even more scared of not jumping and never hearing the end of it.

J jumps unhesitatingly and straight down.  G is getting ready to follow her when J screams in pain.  None of us had thought to check and the water was only 3 feet deep.  J had hit a rock, broke a tooth and cut her face.  No one ...

Happy HatingI’m Not A Mind Reader

10 comments | June 12th, 2012


(story submitted by Michelle T, a Chestist)

I'm not a mind reader.  I don't know what you want or are thinking unless you tell me.  I can try my hardest to figure it out.  I can guess and look for the signals but I can not read your mind. I do not know why you expect me to.  It is not fair. {end story}

We don't know who in her life Michelle's talking about, but we do know that sometimes some people think that if they think it we should get it just through osmosis.  We can all also be guilty of doing the same thing ourselves every now and agin, no?  You ever expect anyone to read your mind?  Anyone in your life expect you to be reading theirs (partners, bosses, husbands, friends...).  Do tell.

#lifestagesGrowing Up Late

6 comments | June 11th, 2012

FLY post

(story submitted by FL, a Chestist)

I'm 26 and I'm refusing to grow-up.  I know, age is just a mind-set, yet all my friends are already settling down with "real jobs" and relationships.  Everyone seems in such a rush and almost burdened by the day by day.

I like uncertainty and being free.  I like chasing excitement and the thrill of not knowing what's coming next.  I like screaming outloud when I'm happy.  I like making ends meet but knowing I can leave at any time.  I have this one friend who says she thinks I'm running away from responsibility.  She's probably right I just like it this way.  {end story}

How old were you when you "grew up" (if you have)?  And what's growing up mean to you, any way?

Love & SexEmotionally Abused

5 comments | June 11th, 2012

chestist sad

(story submitted anonymously, by a 31 yo Chestist)

When i realized that he had been emotionally abusing me, i called him on it. i told him it had to stop or i'd leave. he did stop, and sometimes i wish i'd left anyway. i don't think i'll ever be able to move on or trust him again.  {end story}

Can you have a healthy and happy relationship without trust?  If trust is lost...can you find it?

#thecumulativeeffectWhy Can’t A Girl?

9 comments | June 11th, 2012

double standard

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

I've been living with my boyfriend for 3 years and together with him for almost 5.  We're in love and everything is so good with us.  We've talked a lot about marriage but he hasn't asked me yet.  I feel like I should just ask him; like I should just get a ring and ask him to marry me.  Why can't a girl do that?  Why am I "supposed" to wait for him to ask me?

The only reason I'm not doing it now is because I don't know how he'll react.  What if he's planning something?  I don't want to emasculate him, I just want to marry him.  {end story}

Ah, ye olde double standard rears its head again.  What do you think...of course a girl can ask a guy anything, but why does it still feel like a girl can't (or maybe shouldn't) do this (what with it being the 21c and all)?  Would you ever ask your BF (or GF) to marry you?

#lifestages6th Sense

7 comments | June 11th, 2012


(story submitted by Elena K, a Chestist)

I remember when I was younger, growing up and still living at home, that I always had this sense that no matter what happened everything would work out for me.  It was like a quiet comfort and security that I'd be fine no mattr what did and din't happen.  Not invincibility, just security.  Even when things weren't good I just knew they would be eventually.

I'm 31 now and realize I've lost that feeling.  Life's worked out well for me so far but I've entered a period of uncertainty and have realized that the sense of well-being that had always been there isn't any more.  I don't know where or how or when I lost it, I'd just like it back.  {end story}

Any advice for Elena on getting her groove back?  Any of you have a similar sense that no matter what happens, everything is going to be just fine?  (we sure hope so.)


Happy HatingHow Do You Deal With Anger

6 comments | June 9th, 2012

black explosion chestist

(story submitted by Pissed, a Chestist)

I am pissed.  Lately though I feel like I'm always feeling that way.  The thing is I'm getting so angry in my professional life that it's spilling over into my personal life and I don't know how to stop it from happening. 

Too many people aren't doing what they say, not listening, or not doing things well.  I get so frustrated and angry and then when I should be off doing something totally unrelated, I'm still frustrated and angry and it just sucks.  I want to leave it where it belongs, at work.  {end story}

How do you deal with anger (and/or frustration) so that it doesn't follow you like a shadow?

#thecumulativeeffectSpanx on My Mind

8 comments | June 7th, 2012

50s chestist

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

Did you read that Adele wore 4 pairs of Spanx to the Grammy's?  A week ago I read that the woman who invented Spanx is the first self-made female billionaire. 

Isn't it just fucking ironic that the first female billionaire is one because she invented a way to change how we look and help us pretend our bodies are different than they are?  I can't decide if it's a genius invention or so sad.  I've worn them before and I'll wear them again. Still, I think it's one thing to want to look differently and another when we pretend that we actually do.  Wouldn't we make fun of a guy who wore lifts?  Why is that any different?  {end story}

Ok everyone, what do you think?  Ever worn Spanx or some equivalent?  Would you?


Your Mother Was a Nightmare!

4 comments | June 7th, 2012


(story submitted by PL, a Chestist)

My BFF's mother died suddenly a few years ago.

When we were growing up, she was mean, drunk, absent, emotionally abusive, I'm talking a seriously terrible mother.  When they had any relationship at all it was a bad one.  Despite all this, BFF glorifies this woman and remembers her as an amazing mother, and an example of the mother she hopes to be.  This post-death version of who her mother was has not even a slight resemblance to reality.  This woman terrorized her.  I want to shake her and scream and wake her from these fantasies of maternal bliss.  I get so angry and even a little bit disgusted. Then I think maybe this is how she's reconciling not being able to reconcile.  If this is how she chooses to remember her mother, does it matter that it's a total fairytale?  Why does it bother me so much that she's forgotten how things actually were for her?  It's not my life. {end story}

We're all capable of reinventing the past to fit our present.  What do you think...should our writer remind ...

The Gift of Palm Reading

2 comments | June 6th, 2012


(story by Erin)

 We gathered around a spread of figs and cheese, chips and salsa, chocolate chip cookies and candied coconut. A much-needed ladies’ night for old friends and new. Later that night I quietly thanked myself for pulling it together and getting out of the house as I was reminded how endearing it is to create the space to enjoy and grow true friendship. We had planned to watch a movie, but even after three hours of laughter and conversation, no one, except the hostess, was ready to ease back into silence. Instead we turned reading palms and the horoscopes for The Year of the Dragon.

Now for the disclaimer: I don’t believe in any of that stuff. Zodiac signs and horoscopes? It’s fun. One day they’re right on target and the next they’re way out of the ballpark. Ougie boards? Never done it but it’s always been my take that a present and in the flesh person is moving the planchette. Tarot cards? Cards reading the future? I find it ridiculous. But my fascination with psychic abilities stems back to my youthful days of watching Carrie, The ...

Love & SexIntimacy

3 comments | June 6th, 2012

Chestist grunge

(story submitted by FG, a Chestist)

I've been in love with my boyfriend since we started dating 6 years ago.  He's cute, kind and funny.  My parents and friends love him.  The thing is we never have sex any more and we haven't for 2 years.  We really have no physical intimacy.  I am too  young to give up sex he just doesn't seem interested.  I want sex and love but am worried I can't have them.  If we're not having sex now what happens if we get married?  {end story}.

What do you guys think?  Do sex and love have different expiration dates?  Does one last longer than the other?

#lifestagesI Love Recovery

5 comments | June 4th, 2012

chestist threads

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

i love being in recovery; life without cutting and my eating disorder is so satisfying. I just want to tell everyone who is struggling how great it is, even though i had to gain weight i feel somewhat confident and my life isn't defined by how many cuts i have or how many pounds i lost. {end story}

We love a story of triumph in progress.  Did you know that 30% of HS girls have eating disorders?  Did you know something like 20+ million girls 8-18 self-harm?  Something crazy is going on when th numbers look like this...but let's never forget to celebrate the individual, lik eour writer, who rises above what's been to create what will be.  You ever been in recovery?  Know anyone who has?

#lifestagesNot As It’s Supposed To Be

9 comments | June 3rd, 2012


(story submitted by CHN, a Chestist)

I just graduated from college.  I don't have a job and I have no prospects.

I think I have to move back in with my parents, which means I have to leave the city, boy, and friends I love.  I'm educated, smart, and I got good grades.  Why does the future seem so bleak?  This is not how it was supposed to go.  (end story}

Whether you've just graduated or not, there are times when things don't seem like they're going as they're supposed to...what do you do?  How do you cope and/or turn them around? 

Happy HatingRisk Losing

5 comments | June 3rd, 2012

Chestist Sun, red and black

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

When I was a kid I was really competitive.  If i didn't win I sulked, no matter if it was Candy Land, soccer, tennis, boys, grades or anything.

Lately though, I find myself competition averse.  If it comes down to winning or losing, I do not even want to play.  Sometimes I wonder if it is a reaction to when I was younger.  The thing is I think I need to be more competitive since everyone else is.  Can I win if I don't risk losing?  {end story}

Are you competitive?  Does losing hate on your happy, motivate you to play harder, or make you not want to play at all?