At thirteen in the early 1960s, the bra was a significant female symbol for sexy, svelte and stylish, inspiring irresistible desire in impressionable males. Skinny and shapeless, I was obsessed by want, imploring my mother for one as a dire necessity. But you really have nothing to put in it was my self-piteous perspective of her refusal. Want wasn’t need, though peer pressure decreed a different demand. My innocence incited several combative months with her, finally relenting to buy me a lacy, cotton variety, far sexier than baggy singlets and blooming pyjamas. My bra’s cup size was a tiny AA and a popular female purchase, reflecting I was just a typical teenager buying a bra needlessly as sexual erotica.
Breasts, pushed up, out or pointed, complemented by cleavage, were intrinsic to being sexy as my delusion determined. After three years of still appearing flat and increasingly aware of male lasciviousness, I needed more than a symbol; a carnal, curvaceous contour that sexed my body for seduction, cajoling my mother into buying me a padded bra with great sexual expectations, implants too extreme.
At 18, maturation declared a D size cup. While enflaming amorous male ardour, I was oft embarrassed by my buxom bust constantly bemoaning my body image, but my mother’s specially made bras for her very large breasts dictated a genetic destiny beyond my control.
Consistently unhappy with big breasts, I tried to reassert being thin, appreciating sexiness wasn’t about the superficial, personality more paramount. It worked, reducing my cup size to B and no longer needing a bra, vindicating my mother’s initial common sense though still wearing one as modest, social decorum.
Aged 50yearsomething and perusing Vogue, a perfume advertisement with a French actress wearing a black, delicately laced bodysuit sparked my passion to have one too, perfume irrelevant. The bodysuit boasted more subtle sensuality for individual comfort as well as sex appeal, but David Jones merchandised only thick, elasticised, sexless, stretch ones for sham, slim silhouettes, no others available; likewise Myer and most lingerie stores. My persistence eventually espied my desired purchase in a recycle clothes shop currently possessing many of diverse designs and colours and unable to remember when I last wore a bra. Soft, silky bodysuits, some with moulded bras, now commercial, offer sexy self-indulgence from leading retailers
Liberating lingerie without the physical pain of a chest tourniquet or the unflattering, asexual, albeit sensible, sports bra,  the bodysuit is essentially a bralette that grew, sexual understanding enlightened by greater perspicacity.
My bras are now precious antiques reminiscent of an adolescent fantasy no longer real, almost an anachronism in this life’s tapestry of sexual freedoms and something of an erotic gerrymander. Social puritans today proscribing the sexualisation of young girls in naked selfie scenarios deny a norm of hormonal horizons in a new digital reality. In my late 60s now, my naivety about the bra are ironically amusing, female sexuality inherently human in whatever epoch and with whatever symbols.