Ask Sam letter


To Sam

Something wrong with my breasts!?

Hi Sam,

Until being exposed to sexual images of women, i thought my boobs were 'normal' but i now think otherwise. There is a lump inside my left breast and after a quick google search it said it was either normal in people of my age (14) or cancer. Breast cancer runs in my family (every female both sides has had it) yet i don't know how to bring it up in a conversation. My nipples are also puffy, not just slightly but a lot, (i wouldn't recommend googling 'puffy nipples' but it is kind of like that but bumpy). I'm really scared and self conscious, i don't feel i can ever have a sexual, intimate relationship with somebody in the future. Thankyou for taking the time to read this, please help!

Ask Sam


Hi there

It’s normal to worry about the way you look, especially as you grow and develop during puberty. ‘Normal’ comes in many different forms. Getting to know your body can help you to recognise when something isn’t normal for you. It is normal for breasts to change slightly during the month due to hormonal changes linked to your periods, so you may notice they might become more puffy or bumpy at times. If you notice this happens every month, it may just be part of your cycle.

It sounds like the lump and your nipples are something you are concerned about. If you ever notice anything about your body that doesn’t seem normal, it’s important to get this checked by a doctor. Sometimes Google can leave us with more questions. A doctor can talk this through properly with you. You can see a doctor by yourself, confidentially, and can ask to see a female doctor if you prefer.

It can be embarrassing to talk about our bodies, but it’s something your doctor is used to supporting people with.

Because a doctor will know what things to look for, they can advise if the problems you have noticed are normal or not. And they can help you get support if you need it. I can hear that cancer is a very real worry for you because of your family history. Often getting support as soon as you can helps you to get the best outcomes if it is something more serious.

Whatever the outcome, it sounds like you feel very worried about what it might be like to start a sexual relationship with someone when you are worried about the way you look. It's really important that you feel comfortable with anyone you have a sexual relationship with and never feel pressured into doing anything that doesn’t feel right for you. Working on your confidence may help you to feel more able to begin an intimate relationship with someone in the future, and know that if they do not accept you for you, they may not be the right person to have an intimate relationship with anyway.

This is always something you are welcome to talk through with a Childline counsellor, they won’t judge what you have to say. You can also look on the Childline message boards for support from other young people who might have experience or knowledge you may find helpful.

Take care


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