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Reading the thread about TIMs taking over ABTF subreadit has inspired me to tell my own story of how TIMs behave in bra stores.

I have owned a lingerie store for over 20 years. We have always had a very open policy to helping men who wanted to wear women's lingerie as long as they were respectful and followed our rules ie: no men trying on lingerie with only one salesperson on the floor. I taught my staff to be no more than professional when helping men buy lingerie for themselves, to be very careful and not to react to anything they said except with indifference. We never knew if men were trying to live out some sexual fantasy when shopping with us, where they get off on our shock or their humiliation, so never to feed into that.

Over the last decade or so we have had less and less of those types of encounters and more and more requests from TIMs for bra fittings. It took me years to realize how much more abusive and taxing the requests from "trans women" were than from our previous male customers. At least before I knew what to be aware of and I could ban someone from the store for their behaviour. With TIMs I always feel like I am walking on eggshells. Like if I don't treat these encounters exactly like how they believe I treat my female customers that I (and my business) could suffer repercussions.

Fitting TIMs made me realize that, no, transwomen are not women. I have never been treated the way TIMs treat me in a fitting by women. TIMs are unbelievably picky when it comes to bras. Women have an understanding that bras are challenging to find the right fit. TIMs demand that I find them bras that make their chest look like it is on a different body. Even when I find them the bra that fits, makes their chest look how they want it to look and is the exact type of lace and cut they want they do not buy it. Less then 10% of my encounters with TIMs have resulted in sales and most of these fittings are upwards of an hour long (taking me away from my other customers and work. Meanwhile, when I fit women and developing girls, 95% of those fittings result in a sale. TIMs are super demanding and high maintenance. They require you to stroke their egos and tell you how great they look in bras that I know they are not going to buy anyway. They complain that implants isn't covered by the government, meanwhile I have to pay if I want to reduce my very very large natural breasts. I find it funny how people who claim to be persecuted women have the exact same attitude of entitlement of white rich men.

About 3 years ago I had an experience with a TIM that made me change my mind about how I feel about "trans women". At first I didn't realize that he was a man. He was asking me what I he could wear with a strapless dress. I told him we had some great strapless bras.

"Oh no" he said "my breasts are way too big for a strapless bra."

"I know in the past there haven't been good options for strapless bras but now there are great options even for busty women. I have performed dance recitals in this one." I pointed to a bra that I works great for even my 38HH sized breasts.

"My breasts are much bigger than yours. It may work for you and I wish I could wear it but it won't work they are very heavy" he replied. I looked at him, he looked like a 34G which is 5 sizes smaller than me and tried to assure him (all the while thinking he was a woman) that he could wear a strapless bra.

When I got him into the change room and he took off his dress I saw that he didn't have anything that resembled breasts at all. He was completely flat chested. He was wearing a completely hollow bra. This man was trying to dismiss my struggles with my real breasts and finding a bra to fit and support them with his imaginary breasts.

He did end up in buying a bra from us that day. The bra that he had worn in he had bought from us too. At the cash he said to me. "I look so great in this bra. All the men at work always tell me how great my tits look when I wear it."

"I'm so sorry you experienced that" I said "you should report them to HR".

"No, I love it" he said "My tits look great and everybody notices it" Then there was lots of lewd gesturing on his part.

It was a very upsetting interaction. I stayed polite and professional the whole time. But it was infuriating to have my lived experience with my breasts undermined by someone with imaginary breasts.

I didn't peak at this point. But I did decide "No, transwomen are not women".

Reading the thread about TIMs taking over ABTF subreadit has inspired me to tell my own story of how TIMs behave in bra stores. I have owned a lingerie store for over 20 years. We have always had a very open policy to helping men who wanted to wear women's lingerie as long as they were respectful and followed our rules ie: no men trying on lingerie with only one salesperson on the floor. I taught my staff to be no more than professional when helping men buy lingerie for themselves, to be very careful and not to react to anything they said except with indifference. We never knew if men were trying to live out some sexual fantasy when shopping with us, where they get off on our shock or their humiliation, so never to feed into that. Over the last decade or so we have had less and less of those types of encounters and more and more requests from TIMs for bra fittings. It took me years to realize how much more abusive and taxing the requests from "trans women" were than from our previous male customers. At least before I knew what to be aware of and I could ban someone from the store for their behaviour. With TIMs I always feel like I am walking on eggshells. Like if I don't treat these encounters exactly like how they believe I treat my female customers that I (and my business) could suffer repercussions. Fitting TIMs made me realize that, no, transwomen are not women. I have never been treated the way TIMs treat me in a fitting by women. TIMs are unbelievably picky when it comes to bras. Women have an understanding that bras are challenging to find the right fit. TIMs demand that I find them bras that make their chest look like it is on a different body. Even when I find them the bra that fits, makes their chest look how they want it to look and is the exact type of lace and cut they want they do not buy it. Less then 10% of my encounters with TIMs have resulted in sales and most of these fittings are upwards of an hour long (taking me away from my other customers and work. Meanwhile, when I fit women and developing girls, 95% of those fittings result in a sale. TIMs are super demanding and high maintenance. They require you to stroke their egos and tell you how great they look in bras that I know they are not going to buy anyway. They complain that implants isn't covered by the government, meanwhile I have to pay if I want to reduce my very very large natural breasts. I find it funny how people who claim to be persecuted women have the exact same attitude of entitlement of white rich men. About 3 years ago I had an experience with a TIM that made me change my mind about how I feel about "trans women". At first I didn't realize that he was a man. He was asking me what I he could wear with a strapless dress. I told him we had some great strapless bras. "Oh no" he said "my breasts are way too big for a strapless bra." "I know in the past there haven't been good options for strapless bras but now there are great options even for busty women. I have performed dance recitals in this one." I pointed to a bra that I works great for even my 38HH sized breasts. "My breasts are much bigger than yours. It may work for you and I wish I could wear it but it won't work they are very heavy" he replied. I looked at him, he looked like a 34G which is 5 sizes smaller than me and tried to assure him (all the while thinking he was a woman) that he could wear a strapless bra. When I got him into the change room and he took off his dress I saw that he didn't have anything that resembled breasts at all. He was completely flat chested. He was wearing a completely hollow bra. This man was trying to dismiss my struggles with my real breasts and finding a bra to fit and support them with his imaginary breasts. He did end up in buying a bra from us that day. The bra that he had worn in he had bought from us too. At the cash he said to me. "I look so great in this bra. All the men at work always tell me how great my tits look when I wear it." "I'm so sorry you experienced that" I said "you should report them to HR". "No, I love it" he said "My tits look great and everybody notices it" Then there was lots of lewd gesturing on his part. It was a very upsetting interaction. I stayed polite and professional the whole time. But it was infuriating to have my lived experience with my breasts undermined by someone with imaginary breasts. I didn't peak at this point. But I did decide "No, transwomen are not women".

156 comments

[–] BloodOfTheRaptor 179 points (+179|-0)

He did end up in buying a bra from us that day. The bra that he had worn in he had bought from us too. At the cash he said to me. "I look so great in this bra. All the men at work always tell me how great my tits look when I wear it." "I'm so sorry you experienced that" I said "you should report them to HR". "No, I love it" he said "My tits look great and everybody notices it" Then there was lots of lewd gesturing on his part.

Fucking disgusting. We experience a lifetime of trauma and harassment and it turns them on as both the perpetrator/abuser and as the victim. Psychopaths.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 79 points (+79|-0)

Exactly. I felt even worse because I was at work so I couldn't tell him how I really felt.

[–] Tabitha_Tuesday 49 points (+49|-0)

Guarantee you he was making that up. Most men wouldn't be making comments like that towards a woman at work these days. It was a fetish dream.

[–] urprettymuchnuthin 19 points (+19|-0)

Yea, I've never heard men say this about a woman's breasts. Hell, I never heard this even in high school where that behavior is more prevalent.

[–] [Deleted] 114 points (+114|-0)

My friend went to a VS store the other day where a bra fitter was a TIM who insisted on going to a fitting room with her to help. She ran away but I assume a lot of women would stay out of fear of being called transphobes.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 82 points (+82|-0)

I've had a few TIMs apply and luckily there were always reasons not to hire them. But honestly I worry about the day that a TIM applies and then cries discrimination when I don't hire him.

[–] [Deleted] 45 points (+45|-0)

I feel for you, and others in your situation. I remember there was a funeral home that was involved in a major lawsuit over such a thing (I think the person transitioned while already employed at the funeral home?). It sucks to be fired as a result of dealing with a mental illness but honestly there's a real reason people are deeply uncomfortable about TIMs and I'd hate for a grieving family to feel like they need to walk on eggshells during a time of loss.

[–] Hermione 36 points (+36|-0)

Ugh. IIRC they didn’t even fire him, they just transferred him into a different job in the back? So he wouldn’t shock grieving families who just want to focus on mourning their loved one without a spectacle?

[–] Zaftig [OP] 33 points (+33|-0)

I have lots of customers who wouldn’t want to be fitted by a Tim and I bet most of the people who say they wouldn’t mind it actually would. Meanwhile if I don’t hire a Tim for that reason I’m discriminating? If my religious Muslim customers complain that they don’t want to be fitted by a man some left wing radicals are going to be very confused not knowing which side they support. I’m actually amused by the scenario.

[–] NO 13 points (+13|-0)

Ans they would have, seeing as the man threw a tantrum

[–] GCat 72 points (+72|-0)

It's alarming how this ideology is teaching women and girls to ignore their instincts about men in their spaces.

My pre teen daughter is the reason I even started looking in to all this. And I sucked her out of the vortex as fast as humanly possible.

[–] hesco 9 points (+10|-1)

that is the point, though. isn't?
to tear down the boundaries which women and girls sought to re-establish with with #metoo.

[–] GCat 10 points (+10|-0)

I think the groundwork for this was laid down long before #metoo, but they've been getting much bolder over the past couple years. MRAs have been around for decades, and they seemed to have had their moment on the internet in the early 2010s. MRAs then became more dominated by pick up artists, then MGTOWs, then incels. Incels then became TRAs. All of these movements (or maybe it is just the same movement with rebranding every few years) has been about resentment towards women having boundaries and agency.

I think "trans activism" has been much more successful than any of those other movements because they have been able to position themselves as the most oppressed people ever. Well-meaning people have been trained for decades to support the underdog and fight for the oppressed so they have also been going along with trans activism without realizing its sinister underpinnings.

[–] Womancup 64 points (+64|-0)

All mothers should tell their daughters to run away from such interactions without worrying about being seen as bigoted. I'm so glad worried about teenage girls in this situation

[–] Kevina 45 points (+45|-0)

Call me all the names you want bro. I wonder how the other employees feel about this? Like if I ask for a female fitter is everyone there going to pitch a fit and terf me on youtube?

[–] Hermione 27 points (+27|-0)

Woah, someone needs to call corporate. I wouldn’t have allowed another woman in the fitting room let alone a dude!

Seems pretty out of place for a victoria's secret, but both of the real lingerie stores I've been to have the (female) employee come in with you, unless you object. At first I found it so weird to have another person so actively involved in trying on and removing bras, but these are also the only places I've ever found bras that actually fit. You're fitted in small rooms, not little tight cubicles, and the woman explains everything she's doing. It was surprisingly helpful to learn firsthand what a well-fitted bra looks like, especially as someone with a hard to find bra size. So weird for a victoria's secret, but I highly recommend at a place that actually knows what they're doing.

[–] goatsauce 17 points (+17|-0)

I used to do retail management, and Victoria's Secret notoriously didn't train their bra fitters well. Their sizing is way off from industry standard, and their sales staff sizes to whatever they have in stock. Their sizes also caps out at smaller cup sizes than higher end brands, so they're constantly trying to fit people into a "sister" size by sizing up the band to get a larger cup. Don't recommend, they're a mess, and I imagine that's why a store would hire a TIM to work at one. Most retail anymore will take whoever applies, especially if it's a busy season. Everyone is understaffed and turnover at many places (especially mall stores) is very high because the pay is so low and the hours are horrible.

[–] Hermione 1 points (+1|-0)

I’ve done that, but IIRC, I wasn’t actually topless or braless when they were measuring me, I had a t-shirt on. Either way, we can agree that this dude had no business whatsoever being in there

[–] FFS 103 points (+103|-0)

That sounds like such an unimaginably difficult position they've put you in.

I hope you've been able to get your story over to noconflicttheysaid.org

It appears some of your clients or their allies have tried to hack her site (wonder why?) and her submission form is broken but her gmail address is listed there. She has thousands of submissions, yours would be an important one as the economic and dignity impact can be huge for you.

Stay strong.

[–] Verdandi 95 points (+95|-0)

I find it funny how people who claim to be persecuted women have the exact same attitude of entitlement of white rich men.

[–] [Deleted] 44 points (+46|-2)

It's usually the rich ones. Working class men are too busy doing useful real world things such as fixing toilets or welding metal.

There's this guy:

https://www.kcra.com/article/vermont-electrician-starts-her-own-business-supporting-lgbtq-community/34015620

Imagine you're trying to support a female-owned business, you pick this one (not wanting a strange man in your house anyway), and this guy shows up.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 40 points (+40|-0)

**“It's extremely empowering and inspiring to hear about women who have persevered and risen above some of the challenges to become successful in nontraditional fields. This is actually our time to support women getting back to work,” said Alison Lamagna. **

said with not even one ounce of irony.

[–] GenderHeretic 16 points (+16|-0)

Imagine you're trying to support a female-owned business, you pick this one (not wanting a strange man in your house anyway), and this guy shows up.

A lot of the clientele for such a business would be women seeking a female electrician for safety reasons, some directly because of dangerous experiences with male workers. Fucking disgusting what they put women through for VALIDAAAAATION, and how everyone just applauds this abuse.

[–] Veneficca 10 points (+10|-0)

That is prime peak material. I'm saving it to show dubious friends.

"I'm so sorry you experienced that" I said "you should report them to HR".

LOVED that. Perfect. I'm so sorry you have to deal with TiM. And they barely buy anything anyway.

If sex were a protected category, this would be sexual harassment. Instead "gender identity" is the protected category, so sexual harassment of women has been legalized. Always a win-win for the men's team.

[–] snarkoleptic 79 points (+79|-0) Edited

I worked at a retail store where I also fitted bras, and a TIM would frequently come in and request to use the changing room/get fitted. I didn't know he was also a lesbian fetishist and had been essentially stalking my female manager until I was told later after the first time he showed up during one of my shifts, but it made a lot of sense because he kept asking me if she was working that day. Absolutely terrifying.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 44 points (+44|-0)

It can be scary working in retail because there is no where to hide. Now it's even worse.

[–] snarkoleptic 35 points (+35|-0)

Right? I felt so scared for her, and when I told her about it she seemed terrified, he had been doing it for YEARS and finally came back after a fucking hiatus.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 35 points (+35|-0)

I was working at a bar once. Some guy followed me to work after I rejected him on the street. I didn't know he was following me. He returned the next day and told them he was my uncle and he needed my phone number because my cousin was sick or something and then he started calling me. After that experience I made very strict rules about not giving information to customers about the staff including when they would be working next.

Yep. Had a similar thing happen at the gym I used to work out at. He tried asking me out multiple times and would continually try to talk to me and get the machine next to mine.

I started changing up the time I went and somehow he would ALWAYS magically show up and just stare and smile.

I finally figured out that he noted the car I drove and maybe the plate number and would drive by, look for my car in the lot and started parking right next to me so I couldn’t even sneak out without a potential encounter.

And I’m supposed to welcome a guy with the potential to be like this in the locker room to stare at me naked too? I just quit going and cancelled my membership.

[–] meesh2020k 69 points (+69|-0)

I used to work at a women's clothing store a long time ago and I had an experience with what I now know to be an AGP. Luckily, this was before we were forced to call them women. He was dressed like a woman but had stubble. He wanted to try on really, really short shorts. He told me he was a hosiery model and that he had to look really sexy. He would try on all these really short shorts, and then want me to tell him I thought he looked sexy. All while he had an obvious dick bulge. It was so uncomfortable and he was so creepy, that I mumbled answers and avoided him when he would ask for different sizes. Now, we are supposed to call these creeps men. Now, 18 yr old me would be considered transphobic for avoiding him and not helping him when he was making me feel uncomfortable. Now that I know about AGP and understand it better, I'm disgusted with what was actually going on and that now, young women and girls are forced to participate in these perverted fantasies so these men can get their "gender euphoria." Transwomen are not any kind of woman.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 41 points (+41|-0)

I have had almost the exact same experience. I have developed so many phrases to avoid telling them the things they want you to say to them. There are also the frequent phone calls to deal with.

[–] Carrots90 31 points (+31|-0)

Yes, please make a post about how to avoid’ ‘fetish farming’, ie when they try to force you to participate in their perversions

[–] meesh2020k 24 points (+24|-0)

Not OP, but basically don't feed into it. Use the grey rock method. These men feed off attention and our reactions. When you interact with them, don't show any reaction and just be very brief and professional.

[–] TervenLeo 18 points (+18|-0)

I'm curious - what are those phrases?

[–] Zaftig [OP] 38 points (+38|-0)

Everything turns to meh when dealing with men who I think get off on the experience of making me uncomfortable or humiliating themselves. I’ve had several men tell me that their dominatrix have sent them in. They always ask “does it make you uncomfortable?” I respond: “ “No, I don’t care.” As bland as possible.
If they ask me if something is sexy I say “sexy is subjective” never give any more information than that. Meanwhile if a woman asked me if something is sexy I’m all over it. “Girl you are fire.” “I love this on you” type of thing. Always sincere though. Meanwhile men get. “This is your size” if he asks how it looks it is never more than “ok”. If he asks me to come in the change room and it isn’t for a bra fitting I say “I don’t need to”.

Also when people call on the phone and try to get you to say certain things I always tell my staff to avoid certain words for example sheer or nipples. Their acrobats actually can be pretty funny how they try their hardest to get you to say something that they will get off on. Once we have a pretty good idea that they are being a pervert we hang up. Often it can be hard to tell though because they start off with asking about getting a bra fitting for their wife or they’re a single dad and they’re bringing in their daughter. As soon as they try to get you to say words like nipples that’s when we hang up. No dad called a lingerie store and mentioned his daughter’s nipples.

[–] Moonpriestess Butler hater 59 points (+59|-0)

I really feel for you. Bra fittings are supposed to be providing a service to women, but instead you have men using it to get off.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 46 points (+46|-0)

I got into the business to help women. Helping men wasn't so bad before because they actually used to spend money. TIMs almost never do.

[–] dixiechick547 16 points (+16|-0)

I worked in lingerie in a large department store. Men would come in get bras and leave a mess in the dressing room. We banned them. They could buy but could not use the dressing room. This was in the 80s. I guess we’d get sued today.

[–] lucrecia 58 points (+58|-0)

When I got him into the change room and he took off his dress I saw that he didn't have anything that resembled breasts at all. He was completely flat chested. He was wearing a completely hollow bra.

:D Amazing.

I've wondered before about what life is like for bra-fitters at the moment; this mostly matches what I was picturing though it sounds even worse than I thought. And I totally get what you say about previously being able to ban fetishists if they caused trouble; used to do a job that sometimes brought me into contact with them and we had pretty clear boundaries on that; I've wondered how that's been eroded with the recent Everything Is Transphobic norm; the policy meetings must be a nightmare.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 66 points (+66|-0)

Honestly it took me years to realize what was happening. I didn't peak until a few months ago and retail has mostly been closed here because of the pandemic. I started doing most of the fittings for TIMs because I didn't want my staff to feel the emotional drain of helping someone so high maintenance for an hour or so with no sale. Retail can be so draining but even more so if you feel like your labour isn't resulting in sales.

[–] littleowl12 47 points (+47|-0)

Even HSTSs are manly in their thinking. Getting sexually harassed at work? "The boys just LOVE ME!" Very dudely mentality.

Sorry, hate readers, but it's true.

[–] Rainbows 32 points (+32|-0)

Straight autogynephiles might also develop a pseudo-bisexuality since male attention validates their fantasy of being a sexy woman. I suspect that was the type poor OP encountered.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 21 points (+21|-0)

I didn’t even really believe him that it happened at all. Would creepy men who make such comments about a woman in the workplace make those same comments about a Tim? Just part of his misogynistic fantasy.

[–] Rainbows 7 points (+7|-0) Edited

Exactly, both the non-existing breasts and the male attention was a part of his fantasy, a fantasy that you shouldn't have to be forced to be a part of. That is not your job! I hope there can be a solution to this problem, I know that many women working in retail have similar experiences. I'm sorry you have to deal with this!

[–] KBash 8 points (+8|-0)

Bingo. The pseudo-bisexuality is about validating themselves as a woman.

I think you can generally tell the difference between HSTS and AGPs by their affectations. HSTS will have more typical affectations of gay men; AGPs usually don't have any sort of natural (unfeigned) femininity (it's usually easy to tell the difference between the more natural and the feigned affectations), and their personalities are 100% male.

Also, it's worth noting that straight male narcissists who are not attractive enough to get a lot of automatic attention from women- straight male narcissists who spend all their time chasing and wooing women in order to abuse them, because they won't just get women/victims falling all over them- these men also love the attention they get from gay men, because it's a rare time they get the sexual attention they crave. (I think this is because women tend to be much pickier, due to the cost/benefit analysis of sex with men for women being quite different than it is for other men, IMO). Narcissistic straight men who are not homophobic will certainly love attention from gay men!

[–] Lolo 35 points (+35|-0)

I'm so sorry you have to endure these morons. Thank you for serving actual women with grace, we need you.

[–] Zaftig [OP] 27 points (+27|-0)

Thank you. I got in to the business to help women. I didn't mind helping men because money is important to running a business. However these Tims cost me money and rarely make me money.

[–] [Deleted] 19 points (+19|-0) Edited

Stupid question: if they're frequent enough that they're an issue, can you hire a gay man to deal with them? Send him to deal with the TIMs, or at least the problematic ones that want to objectify the female staff!

Obviously it goes without saying that you shouldn't have to put up with this shit.

[–] VirginiaWolfberry 35 points (+35|-0)

A gender critical ally gay (or straight) man might be good. If there are complaints that they want a female to help them instead, it could be gently stated that the man helping identifies as female, so all’s right in the world.

[–] Carrots90 11 points (+11|-0)

The men will need to claim they are women. Otherwise the TIM can demand to be fitted by ‘another woman’ ugh

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