British woman reveals how her mother 'ironed her breasts' when she was 13 to make her 'u
A woman has revealed how her mother ironed her breasts aged 13 after discovering she was gay, amid calls for awareness of the practice to be taught in UK schools, Daily Mail reported.
The victim, named only as 'Simone', is among up to 1,000 women and girls in Britain feared to have undergone the painful and dangerous procedure.
The practice involves their chests being pressed down with a hot stone to delay breast formation amid a belief it will protect them from male attention.
The practice of breast ironing involves a girl's chest being pressed down with a hot stone to delay breast formation. A girl who suffered the procedure is pictured in Cameroon in May 2007
Simone told the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme that her mother hoped a flat chest would make her daughter 'ugly and no one will admire me'.
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She said: 'It's really an abuse. It dehumanises you - you are not a human being. They hold your hands and then they press on your breast. It really hurts.
'Imagine a hot object on your bare body and when you're going out you have this stripe that they can tie on your breast. At times you find difficulty in breathing.'
Simone was left with long-term damage, meaning milk did not flow normally when breastfeeding a child she had with a husband she was forced to marry
This stone pictured in Cameroon in May 2007 has been used to iron the breasts of four girls after being heated in the oven. The practice of breast ironing in the country is common
The ritual is thought to be mainly carried out by mothers and grandmothers from African countries, with concerns mounting over it taking place in the UK.
Another victim, Kinaya, said she suffered breast ironing aged ten after her mother told her that, otherwise, 'men will start coming to you, to have sex with you'.
She told the programme: 'You're not even allowed to cry out. If you do, you (are said to) have brought shame to your family, you are not a 'strong girl'.'
The National Education Union is now urging that breast ironing awareness is included in the compulsory school curriculum to protect girls from abuse
Its joint president Kiri Tunks also said that school staff and especially PE teachers should to be taught how to notice the signs of the procedure.
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My view: This is barbaric. How do you explain human cruelty?, strange people.