Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Boyfriend Shirt

No, not the fashion statement, I'm talking about the real thing today.  That prize we girls (women!) snag from our boyfriends.  The shirt that still smells of him.

This topic came up over lunch with friends a few weeks ago.  One of my friends mentioned her daughter was 'in the throes' of a relationship, and she knew it because she'd started wearing 'the shirt'.  It is a rite of passage to wear that boyfriend shirt.  A means of claiming the boy (man) and perhaps even a sort of power play.  He's mine, girls, can't you see that I'm wearing a piece of him?

You've done it, yes?  I wonder if there's a teenage girl in love out there who hasn't snagged one of her man's items of clothing?  Then what do we do with it?  We wear it.  All.  The.  Time.  And it's not as though we have to run into a room and announce to everyone that we have his shirt.  Everyone just knows.  And that makes it even more exciting.

It's not even a pretty shirt.  It's usually an oversized t-shirt or football jersey that's stretched out and probably has a hole or two in it.  Doesn't matter if it hangs down to our knees and off our shoulders.  We're wearing a piece of him.  And heaven forbid if our mother's should find it and attempt to wash it.  The horror!  You can't wash out all the smell, even if it is riper than last week's sweat socks.  It's his essence, Mom.  Don't you understand?

Even when we're older and dating men with a mind to marriage we do the shirt-steal.  We no longer have to worry about our mothers washing it, only now it's not accepted to be seen wearing it when out with friends if it's that tatty old t-shirt.  Getting back to the actual fashion statement, if we grab a nice crisp dress shirt and spruce it up with a belt at the waist, then we might have something.  And sometimes boxer shorts replace the shirt.  (Though we probably wash those.)

It is a sexy thing to wear our man so close to our skin.  It is something that has touched him, been rubbed across his skin.  Nothing gets more sensual.  Yeah, even if it's got holes in it.  :-)

So what about you?  Ever proudly worn the boyfriend shirt?  Did you keep it even after the two of you broke up?  And if you're married, do you ever put on one of your hubby's shirts and's that sexy 'been on his skin' thing.  

I confess I stole a big yellow t-shirt from one of my boyfriends.  It was three sizes too big for me, and yep, had a hole right on the lower front hem.  But I wore it EVERYWHERE.  I kept it long after we broke up, too.  Didn't wear it after that.  Seemed sacrilege.  But in a small way, I still had a piece of him.



ArkansasCyndi said...

I took a pair of jeans from my HS boyfriend. A friend made me a purse from them, complete with HIS NAME embroidered on it! :)

And yes, I still have that purse (30+ years later)

Jill said...

Yup, it was a huge Carhartt flannel shirt. He gave it to me when we were taking a walk in the park and it got chilly.
I wore it all the time and I wore this really girly lotion b/c I wanted it to smell like me if I ever gave it back to him.
I lost the shirt somewhere and somehow, but I kept the guy so it worked out. We've been together 7 years and married almost 3 and for the life of us neither remembers what happened to "the shirt."

Keri Ford said...

yep. I had a boyfriend shirt, pants, boxers, maybe even socks a time or two. Then I think he got a thrill out of it, or at least we women tend to think a man looks at 'his woman' in his clothes and thinks, my shirt, that's MINE under it.

for those of you that are married you know that thought wears off to....

"Stop wearing my clothes everyday! I have no t-shirts for work cause you keep wearing them. And you're getting stains on them." (it seems cooking 3 times a day in a shirt might get it dirty, but what does he want me to do? stop feeding the kid?)

I have since switched to his wife-beaters and haven't heard a complaint since.

I have a couple shirts of his taken while we were still dating and six years later, we both know those are his shirts, but they're mine whenever I want. It's an unspoken rule and the only couple of items he doesn't comment on me wearing.

Playground Monitor said...

Yeah, I did the shirt-stealing thing, and I just gave my soon-to-be-ex's fraternity jersey to the thrift store. Ha!

Maybe one day I'll get to steal another man's shirt cause it IS a special sort of ritual.


Helen Brenna said...

I took a windbreaker, really only borrowed it for a while. That's the only time I can think of I've ever done that, so I've never made the connection before today, Michele!

My daughter, though, has done it with several guys! Boxers, shirts, sweatshirts. It is very definitely an intimate act.

Lori said...

In high school, I had a shirt that I took. It had his smell. Yummy.

Now that I'm married, I just take what I want. After so many years, it's probably only sexy to him when it's the only thing I'm wearing (*wink wink*), but I still love wearing his shirts. I feel like he's wrapped himself around me. Safe, warm, loved.

lois greiman said...

Cute post, M.

I think it's not JUST the intimacy thing. It's also the protective thing..he's keeping you warm, etc.

Lou Gagliardi said...

I did this once.

Yes, it smelled and it felt good. though it admittedly was a little small (and no, it wasn't a girl's shirt either)

Anna Dougherty said...

I never really did this with any old boyfriends but I do it now with my husband. When he leaves for a TDY assignment or gets deployed I wear his fleece hockey shirt. I also spray his cologne on his pillow so it smells like him. And because I'm a total dork I use his shower soap sometimes when I'm feeling down- makes me feel safe and cozy.

Liza said...

I still have a shirt from one of my college boyfriends. It is so thin from wear you could probably read through it. However, it is so very soft too. I haven't worn it in years, but I still keep it.

Debra Dixon said...

I'm posting late, but all I really need to say is that my charming husband has said on many occasions to many people, "I only married her to get my shirts back."

Linda Henderson said...

I think we have all done it. I kept a couple of my ex-husbands shirts when we divorced. I had them for quite a while before I got rid of them.

Teonda Tollison said...

I have done the boyfriend shirt steal. I did keep the item after we broke up but not after I started a new relationship. I do now wear the hubbies over sized t-shirts now for pjs and especially if he has to be away from me at night working. The idea alone of being in his clothes knowing they were on him jsut makes me feel closer to him and yes the smell of him it unreplaceable.

Mitzi said...

I love to wear my hubbys big white tee shirts to bed. They're so soft and I admit, they do smell like him too.