Saturday, November 17, 2012

Tight Pants Syndrome...curse of the romantic Hero.

I'm not going to over-share, but I had an experience with Tight Pants the other day, and rest assured those jeans will not be seeing daylight anytime soon.  However, the uncomfortable day got me thinking about the huge number of (particularly paranormal) romance heroes that wear some very tight pants.
I'm sure most of you are aware of a condition called "Tight Pants Syndrome" aka TPS. This is when a man in particular becomes plagued with 'trouble down under' due to wearing excessively tight pants.

The term was originally coined in a 1993 article by Dr. Octavio Bessa, an internist in Stamford, Conneticut. Bessa described a collection of gastrointestinal symptoms including abdominal pain, heartburn and reflux a few hours after meals that he would see in 20 to 25 men every year. The common thread: All wore ill-fitting pants with waistbands several inches smaller than their bellies, Bessa reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Tight Pant Syndrome has developed from there, an ongoing study by researchers TENA men in England surveyed "2,000 British men and concluded that "tight-fitting jeans can cause urinary tract infections, twisted testicles, bladder weakness and long-term health consequences."

Those nut-hugging leathers on your hero aren't looking quite so sexy now are they?

According to the report, 50 percent of men suffering from TPS experienced groin discomfort and over 25 percent suffered bladder problems. The report also stated that 1 in 5 men experienced a twisted testicle.  A disturblingly high statistic!

Now, considering that most romantic heroes are rather well endowed, the fact that they strut, run and otherwise do fantastic things in tight leather and denim is beginning to feel a little unrealistic to me.

You will also be unsurprised to discover that TPS similarly afflicts women, without going into the seriously nitty gritty, TPS can cause a whole host of gynaecological problems in women as well. So if your heroine is a fiesty one, clad in tight leather -  just consider how long has she been wearing those pants? I don't think I need to say more.

In conclusion; I am not saying that our heroes and heroines shouldn't ever wear tight pants. They are a very useful device in showing the reader your hero's obvious endowment, or his pert backside. They're also practical for the kick-ass heroine who simply couldn't fight Zombies wearing floral callots.

However, it's worth remembering that realism in writing helps build worlds and engages audiences. Perhaps considering the tightness of your characters pants may, in some small way, improve the readability and believability of your tale.

Have a super Sunday!



  1. Oh, Nicola, you have talked about a subject I've been wondering about too. How do the lads and lasses get around in such tight pants? I look at so many covers and think - wow, they can fight in that?

    I'm glad I'm not the only one who ponders deeply about this subject. :D

  2. Haha. Great to know I'm not alone!

    I toyed with even posting this one, because it's up there in randomness - even for me. ;)