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5 Tips for Dating with No Nipples

Posted on October 19, 2015, 10:30 AM

By Lisa Kate David

Actress, writer, and breast cancer survivor Lisa David shares five comedic post-mastectomy dating tips she acquired during the most tumultuous year of her life. Six years ago, Lisa ended her marriage, became a single mother of a one-year-old baby girl, and was diagnosed with breast cancer—all within the span of six months. In honor of breast cancer awareness month, Lisa reflects on what it’s like to date after breast cancer with honesty, humor, and in solidarity with all women who’ve been in that post-mastectomy situation—dating without nipples. She is now happily divorced, in a great relationship, and cancer-free.

1. Get your hair done.
The day before my double mastectomy I went to get my hair done. I thought it was important to have nice shiny hair while I was getting my breasts removed. You never know who you’ll meet while you’re under sedation. I also painted my nails a beautiful sparkly blue. My doctor even commented on how nice my nails looked. I make it a habit of looking my best at the worst times.

2. Realize it could be worse and be as honest as you see fit.
It’s much easier to date, especially dating sans nipples, when you realize things could be worse. I had just been through a really trying time in my life and I really felt like I had nothing to lose. Six months before my cancer diagnosis, I found out my husband of over a decade was leading a dark double life. You can bet my hair looked amazing at that time. Honestly, my cancer was just the icing on the cake. So, I decided to tell everyone on a first date that I was a single mom with a two year old daughter, a really screwed up ex-husband, and that I just had a double mastectomy and was under reconstruction. I completely lost my ability for small talk.

3. Have a sense of humor.
I’ve always had the ability to see the absurd in even the most tragic situations. Good or bad, it’s been a coping mechanism of mine to be able to detach a bit and watch my life from the outside. I got sober at 21, so I guess you can say it’s my substitute for being stoned.

4. Be BOLD.
You are a survivor! Don’t just accept it, own it! Don’t shy away from your body or your spirit. It’s an opportunity to have real conversations, real connections. Who cares what anyone thinks!!! You beat cancer. You are alive!!! I honestly see my scars as war wounds and I look at it all as a second chance. The first guy I was intimate with in my no nipple state said to me, “You know what’s so sexy about you? It’s how comfortable you are in your body.” He was right. I used to beat myself up and try to hide every imperfection about my body. But now I have very visible scars and no nipples! You think a little cellulite is gonna bring me down??? I have a new love and respect for my body and myself.

5. Know that you are just like Barbie.
From the time I was a little girl I always aspired to be like Barbie, but it just wasn’t happening. I always strived for that no hips, no thighs, double D look that Barbie is famous for. It’s very difficult to attain when you have curves. And it’s not like I’m that curvaceous. I’m 5’ 2” and a size 2 or 4, but by Barbie (or Hollywood) standards I should be a size 0. Isn’t it funny that we aspire to be a size that isn’t even a number? I tried and tried throughout my adolescence to get rid of my curves. I was bulimic for years. I sooo wanted to be anorexic, but I never had the discipline. I sadly succumbed to the fact that I will never be like Barbie, until I realized that Barbie and I have something very important in common. We both have NO NIPPLES! Oh Happy Day!!!! I began serial dating in what is considered one of the most superficial cities in the world—Los Angeles, and my line was “I have no nipples. I’m just like Barbie.”

Lisa Kate David is an actress, writer and voice-over artist hailed by The New York Times as “a major comedic force”. For more information about Lisa, you can visit her website

Her new solo show “Dating in L.A. With No Nipples” is currently running in Los Angeles. For more information go to

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