Ah boobies, breasts!
They play such a crucial role in a woman’s life as we quickly realize that they are a feature of us that does not belong to us.
They are there to be observed, judged, played with (motorboated, brrrr!) and then to serve as a source of food, as a source of “motherly love”- as I once read.
Indeed, how I felt the oxytocin flowing through my body as I offered my breast to my daughter!
This breast, streaked with vibrantly green engorged veins. This breast with its nipple that never stopped growing and that never stopped leaking, bleeding, or/and forming a yellow crust.
And oh that feeling of my daughter chewing on it like a stale piece of chewing gum that had long since lost its taste, still hoping to chase that last menthol high!
Breastfeeding ? Not for me…
I am going to break yet another taboo: I profoundly hated breastfeeding. Even though I did genuinely feel the oxytocin.
I did it for 12 weeks on end, motivated by two reasons:
-The first one being the scientifically proven adage that the first milks are tremendously healthy for the bébé – and I would do anything for my bébé.
-And the second one because I felt socially pressured to do so. It was the first time in my life I have felt forced to do something.
So after 9 months of having my body not belonging to me – mind you, for the best thing that has ever happened to me – I had to continue without ownership of my body for another half a year, a year, two years?!
I read so much about breastfeeding:
“It helps to bond with your child.” You do not bond any less if you are not offering your darkened nipple to Ms. Chain Chewer. In case you were unaware, your nipples darken by at least 4 shades when you fall pregnant. But back to the bonding theory: what does this then mean for the fathers?
“It is natural.” Alright, can we stop with the au naturel spiel already? We are downplaying things when we label them as natural. We say giving birth is natural but – mon dieu! – does it hurt and when it comes out it does not feel natural at all! Let’s not forget that we are used to having something coming in not coming out…“it is the opposite of anal sex”, I concluded quite proudly.
I even read about a lady who claimed that we should breastfeed our children until they are four, because it is the ” natural biological” age to wean one’s children – muahahaha, evil laugh. Please madame, get a life!
The trend of Breastfeeding
Our western societies have now accepted the importance of breastfeeding to such an extent that I do appreciate, for instance, the many dedicated spaces for it in offices.
I genuinely admire these women who make the choice to lock themselves in an office closet for an hour each time, meditating to the nice roaring sound of the pumping machine while their inbox fills up with unread emails.
I praise how they endorse their womanhood and motherhood so proudly, strolling through the corridors carrying a bag packed with ice.
And I sincerely recognize their motivation and discipline. Because you need to be motivated AND disciplined to do that.
Having said that, this is exactly what I deplore about this trend of breastfeeding: we have lost the freedom of choice to say no to it. We are all supposed to endorse it and adore it as if it were proof of our devoted love to our progeny.
Women do not dare to publicly declare that this practice is a pain in the titties. Quite literally. It is tiring, it hurts; it is an art that takes time to master. We have to go to classes for it, we have to hire consultants for this.
Even when everything goes well, there is always a small issue; some sort of complication.
We women…we like to make our lives more complicated.
Instead of admiring these women who offer themselves, we shrug it off by saying it is natural, and that those who do not sacrifice themselves for it should be ashamed. Wow, bring on the feelings of sisterhood!
Giving birth; breastfeeding – neither of these are natural. We are indeed designed to do both of these things, but not programmed to do them. It is not natural as it does not come naturally.
So, please let me peacefully admire these women who breastfeed – I know all the effort that it requires because I was not able to do it myself- but do not force it upon me. It does not make me a bad mother.
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