My baby was not the only human being to enjoy my breast milk. I also shared it with her father. No, I was not in an adult breastfeeding relationship (also known as ABR, adult nursing relationship or ANR), a weird fetish where regular breastfeeding is a part of an adult relationship that may or may not include babies. I’m not into that. But yes, I did beg my husband to please please drink my breast milk!
This is how it went down.
I had just returned from a long day at work, away from my baby, and my breasts were engorged. They looked and felt like rocks. The skin on my nipples was so taut that I knew my baby was never going to be able to latch on to them. It was painful as hell. I felt like my boobs might explode from the milk buildup.
I searched for remedies on the internet. I applied moist heat, then a cold compress to reduce the swelling. I tried massaging them. I applied cabbage leaves. I even tried using a horrible cheap, manual breast-pump that resembled an oversized syringe. Nothing worked. In the meantime, my baby was a hungry, crying and pissed off. Usually that’s enough for a mom’s breasts to leak. But not mine. Mine were beyond the ability to do that.
The sound of my baby wailing was so stressful that I felt like I was going to snap if I couldn’t soothe her and breastfeeding was not an option. I held my baby to my chest in desperation, propped up on my bed. The babysitter had already left, and I soon heard a different set of steps headed towards my bedroom. By the time my husband walked in from work, I don’t know which one of us was crying louder, the baby or me.
As soon as I saw him, I realized he may be my only salvation at that moment. I had what I thought was a brilliant idea! That’s when I said it: “I need you to drink my breast milk!”
He opened his eyes wide and arched his eyebrows. I could tell he didn’t know whether I was joking or being serious.
“What’s going on?” he asked.
First, I gave him hell for not letting me get the fancy breast pump I wanted. And then I tried to explain why him sucking on my breasts was the only way I could possibly release the pressure and the pain.
“OK!” he said with an excited smile. (Men, I tell you ...) “Fine, what do I do?” he asked while rolling up his sleeves.
That’s how, with my baby still in my arms, I had him lie on the bed and gently suck on first one breast and then the other, until the milk started flowing.
At first, he swallowed it. “It’s sweet!” he said in surprise.
At one point, he got up to get a container into which he spat the milk out.
“It’s making me feel full!”
I didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry! (No worries, we did not feed that milk to the baby! We tossed it out.)
When both my breasts were once again malleable and the milk was free-flowing, and my nipples once again in a shape that was accessible to my baby, it was her turn. I washed both my breasts, and then snuggled up with my little one to feed her and put her to sleep.
As the little one nodded off in a milk stupor, I mouthed “Thank you!” to her dad. Now, you can bet that when I had my next baby, I got my fancy breast pump. I didn’t want to ever have to go through the hellish engorgement again. I mean, what if the next time he wasn’t home to give me a hand?