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Recently my sister called me to talk about her latest date with her sister-in-laws. She said they talked about how horrible it would be after to have saggy, nasty boobs.
This was annoying. I immediately got defensive. They both know I breastfed all my boys. Do they think my boobs are gross? Well screw them. My boobs are fine – great, in fact. After acting like a middle schooler for awhile I started to think about my own past thoughts on breastfeeding.
When I was pregnant with Daniel I was adamant that I would never breastfeed. The thought sickened me. I mean, who would want someone (even a baby) suckling on their breast. It was a sheer invasion of personal space. It was my body after all. And even worse, what happens if it ruined my boobs. I already didn’t like them the way they were and I couldn’t imagine them being any more unattractive.
I was acting like a diva. This is behavior you would expect from a girl on 16 and Pregnant not an adult in their mid-twenties. My husband begged me to at least try breastfeeding. Eventually I agreed to try it just to get him off my back – and I’m glad I did.
I ended up loving it. I have breastfed all three of my boys and I wouldn’t have it any other way. However, it is work. After this last baby I can totally see why many moms choose formula – I just hope the reason they do isn’t because of something as superficial as boobs.
The bottom line is – you never know how pregnancy and breastfeeding is going to change your body. Some of us are lucky and we get by with minimal change, while other women cannot escape stretch marks and saggy boobs.
Jan Barger, a lactation consultant who helps women over at our site Expert Advice, said it best when posed with the question “how will breastfeeding change the appearance of my breasts.” She stated
The truth is that life itself takes a toll on our breasts. Age, weight gain or loss, pregnancy, the effects of gravity, and yes, breastfeeding all affect the way your breasts look… The only way to keep firm, upright breasts throughout your lifetime is to never get pregnant and never get old!
Check out brave moms who’ve shared photos of their post-nursing breasts over at BabyCentre UK.
Photo credit: thejbird, Flickr.
Opinions expressed by parent contributors are their own.