Dear Husband of a Breastfeeding Mother
I know as a young boy or even as a man, breastfeeding has never crossed your mind. It was never something you wondered if you would do or even how long your mom was able to do it for like I have. It's not something you ever saw affecting you or even your life as a father. I'm writing this to you to tell you that I see how this decision was one that did affect you even if it's not to the extent that it affects me. I know that through this journey you've come to understand the sacrifice and commitment in this decision.
I'm sorry you didn't expect to have to share your wife in such a way that time together would be limited. I know that especially in the beginning, it was if every hour I was being pulled away to nurture our baby. I can see how much things were becoming less about us and more about the wellness of our child. Despite this being as it should be, I understand that this too is an adjustment and feelings of selfishness are not to be ashamed of. I'm sorry you didn't foresee it nor could you have fathomed the implications for our relationship. I sympathize with you for having to handle such a change.
I'm sorry you walked right into a whirlwind of emotions. I see your face looking back at mine all those times I spent crying because my body wasn't performing as I expected. When the once fountains of milk I expected turned out to be just a dream, it was you that held me together. I know it wasn't easy being helpless, wishing somehow you could hold this weight for me for just a few minutes. I know it was a struggle watching our baby fuss at my breast or cry of hunger. Though I was persistent, you needed to be too.
I'm sorry that you had to learn so hastily the true beauty and meaning of a woman's body. To know that these breasts were not created just for the pleasure of men but to nurture, provide, and protect an infant. I understand the transition wasn't an easy one but I appreciate your effort to make me feel comfortable especially when nursing in public. I can see how your view has changed.
I'm sorry you have to see me, dischevled, breast exposed, and hair protruding from a messy bun at all hours of the night, different from the woman you married. I thank you for showing me affection even in my less than par states. I thank you for overlooking the stains and the leaking of milk through my shirt as I rush to nurse our child. I'm glad you can still lust towards your wife even when her eyes are tired and she's barely put together.
I want you to know that I see your efforts though others may not. I know you are essential in this journey just as I am because your support has pushed me to continue. Thank you seeing me as the beautiful mother of your child and loving me all the same. I know you see the fruits of my labor as you watch our child grow strong and healthy. I appreciate your unwavering support of my decision to breastfeed because I know you never expected this decision to be yours too.
*David, I dedicate this letter to you. You have been a pillar in my breastfeeding journey and without you by my side I would've given up so long ago. Thank you for all the tears you wiped when I felt like I was failing. Your support has meant so much in those days I questioned myself and my commitment to keep moving forward. Thank you for encouraging me and believing in my body more than I did. I love you.