I love having my breasts touched during foreplay. I absolutely love having boobs. I also loved breast-feeding, but having sex with my husband during the months I was nursing meant I wouldn’t let him fondle one of my most-prized body parts in the process. It sucked for me; it sucked for him; but the only one actually doing any suckling was my daughter.
'Nope, back off, not happening,' I said, his expression showing shock and a little hurt, I could tell.
As much as I tried to claim my body as my own during the 15 months I breastfed, my nipples were reserved for feeding my baby. When we first started having postpartum sex, my husband went for my breasts as he always naturally did, and it was the biggest turn-off ever for me. I remember being really surprised — what had always been a tried-and-true method of arousal was now a total irritation and borderline offense.
“Nope, back off, not happening,” I said, his expression showing shock and a little hurt, I could tell. Once I explained that when he went there it was hard for me to not immediately think of our daughter nursing — something I clearly didn’t want brought into our moments of intimacy — we moved on to all the other ways to titillate (no pun intended) each other. But I undeniably missed the experience. We kept trying throughout the year my daughter nursed to revisit our favorite sexual trick, but it was pretty clear it wasn’t going to happen until she weaned. I wanted to let my husband have free reign for our mutual pleasure, but the mental block that presented itself was unyielding. It was yet another sacrifice for both of us among the many we had made as parents.
Gradually, as she dropped her daytime breastmilk sessions for the growing number of solids she was trying, I was ready and wanted my husband to at least nuzzle his head between my breasts again. It still felt weird for him to kiss or lick my nipples, but we went with what felt right for the time. The whole predicament often made me feel like I had become an uptight and anxious sexual partner, which was the opposite of what years of pre-baby sex with the man I love had cultivated.
Discovering my sexuality, femininity — heck, my whole identity — post-baby was and still is a rollercoaster of a journey.
I was lucky enough to never have any serious bouts of nipple pain in my time breastfeeding, so I sometimes felt like I didn’t have a real reason to turn my husband’s touch there away. I’m so grateful he never put pressure on me to ignore the new sensitivity I had to my breasts being explored, but I knew it was something he understandably missed. Settling on a “this too shall pass” mentality, it stretched us to extend past our foreplay go-to, which was a great thing. Discovering my sexuality, femininity — heck, my whole identity — post-baby was and still is a rollercoaster of a journey.
Looking back, it’s made the accomplishment of 15 months of breastfeeding not solely a mother and baby affair, but a true family effort.
It’s been over a year since my daughter weaned. It only took a few weeks for my nipples to feel normal, and it was like rediscovering the sexual power of my breasts again! It brought about a newness in our sex life that was worth it in the end, especially knowing that having endured the unexpected change in my body, my daughter and I had achieved a long stint of nursing. Looking back, it’s made the accomplishment of 15 months of breastfeeding not solely a mother and baby affair, but a true family effort. I’ve learned that I should never take for granted the life-giving and intimacy-building power of my breasts.
The funny thing is, now that my body is once more “mine,” I want to do it all over again and have another baby to nurse and interrupt my sex life. Motherhood!
Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:
Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.