Monday, October 8, 2007

I'm not done talking about boobs

Now that I have your attention…

Last month I wrote a marginally dissenting opinion on the Facebook issue, and I still haven’t spent the time to find out more about what they did or didn’t do, so I’m not talking about that anymore. I have spent time reading other people’s blog entries on this topic, and I am really moved by the level of controversy that is out there over breastfeeding. The argument that gets me the most is over whether nursing is sexual or not. I have a strong opinion on that one, so I’m diving into the pit here.

Breastfeeding is sexual.

Just to be clear, I do not feel sexually aroused by breastfeeding my child, by watching someone breastfeed, or by looking at pictures of breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding is not kinky or lustful, and it is not obscene. Kinky and lustful are part of sex, but they are not all of sex. If you think breastfeeding is not sexual, I will not claim that you have an incorrect view of breastfeeding. I would claim that you are taking a sadly limited view of sex.

Any woman who has been in a healthy sexual relationship can attest that physical intimacy (in and of itself, apart from the orgasm or whatever else) is a part of sexual satisfaction for a woman. Breastfeeding is physically intimate. Breastfeeding a child produces chemical and emotional responses in a woman that help her feel attached and close to her child in much the same way that sex makes her feel attached and close to her husband. The problem is that most of us have not been in a healthy sexual relationship, and even if we have, we are carrying the scars of past abuse. Last week, so many people wrote to Stop the Abuse. It is astounding how many people have been touched by abuse, and this should give us a clue as to why breastfeeding makes so many upset. It’s not an excuse - but you can’t solve a problem without a full understanding of the causes. Even aside from abusive relationships with others, we live in a world where nearly everyone has an unhealthy relationship with her own body. We worship and sacrifice our own bodies everyday.

The bottom line is that breastfeeding cannot be separated from the aspects of woman that make her WOMAN, and that has something and everything to do with sex. It is no more obscene than a beautiful dress that showcases a lovely feminine body and no less intimate than a husband and wife’s wedding kiss.

1 comment:

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