I am mad at my breasts.

Not a funny “HAHA!” mad, but legitimately angered by their existence.

I used to enjoy them. They stayed up where they were supposed to, they balanced out my bottom half and they filled out dresses and t-shirts with ease.

I was measured again and guess what? I’m still (STILL!) a 34F. EFFFFFF.

That’s a big bra full of two big failures.

It’s as if they stayed the same size hoping it would mask the fact that they simply did not work.

If the loss of a breastfeeding relationship needs to be mourned I have reason to believe that I have reached the valley between anger and loneliness.

I’ve been unhappy with particular body parts in the past. My nose is a bit too big, my thighs a bit too meaty, my stomach a bit too soft, my skin a bit too pale. But none of these ever affected anything but my own selfish vanity. My nose sniffs, my thighs get me from point A to point B, my stomach carried my two babies and my skin, well. My skin keeps my guts in.

But my boobs, they failed my baby.

And it makes me really, really angry.

All they ever had to do in this life was feed a baby. Nothing else. (Although they did get my husband to notice me eleven years ago, even though he’ll deny it and claim it was my sparkling personality that caught his attention.)

They didn’t do their job.

They just sit here on my chest like two giant fleshy mistakes staring back at me everyday.

YOU KNOW YOU GUYS FAILED RIGHT?” I want to scream at them. “YOU DON’T DESERVE GOOD BRAS AND SOFT FABRICS!”

It’s a really weird feeling. To feel utter disappointment and regret in a physical part of yourself. Like a bad tattoo you can’t undo. They will always be there reminding me of their failure. I’m not the one that failed…it was them, and yet they’re attached to me.

Other people may never understand the shame and anxiety these things cause me. But for now? It’s all I can feel when I look at them.

Anybody else?

 

Comments

  1. listening and feeling your frustration and anger with you. *HUG*

  2. YES. This makes so much sense. Even three years after the fact, I still remember my “Thanks a lot, girls” moment. I just wanted to hide them under a tshirt and try to forget they were there. I’m sorry they let you and Vivi down, love. (OMG working with a British director is making me call people “love!” Did you see it?)

  3. I was not able to give birth the way I had always dreamed of because my first was a scheduled c-section (turned from head down to breech at 38 weeks – who does that?!) and my hospital wouldn’t do VBACs for my second. That was tough enough, but then my large-and-so-NOT-in-charge boobs failed me too when it came to breastfeeding. My babies are now seven and five, and I’ll admit that I still harbor some resentment about it. I told my husband a week after we had our oldest that if I had been having babies in the time of the cavemen both baby and I would have never made it. Sure, I wasn’t exactly rational seven days post-partum, but it was still really difficult to accept that my “dream” was not going to be a reality.

    In the end though? I carried two healthy, happy babies to term and now have two thriving daughters who could have cared less how they received their nourishment. I’ll always have a touch of jealousy when I see breastfeeding come so easily to many, but I also think I’m lucky that I can share with others who struggle that it doesn’t work for everyone and everything will still be okay.

  4. I have a great fear that this will happen to me when the time comes. I’m a large-breasted woman and have always had a love/hate (mostly hate) relationship with these babies. I’m sorry that yours failed you.

  5. Honestly, I feel the same way when I get my period. I want to scream down at my uterus, “You. Are. USELESS. If you’re going to SUCK, DO SOMETHING ELSE BESIDES THAT.”

    I hate my girls too, but that’s because they’re a 34HH and I can’t find bras that don’t cost a fortune. Try Bravissimo for bras.

  6. I remember feeling that way after not being able to nurse my son.

    Once he’s walking and talking and nursing isn’t the biggest part of your life you’ll be able to look at it and shrug.

    I promise.

  7. Yep, I’ve felt this way in the past myself. I’m so sorry, for both of us. xo

  8. Mine didn’t work either, but they also stayed their normal size, so it wasn’t like this. I’m sorry. It sucks.

  9. I am in nursing school and learned lastweek that breast size has nothing to do with breast feeding capability. I too am large(34h) and always wondered the purpose.apparently anything above a c cup is just fat. Anyways, thats why some people can be a cups and still breastfeed fine… Which is uber frustrating to those bigger ladies who can’t. Vivi still gets a beautiful mommy who did everyhing she could to breast feed.

  10. I love this post! Sorry that your breasts failed you. I bet your husband can forgive them….

  11. Mine are nearly that size anyhow, and I’ve never even been pregnant. It’s a pain in the butt.

  12. I’m the same size as you and I hate my breasts. If I were to get any type of cosmetic surgery, I would choose a breast reduction. I have a friend who’s an I (Yeesh!) because she gained a cup size with all seven of her children. I only have one baby so far and I gained two. Even for those moms who successfully breastfeed, what’s the point of keeping boobs after they’re weaned? Why can’t they be retractable?

  13. Maybe embrace them a little bit more. I think there is a lot more breasts do to a woman’s identity than feed babies. Baby happy and healthy? You are happy and healthy? focus on happy and healthy….

  14. I was a 34G back in the pre-internet shopping days. I had to special order my bras from a lady (interestingly enough) in Indiana. Do you know how humiliating that is for a 14 year old? Ugh. And then I had a breast reduction, which I do NOT regret AT ALL. But I really, really, really hate that it left me unable to breastfeed. With this last baby I *thought* maybe it would work. And I did make more than ever before, but more than nothing is still not much. :-( So yeah, I feel ya. Stupid, stupid boobs.

  15. *cough* *snort*…oh my gosh, you about made my coffee come out of my nose. This made me laugh (it is just the way you say things…not laughing because you are mad at your boobs. That stinks) I think you hit the nail on the head with this one. I was mad at my boobs too! Wanted to bind those B-s up. And now they look like hangy deflated balloons when I bend over in the shower.

  16. They probably don’t deserve soft fabrics and good bras, but believe me your back does. Stay angry but walk tall.

  17. Gee, I don’t know, Casey. You’ll have to let me look at them and see how I feel. :)

  18. Yes. I was lucky to have some time where the pair did do their job, but when they failed… what a feeling, being betrayed by body parts. Knowing you did everything right, and still…

    For some reason, mine are the smallest (and lowest, sigh) they’ve ever been in my life. I hate that I’m now the flat girl, and I hate that I hate that because it shouldn’t matter.

  19. Yes. I can completely relate. My son is just shy of two, and I remember standing in the kitchen crying and grieving after her was born. Yelling at my husband that it was the “best part of having a baby” and I was missing it!! Telling him that it was the one thing that I could do for my son that nobody else could. And seeing my husband stare back at me with absolutely sadness but admittedly little understanding. You have a right to grieve. One thing that helped me is realizing that my son loves them, even now. He loves to push on them with his hands, and to lay his head on them when we cuddle. He looooves for me to pull him into the recliner, call him “my bay-bee” and smoosh his cheek against my breast as I cradle him and tell him a story.

    Sending so many hugs your way, because I know how you feel. xo

  20. Oh friend. Listening and offering my support.

  21. I can sort of feel your pain. I’m unable to have children (early menopause), when i look at mine in the mirror they remind me of what i will never have, and i just feel so inadequate and useless.

  22. I feel the same as Lisemme above. I’ve lost 4 pregnancies now, and not only do I feel like my breasts (which used to be the only part of my body I like, but are now saggy with no babies to feed) are useless, but I feel the same way about my uterus as you do about your breasts. I don’t feel like I failed to keep my babies, I feel like my uterus failed!

  23. I felt the same way about my body when I had to have a c-section after 30-some odd hours of labor with my first baby. I felt that my body had failed me. With my second I had a successful VBAC, and I must say that it was incredibly redeeming.

  24. Yes, YES. Although to be completely honest, I failed too. Mine did what they were supposed to, then didn’t do what they were supposed to and instead of focus and do EVERYTHING to make them perform, in a state of total mental exhaustion, I packed them up. I wish I had a time machine. The morning is so true. I don’t know where I am…..I am still crying as I write this. I understand and I feel your pain. Hang in there, you did EVERYTHING in your power and that is all that counts.

  25. I am overwhelmed by reading these comments. As women, we take our bodies so personally, and our ability to “fulfill the purpose” that we were made for. I am so sad for those who couldn’t nurse (like me), and even sadder for those who never even got a chance, because they couldn’t have/carry a child. I’m sad for those who didn’t have the support to let them know that they could do it, not to give up!! We HAVE to find a way to accept what was and move on, without hating ourselves or parts of ourselves. We would never allow someone else to call us failures, and yet we do it to ourselves. Even if you have to force yourself…. love yourself. Please!!

    Empty Sack Reply:

    @jacqui,

    “As women, we take our bodies so personally, and our ability to “fulfill the purpose””

    Men too. I had to have my testicles removed after an accident and I also feel that there is a purpose denied to me. There is also the constant reminder that I am ball-less every time I notice my “empty sack” which hangs like a deflated balloon. Your message to “love yourself” is very true.

    Jacqui Reply:

    Wow, see, I forget that men have the same issues! It’s such a hard thing to overcome. I have a friend who was unable to have children, and his wife had a child by donor. He looooves their child, but I know there’s a part of him that’s still really sad about it. I guess we have to find a way to let it go and give ourselves (or our body parts) mercy and grace and realize that it’s just life. By the way, I’m not expert on the subject by any means, but I believe there are replacements that you can have put in, not that they’ll ever make you feel like you used to, but at least it might help it not come to mind simply all the time. :)

  26. My boobs behaved very badly as well. My silver lining is at least I don’t smell like maple syrup all the time. It really grossed me out.

  27. A friend’s husband loving joked about non-milk producing breast and oh-so-tenderly called them….Milk Duds. I guess if you need a pet name, chocolate-carmely goodness would be my first choice!!

    ((HUGS))

  28. I am not on friendly terms with my boobs. They came too early, they got too big, they didn’t work when the babies came. The list could go on and on. I am convinced that I will one day have breast cancer because that would just be typical of my chest region.

  29. I totally agree – but I hate my uterus. It worked just fine a matter of a couple years ago, now it’s all broken and such – not wanting to hold babies. I’ve never felt badly about any part of my body before this… it’s really a new and upsetting thing to me. I feel like I’m being so vain but it’s really not a vanity issue at all.

  30. Sweetie, I am only commenting to try and help. I love your writing but I feel you have serious pain from not breastfeeding and I wish you could feel less pain. I guess I was blessed that in my time we were not pressured to breastfeed. Yes, women did it and I thought nothing of it but I must admit I chose not to, I truly was not comfortable with it and I knew that my stress would transfer to my baby. Anyway, I have two beautiful children that were very healthy kids. I fed them well and they went to all their doctor visits.
    Mostly, we have a wonderful relationship. My son, 23 years old contacts me regularly, even though he is busy in law school and tonight my 20 year old daughter a sophomore in college called me for cooking instructions! My lack of breastfeeding did nothing to stop us from bonding and we have a wonderful mother child relationship. I really hope this helps you.

  31. Thanks for this! I am mad at mine too. My milk production was not as low as yours but I was unable to sustain nursing with mine either. I already was hauling around DDD before my daughter, they grew to H (ugh) with her …. and NEVER went back down. What’s the point of them when they don’t even work??? Meanwhile my sis-in-law (who is tiny) could probably nurse 4 babies at a time with no problem. I just don’t get it.

  32. You know what? They DID fail you and Vivi. And I’m glad you called them out on it. You didn’t fail your baby (ever) a part of you, you had no control over did. Its sucks and I’m sorry.

  33. At least mine appear to be hanging their heads in shame. I feel you on this!

  34. Add me to the mad at my useless uterus group. I totally get this, and have tried to explain it to my husband, who clearly doesn’t.

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  2. [...] breast vs. bottle wars from afar. I have been entrenched in them and I have come out the other side. I am mad at my boobs for failing me. I’m not the one that failed, I did everything humanly possible. It was these two fleshy [...]