I think everything about this article is amazing but regardless of your personal views on transgenderism, this is further proof that men can lactate which I find scientifically fascinating.
“Trans women, individuals who were assigned male at birth but identify and live as women, CAN breastfeed. It is possible, and totally awesome! Health care providers, volunteer breastfeeding counsellors, and trans women themselves need to learn this important, empowering fact.”
So many other things I want to quote here – the entire article is quotable! It’s a really good read but I’m going to stay on point today.
“Sarah” is genetically male and has been living as a woman married to another woman. When Sarah and her wife decided to have a baby, Sarah successfully induced lactation! At the height of her breastfeeding relationship she said, when she woke up in the morning if she hadn’t nursed a lot overnight, she could pump and get 4 ounces!!! What!!!
Yes, this is mind-blowing for several reasons but check out this quote:
I think all parents who can manage to do it should try. In the early months we got twice as much sleep because we were cosleeping and he just rolled back and forth between us to nurse when he needed to. [“Or half as much sleep”, Sarah’s wife joked.] Either of us could take him out for an afternoon without worrying about bottles or getting him back home in time for a feed.
Then when our baby was about six weeks old, my wife had to go to the hospital for surgery. She was there for almost a week. We didn’t get good breastfeeding support from the hospital. We had doctors insisting she not breastfeed because of medications when our midwife and lactation consultant knew it was fine. They gave us no support with pumping. I think that for a lot of moms a situation like that could have been the end of the breastfeeding relationship, and it was a huge help that we were both able to nurse him.
When Babe was only two weeks old we went through that exact same situation. I had an emergency gallbladder removal and the hospital was horrible about breastfeeding. (There were a few pleasant people but no one that could help with the breastfeeding issue – just lots of passing the buck.) If my partner were also breastfeeding, we wouldn’t have had to use formula for 24 hours until we found donor milk, or any bottled substitution at all!
Of course, I can’t ask Husband to induce lactation. Even though men have all the same milk-making machinery, lactating is still a feminine activity. But imagine if, somehow, it became the norm for the nongestational parent to induce lactation during a pregnancy. It would change the world as we know it, especially the USA. Laws about nursing in public and pumping or nursing at work would get a serious overhaul, that’s for sure!
Would you ever ask your male partner to induce lactation?