Let’s talk about this, because I’m thinking it’s a bit insane. I’m catching a slight whiff of the C.R.A.Z.Y.
So. 26 year old father Ragnar Bengtsson, of Sweden, has started using a breast pump in an attempt to begin producing breastmilk. He plans to do this through December, and will pump every three hours, no matter where he is. He’s hoping to someday be able to breastfeed his kids. Additionally, his story will be covered by Swedish TV8.
Now. First of all, I did not know that men could produce breastmilk, that they even had milk ducts. They do, and male lactation is a common side effect of hormonal treatments. Without adding estrogen to his system, however, lactation experts say Ragnar is likely to only produce a few drops of milk from time to time.
Anatomical aspects of Ragnar’s new hobby: covered.
On to my big question: What does Ragnar’s wife think?
Is his wife chuckling and saying “Oh Ragnar, you card! Life is never boring with you?” Or is she wondering if she can possibly flee her marriage in the dead of night without all of Sweden noticing? Is this the type of thing Ragnar has always done? Could she have seen this one coming, or is she concerned that Ragnar’s mind is unraveling before her eyes?
Might Ragnar be just a bit pissy over the attention his wife received during her pregnancy and breastfeeding of their two year old? Feeling underappreciated, did he alert the media that he had something super-special planned for his nipples? Because it’s the media coverage which pushes this one over the edge.
If one of my male neighbors happened to give this type of thing a whirl, no one outside of his immediate life would know, and why would they? In fact, if this were done privately it would be less insane, it would be a private experiment undertaken to satisfy a man’s curiosity. OK, maybe still a bit odd, but we aren’t, fortunately, accountable for our private little oddities. But Ragnar has himself television coverage, and once cameras are added it becomes, “Look at meeee! I’m whipping out a breastpump and trying to lactaaaate!” It becomes performance art, but without the irony lent by self-awareness.
What do you think his wife is thinking?
But here’s the part I really, really, really like: the expert interviewed for the article suggests that all men, although unable to produce breastmilk, should still offer their breasts to their babies if unable to find a pacifier. She feels certain many men already do.
“Men often have trouble finding things. And if the mother is out, the child is screaming and they can’t find the pacifier I’m sure there are a lot of men who give their baby their breasts.”
There is not much in this world that is better than curling up against a man’s chest, and the sight of my boys sleeping on their Dad’s chest was one that never failed to make me feel that all was right in my world. However. If I had walked in and seen him trying to get them to latch on to his hairy nipple because there wasn’t a binky handy? “All is right in my world,” is NOT what I would have been thinking.