F-cup, As In Frick, Those Are Some Big Boobs- Breastfeeding and Large Breasts

by Joni Edelman
 this post made possible by the generous sponsorship of Rumina Nursingwear.
Joni Edelman and family

The author and her family.

 

 

Let me just start this off right by saying, YAY. All caps YAY. Jessica asked me to write this guest post my and first thought was, naturally, “Who? Me? Are you SURE? But I’m not worthy. It was a real Wayne’s World moment, and if you don’t know what Wayne’s World is, don’t tell me, I don’t want to know. Mostly because it would imply that I am old. Which I am not. In any case, once I was able to return to standing, I remembered that I have boobs and they have collectively nursed 10 years and 5+ kids.

Editor’s note: I nearly fainted when she said yes she would write for us! And having fed babies meant she was infinitely qualified to write for TLB. Also, Wayne’s World was a Saturday Night Live skit from the late 80’s turned feature film in the early 90’s for those of you too young to be reading this, I mean, get the reference. Back to Joni…

Speaking of boobs, let’s talk about mine! They’re round(ish). They have nipples. The right one is bigger than the left. And because the right one is bigger than the left, the right nipple points sort of downward in an ode to gravity, and my bellybutton. And speaking of gravity, my boobs and gravity, they are well acquainted. In addition to being round, nipple bearing, disproportionate, and subject to gravity, they are also large. As of this writing, they thoroughly fill an F cup. F is for frick. As in frick, those are some big boobs.

I digress. Let me start from the start. I was born in the early 70s. In the early 70s women were setting their bras on fire and such, which in hindsight seems pretty sensible. I imagine my mother, cut off shorts and tube top, perched on my dad’s shoulders at a Janis Joplin concert, waving her bra in the air, screaming, “THE MAN WILL NOT HOLD ME DOWN.” Or some other such profound feminist thing. As a consequence of the bra burning, my mom wasn’t really wearing bras. As such, I was quite intimately aware of her small sloping breasts and thumb size nipples (which seemed really grotesque to me at 7, but which I now see as relatively common, as in mine look just like that).

I personally didn’t have any boobs. I was 99.7% sure that I was destined to bear the chest of a 10 year old boy until such day as I left this earth.

Then when I was 16 I went to Europe. And while in Europe I ate a lot of pasta/nutella/bread/gelato. Because I was there for quite a while, all that pasta/nutella/bread/gelato basically adhered itself to my butt and chest. Tada. By miracle of chocolate and hazelnuts, plus a sprinkling of hormones, my boobs were born.

breastfeeding through pregnancy

Joni breastfeeding and pregnant.

And then my first baby was born when I was 20. No one in my family had breastfed a baby since The Grapes of Wrath. So no one really talked about it and no one could, or would, really tell me about it. But I decided I was going to figure it out so I equipped myself with two boobs full of milk and three nursing bras.

I nursed that baby and then her brother and his brother and his sister and her brother. And if you lost count, that’s five. Plus some random babies here and there because I am cow-like in milk production. Milk glands are like sweat glands. So making milk is akin to sweating. I sweat a lot and I also make a lot of milk. COINCIDENCE?

The milk sweating doesn’t really have anything to do with the fact that I have two boulders attached to my chest. That’s mostly just genetics. I’m German and when I consider my family tree I picture a busty barmaid in a corset with a tray of beer. Wait. That’s the St. Pauli girl. In any case, where these suckers came from may remain a mystery but what is not a mystery is that they are big.

I was fit for a nursing bra after that first baby, because the three I bought looked like I was trying to shove a watermelon into a tube sock. When the lovely lady at Pea in a Pod (or something. It was the early 90s, the options were slim) measured me and declared me a 34G, I must have turned some shade of white/green, because even she looked alarmed.

Ten year old boy to Dolly Parton. Bam.

Bras and nursing tanks are more readily available now, but in the 90s if you wanted a special size you had to order it. From a catalogue. I know. It was the dark ages. We just all sat around looking at our catalogues by candlelight and eating our curds and whey.

Milk ducts actually increase with the birth/nursing of each subsequent child. Which basically means that by now, I’m equipped with enough milk-sweat glands to feed a not very small village. I nursed my last baby 2.5 years from a G cup.

Nursing with breasts this plentiful has it’s benefits, and of course it’s downfalls. Discuss.

Boos:

  • Buying a bra is no easy feat. Forget off the rack, unless you go to Sports Authority and buy two hammocks and whipstitch them together.
  • Discretion is not easy. It’s hard enough to keep a baby covered much less a breast the size of volleyball. I never even tried. Look stranger, I double dog dare you.
  • Your giant breast may inadvertently smoosh into your baby’s face. Not like suffocation level though (because babies are born with that little nose channel to help them breathe, probably in circumstances such as these) but smoosh, non the less.
  • It’s more likely that your infant will inadvertently latch on to the side your breast, simply because there is so. much. boob.
  • Your back is probably going to hurt from lugging around a pair of tatas heavier than your baby.

 

Breastfeeding with large breasts

The author and her two youngest

Yays:

  • Looking like Dolly Parton. (This can actually fall into either category. The former, from my perspective)
  • In the event you are tandem nursing, it is quite easy to nurse two children at once, even if they are not near each other.
  • In that same category, you can nurse on your back. Because your breasts simply fall down. The one time gravity and breasts work together toward a common goal.
  • Ever been on a long car drive with a crying baby. Boob in the carseat and you don’t have to dangerously lean over the seat. Need I say more?

Despite my lack of support/example/community I nursed all five of my babies until they stopped. I’m profoundly grateful for my E.5 (left) and F (right) breasts. They have served gallons and gallons of meals to a bevy of babies. My gratitude is expressed by way of a well fitting bra, ordered from a catalogue. Just kidding, thankfully it’s from Cacique. Which is good because I’m fresh out of candles.

 

Joni Edelman
I’m Joni. I’m lucky enough to have 5 amazing kids (19, 16, 15, 4 and 2), one fantastic husband, an awesome sister and a yarn addiction. When I’m not raising up people I’m a freelance writer, RN, and the momma behind mommabare. Love is my religion. I like cake and crafty crap. And yoga. In that order. 
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Comments

  1. I found good and cute nursing bras at hotmilk. Online. Their sizing chart is very accurate!!

  2. I’m so glad to have read this!

    I’m currently 5mo pregnant with my first and want to breastfeed. No one in my family has breastfed, and my friends all have “average” sized boobs, so I feel like I’m on my own here. I’m already a 34I. Yeah, I – as in INSANE. I’m afraid of what the future brings (engorgement! I’ll need wheelbarrows!). It was very reassuring to know that I’m not going to suffocate my baby!

    • Don’t freak out too much about how big they might get! It’s my understanding and personal experience that bigger boobs often don’t change as much as smaller ones. Mine barely change at all, except during the initial engorgement, which really doesn’t last very long (and who wants to put on a real bra and go out with swollen rock boobs?). I’m a 34K – 36H/I depending on the brand. Blessings for your birth and breastfeeding journey! I hope it’s beautiful.

  3. Angela N says:

    Cacique bras are the bomb for Big Girls! Nursing mama or not!

  4. momateefitz says:

    I also was blessed (cursed) by the boobie fairy. I am of German descent too and am currently a 36G. I have gone as high as a 38J when my milk came in. My 2 sisters also are quite large. My breasts were “normal” untilI was pregnant ; a tiny 34C cup! I love that I can nurse on my back in bed but hate that I need good bras to stave off my back pain. I am pplanning on a reduction when I am done nursing as I do have chronic back pain and need to take off the extra weight.

    I was always fortunate to have enough milk for my nursling plus some. I just wish I could have donated.

  5. I was a 34C with my first pregnancy (born 2008). I am now nursing our third (will be one on 5/14) my last measurement I was a 34J. I didn’t even know there was such a size.

  6. Yelena Leychik says:

    I am a 38JJ pre getting pregnant. Now at 25 weeks, still same size. But no clue where to get a maternity bra in my size or where to get measured and fitted. Hate catalogs!

    • http://Www.blestbras.com.au are fantastic! They dont have a store but their online fitting system if pretty good:) easy to return items if they dont fit…just try on before you remove the tags. Only downside is that you cant return sale items:( they have beautiful maternity bras with flexiwire and their normal bras are beautiful too!

  7. Amanda Robert says:

    I love this post! I wish this would have been around for some extra support a few years ago! I am 28 and 30 weeks pregnant with my 4th. I am currently a 36h/j depending on bra. I have found so many cute bras for “normal” boobs. It’s good to know I am not the only one with big boob issues!

  8. I recently was made aware of the fact that despite my husband and I’s use of birth control *the pill* pregnancy is very VERY much a possibility… I am 20 years old and not overweight by any means. All hail the German for…mothers???? or maybe pelt them with rocks… at 15 I was in a 38C. Previous to getting pregnant I was a 40DD but I never really found a bra that was comfy…let alone cute. Now I am 8 weeks pregnant with my first child and have already had to go up. I found a relatively inexpensive nursing bra at target in the largest size they carried… a 40DDD. fast forward 3 days and here I am back on the market. Wondering my true size (as I have not had someone else actually check…) I fear for the future of my “girls” because I have had a lot of breast pain due to lack of support in the correct places. I am ready to give up home and start making my own…. and I will mention I despise the sewing “devil” I borrow from my mother on the rare occasion I decide I want to battle! Any and all help would be GREATLY appreciated. P.s. is a nursing bra REALLY a necessity????

    Love with all my boobies, Ashley

    • Unity Dawson says:

      If you would normally wear a bra and plan to breastfeed, I suggest you buy at least one comfortable feeding bra if you want to continue wearing them, normal bras are rather difficult and uncomfortable to feed from. I made the mistake of just grabbing one of the shelf so definitely get fitted after your milk comes in as you will change in size! I tend to wear a lot of loose fitting tops and a singlet underneath as these do give some support and hide your tummy when lifting your shirt to feed if that is a concern, other than that I choose tops that have a few buttons in front, some in style items are completely impractical for breastfeeding in comfort! Have fun shopping!

    • Get a nursing bra if you want to nurse! Will make your life so much easier. They are usually stretchy so kinda grow/shrink with your body.. at least a little. 🙂 Hope that helps… They are expensive but definitely worth it if you want to be comfy and somewhat supported. I have found the support is not the same at all but still WAY better then nothing!

      Good luck and congrats!

  9. This could be me!!! Except I’m only on my second kid so I see what I have ahead of me. When my oldest was 6 months I went to get sized at a special breastfeeding shop…they brought me bra after bra and my boobs overflowed them all. I finally bought a 34I (i, as in incredulous) and even that was a smidge small if the baby hadn’t eaten in oh, an hour. Ugh. But I do acknowledge the benefits of side-lying nursing with big boobs. Sleepong while nursing is a win for everyone involved.

  10. The Binky Babe says:

    I feel like I could have written this exact post myself. After my first was born I went to a specialty lingerie shop in NYC to get measured, and I measured at a 30H, but they only had nursing bras down to a 32, so they helpfully took one in for me. Fast forward to this past year when kid #2 came along, and I’m thinner than ever (man these kids can eat the calories off me faster than I can put them back in!) but my boobs just get bigger and bigger. I ordered two in size 28J from the only retailer/manufacturer I could find. But, six months into breastfeeding, and I’m noticing that, though the bands still fit, the cups are looking a little tight. I am none too excited about ordering K cups, and not the Keurig kind!

  11. Elizabeth says:

    I’m sure you were just kidding, but not all Mamas will realize how dangerous it is to breastfeed in a moving car. No matter how large your breasts are, it is physically impossible to breastfeed a properly restrained infant in a car seat while remaining fully upright and with your seat belt correctly placed. Your seat belt becomes totally ineffective if you lean forward or to the side, endangering not just you but your infant and anybody else in the car. If your big tatas allow you to nurse the baby to sleep in the seat while safely pulled over, awesome! But Mamas and babies have died trying to pull this trick in a moving vehicle.

    Other than that, I can relate to the article. 🙂 One more “con” to add to your list: You overhear someone discussing a sale on single-serving coffee pods and you get your hopes up that you might find an affordable bra in your size…

    – Elizabeth, Child Passenger Safety Technician and J-cup Breastfeeding Mama of 4.

  12. THIS WAS AMAZING!

    I wear around a 36H (depends if you measure before or after two little monkeys nurse).
    I am currently nursing my almost 3 year old and my 9 month old. I totally appreciated EVERYTHING in this.

    Thanks for writing!!

  13. Thanks for this! At 18 I had a breast reduction, but they grew back bigger. Before getting pregnant I was a 32H as in Humongous. Now while nursing my second I’m a 34J/K, which I wish stood for Just Kidding but may stand for Jubbly Knockers. Sigh.
    Your mention of the face smoosh and the non-nipple latch made me burst out laughing (reminds me to apologize tomorrow to my husband since he’s trying to sleep and I’m reading this at 5am while nursing). Thanks for making me feel less alone, I find that my breasts are a while lot ‘cons’ with the ‘pro’ being only makes milk.

  14. I only have one kiddo so far, and now I’m scared that my boobs will get even bigger with more babies! Eeek! I just got fitted for a bra the other day and I’m up to a 34L (maybe the L is for leaky…or else LOL). Back before I was pregnant I was only a 34G. Thanks for the article and for the laugh!

  15. Kendra Owen says:

    Thank you for this post! It made my day! You forgot about the major boob sweat though, that’s my struggle and how I get choked to near death at night and have to lift and move my boobs just to turn over at night. It’s hard having big boobies!

  16. I can relate!! I’m F/G and breastfeeding! I’m a nurse as well! Thanks for the laugh/read!!

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