Explaining Lactation to My Kindergartener

Have you ever talked with a kindergartener? Have you ever fallen down into their rabbit hole of questions? This morning, my son wanted to know exactly how his brother gets milk from my breasts. Like, where does the milk in there COME FROM? child reading book

First I explained how mothers have milk ducts and breast tissue and other parts that create milk. None of these parts show up on his “Systems of the Body” puzzle, obviously, so he doesn’t quite believe me that they exist. You can imagine how much time we then spent on the Internet, locating images of milk ducts.

Then, I had to explain to him why (primarily) mothers provide milk for their babies. Sure, there have been documented cases of males lactating, and trans dads can provide milk for their babies. This didn’t do much to help him understand why he couldn’t nurse his brother.

Oh, how I wish he could nurse his brother!

My next hour was spent thus: “Well, Miles, you see, when the mother’s placenta detaches, this triggers a hormonal response to produce milk…”

In the end, we went to the library to find this book, which claims it will “explain the nature and development of breasts and how they are used to breastfeed milk to babies.” Let’s hope this author has passed the book by a review team of 5-year-olds, because my curious son wants to know it all!

Do you have a curious kiddo asking questions about breastfeeding? Leave us a comment to share some of your favorite nursing resources for older kids.

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