Dear Wendy,

Put down the martini, get away from the kids, and hear me out. I’m about to be candid with you. On second thought, grab that martini again. Just chug it. It might help.

First off, little Gabe is healthy and fine. An attention-whore, probably, but I suppose that’s just how babies are. Now, this is where it gets a little crude, but as you know, Kristina’s breasts are one of her best features. Her face is great too—or just fine, I’m not telling you what to think—and her personality is killer, of course, but for the moment this is irrelevant.

I don’t really get jealous when I see men (or women, little kids, dogs for Christ’s sake) sneak a gander at Kristina’s cleavage, because, frankly, civilizations have been built on less. I get it. And in a weird sense, I like that people take notice. Makes me feel lucky. Kristina is faithful to me, and that’s what matters.

I love Gabe. He’s half me. And I’m sure that fact has something to do with his literal clinginess to Kristina’s milk-pillows.

Except now there’s Gabe. And Gabe is a baby—so it seems, right? Because of his status as a baby, he gets exclusive access to boobs-time, as if he was born with a VIP membership or something. You might think, oh, Q, there’s plenty to go around!

But there’s not. Lately, when Gabe’s not sucking away (Kristina swears he’s hungry, but c’mon, let’s put this into equal terms: how many creamy hot fudge sundaes could you eat in one sitting?) my wife is too sore to let me give it a go. Not only do I not have exclusive access anymore, I have virtually no access.

On a psychological level, it’s my belief that no feeling is unique to one person—that is, what one person feels, another person has felt at one time or another. With this in mind, I’m asking myself just how often other fathers have been jealous of their newborn babies. I can’t be the only husband whose wife has perfect melon-shaped skin-blimps of mythological profundity. And I’m not the only father whose baby has usurped his authority on the matter. I’m just the only one with the gall to bring it up, damn it.

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I love Gabe. He’s half me. And I’m sure that fact has something to do with his literal clinginess to Kristina’s heaven-sent, angel-kissed, quadruple-D, turn-to-see milk-pillows. But we have got to compromise, him and I. As it is now, he pretends he can’t hear me. Won’t even try to communicate.

You’re a girl, we both know this. And you’ve had babies. And I’m your brother and we were babies once. But this is my first baby, and maybe I should’ve read more baby books because I didn’t foresee this.

Imagine you’ve just done a 60-hour week at the office. Woah! Lots of hours for one week! And Chuck’s been screwing you every day. But it’s Friday. You head out from the office and on the highway you see a billboard—the same billboard as always—advertising breast implants. You chuckle and shake your head. “Yeah, okay.”

You pull into the driveway with a half-chub. It was the billboard that did it, that got you daydreaming. At first you scoffed, but now you’re revved up, can’t think of anything else. You’re thinking about your gorgeous wife and about how your birthday is coming up. Your half-chub becomes a full-grown G.I. Joe. And then you slink into your one-story love-nest ready to pounce…

Except you get in and your wife is breastfeeding. Again. You realize this means no sweet nibble-nibble motorboat yacht-party. Your G.I. Joe becomes a goddamn stuffed rabbit with half its ear chewed up, limp, forlorn, and unloved.

And as much as you’re proud to be a father, you know it’s the baby’s fault. You know because he won’t even look at you.

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Women, I’ve heard, occasionally go through these bouts of pure hatred for their newborns, and while that’s not what this is, doesn’t it somewhat justify my feeling? If women can try to strangle their babies in the dead of night for no great reason, can’t I give mine a sideways glance of loathing when we’re having dinner?

I’m a feminist, you know—the first male feminist in our cul-de-sac, actually. So I get it. Women deserve to the right to decide for themselves whether or not they’re going to breastfeed. I’ve always said that, always. I probably said that back when I was slurping on our mom’s teat (sorry for that image).

But this is different. I’m not protesting her right to breastfeed. I’m standing up for my right to enjoy the fruits of our marriage. But if I bring it up to her, she’ll just think I’m being irrational…

Do you have any advice? Gabe is currently staring at me, as in right this second, and to be honest, it’s making me nervous. It’s like he knows.

Well, two can play at this game. Mommy isn’t here. I guess we’ll see how he fares when Daddy starts gnawing on his pacifier, eh? That should show him who gets to do the sucking around here.

Hearts and such,
Q

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