An adult nursing relationship (ANR) is a consensual connection between two or more people wherein one person breastfeeds the others. While an ANR is not exclusive to specific genders, sexualities, or relationship models, the most common types of ANR involve heterosexual women feeding heterosexual men. However, people across the sexuality and gender spectrums, and couples, and more can be involved in adult nursing relationships.
In some instances, the people involved may be romantically and/or sexually involved or simply enjoy the act of nursing. At the same time, some adult nursing relationships may involve a sexual element while others do not. For some, the close and nurturing act of suckling—for both people—is the fulfilling part of the union. Whether sexual or not, the main appeals of an ANR are the intimacy created in breastfeeding and receiving milk, the sensual close contact through suckling and skin-to-skin contact, and the emotional bond in the relationship.
Breast milk contains the hormone oxytocin and its release helps with bonding, is very relaxing, and can reduce anxiety. Lactation also produces prolactin, which lowers stress in the person producing it.
Adult nursing relationships are often considered taboo because they are misunderstood. Breastfeeding has come to be understood as a relationship between a mother and child, and only when that child is very young. This leads to the misconception that an ANR has incest and pedophilic connotations. However, most participants in adult nursing relationships do not engage in age or incest play at all. In some instances, an adult nursing relationship may be tied into pregnancy fetish, however, lactation can also be induced and maintained by non-mothers people as well.