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A Picture Of The Structure Of Human Milk Ducts Has People Equal Parts Fascinated And Horrified

Jamie Grill/Getty Images, @chiknclit/Twitter

Remember when you were a kid, just learning about the human body for the first time, and your teacher handed out diagrams, and you were horrified and basically scarred for life?

Well, apparently, that stage of life isn’t over.

Brace yourselves for this image:

If you’re asking what that is an image of… well, you should really think before you ask questions.

That is the image of the female muscle system. It’s just the torso, but that means the muscles in the breasts are shown, and those flower-like structures are known as milk ducts.

So the “petals” are the milk-making glands, which start producing milk after a mother gives birth. They are separated to look like flower petals. They are known as ducts, and they carry milk to the nipple.

This structure was a surprise to many, which is why the pictorial proof was a little hard to take:

Girls, this is real.

And if you find it downright horrifying…you’re not alone:  


But it’s good to remember this is the human body, and it’s natural.

Many women, especially those are currently breastfeeding or have breastfed in the past, are loving this picture:

Of course, any squeamishness comes back to the patriarchy:

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether you’re freaked out, amazed, or ready to launch into a feminist tirade.

The fact is, flower-shaped milk ducts exist, and they’ve always looked like this. The only difference is, now you know.