Breastfeeding is harder than it looks ….
One of the first major challenges parents face is Breast Feeding. As mammals breast feeding is the natural thing to do, it is what the female body is designed to do following pregnancy, however, let us get one big thing straight in everyone’s mind – man, woman and child ….. Breast Feeding, like parenthood, is often a shock to the system and not the easy option – even the most realistic parents are quite often not prepared for the challenge of feeding their child.
There are many reasons why parents opt out of breast feeding – many women, especially new mothers, can often feel overwhelmed by the lack of sleep and the demand on their time and attention – all of this straight after the marathon of giving birth and trying to continue a routine – becomes too much to learn at once.
Especially with a first child women we have spoken to have relayed various accounts of why they gave up breastfeeding their child – here are some:
- problems with baby latching on
-problems with baby staying latched on
- baby stopping feeding as soon as health visitor left
- huge weight loss – or fear that child not gaining weight quickly enough
- baby feeding too frequently so parents have no sleep and there is constant crying
- problems latching on led to a variety of health visitors ‘manhandling’breasts and giving advice that did not seem to make any difference
-having more children and needing to maintain a definite routine
- combination of all of the above creating panic and stress in the mother – combined with guilt and feelings of failure which was in turn making everyone especially the baby unhappy and even more distressed.
Many of us also no longer have close support networks or the luxury of someone at home all day to help with the house and the new born, so, is there an alternative to all of the above? Is there a way of overcoming the challenges without feeling pressured into certain patterns and behaviour or feeling like a failure before you have even started?
In line with Breast Feeding Awareness Week we have spoken to a few different people to find out what support is available in Notts and where information can be found that can help mothers prepare realistically for the act of breast feeding.
Please take a look at our following blog posts:
La Leche League – An international Breast Feeding Support Organisation – with support groups in most areas of the UK including Nottingham
An alternative source for Breastfeeding Support. A fully qualified Lactation Consultant (and Doula) – Yvonne – helps women with breast feeding by offering advice, information and support.
Even if you have stopped breast feeding and are bottle feeding or your baby is already weeks or months old LLL or a Lactation Consultant may be able to help you with routines, technique, understanding or increasing your milk supply to meet the different stages of your day and baby’s needs. These people have time for you and are non judgemental as many have had to deal with similar issues themselves.
Other blog articles relating to Breastfeeding experiences:
‘This Struggling and Exhausted Mummy Reached for the Bottle’ by Marija Smits
Carrie’s Crafts – How Feeding Challenges can also inspire.
Other useful links:
Association of BreastFeeding Mothers