Welcome to this week’s edition of the Breastfeeding Mini Series. As I wrap up the series, I am tackling some breastfeeding challenges. If you are new to the series, check out my posts on thrush and teething.
The first breastfeeding challenge I ever faced was opposition. Some of the members of my extended family didn’t understand why I wanted to breastfeed. Everyone else in the family had formula fed their babies for years. Why would I choose a different path?
Even at my baby shower, a well-meaning family member told me: “You can never breastfeed. Your breasts are too small.”
Another aunt chimed in: “What are you going to do? You know nothing about babies.”
Well…the latter was probably right. But what mom-to-be does know a lot about raising children? It’s something most of us learn as we go.
(I wish I HAD done more to prepare earlier in life, though!)
Here are 5 things I’ve learned about facing opposition:
1. Know WHY you want to breastfeed and be determined that no one will sway you with discouragement. Remember your goals. If you are determined to stay the course despite opposition, you will be more likely to succeed.
2. Surround yourself with breastfeeding friends. You will need the support. This could be in-person or online friends–wherever you can find each other!
3. Arm yourself with knowledge about the benefits of breastfeeding–but be careful how you share them. When a family member questioned our reasoning for breastfeeding, my husband sent them an e-mail with a link to KellyMom.com. Well, this family member forwarded the e-mail to another family member who was currently formula feeding. The formula-feeding mom was sorely offended. Be careful how and with whom you share.
3. Respect their choices as well. You may know breast is best for your family, but don’t preach at others who are formula feeding. I am a huge breastfeeding advocate, but we need not judge when others don’t take our same path.
4. Educate but don’t harass. If others ask you about your choice, by all means, gush about all the wonderful benefits of breastfeeding. But if they don’t? Don’t beat them over their heads with The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding.
5. Take a break from the conversation or situation. Walk away, go nurse your baby, eat a lactation cookie (or two).
6. Remember: This is YOUR baby and YOUR life. Only you can decide how to feed your child.
- Homemade Lactation Cookies
- Why? & The Best Advice Ever
- Before Baby Arrives
- The First Two Weeks
- The Breast Crawl
- Is Colostrum Liquid Gold?
- Happy World Breastfeeding Week!
- Yummy Mummy Lactation Cookies
- How Breastfeeding Paves the Way for a Real Food Life
- Breastfeeding Challenges: Teething
- Breastfeeding Challenges: Thrush
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