To use the sports analogy again, if you decided to take up running, you would expect to get sore muscles, but because you know that it’s part of the experience, you would take it in stride and not let it derail you. Unfortunately, because our culture fell off the breastfeeding wagon (don’t forget that only 20% our parents breastfed in the 60s-70s), we have lost a sense of what to expect and our definition of “normal” and “natural” has become warped. At the same time, targeted efforts to undermine breastfeeding have put roadblocks in the way of women succeeding. The unfortunate result for too many women is that their first race is uphill with hurdles, often depending on where you give birth or what part of the country you live in! So be gentle with yourself and your baby during this time—you both are learning a new skill and a new relationship. And really, 4-6 weeks is a small period of time compared with the lifetime of benefits for both of you!
Finally, don’t compare and despair: there are some women for whom breastfeeding comes as easy as golf comes to Tiger Woods. Whether by natural talent, or because they were lucky to have fewer breastfeeding booby traps™ in their way, these women had no problems breastfeeding and have difficulty understanding why others do. They (or their friends or doctors) may end up coming across as a bit insensitive or invalidating towards you in the process. Don’t let this get you off kilter! Most people have not stopped to consider all the cultural and institutional barriers to breastfeeding and, therefore, have contributed to blaming mothers unfairly. Best for Babes is working to educate family, friends and professionals, as well as removing those booby traps™, so that new moms are no longer thrown under the bus and breastfeeding is restored to the “normal” and “natural” experience that it was designed to be.
Here are our key evidence-based concepts to get you off to a great start:( Read more...Collapse )