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The Honest Guide to Breast Feeding

1 CommentTuesday, 3 July 2018  | 

The Honest Guide To Breast Feeding.

 

Boobs. Breasts. Tits. Titties. Jugs. Boobies. Bazongas. Rack. Baps. Fried Eggs. Jubblies. Knockers. Hooters.

 

Gosh, some of those labels seem vulgar, (apart from Hooters, that just reminds me of the most amazing chicken wings in Florida) but whatever you call them, whatever their size, whatever their shape; they all have the same function.

 

They produce milk. From either a trickle to a constant waterfall of dairy.

 

Breastfeeding is something you will need to think seriously about when you’re pregnant. You’ll ask yourself so many questions, here’s just a few:

 

  1. Do I want to breastfeed? Do I want to bottle feed?
  2. What if I can’t make enough milk? How much is ‘enough’ milk?
  3. What if the baby won’t ‘latch on’? What does ‘latch on’ even mean?! (This is jug-jargon for when the baby’s mouth takes in your full nipple so that its comfortable for you both)
  4. How many bottles do I need? What milk do I buy?

One question, leads to another.

 

I wanted to breastfeed, I knew as soon as I was pregnant. As soon as your baby is born, the midwives like to put baby onto your breast – or at least the chest area. Skin on Skin contact. This is often your first cuddle with your baby, providing there are no complications during labour.

 

If you’re lucky, the baby will just know to nuzzle into your breast and more importantly, your nipple, and start to suck. Its one of the strangest, yet beautiful, feelings.

 

To some women, breastfeeding isn’t even an issue. They don’t want to breastfeed. That is 100% their choice. Whether you choose bottle or boob, fed is best. Its got to be, right?

 

Recently, there’s been debate about whether mothers who bottle feed their babies should be given as much support as mothers who choose to breast feed. In June 2018, The Royal College of Midwives released their new ‘position’ on the matter stating that women, if after being given information and advice, choose to bottle feed, they should be supported. I believe, this should go without saying. ALL mothers should be given support on feeding their children.

 

There is so much pressure on women to breastfeed, but in the end, do what is right for you and  your baby. By all means, talk it over with your partner, doctor, midwife et, but your baby needs to be fed or they will die. This is the literal truth. They need food, like we do.

 

I managed eight weeks with my first child, Max. Towards the end of those 8 weeks, my nipples were so sore and I was just so tired. It was hard to keep up with his demands. I went to classes at the hospital for assistance and even tried nipple shields. This isn’t something from 50 Shades, this is  simply a plastic nipple, to be place over your own to help ease the pain from the baby sucking. I found it as useful as a chocolate teapot. Not only did I feel ashamed for having to use it (I know, I shouldn’t have felt this way – but I did) but also, Max cottoned on very quickly to the fact this was not my real nipple.

 

With Lily, she was so early my milk hadn’t ‘come in’ (This is jug-jargon for when your boobs fill with milk and you can begin feeding). Initially, she was tube fed with the brand formula, SMA. This was the milk I had bottle fed with Max so it was all I had known. The hospital were great and were used to having to give babies formula in NICU – as above, your baby needs food. Full Stop.

 

I knew I wasn’t making a lot of milk with Max because I remember watching a Will Ferrell film, ‘Land Of The Lost’ (terrible film btw) and I managed just 1oz by expressing.

 

Ah, expressing, now there’s a sight. I had a simple handheld manual breast pump, it looked like a small watering can.

 

With Lily, I was encouraged to express as much as I could and I was lent a Medela Electric Double Pump by the hospital. This was like having two watering cans attached to both my breasts. The nozzle would replicate the movement of a baby sucking.

 

In all fairness, it really helped my milk supply and in the hospital, it gave me something to do. After only two weeks though, I decided to put Lily onto formula. My husband, was so supportive, he was happy as long as Lily was fed. I was grateful for this because it’s bad enough when nurse Vera gives you that disappointed look when you bring out the bottle,  you don’t need it from your partner. So I was lucky.

 

I do wish I could have breastfed my children longer. But remember, in the long run, its not going to have any doomed impact. It won’t affect what primary school they go to, it won’t go on their CV…

Do what is right for you and your baby, I promise you, they will love you regardless.

 

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