Hint: Breastfeeding does not come as naturally as you would expect.
Society gives this impression breastfeeding “comes naturally”, and then when the new mom struggles, she thinks there’s something wrong with her.
It breaks my heart to think about the women who doubt themselves and give up breastfeeding because of this.
Mama, breastfeeding is hard.
You don’t know what you’re doing, you’re vulnerable, you feel like an idiot, and so many people in the delivery room are shouting instructions (often conflicting instructions). It’s bewildering.
I look back at my first day with my baby in the hospital, and I want to start bawling.
The nurses hurt my breasts and tore my self-confidence to shreds in an attempt to help me.
And the irony is I still didn’t breastfeed correctly. I found out a week later that my son had lost almost an entire kg in weight because he wasn’t getting enough nourishment.
I had to resort to nipple shields while I struggled to get the hang of breastfeeding. Eventually, when my son was three months old, I came across the Thompson Method, and my breastfeeding journey turned around.
So I know first-hand how traumatising it feels to be a failure when everyone tells you how easy it should be.
Here are the two most important lessons I learned that you should apply to breastfeed correctly from the start:
Do not let anyone — even the nurses — push, prod, touch, or squeeze your breasts.
It’s unnecessary and unhelpful and can lead to nipple trauma which is challenging to recover from.
It’s your body and your baby — stand up for yourself and your rights.
Prepare ahead of time to breastfeed correctly from the start. If you are already breastfeeding and struggling, you can still improve the situation by empowering yourself with knowledge.
Traditionally you can go to a lactation consultant, but their methods are not always the most up to date. (Hint: Tips such as “nose to nipple” can cause you severe pain, mama!)
I highly recommend The Thompson Breastfeeding Method.
Dr Thompson has years of evidence and studies to back up her method, and it works.
Lactation consultants only worsened my breastfeeding journey, but I was breastfeeding pain-free within the same day as implementing Dr Thompson’s tips.
And she provides support beyond breastfeeding. She covers topics such as your rights during birthing and how to bond with your baby.
Check out her free Facebook group also. There is a lot of info you can use.
Set yourself and your baby up for breastfeeding success by:
- Refusing to let anyone abuse your breasts and nipples in an attempt to help you.
- Prepare (or recover) as much as possible by studying the Thompson Method.
You got this, mama.