When it comes to breastfeeding, everyone drums into you about the pros, the benefits and all the good that comes from breastfeeding. Now that’s great, of course we should express all the positive and we should support our breastfeeding mama’s but too many are unaware of just how difficult breastfeeding is in those early weeks.
Breastfeeding is painful. This can come from sore nipples, bad latch, blocked ducts, engorgement and even mastitis!
Breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally to baby and mother. Some babies do struggle to latch, something like tongue tie can make it difficult, and some mothers don’t make enough, or any, milk.
Freedom is limited. You can’t leave baby because you have their food supply and it isn’t as easy to express. Even during the night, dad can’t help either!
You have to plan your day around breastfeeding. Especially during growth spurts. You’re limited on what you can do when you have a baby hanging off your breast.
Your life becomes breastfeeding. You find yourself searching for clothes that are easy to breastfeed in. You’re much cautious about the food you eat so that you can get a good varied diet to help your milk supply, and you focus everything around oats! You swap all your fluid intake to water to help your milk supply.
They just don’t make breast pads thick enough in those early days. You leak through everything!
Breastfeeding makes your uterus contract quicker, meaning you get painful cramps every time you feed your baby!
You get dirty looks or horrible comments from strangers whilst feeding your baby in public!
These are just a few of the negatives, but the positives certainly do outweigh it all. Once breastfeeding gets established (around 6 weeks) it is so easy and rewarding! Having used both breast and formula for my children I can honestly tell you that their development is no different from each other.
As natural as breastfeeding is, it doesn’t come naturally to all. It is important to remember not to feel pressured to breastfeed and if you are struggling or happy then it matters not how you feed your baby. Fed is always best!