Giving birth was pretty hard. I thought once it was over, the rest would kind of fall into place. I’d always hoped to breastfeed, and I’m still breastfeeding now, but it’s definitely not been an easy ride.
Pain, bleeding, cracked nipples, a tongue-tie, nipple shields, engorgement, expressing, failed attempts to bottle feed expressed milk, and most recently, mastitis, have blighted my breastfeeding journey. I’ve persevered, seen a lactation consultant, and to this day, am still going (albeit sometimes through gritted teeth). It’s definitely a lot harder than I expected.
Thinking about it, I don’t think I’ve met many mums, if any, who have had an easy ride with breastfeeding. This doesn’t make any sense to me. What should be the most natural thing in the world is sooo difficult for so many! Why is that?!
I know a few mums who have, for one reason or another, simply not been able to continue with breastfeeding and have needed to switch to bottle feeding for their own physical and mental wellbeing.
What makes me really sad is seeing these new mums give themselves a hard time, and what makes me angry is reading comments on online message forums, from a few nasty people, giving them a hard time. We need to stick together, not turn on one another and judge each other! Each Mama needs to do what works for them and for their baby, and if this means feeding via bottle over breast, then that’s just fine. Nobody really knows what another mum is going through. We need to support one another, ladies! Share the love.