Mom Confessions: Misconceptions I Had About Breastfeeding

breastfeeding
Image via Mindi Stavish

Breastfeeding is typically portrayed in the public in one of two ways: snuggly and cuddly moments that appear easy or discreet moments that should not be displayed in public. There are so many misconceptions about breastfeeding to sort through that it's enough to make an expectant mom a bit crazy.

Here are what some of my friends had to say about ideas they had about breastfeeding before having a baby.

breastfeeding
Image via Flickr/ Pusteblemenland

“The quick answer to that is ‘I thought breastfeeding would be … easy!' With my first child, I didn't do anything to prepare for it because I thought it would be so natural.

“It turns out breastfeeding wasn't easy at all. Both Baby and I struggled with it. I had those lactation consultants on speed dial for at least a month! With my second child, I was way more prepared, and she and I are breastfeeding champs.

“For me, the hard part this time is finding time for myself when we are so attached.” — Alison Graichen, mom of two

Mother gazing down at her nursing baby
Image via iStock

“Weird. I thought it would be weird. Now I can't imagine any other way.” — Stephanie Dulli, Stephanie Says, mom of two

Baby nursing
Image via iStock

“I thought breastfeeding would be awkward and silly. The first attempt was actually strange. Now, I'm a mom of three that have all breastfed. It was such an amazing experience.” — Lisa Julian Johnson, mom of three

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Image via Stavish Stills Photography

“Before I was a mom, I thought breastfeeding would be easy. It's natural, and women have done it forever. But neither of us knew what we were doing, and feedings took 45 minutes. I felt strapped to the couch! After a few months, it became easy for us, and we wouldn't have it any other way.” — Mandy Agarwal, mom of one

{ MORE: Should You Feed Your Baby Donated Breast Milk? }

breastfeeding mom
Image via Flickr/ c r z

“I thought breastfeeding would be easy! It took me five weeks for succesful nursing with my first child. I was determined, but man, I wanted to give up so many times!” –Denise Dyer, mom of two

breastfeeding
Image via Hannah Michaelson

“I thought breastfeeding was what hippies did. From the time puberty hit until I was 20, I had a serious misconception on everything parenting. I wanted to have a scheduled ‘luxury c-section' (whatever that is!) because there was no way a baby was coming out of my … well … and I was going to bottle feed until I could spoon feed.

“I ended up having a water birth, and at 16 months, I'm still breastfeeding and did BLW. It's funny how many things kids change in our lives — everything. –Hannah Michaelson

airplane and pumping
Image via Mindi Stavish for EverydayFamily

“I thought that it would come naturally. My first was born with special needs, and because of her medical issues, [I] was not able to breastfeed. I pumped for her for a year, and she got only breastmilk for that time.

“Although it wasn't the way I imagined, I considered it breastfeeding in my own way.” –Jamie Davis Smith, mom of three

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Image via Flickr/ Raphaël Goetter

“Before I was a mom, I thought that breastfeeding would come naturally. I thought that my body would do what it was meant to do without any coaxing or help. I thought that I would be able to produce milk with ease as long as I kept my calories up.

“What I learned was that there are some women who simply do not have that luxury, and I was one of them. I was taking over 30 pills a day, constantly seeking help from lactation consultants, pumping with a hospital-grade pump after each feed, pumping additional sessions, and doing everything humanly possible (including buying and getting an ‘illegal' drug, aka non-FDA approved, from another country that had an overwhelmingly positive results and reviews from others) to make my ‘milk machine' work, but nothing helped.” –Sarah Case, mom of one

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Image via Angela Middleton

“Before I was a mom, I thought breastfeeding would be disrespectful, vulgar, scary, weird, easy, normal, and natural, along with a multitude of other things. Then we got pregnant when I was 17, and I knew in my heart, body, and soul I would breastfeed my baby. That's what I did.

“We had troubles, and I had zero support. I was harassed by family, lost friends, and was ashamed to nurse in public, often hiding in my car or under a cover, shhhhing my baby till I could get to a place I could nurse.

“I thought everyone thought like me. Then I became a mommy of two, and I'm the biggest breastfeeding advocate I know. Now my whole life is about breastfeeding and children and parenting and advocating.” –-Angela Middleton, mom of two

{ MORE: Social Media: Helping Parents Learn (*how to defend themselves against unsolicited advice) }

Baby Martinez_-4
Image via Stavish Stills Phototography

“I thought breastfeeding would come with a heavenly song in the background and little birdies flying in the air while I peacefully caressed my baby and rivers of milk poured out of my breasts.

“Reality was a whole lot different.

“It consisted of a screaming toddler, a screaming hungry baby, an SNS that would not flow properly, and breasts that would not provide adequately. I'm still trying, and I will continue as long as I can. Everyone's journey is different, yet everyone's is special.” — Alithza Martinez, mom of two

breastfeeding mother
Image via iStock

“Before I became a mom, I thought breastfeeding would be natural and beautiful. What it was, though, was hard, awkward, stressful, obsessive, and something only I could control.” –Sonja Mangrum, mom of three

{ MORE: Why Breastfeeding Doesn't Have to Be All or Nothing }

What did you discover about breastfeeding?

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Mom Confessions: Misconceptions I Had About Breastfeeding

Mindi is a working mom with three boys ages 4, 2, and an infant (born June 2013). She spent her first 8 years of her career in Speech-Language Pathology at a Children's Hospital. She currently works with adults and children in home health. The real fun for her happens when she is at home with her boys, chasing them around and pretending to be a super hero. She blogs about life as a working mom at Simply Stavish. Her weekly feature, Words in the Sand, teaches parents how to grow their child's s ... More

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3 comments

  1. Profile photo of chrissy chrissy says:

    I thought bf would be weird because before kids they were my husband’s so I only saw them in a sexual way. But I really wanted to at least give bf a try. It was the hardest most beautiful experience I’ve had. The 1st couple weeks were tough with the soreness. But I kept at it. The next fight was keeping my supply. I’m hypothyroid so it’s really hard to keep a good supply when your metabolism doesn’t work like it’s supposed to. But I’m proud to say I managed to bf my 1st son for almost 6mths, 2nd for 3 mths, and 3rd for 2 mths. I did everything I could but I’m not one of those mom’s who can produce enough for my babies naturally. I’m a total advocate for bf. I’ve offered support to any of my friends who wanted to try it. You can however have a closeness and cuddle time with bottle feeding too. It’s worth at least trying it. It’s no piece of cake to start but if you can stuck it out its a beautiful thing. It definitely gets easier after the 1st child. I knew exactly what I needed to do with my 2nd and 3rd sons. Good luck moms

  2. Profile photo of nakitta nakitta says:

    I am a mother of two children. I tried breastfeeding my son, he’s 6 now, but stopped after three weeks. But with my daughter, who is 8 months, I breast fed for five months. I loved it… It was one of the best things I ever chose to do. It gives me such a close bond, and it’s like I can feel all the love.

  3. Profile photo of Cody Cody says:

    I too though bf would come naturally and easy but it didn’t. After having and emergeny C section and not being able to hold or see my son for 2 days he had to get bottle fed. I felt horrible I didn’t even want to see him bc I felt like he didn’t need me. Bf was the worst experience of my life bc the LC at the hospital was a total b**** and no help at all. I felt useless I could never get enough to pump and he would never latch bc he was so use to a bottle. Switching to formula was the best decision I made for our family. We both were much healthier and happier after that bc I had no one around to help I wasn’t eating or taking care of myself at all. I think there is too much pressure for women to bf. If it works for you great if not its ok.

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