Mom Confessions: Misconceptions I Had About Breastfeeding
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.
“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
“Weird. I thought it would be weird. Now I can't imagine any other way.” — Stephanie Dulli, Stephanie Says, mom of two
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
What did you discover about breastfeeding?