I was nineteen when I had my first baby and all I knew was bottle feeding. For me, that was the norm and breastfeeding was not on my radar at all. Second baby, and my outlook on feeding was unchanged. Third baby and I began to think more about breastfeeding, but wasn’t ready to take that leap. By my fourth pregnancy, I really started to properly consider breastfeeding, but would it be for me? This is my story of breastfeeding after bottle feeding my older children.
“Will you be breastfeeding or bottle feeding?”
At nineteen years old I had no knowledge of breastfeeding and I thought it was weird. Weird?! How could one of the most natural things on this planet be weird?
At nineteen years old I had no knowledge of breastfeeding and I thought it was weird.
Maybe it was my lack of awareness or society, medias over-sexualisation of breasts, education, or my home surroundings. Who knows, but that was my nineteen-year-old self’s opinion on the topic and nobody tried to enlighten or push me towards it.
Baby number two comes and I do what I know. Formula. Baby number three comes, this time I enquire about breastfeeding but then I quickly back out as it would unfair to feed any of my kids differently, right? *eye roll*
Wrong about feeding
Five years pass. I see breastfeeding being normalised, I see women’s bodies be normalised, and I see more accessible information waving in my face. I do the research myself and see that I may have been wrong about feeding this whole time. I get amazing community midwives, really loving and warm mummy types. They were so open about feeding their own children and explain latching, health benefits and not to mention the bond.
Baby number four arrives and within an hour he latches. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL. To think I missed out on this beautiful moment three times over! It wasn’t until I came home and seen my girls did I feel that real mummy guilt. Yes fed is best, in whatever form, but breastfeeding feels that extra bit special.
Would my younger self have given it a go if I had been more informed?
If it had been more normalised in media?
If I had seen it happening more around me?
Yes fed is best, in whatever form, but breastfeeding feels that extra bit special.
The mum guilt is real
Blogs, support groups and media has changed since then and I hope my girls will grow up in a society where breastfeeding is the norm and they never feel ashamed or embarrassed to openly feed.
I hope my girls will grow up in a society where breastfeeding is the norm and they never feel ashamed or embarrassed to openly feed.
Breastfeeding after bottle feeding my older children has brought a lot of mum guilt. I think I’ll always wish I had have given breastfeeding a go with my first. It’s been such a beautiful experience so far, minus the shallow latch (ouch) and sleepless nights.
Moral of this rant. Do your research, ask for help, accept the help, share breastfeeding content, give breastfeeding a go if it’s baby number one or baby number ten and FREE THE NIPPLE.