IT IS SO HARD. Seriously. It is hard. Every single time I breastfeed it is a different experience and sometimes it is pleasant and sometimes she is fighting me and doesn’t want to latch and it is so overwhelming I want to cry. There are so many things I wish I was told about breastfeeding that would have come in handy later down the road. When I experience certain things such as cluster feeding, engorgement, baby not wanting to latch I wish I would have known how normal it was. There are so many things that I wish I was told about breastfeeding and let me share those things with you because I genuinely feel that if I can share what I wish I would have known that I do NOW know it may help someone else.
It can be really hard in the beginning but it does get better
Figuring out the latch is tough, making sure the baby is comfortable and happy as well as the lack of sleep due to breastfeeding can be hard and overwhelming. It would have been nice to hear “Hey it is going to be tough for the first month or two and every day is a giant roller coaster but it does get better”
That mama is doing a great job
Encouragement goes a long way especially when breastfeeding because if I am being honest, there are SO many times I wanted to quit. It seems so much easier to just pump and bottle feed. And if that is what is easier for you then you have to do what you feel is best for you but for me I want to go as far as I can with it...but I need love and support from the people in my life. Show encouragement and support and when the days are hard for them to tell them how GREAT they are doing and remind them how strong they are.
Breastfeeding is exhausting and wipes out all of your energy
Say goodbye to what energy you were saving for a rainy day because that is not gone. Breastfeeding sucks so much energy out of you that you really start to feel exhausted from sun up to sun down. It would have been cool if I knew about a high protein diet and staying hydrated early on. NOW I know these things because I figured it out however, before giving birth knowing how much of an energy suck it was would have been nice.
It is VERY isolating
Eventually you are breastfeeding or pumping so much that you feel confined to the couch or bed. Baby is always hungry therefore your boob is always out and you are ALWAYS hanging out at home because why leave...you’ll need to pump or nurse in 10 minutes anyways. By having this mindset you will begin to isolate yourself from the real world adding sadness to your mood. Although it can be isolating, it is important to remember that you don’t have to allow breastfeeding to confine you to the house.
It hurts and your nipples may crack and bleed
TELL THEM about these things, seriously. My nipples were SO sore in the beginning that I didn’t want to do it anymore. They would crack and be so sore for weeks before I started feeling any relief. But I just kept nursing and eventually my nipples began to toughen up and baby's latch got softer and the whole nursing experience got better.
Cluster feeding SUCKS
They are growing and changing therefore they are wanting a snack ALL. THE. TIME. You will feel like a dairy cow with sore achy boobs and while they are nursing what feels like every 30 seconds just know It sucks now but it does get better.
Overall if you have had experiences breastfeeding BE HONEST. Don’t be pushy or “this is what you should do” be supportive and if they mention how they are feeling or what they are going through support them. Tell them they are amazing and how great of a job they are doing. Tell them hey it is okay THIS TOO SHALL PASS.
it's heartbreaking when you can feel yourself getting pushed out of someone's life.
i’m over quarantine i’m losing my damn mind!
covid 19 can suck it