The lovely Jules from http://curtainsforthewindow.blogspot.com/ or twitter @muddleduck is our guest blogger today with her experience of breastfeeding! Thank you Jules x
“Oooh no, you can’t do that!”
The phrase “breast is best” is one that I first remember hearing all those years ago when I had my first baby girl in 2002. I was a nervous 19 year old first time mum who felt determined to at least attempt to breastfeed. That determination turned out to be well needed!
When I’d just given birth to my daughter I’d asked for her to be placed directly on me to feed, this is now apparently common practice but for some reason 9 years ago at the hospital I had her in it mustn’t have been. Whilst they allowed me to do it I did get some very funny looks! My baby latched on pretty well first go and had a teeny feed before we were taken up to the wards, so far so good.
On reaching the ward none of the midwives seemed particularly interested in answering my questions about breastfeeding or indeed seemed to have more than about five minutes to give to me time wise….so I just ploughed on and did things how I thought they ought to be done by myself. All of a sudden, in the middle of feeding a rather hungry new baby, a midwife appeared, removed my baby from my breast and started winding her. To say I was shocked is an understatement! She then proceeded to tell me I was going about things completely the wrong way, that the baby wasn’t latched on properly and that I’d upset her tummy. After that she decided I ought to be bottle feeding my baby as she was obviously “too hungry” and I wouldn’t be able to produce enough!! Needless to say I took my baby back from this person and tearyily eyed asked for a second opinion.
When a different midwife came up I asked her to check how I was latching the baby on, whether she thought I wasn’t going to produce enough milk and if she thought I ought to bottle feed. She seemed completely taken aback by the other lady’s comments and set me straight. What I was doing was perfect, my baby seemed happy and was feeding well, I was feeding on demand and making sure I winded her properly….she couldn’t see the big problem and told me to carry on as I was.
Looking back on it now I believe that the first midwife who spoke to me took one look at my face and saw a slighty nervous 19 year old girl instead of someone who was a new mum. She quite obviously didn’t trust that I’d have the instincts and wherewithal to know what I was doing and to actually want to breastfeed my child. Perhaps some people, if they’d given birth when they were my age may not have but I certainly did!
I breastfed my first daughter for 10 months, my second for 19 months and my third for 20 months…..I sometimes wish I could bump into that nasty midwife and show her that not only did I breast feed the daughter she thought I couldn’t/shouldn’t I also went on to feed another two!
I’m very glad I stuck to my guns and had the belief that I could do it….it just goes to show, Mum really does know best!