This will be a more subtle article with a little less vulgarity based around the one thing that people usually have misconceptions about, and that is breastfeeding.
I reached out to the one person that I thought had more knowledge on the basis of the subject than I do, and her name is Angel Simons. I will link her Facebook at the bottom and some other sources and links as well!
Before I kick off, I’ll start off by saying this: as a mother who could only breast feed for a few short months due to medical complications, I can tell you, the journey is a difficult one. There is alot that goes into it, despite what people say/think. It’s a test of patience, and it tests your strength. But, when it comes down to it, breastfeeding to me solely has more benefits than anything else, and not only is it beneficial for you, as a mother, but it’s also beneficial for your child. Not only that, but the bond that a mother and child grow through this experience is unlike any other, so I encourage all mothers to atleast try it before you knock it down.
So, I will now introduce Angel, and hopefully give those struggling mothers some hope in the journey of breastfeeding.
Angel Simons is the 23 year old mother to a very cute 2 year old little man. If any of you have her on Facebook, she quite simply made one of the happiest and cutest boys around. Angel is still breastfeeding to this date. She has also become incredibly experienced in the world of breastfeeding over the course of the last 27 months. So I sat down, and I made a list of things I wanted to know, that I knew may help others…
Me: First of all, I just want to say thank you for allowing me to pick your brain about this! It means a lot!
Angel: I‘m happy to help!
Me: My first question for you is, in the beginning, what was the hardest part of breastfeeding for you?
Angel: Well, the hardest part for me was getting my son to latch onto my inverted nipple, but, I know not everyone has that problem. That was hell though… He nursed from the same boob for a day and my nipple was bleeding. But, all around the biggest issue was baby and I both learning the proper way to do it. Getting the latch down was the biggest thing. I’m so thankful that the hospital I delivered at had a lactation nurse to help us.
Me: Oh my gosh, that sounds extremely painful. What did you have to do to resolve that?
Angel: The lactation nurse taught me tricks on how to extract my inverted nipple, and after seeing her, I was free of a lot of stress and discomfort.
Me: Are you exclusively breast feeding or do you pump as well?
Angel: I have not pumped since he was an infant.
Me: So, in total, how long have you been breastfeeding for?
Angel: 27 months!
Me: In that time, what are some common misconceptions that you’ve heard from people about it?
Angel: Probably that it’s wrong or weird to breastfeed past infancy. Either that, or the fact it’s shameful to breastfeed in public.
Me: How do you combat those remarks?
Angel: I’ve never had anyone say anything personally about the breastfeeding in public. However, I have gotten negative feedback for nursing my toddler. In those situations I’d educate the person telling them all of the endless benefits, one main one being that my son’s immune system is only 60% developed and that my breast milk is strengthening it immensely!
Me: What are some benefits of breastfeeding that you’ve actively noticed over the last 27 months that you can tell others about?
Angel: My son has always been extremely healthy, weight wise, intellectually he’s always been advanced, and he very, very rarely has gotten sick and when he does it was a very short duration. Another advantage is when he has gotten infections I would put breastmilk on the infected area and it would clear it right up!
Me: What advice can you offer to breastfeeding moms?
Angel: That it can be intimidating in the begining, but after you and baby get the hang of things it will be smooth sailing from there. Around the three month marking point it will come very natural. Stick it out, and stay strong. I would suggest avoid supplementing and pumping in the first six weeks while you are establishing your supply! Never feel pressured by external influences. Listen to your body and always see a lactation consultant if you are having issues. There are many cures to common issues women have, don’t give up!
Something else was mentioned during this interview that Angel had said that had me literally in awe:
“I have decided not to put pressure on my son to wean because of society’s standards of what’s “normal.” Him and I are both fond of the bond we have together with him nursing. I never expected to have such a strong attachment to breastfeeding him, so I also am in no hurry. I did want to wean him when he turned two, but I couldn’t stand the heartbreak he experienced. I don’t see the point in making him scream and cry just to put an end to it for other people. I don’t want to stop it and neither does he.”
Angel is a perfect example of the strong-willed, breastfeeding mother I could always hope to be!
I only covered the bare minimum in my Q&A with Angel, so I also dug around and did some reading with my good friend Google!
Here are some links to articles I thought would be mildly helpful if you’re a new mom just starting out in the world of all things boobie-milk:
Angel Simons FB: http://www.facebook.com/angel.simons.756
My personal advice to mothers just starting out is to not give up. Sometimes, it’s hard, and sometimes you truly do feel like giving up, but, I can promise that once the true latch and comfortable positions are found, breast feeding is a truly beautiful thing. My biggest support in the journey aside from my lactation expert was reaching out to other moms that we’re struggling with the same things. Having that shoulder to lean on, especially in the beginning, it is important. Fear not, no mother will turn you away if you need advice!
Good luck in the journey and may the odds be in your favor!