Breastfeeding Carnival: Day 1

Welcome to The Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival!

This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe’s Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. Today’s post is about how the mothers before you influenced your choice to breastfeed. Please read the other blogs in today’s carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 18th through the 31st!


Mothers Before Me: How were you influenced by the mothers before you when it comes to breastfeeding? Did you witness breastfeeding as a child? Was breastfeeding considered taboo in your family? How did this influence your choice to breastfeed?

I never saw a woman breastfeed, that I was aware of, before I breastfed my first child. My mother certainly didn’t breastfeed. My paternal grandmother didn’t breastfeed. My maternal grandmother, who died before I was born, probably didn’t. None of my friends breastfed. The idea of breastfeeding was even gross to me!

My older sister had a child when Iwas 16 years old, and while she formula fed, I heard that she initially tried breastfeeding. “Eww! Gross!” I thought. When I was 20, and a friend of mine had a baby, a co-worker joked that he took our pooled money and bought her a breastpump. Gross! I thought, and “What does that do?” was my next thought. My friend didn’t breastfeed. She formula fed. A decision that seemed perfectly normal in the early 1990’s. Other than those two times, I rarely ever thought about breastfeeding one way or the other. Then I got pregnant.

I chose breastfeeding because it was the right thing to do, not because I thought it was going to be this wonderful bonding experience. My parents adopted a baby, and he was bottle fed, and we bonded just fine thank-you-very-much. I read about the ways it helps the baby’s immune system, and thought I’d do it for just a few months, and I took a breastfeeding class (a one hour class with 30 other people and very little practical advice).

When the baby was born and I tried breastfeeding, it was HARD, but I was determined to make it work. Once we got it working (took a couple of weeks), I was way past any feelings of breastfeeding being gross. Nothing made the baby happier! When she turned a year old, I thought, why stop now?

My family’s initial response was unhappiness. My mother said I was “denying other people the joy of feeding the baby.” My father wouldn’t look at me making me feel very uncomfortable nursing in front of him. Eventually, my mother came around, and now thinks people who don’t try to breastfeed are weird!

I’m proud to be a good example to my children and others (when I nurse in public).
 


 
Here are more post by the Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival participants! Check back because more will be added throughout the day.

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “Breastfeeding Carnival: Day 1

  1. Pingback: Generations of Breastfeeding Joy « Amy Elizabeth

  2. Pingback: Taught Without Being Taught | the BREASTFEEDING CAFE

  3. Pingback: My Mother’s Gift | Motherhood: Deconstructed

  4. Pingback: Learning Lessons From My Mom « The Adventures of Lactating Girl

  5. It must have taken some great courage to overcome all of that negativity about breastfeeding and try it anyway. Congratulations to you and your daughter!

  6. theadventuresoflactatinggirl

    While I know my mom always thought of breastfeeding as best, I can definitely tell she cares a lot more about it now that I breastfeed. And my husband, who was bottle-fed pretty much from the beginning, is a HUGE breastfeeding advocate now. It’s amazing how having someone around you breastfeed can entirely change your opinion on breastfeeding.

    • It is, that’s why it’s important for moms not to hide when their friends come over. Their friends might be uncomfortable at first, but they’ll eventually see how wonderful and easy it is (that is, easy once you get the hang of it).

  7. Pingback: Mothers Before Me « Imperfect Happiness

  8. Motherhood: Deconstructed

    That’s awesome that you were able to make breastfeeding work for you and also influence others at the same time!

  9. Pingback: Mothers Before Me: Lessons for a New Life. « Natural Urban Mama

  10. Pingback: The Mother’s Before Me « Mommy News and Views Blog

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