Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Breastfeeding Dilemma

Many new mothers breastfeed their babies for just a short while.

Some breastfeed only during their maternity leave,
while others may continue until they claim their breastmilk is decreasing in amount and finally stop.
There are also those who find that breastfeeding is not really a joyful experience and quit.
And those who suddenly quit for no apparent reason.
Only a minority of mothers breastfeed their child successfully and exclusively (4-6months without any additional nutrition).

Why is this happening? This does not only happen to those who are poorly educated but also those who are the top in their field.
After some researches(informal), readings (books, journals magazines) and talking to other experienced mothers, I have some thoughts to share ( and some tips too).

All mothers SHOULD breastfeed their babies exclusively(unless medically adviced not to). I don't want to just promoting people to breastfeed, but to breastfeed exclusively.
There are differences in term of amount of milk consume, the lenght of time, the effort needed and the most importantly-the outcome.

But why many still hesitate?
Why many did not persevere?
Why many have tried but not successful?
It all begins with the optimal preparation of the MIND, BODY and EMOTION......


Wiz said...

As I was reading your post on breast feeding, I was taken back in time and now reminiscing the time which I tried to. After the birth of my first child, I was extremely eager to breast feed her, coz that is only natural for all mothers, the instinct to feed her offspring. But after countless attempts I failed. I was engulfed in such a sorrowful state that was driving me to the brink of insanity. I felt like a failure, a bad mother, and an incompetent one too. I kept asking myself why everyone else could do it and I couldn't. Everytime I tried to breastfeed, my nipples would bleed and milk wouldn't come out that much from them. My baby cried of hunger coz she couldn't suck the milk out. I have used everything, the pump, the rubber nipples, everything that was offered to me and suggested, all was purchased and tried. But nothing worked.
The agony of self defeat was too over whelming for a new mother plus the discouraging words from everyone around you questioning why I couldn't breastfeed my own child. I continued trying for a month, with intervals in between to let my nipples recover from the wounds and later I just left it as it was. It was difficult for me as my breasts were swollen with milk but the milk didn't have an outlet to gush out. The mental state I was in was horrendous, crying has become a daily event. My husband was the only person supportive ensuring me that I could still be a good mother even if I could not breastfeed my child.
I do so believe that the bond between mothers and babies does not limit to breast milk alone, it's the nurturing which plays the biggest role. I have encountered many mothers who breast feed their kids till they are 1 year plus and the kids are not attached to the mothers, disobedient and they are not as bright as they should be considering they were breastfed.

I brought up my kids the best way I knew how. We don't have much since I decided to stop working to compensate my inability to breastfeed them. And years later with two kids I get compliments from doctors and strangers saying how behaved and well taught my kids are. And the best compliments thus far was from a paediatrician, he said..."You've taught your daughter well, you must have breastfed her thru the entire course!" I just smiled, and for the first time I felt good as a non breastfeeding mother.

Trust me, no mothers in this world would choose not to breastfeed, coz for me it wasn't a choice, it was fate.

Thanks for reading thru, I was compelled to reciprocate to your post.

drNO said...

i appreciate your view.
It is very true...all mothers should think like you.
But sad to say, they are many who are not. I've met a lot of these people. I've even talked to some of them to know their real reason for refusing to breastfeed. They would think only the negatives about breastfeeding.
Hopefully Malaysian are more educated ...
The benefit of breastfeeding to kids are not 100%/surefire. If that's the case, all breastfed kids are excellent in life and education. It is based on research, and the results are for majority (not all).
Their upbringing still plays an important role.