I remember the day my son was born, and the nurse put him on me to breastfeed. I made an attempt, but it just wasn’t working. He
wouldn't latch on. I didn’t give up—at first. I tried while we were
in the hospital, I tried at home and a family member even tried helping me. Guess what? Still nothing. My son just
didn’t want to latch on.
My next option was to pump. As hard as I tried, there was very little to show for it. At the very least, my
baby got some sort of breast milk, which
is amazing. But there are some moms who, for various reasons, aren't able to do even that. Or maybe they simply choose not to. They feel hopeless or bad about not being able to breastfeed. I tried everything that I was told. In the end, I don’t
feel bad about not being able to breastfeed—I tried my best.
We seem to be bombarded daily by the
“breastfeeding police." No offense to moms who prefer to breastfeed.
Kudos to you. But it’s the ones who throw hurtful words my way if I don't feed my baby in the way they think is perfect that really upset me.
It’s not so easy living in a
world where you’re constantly judged as a mom. Between vaccine debates,
breastfeeding and other parenting styles, some moms
seem always ready and willing to check you on something.
People post on
Facebook all the time about breastfeeding, basically putting down other moms who don't nurse. I've learned to just kept scrolling. You should never let someone else’s judgment impact your decision and feelings about
yourself, especially as a mother. Your decision has to be something you really
want. If you chose not to breastfeed, you have to let go of the guilt. Those of us
who don’t breastfeed are not bad moms. Those who breastfeed aren’t better
You should never let someone else’s judgment impact your decision and feelings about
yourself, especially as a mother.
I hear all the time that babies
and mothers bond by breastfeeding. I’m sure they do. But that’s not the
only way. As I said, I couldn’t
breastfeed my son, but he is super close to me. We have an awesome bond and
always have. There are several other ways to bond with your baby, too, such as
feeding him when he’s hungry, making eye contact while talking to him and picking
him up when he cries. Those things help build trust.
Bonding is also not the
only issue people debate when it comes to breastfeeding vs. formula feeding. If you were ever nervous about your child having a lower IQ because of formula feeding, the studies that reported that have been criticized. (Also, my son, now 7, is seriously a math wizard. Not to mention, he shocked
everyone with how soon he was able to say his alphabet.)
If you’re a mom who, like me, didn’t breastfeed
but you feel guilty about it, you have to let it go. Whether you tried to
breastfeed or not, you’re a good mom. You’re feeding your child, right?
Trust me, I totally get the benefits of
breastfeeding. It’s a great way to feed
your baby, but if you can’t for your own personal reasons, there’s no reason to
beat yourself up about it.
"The Big Bang Theory" star is a passionate advocate of extended breastfeeding, and nursed her son until he was 4. Bialik shares on her blog, "I never ever believed that I would be nursing a child over the age of 3. But now that I am, I believe when he is done, he will be done. I believe that he will not need to nurse before he walks down the aisle to greet his bride ... and I believe that nursing is natural and beautiful and wonderful."