Though each mom's feeding experience is unique, a new global breastfeeding survey by Lansinoh Laboratories, Inc., highlights which elements of breastfeeding are constant all over the world, and which attitude and habits are not.
The breastfeeding product manufacturer surveyed 13,169 new and expecting mothers in nine different countries -- Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Mexico, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the U.S. -- to compare cultural differences in attitudes about breastfeeding.
Moms who are unable to breastfeed, and those who chose not to, are prone to feeling "mom guilt" as a result. If you're in that boat, you're not alone -- 64 percent of moms in the U.S. and a whopping 93 percent of moms in Brazil (as well as 91 percent of moms in Turkey) feel those pangs of conscience, too.
Here are 8 more things breastfeeding moms across the world have in common, according to the survey.
6 to 12 months is how long a baby should ideally be breastfed for, according to moms in Brazil, China, Germany, Hungary, Mexico, the United Kingdom and the U.S. Moms in Turkey wanted to breastfeed for 12 to 24 months, while moms in France thought three to six months would suffice. (The AAP recommends that babies should be exclusively breastfed for 6 months, and then nursed in combination with food until they are at least 12 months old.)
45 percent of moms in the U.S. think that a 2-year-old is too old to be breastfed. Moms in France, Germany, Hungary, Mexico and the United Kingdom agree. Almost half of the moms in Turkey and Brazil (a majority of the votes) thought nursing a 2-year-old was "fantastic."
Health benefits for the baby is the overwhelming reason why moms breastfed in all nine countries.
93 percent of moms in the U.S. think that breastfeeding is the best way to feed your baby. They're in agreement with moms in Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Mexico, Turkey and the United Kingdom.
The pain is the worst part of breastfeeding for moms in Brazil, France, Germany, Mexico and the U.S.
57 percent of moms in the U.S. think that breastfeeding in public is "perfectly natural." Moms in Brazil, Germany, Mexico, Turkey and the United Kingdom agree, but moms in the United Kingdom showed the most support, with 63 percent in favor of the practice. Almost half of the moms in China and France felt nursing in public was "embarrassing."
Occasionally is how often moms plan to pump breast milk in Brazil, China, France, Germany, Mexico, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the U.S.
64 percent of moms in the U.S would feel guilty if they didn't breastfeed. Moms in Brazil, China, France, Hungary, Mexico, Turkey and the United Kingdom also feel that guilt.
Clarification: This article has been updated to clarify that the AAP recommends exclusive breastfeeding for six months, followed by breastfeeding in conjunction with food for a minimum (not maximum) of another six months.