I survived breastfeeding my daughter. It wasn't easy and I must admit sometimes it was downright hard, but I survived and quite frankly, I don't miss it.
As a breastfeeding mom you enjoy the cuddles with your baby, but you also feel lots of pressure for many reasons.
I remember when I first started breastfeeding my daughter, many of the women I surrounded myself with who were older couldn't relate because they had fed their babies with formula. There is absolutely nothing wrong with formula and I can admit now there were times I had to supplement, but my toddler is still healthy and happy and I would never question a mother's parenting because of using formula; it just wasn't my full time reality.
I remember crying and sometimes yelling at people for some of the incredibly annoying things they would say to me while nursing. Because I know first hand what it's like to deal with others' opinions when nursing, I decided to create a 10-point dummy list that I encourage all to abide by when addressing a nursing mom:
1. I Spilled the Milk
After a long stressful day, especially when you go back to work, every ounce of breast milk a new mom pumps is VITAL. She has saved up all her good energy just for those few ounces, and if she entrusts you to put it in storage or bottle it for the baby, you have one job: Don't spill it.
2. Are You Almost Finished?
The worst thing you can ever ask a breastfeeding mom is if she's finished. When she's finished, trust me, you will know.
3. I Think She or He Is Still Hungry
No one knows a baby's hunger cues like a nursing mom. If you notice her baby is still crying, don't assume the baby is still hungry. Telling a nursing mom her baby is still hungry is the equivalent to telling a woman who has just eaten a full meal that she didn't eat enough.
4. You're Doing it Wrong
Veteran moms, we all know you mean well, but do you remember your days as a new mom? Remember the stress you dealt with? This mom feels the exact same way. There is nothing worse than hearing someone say you're doing it wrong when you can clearly see milk leaving your boob and entering your baby's mouth.
5. Formula Will Help Them Sleep Through the Night
I have nothing against formula, but if she's breastfeeding, rest assured she's breastfeeding because she did not want to use formula. Contrary to popular belief, it has not been proven that formula helps a baby sleep through the night so leave your opinion to yourself.
6. Are You Going to Wean Soon?
Breastfeeding is a day by day journey. When a mom is ready to wean or feels her little one is ready, she will -- and she probably won't tell you when she does.
7. Your Breast Are Huge
This is not a compliment, nor is it music to a woman's ears to hear her breasts are getting bigger. She can clearly see that in the mirror, and if she's not used to having larger breasts, she's probably insecure about it and doesn't need a reminder.
8. Breastfeeding Is Selfish
Breastfeeding is one of the most selfless things a mom can do for a child. She is literally giving everything that is inside of her to her baby.
9. Can You Eat That?
Most breastfeeding mom's have read every book possible about breastfeeding, so you can be sure, nine times out of ten, if she's eating something, she's probably read it's okay. Never question a mother's intake unless she's using drugs or alcohol; in that case, there might be a problem.
10. Your Baby Will Never Take a Bottle Now
No one knows what the future holds, and just because your baby is breastfed does not mean a bottle will never be an option; if that were the case, all of the breastfed babies in the world would still be attached to their mom's nipple, right? Enough said.