Let’s be real, breastfeeding takes over you life as a new Mum!
Especially, if you’re trying to do it exclusively – that is offering baby ONLY breastmilk and no formula at all. I remember going through those first weeks of breastfeeding and understanding why Mums say you feel like a cow. Milk was literarily everywhere – breast pad, baby’s clothes, your clothes. I spent the early days carrying my breastfeeding pillow around with me in the house, because positioning baby on my lap was still awkward. My breasts were heavy (painfully heavy when the milk first came in) and I cannot forget trying not to cry from the pain on first latch by baby.
Like many women, I persevered because – bonding, and the thought of baby getting milk made perfectly for them with antibodies etc was very satisfying.
The trends below are a salute to Women’s resilience. What I see is Women making breastfeeding work for them and professionals doing more to support women going through the process. And I love that! You want to do what’s right of baby, but that shouldn’t come as a sacrifice to your health, sanity and happiness entirely.
Check out these new trends in Breastfeeding:
1. Exclusive pumping
This involves only feeding your baby breastmilk from the bottle ONLY and not putting them directly to the breast. Reasons why you might do this:
- you cannot get baby to latch on,
- you suffer from breastfeeding aversion (see point 2),
- your baby gets used to the bottle and refuses to breastfeed on the breast continuously or
- just out of choice – thats what you want to do!
2. Breastfeeding Aversion and Agitation (BAA) is REAL.
BAA is described as having negative feelings when your baby is latched on and sucking on the breast.
This is something that affects mums, that they may be shy to share about. There may be a feeling of guilt or shame attached, since we are told breastfeeding should be a natural and thats the opposite of what they are feeling in that moment. It might be temporary or only happen when you’re on your period or on certain days. For some, you just cannot breastfeed at all because of the feeling and might choose instead to go for exclusive pumping.
It’s so important that this feeling is labelled because it is something women are experiencing. Someone close to you may be going through it and not even know there’s a name for it. The more of us who know, the more we can support our sisters, wives and friends or show them where to get support, if they experience these feelings. There is a dedicated website for women experiencing Breastfeeding Aversion & Agitation (BAA), please visit: breastfeedingaversion.com.
3. Adoptive Mums can breastfeed
Induced lactation involves teaching your body to produce milk for a baby, in this case, a baby you have adopted. You do it by putting your baby to the breast to suckle. If baby is willing and does it, then you repeat this un till milk flows.
I found this very fascinating, but I do wonder why it would be of top importance to have this particular bonding experience with your adoptive baby. In any case, I cannot speak on it much since I haven’t been in the position. What do you guys think – did you or someone you know achieve this successfully?
4. Sadness and Depression during weaning
This usually happens when a mum is forced to wean before she is ready. Some Mums still cannot pump at work comfortably or travel and come back and baby is not interested. This sadness is also more common in mums who have a history of depression. It is believed to be caused by changes in hormone levels. When you’re breastfeeding, the hormones prolactin (brings wellness, calmness, relaxation) and oxytocin (increases positive attitudes like bonding) are released. So stopping can cause a big drop in these hormones and that may in turn lead to sadness and possibly depression.
As usual, if you suspect a friend or family member is experiencing this, please advise them to talk to you and a Doctor, who can offer advice and professional help. No one who is suffering these feelings should have to do it on their own.
5. Lactation cookies, muffins and teas
I would say that this is a trend that is new for Nigeria in particular. Two Mums operating as Milky Express and The Milk Booster, are offering breastfeeding advice on Instagram, alongside selling home made cookies and muffins. These snacks can help Mums maintain or increase they supply of milk.
With many Nigerians mums returning to work after a three month maternity leave, these products are helpful to those who want to achieve at least six months of exclusively breastfeeding, especially. New Mums, Funto Ibuoye and Anita Okoye – who is a twin mama, have endorsed the products, sharing that they have found them helpful. If you’re that Mum who has been thinking a lot about your milk supply and returning to work or just boosting your supply, these products could be for you! Find them on Instagram @milkyexpress and @themilkbooster.
Alright Mums, let me know what you think. Are you exclusively pumping? Are you currently using lactation snacks and do you find them helpful? Share below, please. Let’s do this together, I am personally preparing to get into breastfeeding very shortly again!
Ps: I will be running my first detailed & paid course:
‘The Biggies’ – all the key considerations for your first year with baby.
There will be webinars that cover breastfeeding, weaning, sleep, play & early learning, TV & screen time, Nanny vs Creche (and handouts to help choose either), transitioning older sibling when baby arrives and more. All those big topics you’re thinking about as a new Mum or second time Mum who wants to do things differently this time.
I am very excited, because for once I will be able to give full information, tying all the topics I have been sharing for two years now on Instagram, together. You will put forward your personal questions, which we will answer. It will act as a small, closed support group of mums with children of similar age.
I will also at this point have a new baby and toddler. Everything is just as REAL for me, as it is for you. If you are interested, please fill this form (it asks for your name, email, subject & message). In the subject put ‘The Biggies’. In message tell me your baby’s date of birth. I’m exciteddddddddd.