It’s a touchy topic but none the less, very important. Am I going to breast feed? For some moms, there’s no question. But for other moms, it’s up for debate. For me, it was a tough decision but in the end, choosing not to nurse my fifth and last child was one of the best decisions I could have made. Here’s why.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog post does not constitute professional medical advice. Please consult your doctor or physician regarding the health of you and your baby.
#4: I already knew what it meant to breast feed
Prior to the birth of my fifth baby, I nursed all four of my other babies. I already knew how my body handled breast feeding. I understood what was required physically, mentally and emotionally in order to be a nursing mother. Had this been my first baby, it would have been a much tougher decision.
#3: I was worried about my baby’s health
I was diagnosed with preeclampsia during my pregnancy and was forced to deliver three and a half weeks early. My baby was only four pounds. Having nursed before, I knew that my body didn’t produce a lot of breast milk. As a result, I knew I would constantly be worrying whether or not my baby was getting enough nutrients. Her health was my main concern.
#2: I had four other kids at home
If I had decided to nurse, I would have needed to weigh my baby before and after breast feeding and top my baby off with a bottle of formula afterwards every time I nursed. Considering the fact that preemies need to be fed every two hours, I would basically be nursing all day long. With four other kids to take care of, it would have been very difficult.
#1: I had to consider my own mental health
I’m a happier and healthier mom when I’m not nursing. I’ve learned that about myself. Nursing isn’t for everyone and that’s okay. I didn’t feel guilty about not nursing at all. It’s a decision that is very personal and no one else should make that for you.
Hopefully this is helpful as you are considering whether or not you are going to breast feed. For some moms, they aren’t even able to nurse. And for some moms, nursing is a wonderful bonding experience. It’s different for everyone. When it comes down to it, all that matters is that you feed your baby.
For more information about nursing, check out these books and resources:
- Lactivate!: A User’s Guide to Breastfeeding
- Breastfeeding made simple: Seven natural laws for nursing
- The womanly art of breastfeeding
- Breastfeeding may not be your thing and that’s okay
Related link: My #1 post-partum regret