Breastfeeding may be a beautiful experience, but it doesn’t mean that it’s an easy one. There may be a lot of emotions or sentiments that you might be ashamed of feeling, but the truth is, a lot of other moms feel the same way too. So if you’re feeling guilty because you think you’re feeling things you shouldn’t feel, it’s okay. We’re here to tell you why it’s okay to feel that way, and what you can do about it.
“Am I doing this right?” “Can I even do this?” “Will I be able to sustain this?” Doubt and insecurity will probably plague you throughout your breastfeeding journey, especially at the beginning. Breastfeeding is something new to you and something you’re unfamiliar with. But as you become more accustomed to it, you’ll slowly gain more confidence in yourself and what you’re doing. You can think of doubts and insecurities as obstacles to overcome after you’ve gained some experience through trial and error.
The fear of not producing enough milk, getting a disease or infection, or worse, doing something that will negatively affect your baby are common fears of breastfeeding moms. And while it’s okay to feel these fears, you can also try to look for a way to combat them. You can do research, ask fellow breastfeeding moms, and visit a doctor to help alleviate some of them. In the end, know that the presence of fear isn’t just for yourself. It also means that you truly and deeply care for your baby.
Sometimes you can’t really identify the specific emotion that you’re feeling because it may be a mix of two emotions or more. Anxiety can hide behind doubts and insecurities, as well as fears. Being anxious about how often your baby eats, your milk supply, and storage is perfectly fine. Again, it just goes to show that you care.
Whether you’re frustrated at yourself, at others, or even your baby, we’re here to tell you that even breastfeeding moms aren’t perfect. It’s natural to feel frustration, especially with something as difficult as breastfeeding. Just try to make sure that you don’t feed your frustration to others (especially your baby), and go back to the reason you’re doing it in the first place.
Are moms busy? Of course they are! They’ve got households to attend to, children (and husbands) to take care of, and for some, jobs and work to go to. Add breastfeeding into the picture, and at some point or another, it’s completely understandable for any sane mother to be stressed. But that doesn’t mean that you have to let stress take over your life either. Try to carve out even ten minutes in your day to breathe, relax, and reorganize yourself. You can even do it while feeding your baby!
Guilt that you’re not doing everything that you can for your baby, that you’re not providing them with the best, that you did something wrong and didn’t fix it right away–does this sound familiar? You can never really completely rid yourself of mom guilt. All moms have fallen victim to this special epidemic that only mothers can experience. But again, remember that these are hallmarks of your love and care for your child. And it is only because you love your baby so much that you feel all of this.
At the end of the day, just know that you’re human, and that it’s okay to feel these emotions every once in a while. No one expects you to be perfect momma. So keep your head up, give yourself a pat on the back, and keep on going!