Breastfeeding Support

eyelashes!

Picture by Mahalie Stackpole

As I’m sure you already know, breastfeeding is not only good for your baby, it’s also economical and environmentally friendly. It’s also easier said than done. While some babies latch right away, it can take a lot of time and effort for others to become comfortable breastfeeding. An improper latch can be frustrating for the baby and painful for mom and hard to correct if you don’t have any guidance!

Fortunately, there are many resources out there for moms who wish to breastfeed. Books such as The Nursing Mother’s Companion, 6th Edition: 25th Anniversary Edition are useful, but it’s even better if you can join a breastfeeding support group.

Where I live, the group I ended up joining wasn’t listed on any of the resource websites. A search for “breastfeeding groups in my area” didn’t return any results worth following up with. There’s always La Leche League but luckily I ended up finding a great twice weekly group before the monthly La Leche meeting rolled around. I had to ask around quite a bit before I finally found a local group, but it was worth the wait!

Did you join a breastfeeding support group? How did you find out about it? Did you read any books that were helpful?

Comments

  1. I never joined one, and I have to say, I don’t think it occurred to me. What do you do during group meetings? Is it more of a social thing, or is there something more officious about it? I probably could have used something like this in my first months!

  2. Rebecca, there is always a lactation consultant present at the breastfeeding group meetings who answers questions and gives individual guidance on your baby’s latch. Whether you think you might be getting mastitis or thrush, she will tell you what to do about it. At our meetings, you can weigh your baby to see if she’s gained any weight and you can even weigh before feeding and after to see how much she’s taking. If your baby isn’t gaining weight, the lactation consultant will help you figure out how to fix this. If you have concerns about going back to work and pumping/bottle feeding, she’ll advise about that too. They’re great!

    That being said, it’s also a very social thing. All the members have something in common, a desire to breastfeed. During the meetings we discover other things we have in common and share advice about baby gear and products, baby wearing, sleep training and everything else we can think of. So it’s not only a breastfeeding support group, but a new mom support group!

  3. We had a free “baby clinic” every Tuesday through our midwifery birth center and it was a life saver. It was totally free, had snacks for the moms, and allowed us to check in with the lactation consultant and weigh our babies. Usually we just spent lots of time bonding like war veterans in the waiting room over the toils of new motherhood. I expected that breastfeeding would be so easy…but my son didn’t latch well and I felt so discouraged and TIRED those first few weeks. It was nice hearing from moms who had babies even a few months older than mine to know that it would get easier. And I did keep in touch with several of those women for years so I agree about the social part Michele!

  4. I went to La Leche meetings with my second baby and I got a lot out of it. They helped me figure out a latching problem we were having which was giving me repeated blocked ducts. I also enjoyed being at meetings while I was nursing a toddler because it was an open and non-judgmental environment. It felt nice to nurse my daughter and not have to be concerned if she yanked my shirt down, or popped off the nipple without warning to wander off and look at something. Everyone there was pretty much doing the same thing.

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