This is a blog all about my adventures in Breastfeeding Peer Support. I want to share all the things I have learned and celebrate amazing breastfeeding Mothers and their babies.

I would like to share other peoples stories here too. Accounts of problems overcome, funny things your older children have said, strange places you have attached your baby and so on. Please email me with any stories you'd like to share with other breastfeeding Mothers. Please include what you'd like to be called (URLs ok or just a name), how old your baby was at the time and where abouts you are geographically.

Friday, 23 July 2010


My baby boy won't go to the breast.

I am a bit scared.

My arthritic finger and thumb joints are complaining about all the hand expressing and making me more grumpy.

He is teething, he is in great discomfort and is biting everything. He has taken to biting at the breast. I say no, sit him at my feet and put my breast away. If he still shows interest then I will offer it to him again in a short while. I have done this with all my children, no shouting, smacking or biting (like I had been advised to do by other BF mums (scary)) and eventually they get the message that if they bite me they don't get any more.

He bit me several times during a feed on thursday afternoon, he was tired so I persevered so he would be soothed and drop off to sleep. It got beyond a joke so he was sat down and I put my breast away. That was the last time he went to the breast. He is turning his head and refusing. I'm not sure if it's because his mouth is so sore or because I upset him.

Last night he slept for barely three hours, he screamed, bit my shoulder, didn't want to cuddle up tight like he normally would and wouldn't nurse. We gave him paracetamol and teething powders to try and calm him, nothing worked, he cried and cried. I brought him downstairs and expressed into a cup. He had a whole beaker of EBM and then slept for a short while.

He had a beaker of EBM with his porridge this morning, he had some in a beaker after lunch. There is lots in the fridge as I am sore and very full, he is wanting to be held and is crying alot my production and let-down seem to have gone a little mad.

What if he doesn't go back to the breast?


There is no way he is having anything other than milk from his Mummy but I'm not sure my fingers or sanity can cope with hand expressing every few hours. I have a pump somewhere but have never been very successful with it. I had it so I could leave the girls when they were smaller for the odd evening. They rarely got left and wouldn't have milk from anything but me. It wasn't until my training when I learned how to coach another woman how to hand express that I really got to grips with it and made a success of doing it myself.

When all the children are snuggled in their beds tonight I'm going to strip us both off and wrap us up in bed and see if the good old skin-to-skin can encourage him to suckle again.

Any hints, tips or personal insights much appreciated.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Kangaroo Mother Care

I attended a breastfeeding conference feedback event last monday. Feedback from all those 'important' enough to be sent off to various BF and BF related health conferences over the last twelve months. I now have a new friend, please meet Mr. Nils Bergman;

Sorry for the very small picture Nils, this does not reflect my admiration of you and your work.

We had five hours of feedback but the hour we spent being shown video and evidence of the benefits of Kangaroo Mother Care was one of the most touching. This man, his team and their forward thinking has saved the lives of so many babies. And the best bit; it isn't rocket science. If you keep babies with their mothers they are more likely to survive, seeemples!!

We also heard about the negative effect of prolonged crying for babies, which is what I always knew deep in my heart, and we had a brilliant presentation about Biological Nurturing. I'll be back with some more info and links soon.

Amazing stuff, amazing mothers and amazing babies!

Friday, 9 July 2010

Is Breastfeeding Creepy?

I have had to think long and hard about writing this piece, many people have emailed me asking for a view or opinion on the Kathryn Blundell article in Mother and Baby magazine a few weeks ago. I have not read the actual article but there are excerpts and evaluations in the Guardian, in the Telegraph and in the Mail.

I find this makes me quite angry, not least because of the belief that 'it didn't do me any harm' that annoys the shit out of me, I think people with this thinking fall into the same camp as 'I smoked 40 a day, didn't do me any harm' and 'he'll only eat chicken nuggets, I can't make him eat vegetables' All these beliefs are so bad for our long term health both personally and as a society and cost the NHS a fortune!!

But the assumption is that when you become a Mother you stop being a sexual being. And yes we probably make love to our partners far less than we did pre children because of time and space constraints but that doesn't mean we don't do it at all. Why can't Mothers be sexy?

I work with a peer supporter who is of the belief that her breasts are only there for her children, I accept her thinking but maybe don't fully understand. She is of the belief that no man (or woamn) has any claim to her body and that it belongs only to her children.

Yes, my breasts nourish my children both physically and spiritually but they are still a huge part of my sexual being. I have spent most of the last nine years breastfeeding my children but that doesn't mean they are not also a part of my sexual life. Or that they are only there for the child I am currently breastfeeding. I provide nutrition for Sebastian but I also provide comfort and warmth through my breasts to my other children. It's a comfy place to rest a fevered brow, a good place to rest upon when tired or hurt or sad. They really are the bosom of our family!

The 'creepy' thing reminds me of a woman I knew at playgroup who always thought I was a bit odd for breatsfeeding my girls beyond the first weeks of their lives but she was really shocked that I also breastfed Nathaniel and asked me was 'it not wierd because he was a boy?' I was so confused by this comment but she really only saw her breasts as a sexual part of her and the thought of someone with a penis sucking upon them made her squirm. Erm, no, it's not wierd, he was my child that I'd grown in my body and continued to grow through my body, it really made no difference what was in his nappy!

So to sum up and stop waffling I think that breasts can be used for the nourishment of a baby or child but still be of pleasure to both Mother and Father and that they really can be multifunctional and shoudln't be pigeon holed into one use only!

There, I said it I like my breasts in more ways than one, does that make me creepy?