12 Week Old Baby Reader Story 💡
Baby Week to Week 12 Mama Natural I Couldn’t Breastfeed, and I Hated Myself for It
I Couldn’t Breastfeed, and I Hated Myself for It
Mama and baby Bella sharing a peaceful moment together skin-to-skin.
I wasn’t able to nurse either of my daughters. There, I said it.
I just couldn’t do it, and it was devastating. I had low-intervention births, and both babies latched immediately following their arrival into the world, but for some reason, breastfeeding just didn’t work out.
Not being able to breastfeed was a physical and emotional rollercoaster. There is so much shame around not being able to nurse your babies — I’m even guilty of shaming myself.
I did what I could by exclusively pumping, but the pressure I put on myself to maintain output was exhausting. In order to build up my supply, I had to pump every two hours. I was pumping at least five hours a day… with a newborn and a toddler in tow. Because of that, I felt like I wasn’t able to give my older child the attention she deserved. I’m failing both of my babies, I thought to myself frequently.
It took nearly six months for me to realize there are a lot of ways to be a good mother — that my worth as my daughters’ caregiver wasn’t dependent on whether I could breastfeed. I started to prioritize the needs of my daughters over pumping.
If the girls want to be held or played with, I unhook myself. I’ve found a balance that works for my family, rather than make pumping my top priority. It’s easier said than done, but accepting what you can give as enough is the greatest gift you can give yourself. — Molly P.