Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Support: The Key To Successfully Breastfeeding

Once your brain is full of all the breastfeeding resources and information you can handle, the next step is building your support system.

Some women are blessed to have family and friends all around them that are supportive of breastfeeding, having nursed many children and for quite a long time. Some women have a few cousins or maybe a sister that nursed their babies and know the benefits, but weren't really all that into it. Most women have nobody around them to give them the support they need to succeed.

If you have no friends or family, but have the internet, you're in luck! There are great social networking sites that can connect you with like-minded moms across the country and throughout the world. I've met several moms on the website Cafemom.com, who have encouraged me, supported me, become great friends, and have helped me in so many more ways than I can list. They turned me into a lactivist, reminded me why I was nursing through a pregnancy when it got hard, and we all love to share information with each other. Though I've met very few of them in person, we have such amazing bonds that I don't have with many people locally. There are several other mom-sites to join, too!

I've linked it a couple other times, but check out La Leche League for awesome local support! Many hospitals also have breastfeeding mom groups run by IBCLCs (internationally board certified lactation consultants), that can be a good alternative if there isn't an LLL meeting in your area.

You may know of friends from high school or college that went on to become full time moms, and nursed their children... now would be a great time to reconnect with them! I've had several friends and acquaintances from high school find me on Facebook for advice about breastfeeding, and I'm oh-so-happy to help and share what I've learned!

For an un-supportive spouse, see the post before this about the father's role in breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding can be tough, and having a good support system will really help you succeed!

Happy breastfeeding!

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