Click here to read part 1, with paragraphs 1-7
8. Underestimating the importance of a good, professional lactation consultant. If you need a lactation consultant, look for an . Some "lactation consultants" actually do more harm than good with their misinformed and misleading advice.
9. Insecurity about the ability to produce enough milk, or milk of "good enough" quality. What nursing mother hasn't encountered the raised-eyebrows question, "and how can you be sure you have enough milk?"; there are few things to undermine one's confidence like this one. I have spoken to a mother who used to have a skinny baby - who has by now, several years later, turned into a skinny child. Which is now natural and normal. But back then, of course, "not having enough milk" was to blame.
10. Lack of support. A supportive husband, a community of women who successfully (e)d, La League's - all of those can increase the chance of a successful nursing relationship. I have always got wonderful support from my husband, who never complained about a messy house or lack of proper dinner on days when, it seemed, the baby had to be at my breast every waking moment. And on the flip side of the coin, it's so easy to become discouraged when you are a new mother, have no support, and hear the authoritative tone of someone who tells you "sometimes it just cannot be done".
11. Deciding to combine breast and bottles of formula so that "others can help too". It can very soon lead to a drop in milk supply and a switch to using formula entirely. There are plenty of other ways to help a new mother, other than feeding the baby, such as changing diapers, bathing, and entertaining the little one while Mommy gets some rest.
12. Difficulty to breastfeed in public. Not long ago, after my sister-in-law's wedding, we were away to spend with her new family. Our room was far away from where we went to pray or take our meals, so there was no way for me to retreat there during breaks to breastfeed. So I nursed just about wherever I could. I nursed in a dusty back room in a synagogue. I nursed on a bench in a deserted playground - which was alright during the evening, but during the day, I found myself crouched with a fussy baby in a tiny spot of shadow behind a bomb shelter, trying to nurse her while throwing nervous glances all around me to make sure no one is looking. I was feeling increasingly bitter about this forced exile while everyone were enjoying a leisurely meal in an air-conditioned room. Well, when I came back, I saw another mother (previously unnoticed by me) sitting on the floor right next to the table and nursing her baby with her entire breast hanging out. No one seemed to be paying her the slightest bit of attention. So I thought to myself, next time I might just pull a chair aside, throw a blanket over myself and the baby and get it over with. I'm a huge proponent of modesty, and obviously I don't think one should let it all hang out, but a nursing mother doesn't need to feel like an outcast.
13. Fear of nursing because the mother is ill. I have known mothers who have stopped breastfeeding because of a minor infection which took a few days to treat. Surely breastfeeding-compatible medicines could be found for that, or at least the mother could resume nursing after a few days, and in the meantime keep up her supply by pumping.
14. Wrong interpretation of the baby's signs. A fussy baby doesn't mean that the baby isn't getting enough milk, nor is a baby who nurses very often. Perhaps the baby wants to nurse just for comfort; and if the baby does need more milk, nursing as frequently as possible - not spacing feedings by using a bottle or pacifier - is the way to boost production.
15. Believing that there really isn't such a big difference between nursing and using formula. When things get rocky, how many mothers choose to quit simply because they haven't been informed about the important benefits of breastfeeding? Too many give up on breast milk too easily.
I think this is the time to say that I know there are also mothers who badly wanted to nurse their babies and truly couldn't, because of no fault of their own, whether it was a medical problem or lack of knowledge and support or a combination of all of the above. The purpose of my blog is not to put other mothers on the line of defence. I think we are all united in wanting the best for our children, and also in all of us being far from perfect.