This is my first in a series of posts I’m going to call “Mom Confessions” I think as moms, we keep a lot of things inside. Things we’re too afraid to say out loud because of the judgement we’re sure to receive as soon as we say them. Things like, “I co-sleep” or “sometimes I want to run away” or “sometimes I dream about life before kids”
I know this because I have had the above conversations with many a friend. We’re (mostly) all thinking it, but just too damn afraid to say it. Even though we LOVE this mom gig and wouldn’t trade it for the world. Having these feelings don’t make us bad moms either. It makes us human. I want to share these because even if they help one mom feel less guilty, it will be worth it.
Here goes with my first confession:
I don’t like breastfeeding.
I feel guilty about this on many levels. The first one being, I tried SO hard to BF O and it never took. I put myself through the emotional ringer and beat myself up long after I made the choice to stop trying. It was a constant source of anxiety for me and I dreaded anytime anyone asked me if I was BFing.
So here I am with W. He took to BF like a fish to water. We had a couple of small hiccups at the beginning, but all in all it was a pretty easy process. My milk was coming in so fast, the nurses couldn’t believe how much I had pumped for him.
That leads to guilty feeling number two. Some babies are able to breastfeed but for whatever reason, the Momma has a hard time producing milk. With O and now with W, that was never an issue for me. Which, believe me, I know how lucky I am.
This leads to my next thing, I also don’t like that I don’t know how much he’s getting. This was a bigger issue for me at the beginning when I was still learning how to BF and it felt like he was feeding all the time. I was so worried he wasn’t getting enough. I later learned about cluster feeding, but it was still so stressful for me.
Something I get asked a lot, do I feel closer to W than I did with O because of the breastfeeding. Honestly? Not at all. In fact (are you ready to judge?), sometimes I resent W for needing me so much more than O did. Some days I’m just touched out and don’t want my nipples being sucked on. Plus, the feeding is really all on me. J could (and does) feed him milk I’ve pumped but I still have to pump to make sure my supply stays up, so it’s easier for me to just do it.
Finally, and this one is probably a bit controversial, I find it hard that my body is still not my own. I’ve basically been sacrificing my body to my two babies for the last two years now. Between being pregnant, pumping for O, getting pregnant again and now breastfeeding, it’s been a long haul. I have to be so aware of what I put into my body now for fear that it will give W gas. And listen, I get it. That’s all part of being a mom, right? That comes with the territory. It was our choice to have kids this close together.
And don’t get me wrong, there are some really good things about it. I don’t have to pack bottles whenever we go out. I don’t have to wash a billion bottles a day. I have food on demand. He’s hungry, I just have to pop out the boob. Not to mention the fact he’s receiving all the benefits of breastmilk.
So there it is. Something I wanted so badly is something I don’t really like. I know I’m fortunate to be able to so this. I know it’s so good for him and that it’s only for a short time (in the grand scheme of things). However, I know I’m not alone in this feeling and I feel it’s OK to admit there are certain parts of motherhood we don’t love.
I’m hopeful that as time goes on, I may grow to love it or at least like it. I know we’re still only 2.5 months in and it’s still an intense time.
What are your thoughts?