Even women with complications seem to get over them fairly easily and are able to nurse well. I’ve known hundreds of women with inverted nipples and flat chests who’ve breastfed just as well as women with super-pointy nipples and large breasts. Young mothers – no problem. Older mothers – champion nurses. Sure, cracked nipples hurt a bit, but with a few minor adjustments and supplies available at the drug store, they’re good to go. I even had a patient once who was born without arms and used her feet to hold her baby to her breast and get her latched on. Seriously, most of the time, breastfeeding is that easy.
The thing is this: When most of what you hear, read and see about breastfeeding is that it’s fraught with trouble, it’s going to be hard for some women to sign on and go for it. When all you hear is that it’s a big freaking hassle when you go back to work, some women are going to say, fuggetaboutit. Yes, some women do have breastfeeding problems, but honest-to-god, ladies, most don’t.
For most women the world over, it’s easy, snuggly, inexpensive, convenient, comfortable, sweet, efficient and lovely. When it’s time to go back to work, most women say pumping is easy, quick and no big deal. Once bosses understand that it’s really not such a time-sucking problem after all, more will find ways to be supportive. I know a guy who cleaned out a broom cupboard at his office, painted and decorated it, put in a space heater, a mini-fridge and a rocker and turned it into his company’s nursing room. Let’s start focusing on stories like that, shall we?
Jeanne Faulkner, R.N., lives in Portland, Ore., with her husband and children. And co-author of, The Complete Illustrated Birthing Companion: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating the Best Birthing Plan for a Safe, Less Painful, and Successful Delivery for You and Your Baby. Got a question for Jeanne? Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org and it may be answered in a future blog post.
This Fit Pregnancy blog is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace medical advice from your physician. Before initiating any exercise program, diet or treatment provided by Fit Pregnancy, you should seek medical advice from your primary caregiver.