I just replied to a post in a special group where many Mum’s are in the same shoes that I have been in for the last 3 years…it got me thinking it was time for a new post.
Why do Mum’s like myself, continue to endure the challenges that come from breastfeeding a baby who reacts to the foods we eat? To keep taking more and more foods (it seems) away, when you never know when it will stop?
The poor Mum who asked it has a very unhappy 4.5 month old, and was curious on what had kept other Mum’s going. She’s not the first person to ask me this… and I thought I would share, because I’m sure someone else will read this who needs a little encouragement to continue the hard work!
SO these were what came to mind…
1) Since she was so reactive, we expected formula would make it worse even the hydrolysed ones
2) Couldn’t afford formula (though its not as if the Dr’s visits etc are cheap… but then we could have had formula AND that)
3) We would have to challenge foods/triggers directly with her, whereas I could lessen the blow by doing it through me
4) It unlocked insight into my own health and made me a healthier person (though this took a lot longer to realise)
5) The protection to her digestive system from the easier-to-digest food and probiotic component I provided… the increase in minerals she needed as I healed me was apparent in her
6) (and this should probably be higher) the comfort I could provide when she was reacting. To be able to breastfeed her, and often feeding in bed and continuously feeding so I got *any* sleep….. if she was formula fed and reacting, I had no way to comfort her pain besides potentially more drugs
7) Related to 3… could challenge foods and find safe ones while she was exclusively BF so that we had some insight into what would be safe foods for her to wean onto.
You have to decide to keep going for reasons that are relevant to you. Only you can decide. Do NOT let others decide for you, to tell you that you have to do give up feeding because your milk is “bad”… especially if you feel that there’s more to it than that.
You need to trust your gut. That is the real root reason I think I continued. It felt right, and stopping didn’t.
Good luck Mummas!