5 Things NOT To Say To A Breastfeeding Mom
Sometimes, even when they have your best interests at heart, people unintentionally say hurtful things. So whether we mean well or not, do remember that some statements should never be made – to avoid committing an irreversible blunder and offending others. Here are 5 things you should never say to a breastfeeding mom:
- Expressing disgust
Sadly, even when a mother covers up modestly and adequately in a corner when breastfeeding her baby, she might get unpleasant stares and rude remarks from people, like, “ That’s obscene! Can’t you go somewhere else to do that?” or “ Yuck, you shouldn’t be doing this right here. Go home or to the toilet.” Firstly, whenever a baby gets hungry, do you expect the mom to tell the baby to wait, then give up on her errands and tasks to rush home immediately and feed her baby, when she can just feed her baby on the spot? Or that the only choice she has, is to feed her baby in a dirty, public bathroom?
- Judging her choice to breastfeed
Even though there are many obvious, proven benefits of breastfeeding, there are still folks who disagree with this practice – and vocally question a mom’s choice. Oblivious to outrageous comments range from, “Why would anyone think to breastfeed a toddler?” to “Why don’t you just feed formula milk to your baby? It’s easier and safer.” or even “Your boobs should be your husband’s, not your baby’s. It’s too sexual. Your sex life is going to be ruined!” Instead of being encouraging, some people get judgemental about what a mom chooses to do with her own body and baby.
- Criticising how she looks
Some mothers reported getting told, “ Breastfeeding is going to ruin your boobs.” or degrading, “ You look like a huge cow!” When a mother’s main concern is ensuring that her baby gets the best, healthiest start in life and as many nutrients as she can give, it is extremely insensitive, to criticise her on pettier issues, such as looks.
- Doubting and putting down people
As if the stress of being a mom is not overwhelming enough, some mothers get doubted, from their choices to milk quality to the way they breastfeed. “Are you sure this is the correct way?” or “ Maybe your milk isn’t good.” can hurt a mother’s confidence and self-esteem, and these comments usually come from other experienced mothers who think they know better.
- Giving unsolicited advice
Again, some experienced mothers like to think that they know more than the mom herself, even though not every baby and condition is the same. “You should eat this and that for the best milk,” might pressure, guilt-trip and place the mom at blame if she is not following the advisor’s specific diet suggestions. Remember that not every breastfeeding experience and baby is the same, so trust your guts and doctor instead of every naysayer.
Instead of making any of these insensitive, offensive remarks, it is better to just listen to a mom’s feelings and be supportive of what she chooses and is going through.
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