I love this and love the Surgeon General (who I will fully admit I haven’t paid much attention to until just this minute) for taking it on as a Call to Action.
It does take a village. Remember this and help support, not judge, a mom who is breastfeeding. It is way to easy to judge, but breastfeeding isn’t easy. The author of this article also says this, but just because you have boobs doesn’t mean it’s plug and play technology.
For me, the hardest part has been keeping it up after going back to work. No where does all of this come to heads than in the workplace. You have to pump enough to keep up the supply, you hope that you arrive home in time to nurse, you fear leaking or getting a clogged duct (OOOOOOOOUCH) from sitting in meetings and missing your scheduled pump time. It’s uncomfortable to talk about in mixed circles - and not because II’m ashamed of it, but because it makes others shift in their seats - there is nothing worse than mentioning having to step out to pump and feeling like the whole room just looked at your boobs.
At any rate, I could go on and on, but I think the point is, this isn’t easy, so BE there for another mom. I think if we all focused on helping each other go “just one more day”, we’d all wake up still nursing 6 months, 12 months and then some later. There are plenty of people out there to judge, so be someone supporting another mom against the hurdles she faces.
So use the buddy system! Find a mom at work and give her your number and tell her you’ll be her 911 to call when she feels like she just wants to give up. Be agnostic - it’s not about telling her HOW to do it, but listening, laughing and supporting her along the way. Telling her every day she nurses is amazing. Share with her the ins and outs of the lactation room in the office or the employee fridge. Share your resources. Take her out to lunch and just LISTEN.
The biggest rule when doing this is that if you can’t put your judgement aside, don’t offer your partnership. What worked for you won’t work for everyone. For every mom that believes supplementing is evil, there is a mom who would attribute supplementing to saving their sanity and helping them maintain nursing even longer. You might be a boobs out kinda gal and she’s a discreet breastfeeding kinda gal.
But if you can be agnostic. If you can truly help support a mom through the craziness - hell, it’s not like you have to have known what you were doing, she’ll love you even more for that! - please do it. We need each other. Like the Best for Babes group talks about, there are enough booby traps out there for us to stumble over, let’s not make “other moms” one of them.