A friend of mine commented a few days ago how “excited I must be to get my boobs back as Peachy is coming up to one” She seemed a bit shocked when I told her I had no intention of stopping breastfeeding just because putting kids on cows milk seems to happen at one – what does a cow have over my nutrition??
But what she seemed most shocked about is that I added in my reply “and anyways, I’m pumping extra for a couple of gorgeous babies who need a little top up from their own Mumma’s milk to help them grow” – the look she gave made me want to check I hadn’t grown another head!
She confessed that she was totally horrified at the thought of a baby having another person’s milk and that it was, and I quote, “icky”
Now I don’t think icky is the technical term for sharing milk but I was shocked at her words! She is a very liberal, open minded person, another breast feeding advocate (although no babies herself yet) and generally an all round good gal! And it got me thinking – why is this frowned upon by society?
There have been some tabloid coverage on breastfeeding in public, or as I call it “feeding Peachy when she is hungry” with lots of negative undertones and lots of “yeah I agree with it BUT they should cover themselves” and my favourite the “brelfies” or as one paper called it “women just showing off”…
And looking around, there has been a few articles where women have wet nursed a sister or friend’s baby either regularly or occasionally and people have been up in arms about that too.
But that’s not what I do. I have a small over supply. I freeze the milk that Peachy doesn’t need. That milk sits in my freezer. There are a few lovely mummies whose bubba’s need some more milk to grow and develop. I give the milk in the freezer. Their mummies give them milk. That’s the process in a nutshell.
How is this “icky”?
I would hope that society would realise the pressure a breastfeeding mum has as the sole provider of her child’s nutrition and that when you are not producing enough to keep up with your babies needs, or there is a medical reason as to why your baby is not gaining weight, that it takes a huge amount of respect and courage to call out and ask for help.
I applaud the mummies of the babies whom I supply milk to. And I would hope that someone would have helped me should I ever need it.
It takes a village to raise a child. Welcome to my village.