Blogger Constance Hall wants more moms to understand the reality of breastfeeding.
When you’re a first time mom and learning about breastfeeding, you think it’s going to be natural and easy — that you’ll just instinctually be able to figure it out, and whatever problems you encounter will be easily solvable. In reality, that’s not always the case, and that’s why blogger Constance Hall wants more women to know that “breastfeeding ain’t always glamorous and it certainly isn’t easy.”
In a post on her Facebook page that’s already been liked more than 53,000 times, the 32-year-old mother of four shared a photo of herself “sleeping, while breastfeeding twins” and opened up about the struggle to get newborns fed.
“When I was pregnant with my first baby I was really excited by that awesome connection between mum and baby, they suckle, you stroke their hair, your own hair’s blow dried and a glowing smile resides on your face…
I wasn’t expecting the royal fucking let down that for me was crying through the pain of bleeding, cracked nipples being sucked on innocently by a baby who was actually causing me unthinkable agony. A sweaty dread locked ponytail and a mild stench of sour milk, it wasn’t pretty.”
Hall — who previously went viral for her hilarious take on “parent sex” — adds that even though we tend to think of breastfeeding as natural and instinctual, “babies don’t all come out suckling, some need to be taught, and teaching a baby to feed is hard and frustrating.” Anyone who’s had a baby born prematurely or dealt with feeding issues can totally relate to that statement. And, as for pumping, don’t even get Constance started. She says:
“Expressing milk can pretty much just go and fuck itself, 3 of my babies have been over 5 weeks prem, a lot of expressing involved in preemie babies. I now have a rule, if I need to pump I’m switching to formula, nothing is worth the ordeal. A nipple that is being sucked through a breast pump looks kind of related to the image of a kid blowing his mouth against a window that you are on the other side of.. It’s just squashed and wrong. When someone pops over unannounced and your pumping you actually feel around with your free hand for something to throw at them. I’m not saying it’s ok to throw things at your husbands friends, I’m saying it’s ok to want to.”
Hall says her twins self-weaned at six months — “probably because I was giving them formula most of the time anyway” — and her bond didn’t change with them one bit. In fact, her bond with them only got stronger because she was doing what she needed to do for herself.
So often, we hear the mantra “breast is best” repeated over and over again with little to no concern for what’s best for moms. Some women love breastfeeding, and will go on to do it for years. Others struggle with latching issues, don’t produce enough milk, are battling postpartum depression, or have a whole host of other difficulties that prevent the feeding experience from being what they thought it would be.
The important thing to remember is that it’s all okay — whatever you need to do to get your baby fed and keep yourself sane and healthy in the process is what’s “best” for your family, and no one else’s opinion really matters. As much as we argue about breastfeeding and drown ourselves in guilt over our choices, Hall says she wants every woman out there to know there’s no such thing as “failing” at breastfeeding:
“My bond with all of my children has strengthened as I have felt calmer, more relaxed, better rested and with the twins, that relaxation came in the form of formula. Don’t ever consider yourself failing at breast feeding. Queens don’t fail. Some continue, some change their minds, some never wanted to and some have no choice. But none of them fail. Baby is fed? Queenie’s a success.”