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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Effective Communication Bucket List

"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (August). For this month, we join the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action in it's "Talk to Me!" theme where participants will share personal experiences, insights or recommendations in communicating breastfeeding intentions and goals to their support system. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants."

Here's my bucket list of how you can be able to effectively communicate your breastfeeding intentions and goals to your support system.

Research
I have found that having done my own research ahead of time helps me become more confident in letting people know that I intend to breastfeed without supplements. Other breastfeeding moms have also shared to me that being knowledgeable about the benefits, problem resolutions, issues surrounding breastfeeding have made them steadfast in their beliefs and allow them to properly address the concerns raised by people around them who are encouraging the use of breastmilk substitutes.
But it is important that you get information from the correct resources. I previously shared the top books in my breastfeeding library and would like to add one more to this list - Bestfeeding by Mary Renfrew. It is currently on my nightstand and I like the way it explains and encourages breastfeeding. Review coming soon. If you don't want to buy books, go for online resources such as Kellymom, Dr. Jack Newman, La Leche League International. Again, let me reiterate - better informed = better armed!



Plan Ahead
Interview your pediatrician. If she prescribes a breastmilk substitute, ask for a medical reason. But note that despite the amount of research you have done, if your pediatrician is not breastfeeding friendly, he/she will always find a reason to push breastmilk substitutes. Reminds me of that neonatologist in a leading hospital who kept pushing for the addition of spirulina in breastmilk but was really a researcher for that food supplement. No medical reason given for the addition of the supplement except that all the babies she previously gave it to had increased weight. Check out my previous post on how to find a breastfeeding friendly pediatrician.
Make sure that your husband is on the same page as you! Bring your husband to support groups and classes. There is nothing worse than hearing your own husband say - you don't have milk! You can also bring your mom or mother in law to classes. Whenever I attend LATCH classes or LLLI meetings, I am always happy to see grandmothers there. Sometimes, they ask questions but more often they don't. It will be especially helpful for you if you can have your husband or mom or MIL already prepare their issues and YOU can ask or bring up the questions instead of them.
An important ally to have is yaya. Show yaya that you are serious and don't keep a formula can for those just in case moments. In my case, I taught yaya how to properly handle and store breastmilk by asking her to watch me then having her do it while I was watching her. Print out this guide on how to bottlefeed the breastfed baby and explain to her that baby does not always want milk when baby cries. Sometimes, baby just wants comfort or to be changed. AND I emphasized to my yaya that you won't be spoiling baby if you carry her often!

Use Past Experience as Measures of Success
I was quite lucky that my sister-in-law breastfed her 2 boys. She was actually an exclusive pumper and lasted 4 months for her first and 6 months for her second son. Her experience and her exhortation that I breastfeed helped me respond to comments from my mother-in-law. If my mother-in-law had some comment or objection, I just kept quiet then messaged my sister-in-law. Then she'll be the one to call her mom to respond. Worked perfectly!

But sometimes you just have to grin and bear it. For instance, when I was having issues with looking for a pediatrician, we were with a pediatrician who was not breastfeeding friendly. When she made comments about supplementation, etc., I just smiled and said nothing. But since I had done all my research and knew that I was giving what was normal (and not only the best) to my baby, my confidence was not shaken and I continued on.

So how did you share your breastfeeding intentions/goals?

Check out the other carnival participants (to be updated throughout the day):
DaintyMom's Creating a Pro-Breastfeeding Culture in the Family (Facebook and Twitter: @Dainty_Mom)
Wifely Steps' On Breastfeeding: Say It, Claim It, Get Support! (Facebook and Twitter: @macaronigirl)
Truly Rich Mom's How To Get Others to Support You in Breastfeeding (Facebook and Twitter: @tinasrodriguez)
EthanMama's My Best Breastfeeding Support System - My Husband (Twitter: @ethanmama)
Raising Baby Lia's A Shoutout to my Breastfeeding Buddies
Jen CC Tan's I'm Breastfeeding, and That's That! (Facebook and Twitter: @next9baby)
Project Blog by Kate's Talk and Make it Happen (Facebook and Twitter: @kate_demetrio)
My Mommy Kwentos' How I Recruited my Top Breastfeeding Buddies (Facebook)
Apples & Dumplings Communicating and First Time Breastfeeders (Twitter: @apple_dumplings)
I'm a Newbie Wife's How I Taught My Family to Breastfeed
TouringKitty's Communication Through Breastfeeding (Twitter: @Touringkitty)
Mec as Mom's Pre-Natal Pediatric Consultations Are Necessary
Escie's World's Ready, Get Set, Go! for Breastfeeding (Twitter: @Escielicious)
Nanaystrip's BreasTALK : Text, Retweet, Share your Knowledge and Experiences (Twitter: @bunsonimaestro)
Superwomom's A-S-Ks (on breastfeeding questions, help, support) (Twitter: @dsedilla)
Go Help Yourself's “6 persuasion tips for breastfeeding moms and advocates”
Legally Mom's Breastfeeding Talk Between Me and My Formula Fed Daughter (Facebook and Twitter: @legallymomPH)
Handy Mommy's Couple's Communication and Decision: Key to Successful Breastfeeding
Chronicles of a Nursing Mom's Effective Communication Bucket List (Facebook and Twitter: @mamababylove)

10 comments:

jencc said...

Ako, I just said, "I'm breastfeeding." TAPOS ang usapan. Hahahaha!

mec sexy said...

haha... ako ata, bago pa kami nagpakasal nasabi ko na :D Plus, breastfeeding yung sis nya noon eh, so parang 'it follows' ang dating for him :D

Tina Santiago Rodriguez said...

Reading your post, I realize again how blessed I am that I gave birth to both kids in Timor (though at the time, I was really doubting if it was a good decision to do so!). The ob-gyn, midwives, nurses and pedia there really make sure that moms breastfeed after birth, as they are trained by UNICEF, and really promote breastfeeding, esp. since most moms and families there can't afford formula in the first place - heck, a lot of places don't even have easy access to water! ;-)

Both our kids were given to me right after being delivered so that they could nurse. Although it would have helped much more if someone had showed me the right way to latch, hehe. ;-) 

Thanks again for hosting this carnival Jen (and Mec!) Godbless!

HandyMommy Ichel said...

I agree on being at the same page with husbands and lolas!  and of course, we are blessed with able helpers!
Great Jen that you know where you stand, so not even a not so breastfeeding savvy pedia can shake your resolve! 
I really appreciate this carnival and your posts to help more moms, babies and families!

applesanddumplings said...

It's a good thing my husband was breastfed. When we learned I was pregnant, siya na nagsabi, "mag bbreastfeed ka." :)

I have that book Bestfeeding! :) It's  a great book. Ngayon, my books are with my pregnant sister!

Mel Cantara said...

Too bad, I'm not an active blogger.  I have my own breastfeeding tales to share.  I gave birth to my little Sadie December 20 of last year.  I religiously go to my OB for my scheduled check-ups, and being a first-time mom-to-be then, I report every little thing to my doctor.  The day I learned we were expecting, my husband and I decided that our firstborn would be breastfed.  In utero, my Sadie was very active, and my OB said she was perfectly fine and healthy.  Five and a half months into the pregnancy, I had my 4D ultrasound, and my heart was swollen with pride when we saw her for the first time--she was smiling, yawning, kicking.  Everything seems to tell us she'd come out in the pink of health.  Then came a bump on the road--I was diagnosed with preeclampsia.  Succeeding ultrasounds showed that she didn't grew much right after our 4D session.  She was just 4.5 lbs when I delivered her through Caesarian section. But she was fine.  Tiny, too tiny, but very, very healthy.  Before I went to the nursery to breastfeed her for the first time, I tried my manual pump--I couldn't help it, I was curious to find out if I had enough ammunition, so to speak.  I was dismayed when nothing came out.  But my disgust didn't break my will--I've read it somewhere, it's normal to feel disheartened when you see no milk coming out from your breasts.  I went to the nursery with my resolve even firmer--SADIE WILL BE BREASTFED no matter what it takes.  So there, my tiny angel latched and sucked and sucked.  I didn't feel anything gushing out from my breasts but Sadie went sucking away until she finally felt full.  WE DID IT.  Right then I realized whey some mothers give up that easily.  If you aren't armed with the correct information, you will feel disappointed and turn to formula instantly.  I am no lactivist, I respect that some mothers opt to feed their babies formula.  But I hope they change their minds.  And I hope expectant mothers consider the fact that breast is indeed best. My Sadie is now 16 lbs heavy.  She never gets sick. I owe it to one thing alone--my milk. Sure, I won't lie, I was tempted to finally wean her.  I bought formula, I still have a box sitting here somewhere.  But she hates it.  And I hate the thought of having thought about feeding her with it.  We tried, and somehow I'm happy she refused it.  There are days when I feel like wanting to just go ahead and stop breastfeeding her but at the end of each day, when I look at her, I realize that she deserves better.  And so I made a vow, I'll keep on breastfeeding her until I can. 

Em Alcantara said...

haha matigas lang talaga ulo natin, we don't follow our pedia. it's been a year since this desire to breastfeed started, and i'm inspired by all the moms i have met -- sa LLLI meets, mom events, twitter, facebook, blogs. the others i've not even seen! see, that's why i love technology being put to good use, hindi yung panay paninira lang. thanks again for hosting this blog carnival jen and mec!

Anthony said...

We didn't interview our pediatrician and just depended on the recommendation of a friend. So now we have a medrep disguised as a breastfeeding friendly pediatrician for our baby. We're thinking of firing her. Just looking for the right replacement. Anyway, I guess that part of interviewing your pediatrician is very important.

Nathalie Velasco said...

It's really important to be armed with information to get the support you need, right, Mommy Jen? :) Which is why we are thankful for you blog and the link you've been sharing.  Clap Clap Clap

Armi B said...

"I emphasized to my yaya that you won't be spoiling baby if you carry her often!"
- I need to explain this to the lolos and lolas too. Huwag daw pamihasanin ang bata sa karga, kaya napapagalitan nila kaming mag-asawa. Hay.

By the way, I would like to thank you and Ms. Mec for hosting this blog carnival! I'm really glad to be part of such an enriching experience - learned a lot from other moms too. \(^_^)/

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