In a digital age where we are connected to one another through Facebook, Twitter, and countless other methods of communication, why is it so important to find mother-to-mother breastfeeding support in person?
There are some amazing connections being made online, and I see a great deal of growth happen in our local chat group for Indy Breastfeeding Moms: a Chapter of Breastfeeding USA. New mothers post photos of their babies, sharing their joy with other mamas. I see images of beautiful, happy babies each day and am comforted by the thought that these are compassionate parents who are doing their absolute best. But I often wonder how isolated new parents really feel with the digital degree of separation.
Venting about a lack of sleep the night before via a Tweet or Facebook update isn’t the same as a friend dropping by your home and bringing you a latte while you chat about the hardships of motherhood. Personal, one-on-one connection is vital to new mothers! This is especially true when moms are trying to get the hang of breastfeeding. The first six weeks are hard, and often times very confusing!
“Is my baby eating enough?” “Is my baby eating too much?” “Am I making enough milk?” “How to I prepare to return to work?”
The questions and self-doubt are almost always best answered by mothers who’ve been there. Being in a room with other mothers as you nurse your babies together makes getting support for those burning questions much less daunting and scary.
While there are some great evidence-based and support-driven online resources available when you have questions at 1 a.m., getting out of the house with your baby to meet other women who are in a similar phase of life is priceless. Making face-to-face connections with moms is so important! You can show up to a breastfeeding support group in yoga pants, unshowered, and running on fumes, but still leave that meeting feeling as though you’re on top of the world.
You’re not alone, mamas! Find a group of breastfeeding mothers, and give yourself the gift of mother-to-mother support.