Breastfeeding and the Spectator
Recently my young niece has cut out two articles from the Spectator to show me. Both are excellent insights into the pressures of new motherhood. I agreed with both writers, Ysenda Maxtone Graham in “The Breast Test. New mothers who can’t keep to the breast-feeding orthodoxy face needless misery and shame” (29th August 2015) and Molly Ceglowski in, “Baby Steps. Why women are seeking alternatives to NCT antenatal classes (3rd October 2015).
Kensington Midwives were pleased to see Clare Byam-Cook was quoted as our blogs in the past have taken her advice. She suggests the mouth-to nipple, ‘shape and shove’ method and that, “If everything is going wrong, and you and your baby are permanently in tears; if your husband has started finding excuses to stay away from home, it is probably best to give up the whole idea and restore peace and calm to the household – even if it means giving a bottle!”
The “Baby Steps” article say’s that, “In fact, painful and difficult breast-feeding is so linked to postnatal depression that a lot of doctors advise women to stop after a few days if it’s not going well.” There is no research mentioned to support this, but it Molly mentions that she recently had a baby herself.
The rival antenatal courses to the NCT, the Bump Class and Lulubaby, who we frequently suggest to our clients, have a measured approach, backed up by invited specialist in their fields. This allows for each new mother to do her best, hopefully with no pressure from the natural childbirth lobby. Clare Byam-Cook also say’s, “Breast milk is wonderful stuff, and all mothers owe it to their baby at least to have a go at breast-feeding. But a study I’ve recently read suggests that giving a baby formula can actually make its immunities stronger: the gut learns early on to tolerate different things. And bottle-fed babies do not grow up fat, ill or stupid.”
We find this very sensible and would like all our new mothers to enjoy breastfeeding rather than struggle with a crying baby or cry themselves.