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My MIL told me today that her oldest daughter had colic as a baby because she was never BFed. MIL said she had to be bottle fed (formula fed) because MIL "got engorged." I guess engorgment can make it hard to get a good latch, but she made it sound like she thought a baby couldn't possibly nurse at all if the mother was engorged.
Nursing always help me when I got engorged. I just don't get it - she nursed 3 other kids, (till her first OB checkup, anyway), can she really think that engorgment stops you from BFing? Maybe there's more to it than she let on, but it seemed like she just didn't know what she was talking about. We JUST had this conversation at lunch today, and I was kinda floored when she said that, so I guess that's why I'm writing about it. I'm really confused.
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Yeah...well I think women were not as informed as they are now, and maybe didnt get the help they needed. My mom told me she couldnt nurse because her milk never came in, but then a few months later she said she couldnt nurse because...get this...."your gums were too sharp."
 

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My grandma got a plugged duct and they actually put her under and drained it!!! It got infected and she lost her milk during the recovery process. I'm so glad things have changed!

Darshani
 

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My MIL and my grandmother have both given me their "I couldn't nurse because...." stories. Its not worth it to prove to them that they probably could have and their excuses are bogus, or they were misinformed. I don't think that's what they are looking for. I'm not really sure what they hope to gain by sharing a story like that. I just nod my head and say I'm sorry. I think that most women who share a story like that just want you to know that they loved their babies enough to try to bf even if they wern't sucessful. (I'm not saying that FFers don't love their babies so hold the flames) It was very hard back then for moms to bf....there wasn't much support out there at all. Heck, even now its hard to sucessfully bf.

Just listen to her. We all like to talk about caring for our babies.
 

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Maybe they dont want to hear how ill informed or unsupported they were. Only you know the person and know the tone in the story. Some people use these stories as a way to express regret and hearing how they could have only reinforces the bad feelings they have. I dont know.

Or maybe it is thier roundabout way of telling you what happened to them so you can be better prepared. And some could simply still beleive it. And as someone else said, there can be more to the story than the person it letting on. That is my take on it.
 

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Oh yeah, I know this one


Women in our family "just don't have enough milk", so I guess that is why my Exclusively Bfeed DD was above 90th percentile in weight at 6mo, LOL

After my GrandMother and my Mother (both did not breastfeed) I am first to "break the cycle"


My sister is breastfeeding now too and she was almost flat before the baby (another common "excuse")
 

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Women were discouraged from breastfeeding back then. My mom breastfed all of her kids and was seen as very "low class" and uneducated for doing so. She did it because she was poor and couldn't understand the rational of buying formula when she could breastfeed for free. MIL didn't bf any of her kids because she was a nurse and FIL is an MD and they "knew" formula was superior (and they had more money).
That's just what the medical establishment thought for some reason....

When SIL's ob recently advised her to bf for three months for the health of her baby, MIL said, "Breastfeeding for three months! Who breastfeeds for three months!?" MIL had her babies on cereal and babyfoods the first week! (In the 1960's) (SIL grudgingly expressed and bottlefed for three months, but never nursed because it's "icky".)
 

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I am THE first in my family to BF--out of my mom, grandmas, aunts, cousins, and ALL of my in-laws, and the first among my friends. And, let me tell you, every last one of them feels compelled to start a conversation with me about why they couldn't/didn't do it. I've heard them all... "I didn't have enough milk." "My breasts are too small." "My breasts didn't get bigger during pregnancy." "I had blue milk." "I was engorged." "My baby couldn't latch on right." "My baby was collicky." "My baby was allergic to my milk."

Here's my take on this. When pregnant women or new mothers hear all this stuff over and over again from everyone they know, then they actually come to believe that BFing is some difficult, horrible ordeal. It's a culture of misinformation, and I believe that by keeping out mouths shut, we encourage people to continue to spread this misinformation. For that reason, I've always explained to women that these "reasons" are incorrect or can be overcome. I'm not mean or judgemental. I make a point to tell them that they did a great job with the information and support that they had and that they obviously love their children, but it is my hope that when we are finished with this conversation that they initiated, that they won't misinform anyone else. Just my 2 cents.
 

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My MIL told me that she wanted to nurse all of her 3 children longer but they all weaned themselves at 6 weeks


I just said "oh"
 

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My mother was told that because I was premature, if she BF me I could die. She was so upset, but back then you just didn't argue with the doctors and no matter how much she wanted to, when told that I could die if she did, she chose not to. Talk about your culture of misinformation!!!

She BFed all three of her other kids and switched pediatricians until she found one that supported her (one not born, rasied and educated in the US) in this decision after the docs gave her a shot to dry up her milk post delivery of my little brother (wow run on sentence)

She supports my decision to BF and seems glad that there is so much support for those of us who chose to BF now. She's also a little jealous too I think and occasionally does or says things that can make life a bit more difficult on our end, but I might be pretty bitter if I had had her experiences too.

I'm so glad things are different now.
 

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When I told my grandma that I was going to breastfeed, she promptly told me not to be too disappointed when it didn't work. She told me how she tried to breastfeed my aunt, but she just couldn't make enough milk. My aunt was a slow eater (took her 45 minutes to finish) and yet she still wanted to eat every 2 hours! I didn't have the heart to tell her that that's really not uncommon in a breastfed baby. She said that she had to start supplementing and then after 3 weeks she just had to stop. Good thing though because my uncle wanted to nurse all the time and was so hungry that he had to have cereal in his bottle at 4 weeks so he'd sleep through the night


The funny thing is that now she's the biggest breast feeding advocate in the family (other than me). She is always repeating all the stats and info I've given her and trying to get the new moms in the family to nurse


j
 

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My MIL couldn't breastfeed my SIL (her DD) as she (the baby) 'didn't like her milk'. The same thing happened with GMIL and MIL when MIL was a baby.

The babies in the *** family 'don't like the mother's milk. They need formula' My SIL breastfed for 2 years.

I think it is because there was no support back then. Doctors looked at a difficult or even normal breastfed baby as he/she learns to breastfeed an says "oh the baby doesn't like your breast...try formula".

When DS was born, he latched on like a champ and nursed like a pro. DD was more difficult. She would unpop constantly, like she couldn't get it comfortable. I actually had my MIL tell me "oh, she doesn't like the breast". Uh NO. She just needs practice. She has a very small mouth and still nursing is different. I could stand up and DS would stay latched on, DD will let go if I move slightly. They are just different.

BTW: DH was adopted so he never nursed.
 

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The answer to almost every breastfeeding issue in Grandma's day was
formula. Moms were often asked to give a breast milk sample at ped visit. Of course it looked thin and blue ( foremilk)so out came the formula- goodby bf.
Childbirth educators were ever so careful to make no distinction in feeding values as they did not want to upset the Moms-to-be by stressing bf over bottles. That's why LLL came to be such a hit with those who followed their mothering instincts in the face of all the "scientific" rush to formula and why it gave the artificial feeding advocates such fits. Imagine Real Moms with real milk make their babies healthier, smarter,and more emotionally fit than propped bottles,lots of meds,and detatched parenting advice.
Poor Granny, all we can do is empathize for they will never know the joy or sense of a job well done that we can experience. It does not help to say engorgement can be relieved so baby can latch, an entire day's samping is needed to judge one's milk supply, or family history makes much difference in today's success rates. Best to say you are sorry they got led off track and you hope they will support your efforts to succeed....
 
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