Did YOUR Mom Breastfeed?

This Mother’s Day is dedicated to our mothers and grandmothers and the world of women who encircle, influence, love and guide us– whether they breastfed us or they didn’t. This is the second post in our Rebuilding the Circle series for Mother’s Day.

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Babes, we want to hear YOUR stories!  Did your mother breastfeed you?  Does she support you breastfeeding your own children?  How about your Mother-in-Law?

Our own moms can be our best resources or biggest Booby Traps when it comes to breastfeeding. What has YOUR experience been like?  Please share in the comments!

Help Rebuild the Circle this Mother’s Day- honor a woman you love with a special gift from the Best for Babes Signature Gear Collection — an Annee Matthew for Best for Babes Nursing Tee,  Melinda G for Best for Babes CamiSutra Nursing Cami, or our Signature Short Sleeve Tee — or all three! Enter special coupon code HEALING at checkout to get $5 off .

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14 thoughts on “Did YOUR Mom Breastfeed?

  1. My mother is a retired certified nurse-midwife. She bucked the trend and breastfed me and my brother in the early 1970s. She was my biggest breastfeeding advocate when I had my babies, and I’m proud to say that none of my three children (ages 9, 6, and 2) ever had drop of formula, in large part because of my mom.

    My mother-in-law thought I was a bit “out-there” for eschewing formula, but quickly got on board and at least made no disparaging comments and happily fed my babies bottles of pumped breastmilk when babysitting. I have to give her credit for adjusting her view and accepting my decision, even if she didn’t completely understand my zeal for breastfeeding.


  2. I firmly beleive my mom is the reason using formula for my kids litterally never crossed my mind. She did breastfeed me and we come from a family high risk for allergies and eczema and asthma. I was one of those babies allergic to milk which she didn’t discover until she tried to wean me @ 9 months old. Every time she would give me formula i would develop difficulty breathing and began refusing the formula altogether. SHe told the pediatrician (this was 1984) and he told her nothing was wrong and reccomended a different brand of formula. SHe having been breastfed herself and spent many hours around her breastfed siblings, knew the Doc was full of crap. (once i was a little older i was allergy tested and found to be severly allergic to cow’s milk)She bagen putting me back to the breast after her week long failed experiment and suddenly i was eating and most importantly breathing just fine.
    She told me stories of using formula with my older sister and how hard she and her 1st husband found it to function prepping bottles every 3-4 hrs warming bottles in the middle of the night. Sitting up holding my bibg sis whil she fed becasue my mom refused to let a baby sleep with a bottle. Basically the loss of sanity. Where as with me she always said she just had my crib in her room and would lie down for night time feedings and continue to sleep. As a matter of fact I apparently was and early climber and would exit the crib and drop into mom’s bed at night. I found my son to do this also. LOL.
    All that to say my mother spoke of bonding withand understanding me in a way she didn’t get with my sis becasue she was too tired. Because big sis was held less because big sis slept more during the day. My mom didn’t know the difference in reltaing to your small baby until I was born and she realized the hellish experience she had with formula was not going to be repeated with me.
    As a result I always thought people who opted for formula were just a bit odd. Put the baby in your room and lie down for feedings. you’ll get more sleep and be more functional.( as new sleep studies with ebf moms are showing)When you nurse the baby and keep him with you they cry less (as more and more studies are showing) When you hold the baby during nursing you bond earlier adn have some protection against PPD thanks to all of the wonderful hormones released. From my experience fromula seemed like some cruel and unusual punishment for mothers which I was no intention of experiencing.
    So thanks mom for doing it both ways. Thanks mom for telling me how different your experiences were. Thanks all the rest of my family for bucking trends in the black community and supporting breastfeeding. Thanks for the support that allowed me to nurse until my babies self weaned @ 12 months and 18 months of age respectively.


  3. My mom tried to breastfeed but had no support and was inundated with unhelpful advise, plus she was only 18 at the time. She then more than less supportive of my sisters and I when we breastfed our children. Loved to tell us that we didn’t have enough milk and to let her give a bottle. Thankfully it was something we all wanted to do and persisited.


  4. She did! for 2+ years. Stories of my baby-hood that I heard while growing up often included sweet or funny nursing stories, and it was always completely normal. I always knew I would BF my babies, I’m sure largely because of her. My “baby” turns TWO in 2 days, and he is still happily breastfed!


  5. My mother did not breastfeed us. She did try to breastfeed my sister, but she was born with 2 teeth, which led to nurses telling her it wouldn’t work out. She was 19 at the time and believed them. She didn’t try to breastfed the rest of us. Oddly enough my mother was supportive of me and my sister breastfeeding our children, not that I gave her much of an option. My grandmother was told her milk was poisonous to her children, so she didn’t breastfeed her 5 children. She was surprised when I clued her into all the false information doctors used to tell women and all the new information about how wonderful breast milk is. She was very supportive and thrilled that her great-grandchildren were getting the best nutrition possible.


  6. One of my earliest memories is playing with my mother’s locket while she breastfed me (I was born in 1979). Unfortunately she decided to put me onto formula at 6 months so she could take the combined contraceptive pill. I remember the smell and feel of the bottle too, which I can’t say I much liked lol. However, being the oldest of 6 kids, I got to see her breastfeed my siblings, thankfully longer than I was breastfed for! I credit the fact that I had so much exposure to her breastfeeding my siblings with my natural ability in breastfeeding my own kids. I received compliments from nurses in the hospital after having my first baby on how much of a natural I was at breastfeeding. I think in many respects it’s more what you are exposed to and how much support you receive from people like your mum as to whether you breastfeed or not rather than actually being breastfed or not. So ladies, if you are good at it, show other women so they can learn too! And if you are struggling, find a supportive group of women who can show you – you’d be amazed at how much you can learn just by watching.
    My third Bubba is now 4 months old and I’m still going strong at being a natural breastfeeder! 🙂


  7. All the women in my family breastfed/breastfeed, but none of the women on my husband’s side did…until they saw me do it. Now all of the cousins have been following my lead.

    My mother in law wasn’t sure how to support me. I think she was a little uncomfortable at first because it was something she just wasn’t used to and didn’t really know anything about. She didn’t seem to know what to do with herself when we nursed at first, but it didn’t take too long for her (and everyone else) to get used to seeing us nursing and soon it was just a normal part of life and no one gave us a second glance.


  8. My mother breastfed my sister for 18 months. In 1981, she was the only mother who had recently delivered in the ward who was breastfeeding her newborn and so the nurses approached her about pumping some milk for a couple babies in the NICU. She agreed to donate her milk not realizing that when she went home in a couple days, she’d be BEYOND engorged. A manual pump and some cabbage leaves helped, and eventually her breasts adjusted. She has said that breastfeeding was not encouraged or supported during the 80’s as it was often seen as “gross” and something only poor women did. It was the “me” generation after all. She breastfed me for only 11 months becase she had to return to work and I absolutely refused to take a bottle. She has been an amazing support to me through my 16 week struggle to establish breastfeeding with my son and I am very thankful for her.


  9. No she did not. She tried with my sister, but after 6 weeks my sister was not gaining weight and was very unhappy. They tested her milk and discovered it was like skim milk. Because of that, all 3 of us were formula fed. Do I look down on her for making that decision? Absolutely NOT. She was supportive of me when breastfeeding didn’t work with my first child, but also supportive when it did work with my second child.


  10. I was not breastfed. Neither were my siblings (I am the youngest of 4). When she ahd me, she was a single mother, she had one more child at home (the others were older and moved out), had to return to work within the 6 weeks after having me, and had little support. Other than that, I don’t know why she didn’t. I don’t look badly on it. She did what was best for her at the time. She fully supported my decision to breastfeed and promote breastfeeding to anyone who would listen. My oldest sister breast fed all of her kids and is supportive as well. My mother sister did not breastfeed. She watched my older son while I worked and had no problem giving expressed milk.


  11. My mum breastfed me for 4 months or so, then she gave up because of too little milk and I preferred the bottle. My younger brothers were exclusively breastfed, and she continued to nurse them until they were 14 and 18 months. When I asked her how long the breastfed them, she immediately said that she had gotten a better understanding of it when they came, and hadn’t taken the crap about nursing every 4 hours from the other breast each time – “I just let them lead it.”


  12. My mom didn’t. I was the first born in 1971 in Greece. As soon as I was born her nipples cracked and her OB said “don’t even bother”. My brother was born a couple years later (in South Africa at the time), OBs said, you have to nurse even though you don’t wnat to. They put baby to her breast and made her do it. HSe was scared, new to a foreign country where she didn’t speak the language with no friends or family for support. She tried but it hurt so badly and felt so forced into it and couldn’t stand the thought of her baby getting blood. She quit very quickly with much tears and trauma.
    I fel so badly for her now. I made breastfeeding such a big deal with my first and didn’t support her at all as she told me this story. I made no comment.
    I wil have to right that wrong.


  13. My mum didn’t breastfeed me or my 2 siblings. A couple of comments while I was pregnant made me feel like she wouldn’t be supportive (along the lines of “formula is fine”). I was very surprised when she was really supportive when I struggled through the consequences of a long labour with many interventions including c-section, inverted nipples, a “sleepy baby”, low supply, thrush, bad attachment and severe nipple damage.

    My MIL BF only her youngest of 3 sons. She asked about half way through my struggle “when will they tell you to stop?” Referring to the LC’s/midwives/child health nurses. In a way I guess that helped because it made me even more determined to succeed!!! Still breastfeeding at 8.5 months with no plan to stop 🙂


  14. My mom breastfed me for nearly 4 years (there were many tears when she tried to wean me at 1 and 2), and my early memories are around being nestled in her arms as I suckled to sleep, and feeling very loved. I remember the smell of her milk, and almost the taste too; it was wonderful! My mom-in-law breastfed my DH for 2 years as well, so i have two very supportive women who encourage me to nurse as long as my babies want. I don’t have any yet, but DH & I have just started trying!


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