TOO MUCH INTERVENTION?
Often in our attempt to help the breastfeeding mom, we inadvertently set the stage for insecurities as we question the baby’s normal response and reactions to the initial first days.
Although it is a fine line to walk, I have over the years decided that on many occasions it may be more appropriate to offer less intervention, both physically and verbally.
Less intervention does not mean less support or education. These two are vital for the success of breastfeeding. However, I am referring to the subtle messages we portray that could reduce confidence and create insecurities with the breastfeeding mom and her partner.
Basic, correct information is key. When we put mom and baby in a preconceived standardized form, we are forgetting that this couple, in the breastfeeding dyad, is truly individualized and may not initially meet the set standards. Maintaining flexibility, without risk to mom or baby, is paramount to decreasing mom’s feelings of failure.
What I would suggest as a breastfeeding caregiver, would be to offer assistance with latch-on, only when you see a problem. The “taking over” attitude says, “I don’t feel you can do this on your own,” and creates doubt. Verbal encouragement, supporting physical closeness, skin-to-skin contact, and a “you can do it…enjoy this baby” often is key to helping mom succeed. Be careful in showing your doubts/concerns, especially in the beginning.