Breastfeeding vs. Formula
Just so y’all know, this is not a breastmilk vs. formula debate. This is about the guilt of medication when we have to make this crucial decision. To me, this debate is perfectly unnecessary. There are a lot of great benefits to breastfeeding, and I agree with that; but, I also agree that there are a lot of benefits to having a happy and healthy mama. So in my mind, there is no debate.
Breastfeeding is supposed to provide your baby with great things like perfect nutrition and antibodies. I mean, unicorns basically sneak into your breasts to sprinkle their dust and make this shit. It’s liquid gold, right?
Listen, I’m not shaming breastfeeding here. I just want to make my point. Sometimes, our happiness and health have to come before it. That’s all. If you’re able to breastfeed and everything is roses and sunshine, congrats! If you have major issues and it becomes a trigger (like for me and many other mamas out there), it’s not necessary. They make formula pretty damn good these days.
Not every mom needs to be put on an anti-depressant after birth. Actually, the majority will probably not need them. But there are many of us moms that desperately need some sort of medication after birth, and it makes every single decision we make so painful.
We are also prescribed painkillers, laxatives, and other fun stuff after we give birth. Just another decision to agonize over if we want to breastfeed.
Do we take the drugs and possibly pass it on to our infant? I just want to note here that there is very little data to support how much or how little medication we actually pass on to our babies. Do we forgo our treatment and risk our own health so that we can breastfeed? There are so many questions to answer if we choose to make sure our babies get that liquid gold.
Breastfeeding Mom Guilt
And, the guilt over this whole decision, it is sooo freaking real. We are literally stuck between choosing our baby’s health or our own, or at least we’re made to feel that way.
My daughter had breastmilk exclusively for the first 18 months of her life. She never latched, and I pumped my ass off for 8 months to give her that. It’s something I’m pretty damn proud of, but, if I’m being completely honest, something I regret just a little. I took medication, but the doses were very low. I would take it after my last pump of the day so that it would be metabolized for the most part by morning.
If I had just given my daughter formula, maybe I would have gotten my own health under control much sooner than I did. Here’s the thing; if you’re struggling with this decision right now, I can’t give you any advice. No one can. This is a decision that you have to make for yourself, but mama, please take yourself into consideration. We’re all rooting for you!