The Holiday season can be such a magical time.
But if we’re honest, making it magical can also be stressful. Breastfeeding can add an extra layer of stress to the holiday buzz. We can concede that what we all dread most are the unsolicited comments of our relatives. It is my hope that every breastfeeding momma will smoothly sail though the holiday season without one snarky remark like “Are you STILL breastfeeding?”. Or maybe your family is more inclined to not so subtly suggest that you go into another room to feed your little one. Whatever their angle might be, it would be nice if everyone would concern themselves with something aside from your boobs!
This year my desire it that you won’t just survive the holidays, but that you would thrive! Here are a few tips that I think will help you do just that
For some of us breastfeeding in public can be anxiety inducing. Even if “the public” is related to you. Take a little time now to build yourself up. Look in the mirror and tell yourself that you are magical. Your body alone can sustain a human life for a full year!! You, my dear, are amazing. Wear that like a badge of honor. Put on your invisible super hero cape when you embark on your holiday advendtrues this year. No one will want to mess with a superhero.
Holidays are stressful enough without adding a cranky baby to the mix. Offer the breast to baby 30 minutes before each departure. If you have a few stops to make in one day, feed the baby before leaving each stop. This may not appear to be helpful on the surface, but think about how much better you’ll be able to let those comments roll off when you show up at ease. Offfering the breast before leaving each destination will hopefully calm baby for the ride so that you can enjoy the break in between relatives. Make your car your sanctuary. You can’t have a sanctuary if baby is crying from being hungry and or passed around.
Settle into your NO.
Most breastfed babies want their mothers/fathers. If they are old enough to recognize who is holding them they may not want to be whisked away by strange relative after strange relative. They will want to be close to you. Don’t be bullied into letting your baby be taken away because Aunt Bertha hasn’t seen them before. You can walk baby over to Aunt Bertha and let her admire at the distance that you and your baby are most comfortable with. Don’t feel bad about saying no. No is absolutely your right. If you anticipate having an issue with a particular person about the boundaries you’ve set then take a moment to have a talk with your partner so that you will have back up.
Wear your baby.
Baby wearing is a great way to do many things. It keeps baby feeling calm and secure. If you have that right system you can easily nurse baby without much adjustment or distraction. Your family may not even know what’s going on. And it is a lot harder for people to whisk baby away.
Consider nursing in a quiet room or corner.
This is a good option if you want to remove yourself form any possible discussion about your choice to breastfeed. It also works well for babies 6 months and older who’ve started to become distracted by movement and loud noises. You can nurse in peace and hopefully efficiently without baby poppin on and off the breast to see the happenings.
I hope at least one of these tips helps you breastfeed with confidence this holiday season! Do you have any helpful tips for dealing with your opinionated and pushy relatives?
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