Thursday, February 08, 2007

Don't Take the Baby's Side

So, I joined the La Leache League a few months ago. I like nursing, I needed to get out of the house, and it seemed like a good way to meet other people who would also eat blue potatoes. I generally like it pretty well. However, I have noticed that I always feel a little irked at some point in the meeting and I have finally figured out why.

The leaders always take the baby's side.

When one mother was discussing how she really didn't enjoy nursing at 2am, the leader's response was to enjoy that together time now and how you shouldn't worry about the clock and how you should give yourself permission to sleep at 2pm instead. All of these are wonderful sentiments but when it comes down to it, it really sucks to be awake at 2 am (and 1 am and 4 am) nursing. This response is fairly typical and somewhat problematic. Anne at Bun in the Oven, often references the LLL's purported painless nursing with a good latch. While that might be true after a few weeks, the first week or so will hurt.

Part of motherhood is knowing that sometimes it sucks and doing it anyway. At the same time, it's vital to feel like it's ok to think it sucks, that baby poop smells too, that there won't always be sunshine and daisies and that it isn't just that you need to adjust your attitude. The road to valium addiction is paved with a perpetually positive disposition. Sometimes you just have to take the mommy's side. It doesn't mean she'll abandon her baby or stop picking the baby up when he cries but she will know it's ok if she doesn't smile when the baby cries at 3am.

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