Due to a medical condition called Poland Syndrome, my breasts didn't produce milk during pregnancy. I therefore had to make peace with the fact that I had to bottle-feed my baby from the start. This should of been a guilt-free moment for me but I cannot express how terrible I felt at the prospect of not being able to naturally breastfeed my baby. I felt like a failure as a woman. 

The judgmental looks I received when I got out a bottle instead of my breast made me blurt out my condition at any opportunity and that's so wrong. Why should I have to justify the way I choose to feed my baby to others? 

Let's take a moment to think of just some of the reasons a mother may not be able to breastfeed their baby: 

>She may have undergone breast surgery
>She may need to receive radiation therapy or chemotherapy
>Her baby could be milk intolerant or could have a rare metabolic condition known as Galactosemia 
>She may suffer from a chronic illnesses and her health may suffer as a result of breastfeeding
>She may have an infection requiring antibiotics which are harmful to the baby. 
>She may be suffering from post-birth complications 
>Many NICU babies are unable to breastfeed
>The baby may be fostered or adopted.

And then we have mothers that struggle to breastfeed when they really heartbreakingly try to persevere. It brings tears to my eyes when I think about the amount of wonderful mums who have had breakdowns over the struggles with breastfeeding, such as:

 >Various Lactation issues; split/raw nipples, engorged breasts, mastitis, severe pain, and failure of the baby latching on.
>Insufficient milk supply
>Post natal depression
>Let's not forget some women just hate the feeling of it.

I'm sure I've missed a million other reasons. 

It's important to remember we can only do our best; bottle or breast. Breastfeeding is awesome and should be celebrated. But so should bottle-feeding.

Join in the campaign by sharing your bottle-feeding photos using #dontjudgejustfeed ; the idea is to promote a safe place for love, acceptance and support towards bottle-feeding parents; whether it's formula, pumping or combination feeding.

🚫negativity free post

Published by Holly Leppard