Thursday, 27 February 2014

A Funny Story about Breastfeeding Guilt

When I was a teenager I had unstable asthma. My mum and I attended sessions at the Asthma Foundation  some were led by Dr Rubinfeld. He shared some information that stuck with me. That breasfeeding can protect from asthma later in life. My sister was breastfed, I wasn't. I had asthma, she didn't. From then on my mind was made up, I was breastfeeding.

So I have documented elsewhere in this blog the struggles I had breastfeeding my son born at 27 weeks. He did have my breastmilk for 10 weeks via tube before switching to formula. It was a horrible decision to have to make and for a couple of years after I cried pretty much every day that I hadn't been able to breastfeed my baby.

I was certain it would affect our bond, that he might be at risk of infection and indeed asthma due to my maternal failings. I completely beat myself up over it. I tried to relactate, but that didn't work, I was bereft. Over time I realised I had done an amazing job to express for as long as I did, that Joseph was happy and healthy and all was well.

Not long ago I was putting Joseph to bed, we'd had stories and it was cuddle time. We cuddle for ages at bed time. He gazed at me and said "I miss breastfeeding with my mummy" I explained he was bottle fed once he came off the tubes.

Well the look of horror on his face was a picture. "Who knows about this?" he asked. I was dumfounded. "Joseph it's common knowledge you were a bottle fed baby" "Well I am telling nobody, if anyone asks I was breastfed. Ok?" he said threateningly. Then gave me a long cuddle before falling asleep.

I have no idea where this came from, not a clue. I think it's very interesting he sees breastmilk as superior, and that he doesn't like the idea of bottles. He was never keen as a rugrat either! Bottle feeding was always difficult and I was very pleased once he was weaned and on a cup.

For the record Joseph has a good immune system, and no sign of asthma.

I still wish we'd been able to establish breastfeeding, but I've let go of the guilt.

For the most part. 


  1. Oh that's so cute! For what it's worth, my mum has 6 children,1 has hey fever, 2 have eczema, and 2 asthma (different children have different combinations)
    3 of us were breastfed (my brother till 4 months, sister 2 months and myself 7 months) my brother has nothing, sister eczema and I have all 3!

  2. Yes I think theres a very casual link too many other factors at play to imply breastfeeding can protect against asthma. He is supercute!

  3. really Funny Story about Breast feeding.I did enjoy this story.