Ladies, Put Down the Washcloth: Or What To Do When You Get Bad Breastfeeding Advice

Desiree Wynn

Posted By: Desiree Wynn

Desiree is a brand new mom to a baby girl. Fresh from the hospital, she’s navigating the initiation into parenthood and everything that goes along with it - from waiting for her milk to come in, to learning to get a proper latch...

"Grab it like a hamburger and shove it in as far as it will go."
"You have to toughen your nipples, otherwise it'll hurt like no other!"
"It's not as easy as it looks."
"Make sure you have a lactation consultant on speed dial!"

These are snippets of things that I've heard from family and friends about breastfeeding. Before doing my research, I didn't really understand what the fuss was about. I thought breastfeeding was easy – put your nipple in your baby's mouth and they do the rest. Little did I know!

I learned about different holds, how to address challenges I may face, and all about the Golden Rule: Always Get a Good Latch. My cousin gave me a book on breastfeeding at my baby shower and I was confused – how much information do you need to put mouth A on nipple B? Consider me schooled and I've since read that book cover to cover - twice.

My own mom told me that I should rub a rough washcloth on my nipples daily to toughen the skin. Because my mom said so, I did it. Once. It hurt so badly that there was no way I was going to keep that up! Thankfully, I read that was nonsense, that I would not need to mangle my poor nipples. As if pregnancy wasn't challenging enough, we're expected to inflict pain on ourselves? Daily? I overheard a lady in my doctor's office saying that she was pulling and twisting her nipples in preparation for breastfeeding!

Provided you have a good latch, breastfeeding shouldn't hurt. It's definitely a new sensation that takes some getting used to, but it's not supposed to be torture. I wonder how many women have given up because of pain that could have been avoided, or because they received bad advice.

Unfortunately, breastfeeding is not something you can practice – just like childbirth. You just have to wait for the big dance because you can't do it without a partner. So women of the world, leave your poor nipples alone!

9:00am on Thursday May 12
| | Share
Sign up for the Bravado newsletter


Kara: Breastfeeding Twins
Follow Kara: Breastfeeding Twins
Read More
Jessica: Momma Gone City
Follow Jessica: Momma Gone City
Read More
Emily: DesignHER Momma
Follow Emily: DesignHER Momma
Read More
Kate: The Shopping Mama - View from a multi-tasking mama
Follow Kate: The Shopping Mama - View from a multi-tasking mama
Read More
Kathryn: Candid Insights From the Corner Office
Follow Kathryn: Candid Insights From the Corner Office
Read More

Our Resource Library

Find all you need at your finger tips.
Go to Resource Library

Be the first to know! Sign up to receive special offers, exclusive insider access to new products and content that supports you through pregnancy and nursing.

*First Name:
*Email Address:
*Baby's Due/Birth Date:
*Yes, I'd like to receive your e-newsletter with offers, special
promotions, contests and insider access to new products and
breastfeeding tips.
Items marked with * are required.