I hate breastfeeding. This is a commonly heard statement among mothers that have just given birth and those who are nursing for some time now. However, these thoughts remain hidden for fear of being shamed or judged.
Well, that is understandable because those who do not or have not breastfed have their own thoughts surrounding it.
Many people think that having the “equipment” (a.k.a boobs) is all you need and you are good to go. What they don’t know is that this is just the start and that breastfeeding is not like a walk in the park. Yes, it might be the most natural thing to do after giving birth but it can be a struggle.
For starters, some moms feel like it is a battle as there are babies that find it difficult to latch on the first few attempts. Many moms work hard to find rhythm or the best breastfeeding positions that will work on them to help them get started with their breastfeeding journey.
Then there are other problems that some mothers might encounter such as lip-tie (which makes it difficult for other babies to suck), low milk supply, postpartum depression, insufficient sleep, and lack of support from husband or family to name a few.
There are so many other dilemmas that you can add on to the already growing pile in this mix. The list can go on and on…and I know this because I’ve been through this…and still am going through this time and time again.
Want to know why I hate breastfeeding? Below are my reasons why:
Table of Contents
#1 I Hate Breastfeeding Because My Body Is No Longer My Own
Breastfeeding means that there is a tiny human being dependent on me for nourishment. This is a huge responsibility that overwhelmed me. I didn’t know this when I first started and eventually I said to myself “What was I thinking?”
It is a demanding and unrewarded 24/7 job that no one else in the world can do but me…and it stressed me a lot.
This also translates to having a teeny baby attached to me ALMOST ALL the time…and I must admit that I hated this part A LOT. I mean there is a clingy baby stuck to me all the time that peeing, pooping, and even taking a bath became goals for me. Yikes!
When I started, I was made aware that newborns need to feed every 2 hours to establish my milk supply. But the problem is that my baby feeds for a really long time. What happens is that by the time he finishes feeding, I will need to nurse him again because it is almost time for the next feeding.
I complained. I cried. My boobs hurt A LOT. I said “What?” Can a mom take a break? A sanity break. Did anyone else experience this?
Another thing I hate about this is that I need to plan my day based on it. It means that I need to pick out a breastfeeding-related outfit to wear. I should be able to whip out my “equipment” whenever and wherever if my baby wants to feed. This means that no matter how cute the dress it, I can’t wear it if nursing will be difficult with it. Too bad, right?
Add to the fact that there are still some people who think lowly of breastfeeding. Believe it or not, there are still many others who don’t think of it as a person eating or getting nourishment.
I get a lot of stares for being “inappropriate” and that I need to take my “business” elsewhere. People just have opinions on what I can or can’t do and it is just so exhausting and draining. I just can’t wrap my head around it.
If giving up my body’s ownership means that I can provide this precious liquid gold that is packed with ideal nutrition for my baby, then it is totally okay with me.
If sacrificing sartorial choices means that I get to provide my baby with all his body’s changing needs , then it will be all worth it.
#2 I Hate Breastfeeding Because I Feel Disgusting
I have a baby attached to me by the hip all day long so by the time my husband comes home, I feel tired and over touched. I did not want to be kissed or hugged. I lost interest in intimacy which was putting strain in our relationship and made him feel that he was not important anymore.
Pumping is another story. It is energy draining, and painful…and I don’t really need to tell you more about it because just relaying this story is already tiring. But even without pumping, I still feel like I am a milking cow.
Since I am busy all day with taking care of the baby and breastfeeding, I barely have time for myself. It just makes me feel disgusting.
When I go out, people awkwardly stare at me. Why? Because I have two giant splotches on my shirt and I don’t even know about it until someone brave points it out to me.
I may feel disgusting but I know that I am able to provide important antibodies to my baby that will strengthen him. That’s okay.
My relationship with my husband might have been affected but there’s nothing that open communication can’t solve (and we did solve this problem already).
#3 I Hate Breastfeeding Because It Is Painful
At about 6 to 12 weeks, breast milk supply becomes regulated. By then, your boobs will become softer. But before that time comes, moms with milk oversupply will suffer from full breast…which is really painful specially if baby cannot drink it all up.
I have been there and I’m telling you that it is not fun at all. The pain was intense that I had fever and it was difficult for me to even get up from bed. I was crying while massaging my breasts. I even forced my son to drink more to alleviate the pain but he would not cooperate. Babies are such divas hahahaha.
I thought I was done with all the pain after my supply was regulated but I thought wrong. When my baby started teething, it was a fresh set of hell. He would bite and bite and yank my boobs off and it was agonizing. Sometimes, breastfeeding turns into a bloody fight…LITERALLY because my boobs would bleed from him biting so hard.
Every time I see him, I can only see a shark with razor-sharp teeth and I did not want to deal with that kind of pain.
I may feel pain and get bloodied up but if it means that I get to provide hormones that aid in baby’s development, then I am perfectly fine with it.
#4 I Hate Breastfeeding Because I Feel Guilty
I feel a roller coaster of emotions every time I feed my son. There’s fear, agony, sadness, anger, exhaustion, and anxiety all at once. And it makes me feel guilty.
Am I being a bad mother? I mean, what kind of mother hates nourishing her own child? Why can’t I be happy? Why am I not feeling high from connecting with my child? Why can’t I be like the other moms who enjoy breastfeeding so much? What is wrong with me?
You are not alone and you are not a bad mother. The fact that you are thinking about this already makes you a good one. Moms feel like this all the time and it is okay. It is okay to admit these feelings and just let it all out.
What I usually do is that I think about all the benefits of breastfeeding on me and my son (one of which is that it is totally free hahaha). Whenever I breastfeed him, I am giving him so much more than my time. I am giving him my life and everything that I am and this is what makes my breastfeeding journey worthwhile – the thought that I am doing this all for my son.
But this is just my opinion though. This is how I soldier on so that I can positively deal with whatever I am feeling. This can be your strategy too. But if you want, you can always talk to a friend or your doctor. Maybe you are feeling D-MER or Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex, or maybe something else.
What is D-MER?
This is a condition wherein breastfeeding women feel a brief dysphoria or negative feelings right before letdown or milk release. The dysphoria only lasts for about 30 seconds to 2 minutes. After which, the lactating mother feels fine again.
There are three intensities of D-Mer: mild, moderate, and severe. Mild D-MER can be managed once the mother is aware of her condition. For moderate D-MER, logging feelings or things that can worsen the symptoms help. You can even note things that help you alleviate the symptoms such as rest, more sleep, etc. Think about committing to a lifestyle change if possible.
Those with severe D-MER may consult our doctor for medication. It is encouraged to take prescription that increases dopamine levels.
Remember that it is a reflex and is controlled by hormones. The mother cannot talk herself out of this.
If, even after thousands of times of thinking it through, you feel like breastfeeding is not for you, it is okay.
If you have spare money, access to clean water, and if constantly cleaning bottles is fine with you, then you can try formula feeding. There is nothing wrong with listening to your body and feelings. If you feel that this is the right direction to take, then go for it.
If you are here because you want to understand your significant other who is feeling the same way, good for you.
If you are here because you feel the same way, you often say “I hate breastfeeding” too, remember that you are not alone in this momma. And If you ever feel like talking, remember that this tribe is more than willing to listen to all your woes.
Good luck! You got this.