When breastfeeding sucks / The New Zealand Herald
There is nothing lonelier than sitting half-naked on a couch at 4am, trying to feed a newborn baby. A month ago I was saying goodbye to colleagues, accepting flowers and revelling in the anticipation of late-pregnancy. Now here I was, milk-stained pyjamas around my waist, trying for the tenth time to get my baby's tiny mouth to close around my nipple in a way that didn't cause agonising pain. You might know the lingo: all the midwives say it's about getting a good "latch," or positioning the baby in such a way that it can suck efficiently and you're both comfortable.
I had read all the breastfeeding guidelines. I had watched instructional videos. I had sat up late into the night, bleary-eyed, reading page after page of advice. Breastfeeding is possible for anyone, the articles said. It's the most natural way to feed your baby. Breast is best!
I cuddled my baby close, as the advice suggested. The pain was instant. I likened it to being cut, but maybe a friend put it better; it's like someone is trying to sandpaper your nipples off. "Ahhh," I cursed under my breath, as my husband walked in to the room. "Are you okay?" He asked.
"No," I said, through tears. "No, I'm really not."