What is it about breasts that make them so fascinating to other people? It doesn't matter if someone views them sexually or watches them feed another human being, either. For reasons unknown, it's always this "big deal" and, as mothers, we're constantly pressured to make the "right choice." From breastfeeding in the first place to feeding in public to nursing for the "right" amount of time, it feels as though we just can't win. Well, I'm here to say that I won’t apologize for quitting breastfeeding early, whatever the hell "early" even means. In the end, as the person with lactating breasts, I'm the one who calls the nursing shots.
I was under the impression my boobs would magically fill up with a ton of milk as soon as my son was born. I fantasized about that first feed going beautifully and effortlessly. Instead, my milk came in while I was in a hotel room near my son’s hospital, two days after I’d given birth. I still hadn’t even had a chance to hold him yet, because he’d been rushed to a far off NICU the moment he came into the world. It didn't take me long to realize that what I envisioned my nursing experience to be was, well, never going to happen.
So, it's safe to say that my struggle to breastfeed was a long one. I worked with several lactation consultants, took as many galactogogues as I could, pumped round the clock, and got damn near nothing in return. In fact, it was less than an ounce. Eventually, I gave it up. In the end, breastfeeding wasn’t right for me, it wasn’t right for my family, and I have no intention or desire to apologize for it.