What's A-Parent

Mom's Crying Selfie Makes An Important Point About The Realities Of Breastfeeding For Some Women

"I cannot hide the struggle."

What's A-Parent is a series highlighting those who get real about the hardships that come with raising kids. These often untold stories help show parents they are not alone in their struggle, and are doing an amazing job.

August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month, and during the month we are highlighting stories helping to normalize the act, whether a mother chooses to feed her baby at home or in public, and to bring awareness to the amazing benefits of breast milk for both mother and child. 

While most stories on the topic show glowing mothers happily feeding their baby, there is a different side of breastfeeding so many women experience that isn't often talked about ā€” that breastfeeding can be painful, time-consuming, difficult,  emotionally draining, and can even trigger postpartum depression. It doesn't help that there is so much pressure for moms to choose to breastfeed over bottle feed, even though formula can be a lifesaver for some.  

In an effort to show all sides of breastfeeding, one mom named Angela Burzo posted a crying selfie on Instagram to show that even though breastfeeding is a wonderful thing, it can be a huge struggle. 

In the post from August 8, Burzo wrote about how she cannot keep silent about her struggles any longer. "I love seeing all these beautiful women in their beautiful nursing clothes smiling down at their babes as they lovingly look up back at them, hand-in-hand, while breastfeeding away," the mom wrote. "That is not my reality, right now that is. This is real and as much as I want to stay strong and be the soldier I feel I can be, I cannot hide the struggle that is BREASTFEEDING."

Burzo admits that she doesn't know whether her nipples are inadequate, she isn't producing enough milk, her baby girl, Alyee, is not latching on properly, or she has confused her daughter by giving her a bottle after pumping. Whatever the reason, she knows her breastfeeding journey has been an emotional and painful struggle without naps, eating, and sucking.

She adds, "This photo depicts my reality of this breastfeeding journey so far and that first latch and the pain I endure. Keeping it real."

In less than 24 hours, the post has already received over 3,800 comments. Other moms are writing about their struggles with breastfeeding and sharing words of encouragement. 

One mom said, "We have all been there, but it will pass."

Another mama wrote, "Hugs to you! I have four boys and only nursed the first one for a few months. It was so hard for all the reasons you gave then some. I have been there. Know that you are not alone! This too shall pass. I told myself this at 4am today while I was up worried about teenagers! So hard to look like you have it together when we feel as if we are falling apart. Contact me ... I'll cry with you. #momssticktogether"

A lot of commenters are also thanking Burzo for being so candid. One said, "I truly appreciate your sharing and your honesty. So many women are afraid to share the reality of breastfeeding even though I'm sure everyone has their struggles whether it's a few days or several months. You're doing great."

(H/T: Popsugar)

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