For many moms, the experience of breastfeeding isn't as easy or as natural as they'd like it to be. Whether it's a supply issue or a latching issue—not to mention the nonstop demand of your supply—breastfeeding can be so very difficult.
Ashley Tisdale, who is a new mom to her three-month-old daughter, Jupiter, is getting real about just how unfair the pressure to breastfeed can be.
"I wish someone would've told me how hard breastfeeding really was," she wrote in an essay on her website. "You see your friends who are new moms feeding their babies make it look so easy. But no one tells you how hard it really is."
She also makes a great point about the pressure new moms face about breastfeeding. Not just from society, family, or friends—but from hospital staff, too. Even if it's not intentional, you're almost made to feel like you're a failure if you can't do it or choose not to continue.
"I think there's this pressure around the subject of breastfeeding, and that those who do it are the best moms, but that's not true," she said. "Our journey started on day one in the hospital when Jupiter was having trouble latching."
She said the moment her newborn began drinking from a bottle and preferring it to the breast, her entire outlook on her feeding journey began to change. She decided it was time to center her needs and the needs of her baby so they could enjoy one another.
"That was the moment I realized that maybe breastfeeding isn't meant for us," she wrote. "I pumped all day, and never looked forward to pumping. I would look at the pump like it held me back from really being in the moment with Juju and enjoying my first weeks of motherhood."
If you're a mom who uses formula like Tisdale, then you already know that your bond with your baby is just as valid as the bond between a nursing baby and its mama. But in case you need the reminder, she's got a good one for you.
"The thing about formula is that you still have that same special moment with your baby that you do with breastfeeding. You're still looking into your baby's eyes, whether it's with your breast or a bottle."
Absolutely. We're so happy she's shedding light on the struggles of breastfeeding and letting other moms feel seen.