Parenting: Fighting the Boob

Any ideas why babies fight the boob? At first, with Ember (now nearly six weeks old), I thought it was because I was offering food when she really was not hungry, or when she really wanted something else. However, picture the scene:

She’s rooting, tongue in and out, obviously tense and irate but not actually crying yet. Mummy moves her head towards boob, unholsters the milk machine, and hitherto quiet baby screams, as if she is being tortured. But! If mummy perseveres, stroking nipple on face, stroking cheek with finger, coaxing verbally and so forth, baby will either

A) latch on and feed as if naught of import had occurred or

B) scream as if actually being murdered.

If ‘A’ occurs, quiet tears of joy are shed. But for ‘B’, well, the malicious mammary is hustled away behind the barrier of bra and we return to hunting for whichever soothing method is in fashion for the next five minutes.

My son would feed whenever it was there, so this is alien behaviour to me.

Any ideas?

3 Comments on “Parenting: Fighting the Boob

  1. I never got the hang of breast feeding, it was a mystery to both of us – I expressed for three months, thwarted finally by flu. The only thing I can think of is, could there be any other smells or tastes involved? On your skin or in the milk? James responded very differently depending on what I’d been eating and drinking, and was very keen if there’d been a half pint of beer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wonder… it was particularly bad yesterday and I had managed, in the morning, to get a full on shower rather than a cursory wash (standard fatigued parent issue!) so possibly my skin smelling of ‘not quite mummy’ was freaking her out? Half a pint of beer sounds like a good thing to try, for sure! Once she’s on she feeds like mad, she put on a pound in weight in just over a week, the health visitor’s eyes were like saucers! Flu is a bugger, so hard to breastfeed/express when you are poorly. These are the things no one tells you when you’re expecting.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Also, the whole beer thing is quite the morale boost. my folk club women told me, when I was in late stages of pregnancy, that they’d all been advised by their doctors to drink stout in late pregnancy for the iron! How things change…


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