Black Women Breastfeeding – Raven’s Story

Raven is on the Milky Mommas Admin Team, and she is the most incredible momma. She is beyond smart, her smile is infectious, and she has a deep love for helping mommas breastfeed. Check out her interview below!

What has your breastfeeding journey been like?

My breastfeeding journey has been great for the most part.  I was lucky enough to have a lot of support from friends and family, and my employer was supportive of me pumping.

Did the women in your family breastfeed?

Yes, just about every woman in my immediate family at least attempted to breastfeed.  However, I am the only person that exclusively breastfed and never gave formula.

What made you want to breastfeed?

I wanted to breastfeed because biologically, it just makes sense.  There are so many benefits for both mom and baby, and I didn’t want to spend the money on formula.

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What is the biggest bf challenge you’ve overcome?

The biggest challenge I had starting out was a bad latch on my right breast, which ended up causing a crack at the base of my nipple.  I dreaded nursing her on that side to the point I would cry hysterically before a nursing session.  I ended up seeing an LC who works at the pediatrician’s office and she showed me that I was latching baby incorrectly.  I also went to see the IBCLCs (for free) at the hospital where I gave birth and they told me what to do to heal the crack.  Once that was done, the next biggest issue was having a small storage capacity, which meant nursing every 2 hrs around the clock. Ugh.

Who are your biggest supporters?

My biggest supporter is my boyfriend.  He used to hold my hand while I nursed my LO on that cracked nipple.  He washed by pump parts and prepared baby’s bottles for daycare.  He has always been there for me and supported all my decisions regarding breastfeeding.

Tell us your favorite story about an experience with breastfeeding.

I don’t know that I have a favorite breastfeeding experience.  It has all been pretty normal.  I do love toddler nursing though, and hearing my Lo talk about breastfeeding because it is so normal to her.  The other day she told me that one day when she gets older, she will have milk in her boobs.

Is there anything else you’d like to share or encourage other moms?

Breastfeeding takes a lot of work and dedication.  Even though it’s “natural”, it is not always easy.  If you want to breastfeed your unborn child, build a support system now, educate yourself now.  Don’t wait until baby is born. Facebook groups (like Milky Mommas), LLL meetings and even the hospital where you might deliver baby are places to look to for support. Sometimes all you need is one person in your corner to help you get through.  Take things one day at a time, because every day can bring a new challenge.

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I love her encouragement to educate yourself before baby comes. Thats so important! What is the best thing you learned about breastfeeding, before baby came or since? Leave us a comment below, and check out the blog for upcoming interviews! 

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