Chronicles of a Completely Unperfect Mom

May 25, 2009

Explaining Breastfeeding to Siblings

Filed under: Internet Parenting,Lessons Learned,Randomness — Mom @ 10:41 pm
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With both of my pregnancies, I have become addicted to “expecting club” message boards.  These are boards where women can talk to other women who are due around the same time as they are.  The other day, a mom asked about resources to teach younger siblings about breastfeeding.  I’ll admit, I hadn’t really thought about explaining breastfeeding to Khaila before RJ was born.  To me, it was one of those things that we could talk about “when the time comes”.

I wound up not having to start the conversation, thanks to my step-mom.  While we were in the hospital, she took the reigns and spent a lot of time talking to Khaila about how RJ would be eating milk from mommy’s breast.  In addition, they used that time to talk about how babies can’t eat people food.  It was nice to see Khaila after RJ was born and it was interesting when she climbed into the bed with me and started asking if I was feeding him from my breast.  First, I had never heard her use the word breast before then, but more importantly, because she got it.  It wasn’t weird to her, she didn’t feel jealous that she didn’t get to, it seemed completely natural to her.

Sometimes, I think we try to rely too heavily on media to almost dumb down things to a level we think will be better for our kids.  While books, DVDs, and the internet all have their place in life, there are some concepts kids don’t know to question.  If you don’t know any different, you’re not going to dispute the information you’re given.  I’m glad my step-mom took the time to tell Khaila about breastfeeding.  By explaining it right before she saw it happening, she accepted breastfeeding as completely natural and right.  When we show her books or DVDs, she knows those are stories and it’s actually harder for her to grasp the concepts we’re trying to teach her.  

Now, the big problem is helping her understand that breastfeeding isn’t something the entire world needs to know I’m doing when I’m doing it.  I’m trying to be more open about feeding RJ than I was with her, but she makes it hard when asks me if I’m going to feed RJ from my breast when we’re sitting in a restaurant, at the zoo, or any other public place!



  1. I bfd DS anywhere, anytime he wants it. He’s 3.5yo btw……he knows that he’ll take one breast while his little sibling’ll take the other, if his little siblings comes. That is, tandem nursing. 🙂

    Comment by Elaine — May 26, 2009 @ 2:16 am | Reply

  2. I only BF’d my daughter for a few months, so she wasn’t aware of what it was before he was born. I think it’s awesome that you’re going to tandem nurse them! With RJ, my first goal is a month, then 6 months, and then a year. After that, I’m not sure how long I will BF him, but since he’s my last, I’m determined to make this work!

    Comment by Mada — May 26, 2009 @ 2:30 pm | Reply

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