Until breastfeeding is the norm in our culture again and every medical professional
knows what they are supposed to know about breastfeeding then IBCLC’s will continue
to be desparately needed. I’m an RN of 32 years, mother-baby being my specialty
for the last 25 years. Only recently have I become an IBCLC but I don’t get paid in that capacity, I’m a staff nurse. I have always been in awe of the knowledge that more experienced IBCLC’s posess and how they make a difference in the lives of families. Peer to peer is
just not sufficient when it comes to issues such as tongue tie, IGT, breast surgeries, postpartum hemmorhage and other out of the ordinary conditions. So often I’ve heard the advice given to “just keep nursing” to a mom who has been doing nothing but and is experiencing a very real issue that needs to be addressed.
Add to that the interference by hospitals in the breastfeeding relationship and the lack of staffing and support and you have a set up for breastfeeding cessation, of ANY race. I work in an urban hospitals and work with moms of all races and nationalities. My feeling is that this is a huge matter of education rather than just race. So many of our lower income moms of any race are just not educated about
and do not have the support for it. And many have WIC to fall back on. And I truly believe, and I know others heartilly disagree with me, that that is a big issue in their decisions, at least in our area. Lost of women still see it as a “free” resource even though it’s not and that takes away the economical aspect to breastfeeding.
What makes me sad is when I see women come here from nations where breastfeeding is the norm and they want to formula feed because they think that that is what we do in our country. I have to point out that more educated women breastfeed and then they are more likely to stick with it. I truly would love to see all of my moms breastfeeding with out help, or interference from anyone. But then again I believe that all low risk women shoild deliver at home or birth centers or at the very least have a doula or other knowledable woman with them in labor instead of coming in at 3 cm and wanting an epidural. Ah but for a perfect world.
Until then I will heartily support the need for IBCLC’s and their wealth of knowledge.
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