Sometimes a mama bear can be so exhausted and so overwhelmed that the LAST thing she wants to do is chest-feed. Check in with yourself in these moments. Listen to your body and HONOR these feelings so you can decipher exactly where they are coming from…release…and move forward on the path toward your breastfeeding goal.
Maybe right now nipple pain is so severe that ANY latch (even an asymmetrical one) seems to bring on more discomfort. Maybe your teething baby is putting pressure on a new area of the breast and her added need for mom’s comfort is wearing you down. Maybe you have an active toddler who likes to twist the nipple on your opposite side during a nursing session, making your threshold for touch that much lower. Maybe you are having such a strong aversion to breastfeeding right now that each time your baby latches you feel your skin crawl with discomfort. Or, there might be untreated medical issues like postpartum depression or DMER (Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex) which could prohibit you from feeling the joy and comfort that other women experience through the act of breastfeeding.
Both of these conditions should be addressed with your physician so that an accurate diagnosis can be reached and treatment can begin immediately. It is important that we seek the support we need throughout the duration of our breastfeeding journey because this relationship is ever-changing. Being “touched out” is a common sensation for breastfeeding mothers – as are feelings of being overwhelmed, unheard, and overlooked. We hear you, Mama. Don’t give up on a hard day! This too shall pass…and help is available!