To the author who (while telling a story, in her own post) followed up: “How long did you breastfeed?” with the additional question: “No, how long did you exclusively breastfeed?”
I’m trying to say this in the kindest way possible, because I think we both want the same thing, which is for people to have the best breastfeeding start/experience possible, and not to be undermined by unnecessary supplementation or stories that emphasize the challenges. But I’m wondering whether that can be done without implying that those of us who use pumps, SNS, lactation aids, galactagogues, and supplementing at the breast (even with formula) for months on end aren’t REALLY breastfeeding. I nursed three children for a total of nearly 4 years, but only 6 weeks of that was “exclusively”. In total. That was despite nearly constant nursing support, up to and including going to see Jack Newman.
It took me years of work to accept that I had done my best, and I’m having a lot of trouble not hearing what you just said as, “Whatever it was you were doing there, with all that effort, for all those months, for all those years, it wasn’t really breastfeeding. It doesn’t really count.” And I’m sure that was not your intent.