Breastfeeding Isn't Always Easy (or Painless!)
"All my friends and siblings breastfed their children, and as far as I knew, it was easy for them," says Kira Conley, of Waukegan, Illinois. "Well, when it came to my daughter, it was not easy." Although Conley was determined to master the process, baby Madalyn had her own distinct ideas. "She wouldn't latch on," says Conley. "And she would scream until we gave her a bottle." Much later, Conley learned that she could have arranged for a lactation consultant to lend a hand, but she's made peace with baby formula. "I enjoy bottlefeeding my daughter," she says. "And it allows my husband to feed her easily, too."
Even moms who expect a learning curve encounter some major nursing surprises. "I was shocked by how much time and attention my boobs demanded after I had a baby," says Adrienne Hedger, of San Clemente, California. "The poor things were engorged, deflated, engorged again, leaking, chapped, bleeding, and spraying milk." Tali Hylen, of East Lansing, Michigan, would have appreciated prior knowledge of one key must: nipple cream. "I needed it almost the minute I returned from the hospital!" she says. "That lasted a few weeks."