It’s no secret that many women struggle to breastfeed, regardless of whether it’s their first or sixth baby. It can be difficult, confusing, and frustrating. But did you know there are many resources right here in Albuquerque to help you on your breastfeeding journey?
Now, before we go further, I want you to know that I don’t subscribe to the belief that “Breast is Best.” I believe “Fed is Best,” and whether you breastfeed or formula-feed, the most important thing is that your baby gets the nutrition he or she needs. So if you formula-feed, please don’t think that you’ve failed in any way as a woman or a mom, because that’s just not true.
But if you breastfeed, or are planning to, you’re probably aware that it’s no easy task. Maybe your baby doesn’t latch well, your milk doesn’t come in right away, or maybe you don’t feel like you produce enough. Perhaps you suffer from cracked nipples, mastitis, or thrush. If you struggle with any of these things or the many other breastfeeding issues, you may feel like you’re all alone, but I’m here to tell you that that’s not the case!
Albuquerque has a bunch of fantastic breastfeeding resources to support you through this journey.
I gave birth to my son in December of 2017 at the Presbyterian Hospital downtown. After a long labor that ultimately ended in an emergency C-section, I was exhausted and still had to breastfeed for the first time. Y’all. It was so hard. My son couldn’t latch long enough to eat a whole lot. We struggled with a nipple shield. (I hate that stupid thing with a mad, burning passion.) And I seriously thought there was no way I could do this.
Lactation Consultants are Amazing
I am so incredibly grateful for the lactation specialists I worked with in the hospital. They were so supportive and encouraging. They gave me tricks and tips and stayed in my room for long periods of time as we worked at it.
Before we went home, we made an appointment with another consultant later in the week. The appointment was super low-stress, and it was nice to check in. She encouraged us to keep at it and told us to call the helpline if we had any concerns.
Breastfeeding Support Group
Presbyterian has an amazing support group for breastfeeding moms. I’ve attended since my son was less than two weeks old. (He’s seven months now.) And I absolutely love it. A certified lactation consultant facilitates the weekly meetings. During the session, each mom weighs her baby before and after nursing so she knows how many ounces the baby consumes during the feeding. While we feed our babies, we talk about the things we are struggling with, both relating to breastfeeding and anything else (baby care, teething, postpartum depression, etc.). I’ve learned so much, not just from the lactation consultant (who is amazing and I absolutely adore), but also from the other moms.
This group is open to any mom, regardless of the hospital she delivered at. Many of the moms in our group delivered at Presbyterian, but we have others who delivered elsewhere.
Visit Presbyterian’s website for more information about all the breastfeeding services they offer.
Other Breastfeeding Resources
There are several other great resources for breastfeeding moms in Albuquerque.
- UNMH has a lactation clinic that you can visit before or after birth. They help you learn how to properly position your baby, use a breast pump, breastfeed after a C-section, learn to breastfeed comfortably, and more.
- Lovelace also has a lactation program, and they offer a new parent support group that meets most Wednesdays at 10 am.
- The La Leche League of Albuquerque has a great Facebook page with events, meetups, and more.
- New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force has a lot of great information for moms around New Mexico.
- Dar a Luz also has a breastfeeding support group designed for new moms, moms breastfeeding children of any age, and pregnant moms who will be breastfeeding shortly.
And these aren’t all! There are many other organizations and groups to help you build community and get support and information as you breastfeed.
You don’t have to struggle through breastfeeding by yourself! As you begin or continue your breastfeeding journey, I hope you check out some of these resources. Don’t try to go it alone; get involved in the breastfeeding community right here in Albuquerque!
Do you know of another breastfeeding support group? Please let us know about it in the comments.