Radio host Anthony Lehmann has opened up about his wife Kelly Kearney’s struggles to breastfeed their son Laddie, who was born in July last year.
Anthony, who has often talked about the pressures new mums feel to breastfeed, recently revealed on his show Gold 104.3 that his newborn was unable to feed sufficiently for almost four days.
‘Breast Is Not Always Best’
“Kel tried for days and days and days and wasn’t sure if it’s working – but you don’t know, you’ve never done it before,” he said on his radio show.
“After four days, we weighed our son and he’d lost a third of his body weight. She was thinking she was starving the baby.”
“To say ‘breast is best’ without accompanying that information with the full picture on the alternatives – being that you actually can bottle-feed your kid – is irresponsible and has huge emotional impacts for yourself as a parent,” he told 9Mums.
“We didn’t realise the bottle was a proper alternative. When Laddie was four days old, we realised he had lost all this weight and Kel was completely inconsolable, because, in her mind, she had spent four days starving her son.”
Anthony says that the whole ordeal impacted enormously on his wife and also their son.
“It had a horrible impact on her state of mind and we still both reflect on what happened and feel terrible,” he added.
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“We’re talking about the poor kid receiving next to no nutrition for days — no wonder he was crying.”
What a horrible experience, we totally agree with you Anthony, it’s obvious a greater education around breastfeeding and bottle feeding is needed!
It is important that ALL new mums (and mums-to-be) chat with their healthcare professional and lactation nurses about newborn feeding, ones options and when to seek help.
Breastfeeding doesn’t always come easily. While many mothers manage it without much help there are a lot of mothers who struggle for a number of reasons. Whether it be supply or attachment issues or struggling with baby blues or a reflux baby, a lactation consultant can make a massive difference.
A lactation consultant will observe an entire feed, assess the baby including weighing it before and after the feed to estimate how much milk the baby is getting, check the mum’s breasts and nipples and talk to her about any concerns or feelings she may have. Together they then develop a plan of action that is tailored to the mother’s particular needs.
For more information on lactation consultants, check out the Australian Breastfeeding Association.
If you’re facing any breastfeeding woes, questions or concerns, these articles may help: Breastfeeding Diet Plan, Tips and Advice, Things I’d Wished I Known About Breastfeeding, Frequently Asked Questions About Breastfeeding.