Is it any surprise that breastfeeding isn't all sunshine and rainbows? We've lost a whole generation (or two) of breastfeeders (hold your pants on, I'm sure some of you are thinking I'm being quite melodramatic but seriously. Stop. And. Think. About that statement. How many people can say they've been *exposed* to breastfeeding, be it their own mother, an aunt, a sister, or a cousin... ).
Breastfeeding is an acquired skill. A mother learns how to nurse by observing other mother's nursing and by doing. Since it isn't socially acceptable to hang out at the mall and watch mother's nurse (and let's face it... we'd all be a little creeped out by someone with a notebook "studying" us nursing out in public), there are plenty of online (and real world) resources to help new/struggling nursing mama's.
La Leche League - I have found this to be a fabulous virtual and real world resource. The International page has forums where you can connect with other mama's and the Canadian site has links to LLL publications, FAQ's and access to leader information. I have joined my local LLL (that's right, I am now officially a card carrying lactivist - I love it so much that I've taken on the task of E-Communcations) and we have an awesome group of women that join in at our bi-monthly meetings. We discuss breastfeeding (obviously) and any issues we might be having, breastfeeding in relation to our parenting and relationships. And of course we just talk. It is nice talking to women who are going what you've gone through (or who have gone through it), it is wonderful getting affirmation that this is normal/too-shall-pass. It also gives you access to an incredibly knowledgeable accredited leader.
Dr. Jack Newman - When I was nursing TT we had issues with thrush... I found the Newman Breastfeeding Clinic (it's now Breast Feeding Inc.) and got a lot of help! It is located in the GTA, but they do have a lot of awesome resources and fact sheets, as well as videos online. Dr. Newman also has a couple excellent books/resources available (if you're nursing or will be nursing, I seriously recommend that you check them out).
Nursing Mama's - I try to surround myself with supportive women, women who are quick to offer ideas & advice (and sometimes a shoulder). I've found a couple of awesome forums to throw ideas/thought/questions out there and have gotten some excellent support in return. The Breastfeeding forum on Today's Parent has some very knowledgeable mama's on there as well as TBW (breastfeeding and babywearing do *kind of* go hand-in-hand).
Blogging Mama's - I tend to check-out the crunchy mama blogs... Last week I was reading a blog (which I cannot for the life of me find again... if you know the link please share it with me) where she likened breastfeeding for the first time to riding a bike (in a race) without ever having actually seen a bike being ridden in.real.life! I cannot do her words justice... I think she did a fabulous job of explaining why it is so darn hard! Found it!
This is my first foray into Blog Hop!