Breastfeeding Support – #KeepBritainBF

It’s week three of the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt, and this weeks theme is Breastfeeding Support – which, if you’re clever you will have deduced from the title of this post!

There are some things in life that are so desirable, so necessary, that when you want them, you want them right now.

The chocolate cake displayed in a bakery window, whispering tantilisingly to you how good it would taste. The holiday to somewhere sunny and carefree, when you’re stuck staring out of your office window at the rainy grey vista outside. The dress that makes you feel like superwoman, and it’s on sale and its PURPLE which is your favourite colour so its clearly meant to be yours and you’d better get it because otherwise it might not be there next time you look (can you tell I’ve tried that argument before? Strangely it doesn’t seem so convincing to Other Halves staring in horror at the dwindling state of the household finances…)

Wish you were here?

And then of course, there is the need for support for breastfeeding when you’re desperate to be able to do something that is meant to be a natural part of having a baby, but for one reason or another you’re struggling, you’re sore, your baby is screaming and it’s 3am.

But unlike those other examples which simply require a spare tenner or a credit card with a reasonable limit (not that I’m advocating using it – but sometimes you do just have to give in and stuff your face with cake if you feel like it), getting breastfeeding support when you need it can be a bit more tricky.

Or at least that’s the way it can feel. 3am with an inconsolable newborn can seem the loneliest time on earth, especially with all the hormones flying around, the lack of sleep and the marathon your body has just been through to bring a wonderful little being into the world. Which is why it’s great to know about the support that’s out there – whatever the time of day, whatever the breastfeeding problem. Unfortunately, how well versed you are in knowing what support is out there is very much a postcode lottery (and the face to face support that actually IS available locally is a postcode lottery too). Where I live, for example, we are fortunate to be able to choose between various hospitals for maternity care. The two closest are fairly equal in terms of distance – easily gettable to for the average labouring mum-to-be, and both with similar facilities (and both are terrible for parking, both in terms of parking charge exploitation and also just finding a place to squeeze your car into in the first place). But where they DO differ is in terms of breastfeeding support.

One has antenatal workshops and education prior to giving birth, but very little in terms of postnatal support – and the other offers nothing as standard antenatally, but pretty good postnatal breastfeeding care with a follow up call from a breastfeeding supporter and community midwives who are fairly responsive (as long as you have a feeding problem within working hours!) I can’t help thinking it’s a shame you don’t get both antenatal and postnatal support – because it’s good to know what to expect to a degree prior to starting a breastfeeding relationship (yes, it’s normal for the baby to want to feed a lot, yes, you should have skin to skin contact immediately after the birth for as long as you can without interruption, yes, breastfeeding might not come naturally, no, your baby wont starve if they don’t have a feed straight away…), and it’s also good to have support available if you need it. Which I certainly did, thanks to having problems with positioning and attachment, massive oversupply, a few hideous bouts of mastitis and hospital trip with a very dehydrated Bubby D.

The good news is, even if the availability of hospital support isn’t quite as you’d hoped, there is a whole lot of support available out there if you know where to find it. And, if you read on, then you will know where to find it, because here is a handy guide!

The NCT, La Leche League, Association of Breastfeeding Mothers and Breastfeeding Network all offer support services including trained breastfeeding counsellors, peer supporters, helplines and website information: or 0300 330 0771 (lines open 8am to 10pm). Some areas also have local breastfeeding counsellors who offer support at breastfeeding cafes, visit new mums in hospital, or will even come to offer you support at home. Take a look at their website to see what’s on offer in your area.

Breastfeeding or 0300 100 0212 (lines open 9.30am to 9.30pm) as well as national support centres where you can go and speak to someone face to face and meet other breastfeeding Mum’s.

La Leche or 0845 120 2918

Association of Breastfeeding 08444 122 949

You can also visit your local Sure Start Children’s centre or look at the Baby Cafe website – – to find information about local breastfeeding groups.

As you may have noticed, much of this support is only available during the day, or at least not 24 hours. That’s where social media is a lifesaver. If you are a tweeter, then you can use #breastfeeding, #bf, #bfcafe or #3ambf at any hour of the day or night and you’ll probably find some likeminded breastfeeding mums from all over the world who’ll offer you friendly advice, support or just a word or two of encouragement.

Facebook also has some great pages you can join – some of my favourites are:

You might find more, if you search for breastfeeding and see what comes up!

So wherever you live, whatever your support need, and whenever you need it, hopefully you’ll find there is support out there that works for you.

To see some more great posts about support for breastfeeding, why not visit some of my fellow bloggers taking part in the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt:

Dispelling Breastfeeding Myths


Ponderings of a Doula

Diary of the Milkshake Mummy

Tea with Felicity

 And don’t forget about the fantastic £500 worth of prizes up for grabs just by filling out the lovely rafflecopter below – including a fantastic Babasling (offering you literal support for breastfeeding your baby, wherever you might be).

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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