POSTS WITH TAG: bonding

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    I am in love with breastfeeding my 3-week-old newborn. I feel empowered by the fact that he has gained weight because I am fueling him (and myself!) with healthy foods. There are times -- specifically at 3 a.m. -- when I am beyond grateful I can stick a breast in his face and magically cure a fussy spell. Who knew breasts were a lot like baby catnip?!

    But let me be clear about something: I'm also as critical about breastfeeding as I am about anything else a large group of people claim is the bee's knees. Many women who have nursed understand that it doesn't always come naturally. As wonderful as it is, it can also hurt and be exhausting. Add in the fact that there are a few "facts" that are, quite frankly, super difficult to abide by, and -- if you're anything like me -- you may just consider throwing in the breastfeeding towel to preserve your sanity.

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    Like many parenting issues, cosleeping is one of those parenting choices that's as divisive as religion or politics. Some feel it helps them bond with baby while others feel it creates a bad habit for both parents and children. We'll likely never all agree on this. But something most parents would agree on is putting kids first when it comes to divorce. A child's world is turned upside down when Mom and Dad split up. Shouldn't both parents do anything and everything to make the process as comfortable as possible for the kids? Even if that means cosleeping?

    A newly single mother asked a therapist in an advice column if she thought it was okay that she coslept with her baby after splitting up with her partner. To which she was told no.

    I know.

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    Breastfeeding has many benefits, and one of them is the fact that it can be a natural contraceptive. Don't bank on that though or you may end up pregnant with baby number two before baby number one is 9 months old. But it works ... a lot of the time. As with just about everything, however, there is a science behind this, and it has to do with an infant's competitiveness. Yes, even newborns have a competitive spirit, so says Professor David Haig, who authored a study published in Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health that says breastfed babies prevent pregnancy because they want mom all to themselves. There's more to the reason why.

    There is an undeniable bond that occurs when breastfeeding, and it's that bond that baby wants to keep -- that's part of the reason breastfed babies wake every two hours to nurse, Haig says. And as this study points out, we need to listen to baby's "evolutionary response" and all the motives they have.

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    Twenty-seven-year-old Katheryn Deprill made headlines over the past month after her hunt for her birth mother went completely viral. Dubbed the "Burger King Baby" (because her mom had left her behind in the restroom of a Pennsylvania Burger King), Katheryn finally met her birth mom last month. And today, Katheryn and her biological mom, Cathy Pochek, made a special appearance, along with Katheryn's adoptive mother, Brenda Hollis, on the TODAY show. 

    The result was emotional and required tissues galore. And although you'd think the trio would have already hit their quota for surprises, they shared one of the biggest shockers of this saga so far ...

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    Up until 10 days ago, I hated breastfeeding. Absolutely loathed it. I had attempted to breastfeed my now-2-year-old daughter, and the experience left me feeling deflated and depressed at a time when I should have been over the moon.

    My little girl was healthy and had a healthy appetite -- that I couldn't manage to satisfy, which just made me feel like a horribly inadequate mom. Perhaps as a result of the fact that I was induced, I produced little milk at first, and coupled with the amount of stress I and everyone around me had placed in my breastfeeding success, nursing just wasn't happening.

    I trashed breastfeeding every opportunity I got and thought of myself as a cheerleader for bottle feeding -- which I definitely felt was needed given our culture's borderline nutso obsession with nursing.

    But two weeks ago I gave birth to my baby boy and everything changed. I'm breastfeeding and loving it -- not because I'm a better mom, but because of 5 factors that had nothing to do with me.

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    I'm in all kinds of awe of Jennifer Love Hewitt. I love how she talks about how she's in no rush to take the baby weight off and how there are better things for a new mom to worry about ... like when she and her husband Brian Hallisay are going to have family snuggle time with their 4-month-old daughter Autumn. It's also fantastic to hear that Brian is so supportive that Hewitt thinks he should be a doula.

    Yes. He's apparently that good. He's of the I wish all partners would be like him variety. Because we all know how much support we need. We know how hard it is to do this whole parenting thing alone ... or feeling alone. We all know how support actually helps us to be a better mom. This guy ... wow.

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    For a great many parents, breastfeeding was or is hard work. We trade hours of sleep and sore and bloody nipples in exchange for the promise that we're providing our babies with the best nutrition they can possibly get. We've read studies, listened to our doctors and friends wax poetic about breast milk, and there's no doubt in our minds that breast is simply best.

    But what if the benefits of breastfeeding have been overstated? What if you found out your child could receive the exact same health benefits from formula? A new study is claiming just that.

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    Remember the days before you had children? You know, when you knew everything there was to know about everything and nobody could tell you otherwise?

    Snort.

    And then you had a baby and realized you didn't know anything then, you don't know anything now, and who the hell let you take this child home?! 

    Motherhood is filled with constant lessons, no more so than in those early days when you learn valuable things like these ...

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    Another pregnant woman has died before she could see her baby -- and another baby enters the world without meeting their mother. During a snowstorm yesterday, Min Lin, 36, was hit by a snowplow while she was loading groceries with her husband into the trunk of their car in New York City. The snow plow (actually a utility vehicle with a plow attached) was backing up into a rear parking lot of a shopping mall. Lin was rushed to the hospital and pronounced dead there, but doctors were able to deliver her 6-pound, 6-ounce baby, who is now in intensive care.

    Naturally the baby's family isn't eager to talk with the media, and I hope their privacy is respected at this devastating time. But this story, and the recent story about the brain-dead woman kept alive for her unborn baby, have me wondering how families keep the memory of lost mothers alive for their children.

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    Imagine telling your baby goodbye after knowing him for only 10 days. When Josh and Robbyn Blick welcomed baby Zion into the world, they knew he would have only a few short days to live. Zion was born with Trisomy 18, or Edwards syndrome, a genetic condition. He weighed only 4 pounds, 7 ounces. The Blicks chose to make the best out of a desperately sad situation. They documented baby Zion's 10-day life through photos and a video to share their love and joy with the world.

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