Educational Resources 

How do I father my breastfed baby?

When a baby is born, it is normal and natural for a new father to feel at least a little shut out and maybe even jealous. Adoration is lavished upon the new baby and almost everyone asks about the well-being of the new mother. When the baby is breastfed, mother and baby may seem to be an exclusive couple, leaving the father feeling doubtful about being a part of the new family. He may find himself standing on the sidelines, fearful and uncertain about his place in this relationship. Some fathers may feel that the only way they can interact with the baby is to feed him. Despite these feelings, fathers are very important to both mothers and babies and there are many things they can do for them and with them.

It may help if the father realizes that breastfeeding is one of the most valuable gifts a mother can give the baby. Since it is not only superior nutritionally, but promotes the physical and emotional well-being of the baby, both now and in the future, providing support to the breastfeeding mother is of great importance. Father can be a buffer between mother and those relatives and friends who may disapprove of or be uninformed about breastfeeding. He can also be part of the parents/health care professionals team making decisions about babyís health care. A fatherís support of the mother in these situations is often just what she needs to be able to handle any opposition she may encounter.

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This educational material is provided courtesy of Ameda Egnell.  Permission to use and/or reproduce this copyrighted material has been granted by the distributor, Hollister Incorporated.