A breastfeeding story submitted by
a stay at home dad named Jason
(New York, USA)
My wife and I decided a long time before our son was born that we wanted to breastfeed. We both felt that Jamie would be healthier if we did, and all of our research seemed to confirm this. Also, we wanted Jamie to have the benefit of having at least one parent around him at all times, so I got elected for the job.
I was really excited about being a full time stay at home dad! There was SO much to learn.
When Jamie was born, he seemed to take very well to breastfeeding. I suppose that first time parents never truly know how this will go until they experience it.
From the start, Jamie would nurse about every 2 hours. Sometimes he would nurse as often as every 45 minutes, and there were other times when he would go as long as 4 hours without nursing.
For the first six weeks, his mother was there for him full time, so I wasn’t as involved then physically, but it was a huge mental adjustment for me.
After my wife returned to work, I got my first experience being a stay at home dad and totally in charge of this aspect of Jamie’s life without any one else around! Wow…I have to say that I was more than just a little nervous about all of this in those days. As I recall, my wife would try to pump out about four bottles to leave for me while she was at work every day. She literally would pump them at work, and bring them home. For me it was a really wonderful experience to bottle feed my son. I had an immense time of bonding with him through all of that, and I wouldn’t trade it now for anything. I think it has made a real difference in our relationship, although it’s hard to speculate. But, I really do feel that way.
I would definitely urge all new parents to breastfeed if at all possible. I could actually see the bonding going on between Jamie and his mother. I think this is a really great way of getting close to your child and staying that way.
Jamie nursed for 22 months. I think that he could have gone on for quite a while longer, but we both felt that it was time to stop.
For other men who might be reading this and haven’t gone through this yet, you will go through a major change in the way that you think about breasts too. For those of you who have been through this, you know what I’m talking about. Personally, I went through a “those were mine and now they’re not anymore” type of thing.
However, if given the chance to do this all over again…I would do it just the same. I also think that all of this goes a lot deeper than I really know how to write about in a one-way exposé such as this.
I think if you were breastfed yourself, then this experience will bring some of that back to the surface, and if you’re not the type who remembers that far back, then there will be a sub-conscious memory thing going on for you while you’re going through this.
On the humorous side, as a stay at home dad, I got pretty good at bottle-warming and almost always got the milk the right temperature…. But there were a few times when I left the bottle in the bottle-warmer (yes, I used one of those at times) a little TOO long! haha
Another neat thing that I forgot to mention, is that in the middle of the night Jamie would need to nurse, and I would go get him from his crib and bring him into our room and he would nurse. I enjoyed having the family together like that.
Breastfeeding is a great thing…even for a stay at home dad!
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