Does using our breasts as a baby pacifier truly support us or our child?

Does using our breasts as a baby pacifier truly support us or our child?

Our baby is crying, we know they’re not hungry, and our first thought is to make him or her stop!

If we have chosen to breastfeed, that stopping will often mean popping one of our breasts into their mouth. Doing this gives us an immediate feeling of relief – that the baby is okay (and that we’ve fixed the problem). But was it truly what was needed in that moment? What’s more, is it something we think we should do based on what we believe it means to be a good mother?

To go further, are we in fact using our breasts as baby pacifiers or dummies? If we are, what does this say about our relationship with our breasts and how we feel about them?

Breastfeeding is an item that is currently very much top of the ‘how to be a good mother’ agenda. The attachment parenting perspective also provides a significant contribution to the pro breastfeeding-on-demand debate. As a result, many women take on the message that to be a good mother they should breastfeed whenever the child demands it, or whenever they think their child needs it.

  • What is this saying about our expression as women when we allow our breasts to be used in this way?

  • Have we lost sight that our breasts actually belong to us and we innately know whether it is the right time to offer our breasts to our babies or not?

  • Are there any long-term impacts on the child if every time they express, we silence them with food or the comfort of a dummy?

I had a long career Breastfeeding seven children. During this time I lost sight of what I felt was right for me and my babies because I lacked the confidence to back myself in what I knew to be true.

Instead I relied on what I read from the parenting experts and what I heard from other mothers and the support groups I became involved in. I then championed that I ‘knew the way’ when in fact there was always a lack of ease and at times guilt and resentment around what I was doing. I also became exhausted as I was frequently breastfeeding on demand and used my breasts as a baby pacifier without first checking in with myself as to whether it was right for me, or them, to do so at that time.

  • Maybe as women we need to stop thinking that we don’t know the way to use our breasts lovingly, in a way that supports both ourselves and our children?

  • Maybe too we need to start to acknowledge we do hold the wisdom to know what to do and when, within us. To tap into it, all we need is to simply give ourselves the space to question what is right for us.

"There is an enormous energetic difference between breastfeeding a child and just hooking them onto the breast to feed. Breastfeeding is first and foremost a nurturing act, a deeply establishing loving connection the child feels well before it is a nourishment its body needs. And if one is just ‘feeding’ as a function, what message or feelings does the child feel?"

Serge Benhayon Esoteric Teachings and Revelations Pg. 520

"It is wiser to mother from your innate knowing rather than from the ideals and beliefs that flood your head."

Serge Benhayon Esoteric Teachings and Revelations Pg. 547

If we replayed our initial crying scene with the understanding that we can use our breasts as a baby pacifier, instead of going into autopilot and popping a breast into our baby’s mouth, we could give ourselves a space to stop and ask ourselves what we are actually feeling to do in this particular moment – for ourselves and our child.

The answer will be different each time.

The key here is that we have given ourselves permission to listen to our innate wisdom before we react – a wisdom that firstly honours that our breasts belong to us and are lovingly shared with our babies in way that truly supports both us and them!


Filed under

Breast careMotherhoodRaising childrenBreastfeedingConfidence

  • By Sharon Gavioli, Registered Nurse, Adult Educator, Counsellor, Practitioner of Universal Medicine Therapies, EPA Accredited

  • Photography: Rebecca UK, Photographer

    I am a tender and sensitive woman who is inspired by the playfulness of children and the beauty of nature. I love photographing people and capturing magical and joyful moments on my camera.