A resource to inspire, inform and empower parents.

I Hope It Amounts to Something


Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder

I feel like we’ve reached a new level of chaos in this house. I’m constantly trying to keep up, make up for mistakes and be a good mom, but the chaos grows faster than I can work. I think back to right after Exley was born. Jack was 3 years old. It was an utter disaster around here. Jack hit the ceiling and I was trying to care for a newborn. But Exley napped. And during those naps I spent time with Jack. We played cards, board games, built things out of cardboard or towers with magna tiles. I know that I have always felt like I wasn’t doing enough, I’ve always felt like the chaos I was in was the biggest chaos that would ever exist in life. But looking back on that time now all I remember are the good times. I probably did a ton of things wrong, but I guess I did some things right too. And looking back it seems like it wasn’t so bad compared to now! Now once again it seems like the chaos is over my head. I feel like I am doing all the things wrong. I hope looking back on this some of the good times will come more into focus. It’s an insanely chaotic string of events and I don’t understand how it can turn out to be anything. I don’t understand how it can amount to anything, but I suppose it does. I hope it does. I hope it’s good.

Photo taken in between the first disastrous part of the day and the second explosive part of the day. This was the only way that they wouldn’t completely meltdown in the museum. I don’t like posting this happy photo because it doesn’t really match what I’m saying and it contributes to all the misrepresentation that goes on over social media, but it’s frowned upon to post tantrum photos. This is what I want to be even if I never feel like the person here.

5 Breastfeeding Tips to Help You Get Through the Night

Nothing prepares you for being a parent. While the first few weeks and months are unforgettable they are also incredibly exhausting.

Amongst all the excitement and the attention given to the newborn, something often gets forgotten, that’s the health of one very important person, you – the mom. And as you have a little one to care for now, nothing is as essential as sustaining your own physical and mental health. [Read more…]

Breastfeeding on Demand

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, breastfeeding on demand

Breastfeeding on demand means initiating breastfeeding whenever your baby gives hunger cues. An even easier way to think about this is to initiate breastfeeding whenever you can and often and allowing your baby to breastfeed for as long as they want. There is no need to watch the clock or breastfeed on any kind of schedule. Simply breastfeed as often as you can, whenever your baby asks for it and for as long as your baby wants. This is the best way to establish milk supply and the best way to make sure your baby is getting plenty of milk. You might be told to breastfeed every 2 hours or something like that, but there is no need to do thus and this could actually lead to milk supply issues. Simply breastfeed on demand.

Breastfeeding: You Never Know When It’s the Last Time

“I feel like Jack is going to be one of those kids that breastfeeds until 7 years old,” I said to my husband one day when Jack was around 1 year old. I had been learning a lot about breastfeeding, mostly through the moms at The Badass Breastfeeder Facebook community. I learned that kids who are not weaned early can breastfeed anywhere from 2.5 to 7 years old. Before kids it would have completely freaked me out. Now that I had celebrated my very first nursiversary, after fighting tooth and nail to save what seemed like a doomed breastfeeding relationship, I couldn’t imagine why on earth I would ever wean him. My husband took a bit longer to adjust to the idea of coloring so outside the box, but ultimately we both felt that what helps Jack is much more important than anyone else’s opinion.

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, breastfeeding Jack. [Read more…]

Breastfeeding is Normal

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, breastfeeding in public, nursing in public

So here, let me explain something.

I think feet are gross. Like I really don’t like to look at feet. Summer comes and I’m all, “UGH, everyone is going to in sandals. Gross!” I really don’t care if you get pedicures or paint your toe nails a pretty color. I don’t like feet and I don’t want to see them.

So guess what? I look away. I simply turn my head and look away. I shut my mouth and don’t look.

I don’t say, “Hey! All you people need to wear boots all year long so that I don’t have to see your feet!” I don’t tell people that they can’t come outside with sandals on. I don’t tell people that they should hang out in dirty places and leave the clean places for only boot-wearing folks.

Get it? Breastfeeding is as normal as feet. If you don’t like it look away. You have no right to tell me to cover up or hide myself away. Shut your mouth and look away.

Breastfeeding, Breasts and Rules

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, tandem nursing

Rules. Man, I hate rules. Most rules are arbitrary; anchored in control and profit. Traffic rules that keep cars flowing and not hitting each other, fine, I get that. But there are some rules that we never question that are simply there to oppress and control people. Some of them are loved so dearly that we made them LAWS. Like laws regarding my nipples. In most places I can get a ticket or even arrested if my nipples are exposed! The “I” in this sentence is important because I am a female and if I were not I would not be able to write that sentence. If I were a male I would not have any laws regarding my nipples. I would not be able to find ANY laws regarding the control of my body. Well, you can piss off with your rules about my body! And what about these other rules that aren’t laws, but they are so ingrained in our culture that we don’t even need them to be laws because the citizens keep them alive through social norms? Like I need to wean my child at a certain age or I need to cover when breastfeeding in public. You can piss off with those too!

Photo by Ivette Ivens

Unsolicited Breastfeeding Comments

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder

It’s worn out now, but this shirt used to say, “Human. Kind. Be both.” I think this is a good motto when going about life. I often see comments under breastfeeding posts (especially when the child is beyond infancy) that it’s “disgusting,” “ridiculous” or “inappropriate.” Listen up, these statements are subjective at best and totally insulting. You don’t get to hide behind “Well that’s just my opinion.” It’s not an opinion, it’s an insult. And you can take your insults and shove them. You are welcome to ask questions, we love to answer them and share our experiences. We are moms making decisions for our families just like you. It might not look the same as yours, but that doesn’t matter. And you should be capable of understanding that you are not in charge of anyone’s life but your own. We’ve got this. We promise.

Breastfeed to Sleep

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, breastfeeding her baby to sleep

Breastfeeding your child to sleep is not a bad habit, it will not create sleep problems and it is not spoiling your baby. You are providing a normal and natural way for your child to go to sleep. The suckling motion of nursing relaxes and soothes your child to sleep. Yes, I said “child” because this is not just for babies. Breastfeeding is far from just food. It’s one of those powers that makes you a super hero.

Breastfeeding and Boobs

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, breastfeeding in public

They are just boobs. Boobs in all their glory. Boobs are so awesome people just don’t even know it. They have so many uses. They are incredible! So then why is it that people freak out at the sight of a breastfeeding mother? Even go to such lengths to shield their children’s eyes! Yet we walk around the mall and flip through magazines with magnificent boobs on display and no one blinks.

My theory is that breasts have become so fetishized (as means of controlling women and our bodies) that when people see breastfeeding they see it as a sexual act. And therefore are repulsed by it.

The more we breastfeed in public and the more we question the insanity and the more we confront the dysfunction of society the better chance we have of our children and grandchildren growing up in a saner world.

Breastfeeding Is Your Journey and No One Else’s

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder, extended breastfeeding

There is not a single voice that matters in this decision besides you and your child’s. A person wrote to me recently about how she had promised her husband that she would stop breastfeeding by 3 years old. Well, the child is now 3 years old and she does not want to stop breastfeeding, but her husband is pressuring her to stop. I told her that her husband’s opinion will matter when he is the one breastfeeding. Too harsh? No. A breastfeeding relationship belongs to the owner of the breast and the one suckling on said breast. Period.