Grandparents Matter

It may be difficult for grandparents who did not breastfeed their children to support you in breastfeeding your baby. They may encourage breastfeeding, but might not know how to help you.

Tips For Turning a Grandparent Into an Ally

• Talk about feelings. Grandmothers may have regrets about not breastfeeding. Remember that they made the best decisions given the information available at that time.

• Share the information you've learned. More information about breastfeeding is available now than when they were raising their children. 

• Focus on intent. They may have been taught to do something that we now know is "wrong" (e.g., feeding the baby on a schedule, rather than watching for feeding cues), but their goals were right.

• Be patient and understanding if they are uncomfortable with conversations about breastfeeding.

• Give grandparents specific things to do. They want to help.

• Encourage bonding. They can get to know grandchilden by playing games, holding them, bathing them, etc.

• Let them know you love and appreciate them.