Breastfeeding geniuses?

Breastfeeding was not easy for me. In fact, the only way I made it through the first few days was a nurse who made a home visit and sat on my bed with me while I cried and screamed as my daughter tried to eat.

There were many times I wanted to give up. But I didn’t because breastfeeding was important to me, as it is for many moms who endure the pain of breastfeeding. Its a priority for many full-time working moms, too, who use their lunch breaks to pump breast milk and cart around coolers of the good stuff all day.

It’s a sacrifice. I don’t think anyone can deny that.

It was one I wanted to make because I felt it was good for my daughter and for me, not because I think it will make her a rocket scientist and formula would have made her a hobo. I just thought it was the right thing for me.

So I have a little trouble believing the kind of studies that say kids who are breastfed will be more successful in life. A new study by a group of professors, for example, says siblings who are breastfed have a higher chance of success in high school and are more likely to go on to college than their formula-fed brothers and sisters.

I’m just not convinced it really makes that much of a tangible difference in academia.

For me, the real benefit was the hours sitting with my daughter as she nursed. For those precious minutes, I was all she needed, and I was happy I could give part of myself to her.

What do you think — does breastfeeding make kids more successful in life, or is that just a myth? Why did you decide to breastfeed or to use formula?

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