- Mallory Bourn, 24, is 'emotionally attached' to feeding Blythe twice a day
- But mum-of-one says it isn't 'just weirdos' who feed babies older than one
- Blogger, who lives in London, only intended to feed for three to six months
- Says she now 'understands' women she once mocked and thought were strange
A mother who says she is 'addicted' to breastfeeding her 14-month-old child says she can't bear to be without the 'powerful connection' it brings.
Although Mallory Bourn's daughter Blythe started to to take a bottle four months ago, the blogger from London says she feels 'jealous' when she doesn't feed from her.
The 24-year-old, who runs lifestyle blog Bourn Sisters with her younger sibling Hattie, says she feels 'emotionally attached' to feeding her tot twice a day - and insists it isn't 'just weirdos' who breastfeed when their child is over the age of one.
The 24-year-old (pictured breastfeeding her daughter Blythe), who runs lifestyle blog Bourn Sisters with her younger sibling Hattie, says she feels 'emotionally attached' to feeding her twice a day
But while the lookalike sisters, originally from Norfolk, are similar in many ways, Hattie, 21, opted to switch from breastfeeding to bottle just a few days after giving birth to first son Otis last month.
The English literature graduate, who lives with partner Joe, also 24, said: 'Breastfeeding, for me, has been an amazing experience.
'I think I am addicted to the attachment and the closeness it brings, that powerful connection.
'When I think about stopping I feel really sad. I’m so attached to it and can’t imagine my day without those feeds - although I never expected to feel the way I do.'
Mallory (pictured with 14-month-old Blythe) says she feels 'really sad' when thinking about stopping breastfeeding, and is 'emotionally attached' to it
And it wasn't without it's problems, either. Mallory, pictured, said for the first week of her daughter’s life she was frequently sobbing and screaming in pain with her nipples raw and bleeding
The blogger, who admits she only ever intended to breastfeed for three to six months, continued: ''It has been one of my favourite parts of motherhood so far, although it has not been without its hurdles and tears - from both of us.
'There is something so sacred about breastfeeding that I don’t think you can understand until you are a breastfeeding mum, and I am just not quite ready for it to be over yet.'
Blythe refused to feed from a bottle until she was 10 months old but Mallory said she now ‘can’t help feeling a little jealous and replaced’ when she does.
But Mallory points out that it doesn't make you 'any less of a mum' or prevent bonding should you not breastfeed and, indeed, her sister switched to bottle feeding just a few days after her son was born
Mallory, pictured with her daughter, said now couldn't be happier that she persevered through the initial pain and embarrassment, but now can't imagine being without the 'powerful connection' it brings
BENEFITS OF BREASTFEEDING
The NHS advises that breastfeeding gives babies the healthiest start in life, saying it cuts the odds of stomach bugs, chest and ear infections and constipation.
It says breast-fed babies have lower odds of being obese and while every little helps, it recommends babies are fed exclusively on their mother’s milk for the first six months. Breastfeeding also benefits women, by cutting their odds of breast and ovarian cancer and helping them bond with their baby, the NHS adds.
Mallory said feeding makes her feel ‘empowered’ and now understands why some mothers - who she previously thought were strange - breast feed until their children are much older.
But she admitted she will most likely wean Blythe off breast feeding in the next few months.
She said: 'The people who most encouraged me to breastfeed are shocked I am still feeding, joking "you will be one of those weirdos on This Morning who is still feeding their seven-year-old".
'While I certainly am not going to be feeding her at seven, I can now understand those women I once mocked and thought were strange.
'I thought I would stop a lot sooner. Breastfeeding seems to be really encouraged for newborns, but once the baby gets past one it seems to be unknown territory.
'There are so many women who are doing it but no one is really talking about it.'
Breastfeeding has not always come naturally to Mallory, and she said in the first week of her daughter’s life she was frequently sobbing and screaming in pain with her nipples raw and bleeding.
But despite her 'addiction', Mallory insists she will try to wean Blythe off breast milk in the next few months
At times she didn’t expect to manage even one more feed - let alone to still be feeding her youngster 14 months later.
Mallory also admitted worries about offending people when feeding in public went out the window when dealing with a hungry baby.
'I’m not ashamed to say that just about everyone has probably seen my boobs at this point,' she said. 'When your baby is hungry it really takes priority over your dignity!
'I am no Superwoman but I am proud of my perseverance and was surprised by the determination feeding my baby inspired in me.
'If you feed your baby for one week, one month or one year at least you can say you gave it a go - after all that is what our boobs are there for.
Mallory's sister Hattie, who chose not to breastfeed three days after giving birth to her son Otis (pictured)
'However it’s also important to recognise bottle feeding doesn’t make you any less of a mum or prevent you from bonding with your baby - it’s just different.'
Hattie, who gave birth to son Otis last month, questioned whether breastfeeding was for her but despite suffering a difficult pregnancy and labour decided to give it a go.
The 21-year-old, who lives in Bristol with partner Korey, breastfed for her first few days in hospital but discovered Otis seemed to prefer a bottle and decided to stop breastfeeding.
She added: 'Don’t feel pressured by family or midwives - do what is right for you and your baby.
'A confident, happy mum makes for a happy baby.'
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