Breastfeeding is sold to pregnant women as straightforward, easy and rewarding but many do not find that description matches their experience. But the reason for this difficulty should rarely be to do with breastfeeding itself, but instead because society in the UK is not set up to support women to breastfeed
Now, I wish to take a step back for a moment. You may be thinking it is strange for me to say 'mothers from day one', but it is true. If you look at the toys advertised for girls even today - what do we have? Garish amounts of playthings that are designed to ingrain a want in young girls to be perfect little wives and moulded into aspiring little mummies when they grow up.
There was no reason for me to feel like this. I was doing everything I could to meet my daughter's needs whatever they were and whenever they arose. But I just couldn't help feeling that I simply wasn't good enough. I'd look at my daughter for some reassurance and she would stare back at me, blankly.
In 1655, the medical author Thomas Moffett explained that all 'kind and natural' women would breastfeed. 'Yea', he noted, 'all Women which truly loved their Children' did so. The alternative to breastfeeding for new mothers in the 1600s in England was to hire a wet nurse -- a woman that had recently given birth and was still lactating.
Adoption legislation and practise has come far since Richard was a child being adopted and thanks to Ministers in Government such as Tim Loughton MP and Edward Timpson MP, who have sought to improve the lives of so many children in our society who seek to find a loving family to call their own we continue to grow the circumstances that make an enriching and nurturing experience in the first 1001 days of a child's life.