Happy New BUSY Year: The Affective Outcomes of Choosing to EP

TL;DR: If you choose to EP, your emotional outcomes are going to be A LOT more positive than if you EP because of a reason that is, to whatever degree, out of your control.
We MUST support all forms of breastfeeding and work hard to help those feeding babies to fulfill their goals and expectations, whatever those might be.
I’ll be doing lots of data analysis this week in preparation for THREE conference presentations due this month (in person at the Healthy Children’s Center for Breastfeeding‘s International Breastfeeding Conference and online at GOLD – Lactation Online Conference and iLactation). Today’s analysis yielded some expected, but still depressing, findings.
My survey asked respondents why they EPed. From a list of reasons, one of the options was “just wanted to”; all the other options represented some degree of non-choice for the EPer. I also asked respondents to select emotions/feelings (as many as they wanted) that they experienced as a result of their EPing.
Those who “just wanted to” EP, i.e. chose this form of breastfeeding, were statistically significantly (p < .05) more likely to report feeling:
– happy
– intimate
– capable
– loving
– adequate
– productive
– humble
– strong
Those who EPed because of any other reason than “just wanted to” were statistically significantly (p < .05) more likely to report feeling:
– disappointed
– inadequate
– discouraged
– grieving
– envious
– cheated
– frustrated
– guilty
– bitter
– anxious
– resentful
– insecure
– sad
– regretful
– miserable

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