Photo Credit: Birth Stories By Meagan Adams
Many Surrogates choose to pump breast milk for the Surrogate Babies they have carried. In other cases, the Intended Mother herself may induce lactation, in order for her to breastfeed her baby. Pumping is a huge commitment, and not something that all Surrogates are interested in doing, although is a great gift to the baby. It is very important to discuss, and ensure that all parties are on the same page. If you intended to induce lactation yourself, here is a great resource to get you started.
Many Intended Parents choose the option of bottle feeding as well. Here are some great tips on creating a bond with your baby while bottle or breastfeeding.
Making Feeding A Parental Job:
Breastfeeding mothers spend as many as eight hours a day feeding their newborns. That’s eight hours of cuddles, caresses and skin-to-skin. Take control of the feeding, so that you spend this time with your baby too. Friends and family members may offer to feed the baby for you, but you can decline their offers and explain that it is important bonding time with your newborn.
Enjoying A Quiet Meal:
To make the most of each feed, take your baby into a quiet room so that you can enjoy some calm time together. Babies are easily overwhelmed, and you may find that your baby appreciates the quiet time away from the hustle and bustle of visitors. By taking yourself away from busy areas, you may find you are more likely to talk to and engage with your feeding baby.
Holding Baby Close:
Hold your baby at chest level, with his head supported by the crook of your arm, as you would if you were breastfeeding. A newborn baby has limited sight, but can see your face when held at your breast. This allows breastfed babies to bond with their mothers, so make the most of this by holding your baby close during bottle feeds.
Stripping Off For Some Skin To Skin:
Skin to skin contact is a great way to bond with your new baby. As well as a host of other benefits, it also aids digestion and may help your baby to absorb the nutrients from his milk better. Just one hour of skin to skin each day can have huge benefits for your baby. Skin to skin contact helps your baby to regulate their own body temperature, as well as reducing stress in your baby. Jumping in a nice warm bath together, or snuggling up in bed make for some beautiful skin-to-skin moments.
Making Eye Contact:
While you’re feeding your newborn, chances are their are gazing up at you with their beautiful big eyes. So, put your phone away, tear your eyes away from the television, and spend some time interacting with your baby through the simple but effective medium of eye contact. You don’t have to stare him out through every feed of the day, but taking some time to return his eye contact will help you to bond.
Really Paying Attention To Your Baby:
As well as eye contact, you can talk and sing to your baby. It doesn’t matter that they won’t yet understand what you’re saying, they love hearing your voice. No matter how terrible you are at singing, they will love hearing you. Your voice and your heartbeat are two of the most comforting sounds to him, so hold them close and talk to them while you give them their bottle.
Sniffing Your Baby’s Head:
Yes, sniffing your baby’s head… it’s a parents favourite past time! There is a reason why you love it so much — it creates oxytocin, from the minute they were born. Not that anyone needs to tell you, but keep sniffing your baby’s gorgeous head. We know you love it already, so we’re sure you won’t forget!