In this interview, Lisa Reagan talks with Kathleen Kendall-Tackett about the responses to the Kindred’s video series featuring the latest science and researching supporting the healing powers of breastfeeding. Kendall-Tackett says that the science is there in spades, but the cultural support for breastfeeding is not. Despite the abysmal support for breastfeeding and many parents’ guilt and resentment over the lack of basic social support, like family leave, Kendall-Tackett says from her vantage point things are improving. She shares her insights in the audio interview above.
Dr. Kendall-Tackett covers: breastfeeding’s ability to protect maternal mental health, “significantly” decrease child abuse, aid sexual assault recovery and heal birth trauma. As Kendall-Tackett says, “By being able to turn off the chronic stress response, breastfeeding helps women cope with new motherhood… It’s like Nature knew we didn’t lead perfect lives and provided a built-on system to handle trauma. Breastfeeding does this beautifully and really helped to restore health to women.”
She also answers the perennial question, “Do breastfeeding mother’s get more sleep?” But the answers to this question and others depends upon the recognition that breastmilk – a nutrient-dense, living product – and breastfeeding – a millions of years old process supporting bonding and brain development, “do not produce the same results”.
Where are mothers in industrialized countries to turn for support when, as she says in her video interviews, “We don’t even know what support looks like?” Kendall-Tackett presents her recommendations below for addressing the postpartum weeks and months with advice from other cultures who are successfully supporting new mothers.
Sure, we know as conscious parents that nursing our children is one way to express our bodies’ innate intelligence while bringing forth our children’s, but it’s nice to have so much new research to back up our heart wisdom! Please share these powerful insights and practical breastfeeding wisdom with your friends and family and help us improve cultural knowledge and support of breastfeeding!