Ever since Love Island host Laura Whitmore welcomed her first child with Iain Stirling, the TV presenter has been consistent in sharing her parenting journey with followers on social media. One topic she's been particularly vocal about is breastfeeding, opening up about everything from the empowerment she feels to how she manages milk leaks while appearing on live TV.
While it's a conversation Laura clearly wants to normalise, her posts haven't come without criticism. Laura recently hit back at an Instagram follower after she was accused of spreading 'false information' about breastfeeding while doing an 'Ask Me Anything' on her Instagram Stories. The Love Island presenter was responding to a comment from a disgruntled follower which said, "Don't give false information about breastfeeding. You don't need to pump and dump [referring to when a mother pumps breast milk that won't be given to the baby]."
"I can do what I want with my journey," the presenter said. "I pump and dump because sometimes I can't chill my milk and I overproduce."
Laura, continuing on, said her baby is very happy and well fed – which is of course any parent's primary concern. "My baby is a very happy baby who I've just been breastfeeding, it's worked for me," she added.
It's perhaps unsurprising, then, that Laura feels anxious about talking about her baby so publicly on social media - something she's just addressed for an important reason related to breastfeeding awareness.
"I get a bit anxious talking about my child on this space as I feel so protective but I wanted to talk about breastfeeding. This isn’t knocking anyone who doesn’t but it’s #breastfeedingawarenessweek and I know so many new mums don’t get the support they need like the encouragement of feeding in the golden hour after birth and that it’s ok to feed in public without feeling you should hide away. Feeding your baby is your number one priority," Laura wrote on Instagram along with a picture of herself breastfeeding her little one.
In the caption, Laura spoke about the benefits of breastfeeding in her life and offered encouragement to other new mums possibly at the start of their own breastfeeding journeys.
"I’ve exclusively breastfed for over 4 months so far- it’s free and no washing up! I’ve also been supported, having my baby on set or being able to pump for the odd feed. Anyway hoping a picture of me with my tits out doesn’t offend you and encourages women to feed if they need," she added.
Laura ended her post by saying she's "shocked" that "a lot of women don’t have enough support or embarrassed to feed in public". She urged everyone to "remember to please support new mums and dads trying to navigate parenthood their way".
Good for Laura for speaking out about a topic that's still, frustratingly, somewhat taboo. The more we can normalise talking about the highs and lows of breastfeeding, the better.
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