Breast milk sharing has slowly become a little bit more common and it is so beautiful to see, although if you ask the average person on the street, they might still find it taboo. As with anything, there are certainly upsides and downsides to donating breast milk, as well as receiving donated milk.

Do the pros outweigh the cons? Well, that’s for you to decide.

 

It has been shown that breast milk is the optimal food for a baby, and so it’s wonderful that moms are seeking out the best for their child. There are a variety of reasons why a mother may not be able to produce milk for her baby, whether she has a health condition or simply not enough of a supply for her baby’s demands, it’s great to see women seeking help from other understanding mothers.

 

The Pros Of Donating

your breast milk are incredible, and I can honestly say this through experience. I donated my extra milk, and knowing that you’re helping to feed another baby is priceless. There is nothing like the look of relief and appreciation on that exhausted mothers face as you hand her a big bag of nutritious breast milk for her little baby. Sometimes they’re teary eyed, sometimes they give you a big hug and sometimes they contact you after a few days to say how well their baby is doing on your milk. I don’t think any woman who has donated milk would ever say that they have regretted it.

 

The Con Of Donating

your milk is the heart wrenching decision of which baby to give it to. Some women who donate milk may say that the extra time and effort they put into pumping would be a con. However, I am so full of joy to do it, it doesn’t seem like a negative to me. The most difficult part is receiving messages from dozens of desperate mothers, asking you to provide food for their child. They are showing you pictures of their little babies, telling you how breast milk is the only thing their baby can tolerate and that they have none to offer. Only picking one child to help is more challenging than you might think.

 

The Pros Of Receiving

Donated breast milk could go without saying, your baby is being provided with exactly what they need and it is not costing you more than gas money. Breast milk is so important for infants, to receive the liquid gold as a gift must be an indescribable feeling.

 

The Cons Of Receiving

donated breast milk could be that you have no actual evidence of what the donating mother has been consuming, and what a person ingests plays a big roll in the quality of their breast milk. I have always been very honest when I donate milk, and tell the receiving mother what I eat and drink. The other con might be revolved around feelings of being inadequate and like you have failed as a mother, which could not be further from the truth, you are honest for recognizing that you require supplementation and are brave to ask for the help. One person is usually not adequately able to provide you with all the milk you need, and you might have to supplement with formula, which might upset their tummies with the change in different foods. 

 

As you can see, there are arguments for all sides of the breast milk sharing chain, and it is at your discretion to decide what is best for your family, whether you are donating or receiving. What’s important is that mothers are supporting one another and that there is no judgement, I believe every mother truly wants what is best for their baby.

I grew up on the West Coast of Canada and currently live in Northern California with my amazing husband and our beautiful vegan daughter. I love researching all of the amazing benefits that go hand in hand with being plant based, so I was thrilled to find Raise Vegan and become an active writer for this inspiring team. When I’m not writing for Raise Vegan, you can find me on Instagram, or on my website!