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Breast Feeding and Alcohol

answered 05:48 PM EST, Sun November 27, 2011
anonymous anonymous
How concerned should I be by the issue of alcohol in breast milk. I don’t know how much of it is passed through the milk to the baby, but I share a house with a young family and I have seen her have a bunch of drinks and breast feed on like a bunch of occasions. I asked her if it was OK to be doing this and she said it didn’t harm the baby but I think she may be wrong on this. What should I do here? Should I call social services on her? She seems like a pretty good mom in most regards but the drinking and feeding just weirds me out and if she does that in front of me, what is she doing when no one can see what she is up to.

Loren Gelberg-Goff Says...

Your concerns are legitimate.  You are in a somewhat delicate situation but your best move might be to print off a couple of articles about breast feeding and alcohol consumption and give them to this mom.  Make no assumptions about other behavior when out of your sight, and just work with what you see.  You can express your concerns with compassion and without judgment.  If your are rebuffed or you notice that nothing changes, then I would advise a call to social services.  This is not about judging the mother, just looking to protect the baby and the baby does need protection from a mother who is nursing and drinking. 

Here are a couple of links to articles that you might share with this mother:

http://www.babycenter.com/0_alcohol-and-nursing-moms_3547.bc

http://kellymom.com/health/lifestyle/alcohol.html

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/breast-feeding-and-alcohol/AN02131

I wish you the best of luck and thank you for your concern about this baby and mother.

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