Jillian Johnson was looking forward to raising her healthy baby boy, Landon. She gave birth to him in 2012 and things seemed to be going all right. However, he passed away 19 days later.
Johnson had been attempting to breastfeed her baby. At the time, lactation consultants and nurses in charge of their care said he was latching on to her breast just fine.
The reality is that baby Landon passed away because of dehydration and cardiac arrest that caused him to have a brain injury.
In a blog post for organization Fed is Best, Johnson wrote:
“If I had given him just one bottle, he would still be alive.”
Johnson discussed the pressures to breastfeed exclusively, and her story got the attention of People. She told the magazine,
“I just want people to educate themselves so they don’t make the same mistake I did.
I couldn’t sit by any more and have another mom feel what I feel every day.
I don’t want any parent to have this hole in their heart.
Nothing can fill it.”
The executive director of Baby Friendly USA, Trish MacEnroe says breastfeeding is the safest way a mother can feed her child, but not all mothers produce enough milk at first. MacEnroe says,
“There is room for supplementation and there is room for a mother not to choose breastfeeding.”
Johnson’s story may be a cautionary tale, but she’s since become an advocate for better baby feeding practices.
It’s definitely brave for this mom to speak out. What do you think would help new moms best avoid something like this? Tell us below.