When it comes to breastfeeding, most people have a pretty strong opinion, one way or the other, on whether or not breastfeeding is right for them and what rights a breastfeeding woman has. Most of us are well aware of the benefits breastfeeding provides, both to the mom and the baby, but I don’t think many people are aware of the implications that Rabbi Schmuley brings up in his highly controversial article where he claims that breastfeeding can hurt marriages.
I’ll let you read the original article yourself (dating back to 2006) which was recently re-printed, no doubt in order to stir up controversy and to increase traffic to the site which published it. Rabbi Schmuley has since written a rebuttal about the original article and claims that his views and beliefs were misrepresented. I highly recommend that you read both articles before forming an opinion on the Rabbi, or what the original article claims.
What I took from the article though, what stood out to me, was the idea that breastfeeding could, possibly, may have a detrimental affect on one’s adult relationship.
I don’t think this happens in many relationships and certainly not with the women and men who I know, who communicate with one another and would never let something like this interfere with their marriage or intimate relationship, but it’s not to say that this hasn’t been an issue in some families.
I also know that when it comes to having a successful marriage or relationship, putting your child first is not part of the equation.
Recently, at the She’s Having a Baby event in Beverly Hills, I had the pleasure of attending the seminar with Tisha Campbell Martin , where I wanted to stand up and applaud when she shared with the audience the discussion she had with her husband before they ever became parents.
He wanted to make sure that they continued to put themselves first, and then the two of them as a couple, before their children. He was convinced that this would ensure a successful and happy marriage. They’ve been together for over twenty years and have two beautiful children.
I cannot agree more with this idea that putting ourselves first and our relationship as a couple next provides the root system that children grow from. It’s when we lose sight of who we are as individuals and as a couple that issues and challenges start to break down a relationship rather than being a cause to rally together and overcome it as a team.
Date nights might be hard to come by, especially when your children are young, but setting aside 15 minutes of alone time with your partner every day (morning and night) is a simple way to offer your daily undivided attention to one another and give each other that intimacy that you each deserve.
Finding time for yourself might be just as tricky, but if you share the same beliefs with your partner, letting each other have a night off from time to time (or an hour or two on the weekends) provides you with a great deal of breathing room that you also deserve.
Your family is important. Your child’s health is important as well, but what could be more special than cuddling up with your partner on the couch after 20 years and still feeling that same sense of intimacy that once brought you together. I hope we can all experience that someday and I believe our children will benefit from that even more.