“Mastitis – burning boobs of fire – BINGO!” It’s the short documentary you need to share with your mum friends. You’ll laugh and you’ll nod in agreement. And you’ll be spreading an important message to all mums: we should support each other’s choices.
To mark World Breastfeeding Week, the clever folk behind the Lactaboobiephobia documentary we featured last year have released their latest foray into short documentary films – Booby Trap Bingo. While the first film was all about the stigma many breastfeeding mums face, Booby Trap Bingo aims to increasing awareness, and create a more supportive environment for breastfeeding mums.
In Australia, 96 per cent of mums start off breastfeeding their newborn baby, but only 15 per cent make it to the six month mark. Lactation consultant Pinky McKay says news mums are faced with so many challenges when it comes to their newborn.
“New mothers are vulnerable – they are utterly responsible for another life and they naturally want to do the best for their baby. Sadly, even though breastfeeding is the biologically normal way to feed a baby and women have been feeding their babies at the breast since time began, there is still a plethora of misinformation, even among health professionals,” Pinky says.
“And, because of fear around breastfeeding in public and the possibility of negative comments, most new mothers have not seen a baby being breastfed and many have not even held a baby until they have their own.”
Booby Trap Bingo is part of the worldwide Bosom Buddies campaign, and was created by Melbourne filmmakers Anna Kaplan and Britt Arthur, with Anna drawing on her own experiences as a new mum.
“Breastfeeding is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. No one told me how hard it could be and I was completely unprepared for the challenges I faced,” Anna says.
“I received lots of conflicting advice from health professionals and one problem quickly led to another. I felt like a complete failure as a mother, but I was lucky to have an incredibly supportive family and the resources to have numerous sessions with a private lactation consultant who eventually helped us get back on track.”
The film sets about creating a positive dialogue around some of the negative experiences mums can have with breastfeeding. “By shifting the focus onto the barriers, the film reinforces that women who do face challenges are not alone and good support is available. The Bosom Buddies campaign then takes this concept a step further by stimulating a more positive conversation about how the wider community can be more supportive and empathetic towards breastfeeding mums,” Anna explains.
Lactation consultant Meg Nagle adds, “The number one most important thing we need as breastfeeding mothers is support. By standing up to be a Bosom Buddy you are telling other women that you are there for them. You are supporting them and their breastfeeding babies.”
Take a look at Booby Trap Bingo below, and you can now also view the full version of Lactaboobiephobia.