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Helping When My Grandchild Is Breastfed

roleWhen new mothers feel supported by their family and friends, they are more likely to be successful when starting to breastfeed. This can lead to breastfeeding that continues for as long as mom and child wish. 

You want the best for your grandchild's health and happiness. Whether or not you breastfed your own children, you can help your daughter/in law with her breastfeeding goals.

Click on the topics below for ways you can help.

Breastfeeding is a learned skill, for both mother and child. Take time to listen and offer encouragement as they learn together. Acknowledge your daughter/ in law’s breastfeeding efforts in a positive way. Here are some things you can say:  

“I can see how much breastfeeding means to you.  You’re doing great!”

 “You and baby are learning something new. Take your time.  You can do this!”  

“Being a new mom can be tiring.  What can I do to help?”

“While you feed the baby, what I can get for you to eat or drink?”

“I heard about a group of breastfeeding moms that meet every week. Is this something you might be interested in?

You can encourage mom’s partner to learn about breastfeeding and how partners are important in a breastfeeding family. Acknowledge that mom’s partner is going through an adjustment too. Remind them that spending time with their child and providing care in their own way will have a positive impact on the child’s growth and development.

Encourage family members and friends to ask mom how they can create a comfortable environment while breastfeeding. Remind them that new mothers are experiencing big changes and need to focus on their child. You can suggest ways they can help such as offering to do household tasks, pick up groceries, make a meal, do laundry, or care for other children.


Family members and friends may be interested in the following links:

Why breastfeeding is important
A mother’s right to breastfeed anytime, anywhere.
How Dads can support breastfeeding 
How to support lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer parenting
There are many ways to get to know your grandchild when they are not feeding. You can burp baby between feedings, change diapers, talk, sing and play with the baby while your daughter or daughter-in-law takes a nap or shower.  Babies love to be rocked, cuddled and held skin-to-skin. 

New mothers are experiencing big changes and need to focus on baby.  Your help with chores and household tasks allows her to do this and makes a difference.

  • Offer to pick up groceries and make a meal

  • Offer to clean or help with laundry

  • Look after other children

Your daughter/in law may want you to go with her to an appointment. You can help by: 
  • Carrying the diaper bag
  • Offering to hold your grandchild when your daughter/in law needs to listen, talk, or write something down
  •  If your grandchild needs to breastfeed, offer to write down the information so your daughter/in law can read it later.   
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