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  • Sophie Albert: ‘It Was Hard To Admit To Other People That I Wasn’t Breastfeeding’

    Sophie says she used to hide her daughter's formula milk from Vin's mother.
    by Jocelyn Valle .
Sophie Albert: ‘It Was Hard To Admit To Other People That I Wasn’t Breastfeeding’
PHOTO BY Instagram/itssophiealbert (L), vinabrenica
  • When Sophie Albert was still pregnant with her and her fiancé Vin Abrenica's first child Avianna Celeste, the first-time mom noticed her "boobs were so big."

    So Sophie thought to herself, "Oh my gosh! I'm going to have milk-- a lot of milk." That thought made her very happy and excited because she really wanted her baby to be breastfed for at least six months.

    After giving birth on March 15, 2021, however, Sophie's breast milk didn't come in until she and Vin brought Avianna home. She was producing so little little milk, so she "did everything she could" to increase her supply.

    "I ate all the food that I needed to eat," Sophie tells SmartParenting.com.ph in an exclusive interview for the Dibdibang Usapan video series. "I talked to so many lactation consultants, and my milk supply just kept going down. Instead of it increasing, it just kept going down."

    Sophie says, at that time, she was "so against" giving Avianna formula milk: "I was like, 'No! No formula for her!' So we were asking for donated breast milk. So I was really, like, forcing my body to produce the milk 'cause I was so adamant that I didn't want her to drink formula, and it was driving me crazy."

    Then Sophie reached the tipping point and had this realization: "She just has to be fed. My baby just has to be fed. It doesn't matter that I couldn't give it to her. It doesn't matter if it's not breast milk. She just has to be full."


    The GMA-7 actress explains, "'Cause there was a time when she was so thin because I was so really insistent that she's only gonna take breast milk. And now that I look back on those pictures I was like, 'Wow! That wasn't a healthy thing to do. Like, I made my daughter so skinny.'

    "And when I decided to feed her with formula, and I knew na talagang okay, like, I had to accept na, 'Okay. I did my best. That's enough.' And I have to do what's best for my daughter which is to feed her with anything, with formula.

    "So, when I did feed her with formula, she started to get chubbier. She started to be more alert because she was full. She was less fussy because she was full. So parang things just got so much easier when I accepted that, 'Okay, this time around, my breast milk isn't enough. I did everything that I could and it just wasn't enough. I'll try again next time.'

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    In a nutshell, she says, "I stopped torturing myself na I wasn't able to do it. I stopped na."

    But Sophie admits there's a lot of pressure to breastfeed, even from fellow moms, and some would even send her direct messages. "I feel like some people measure your ability of being a good mom by if you're breastfeeding or not. Like, I really do feel that.

    "And even many times like when I get DMs from other moms on my Instagram account, they're so concerned about the fact about whether or not I'm feeding her with breast milk. And for me it's like, 'Why? I'm feeding her every two hours. Does it matter what I'm feeding her?'"

    She then wonders aloud: "I don't know if I'm just being parang defensive because I'm not giving her breast milk, which I wanted to do. But for me, parang my daughter is chubby, my daughter is of the right weight, like does it really matter what I'm feeding her or what's inside her bottle?"

    Her conclusion: "I feel like there's shame, like, around the moms that can't breastfeed. It was so hard for me to admit to other people that I wasn't breastfeeding."

    In fact, Sophie, now says in reflection, "For a time, I was even hiding my formula because I didn't want anyone to know that I wasn't giving her my breast milk. Like when Vin's mom was here, I hid the formula, and I didn't want her to know that it wasn't breast milk.


    "And then, after a while, I said, 'This is ridiculous!' Like 'Why am I doing this?' And eventually, like, she found out that I was feeding her formula and it was totally okay with her.

    "So parang it was all just in my head because of the pressure of, I guess, ngayon nga kasi everybody knows that breast milk is best. But, it's not best when you torture yourself over the fact that you can't give it. You just can't, di ba?"

    Watch Sophie's Didbdibang Usapan episode on our YouTube channel.

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