Mum receives backlash after hitting headlines saying how “grateful and totally overwhelmed” she was with support from over 1,000-strong army of volunteer breast feeders.
Yesterday the Daily Mail reports, when Ronja Wiedenbeck, 26, was suddenly taken ill and put on strong medication which left her unable to feed 11 month-old, Rio, the worried single mother-of-two logged onto the ‘Breastfeeding Yummy Mummies’ Facebook group from her hospital bed asking for volunteer ‘wet nurses’.
She was overwhelmed with offers of support – and is thankful to the five complete strangers who breastfeed baby Rio.
“I was pumped full of morphine and it seemed instinctive for someone to feed him in a way that he has been used to and he’s comfortable with,” the mum said.
“When he was about to be fed by the first lady he looked over at me, almost to ask for approval, it filled my heart with such joy and massive relief.
“I’m so grateful and totally overwhelmed with the response to the message. It is such a loving and selfless act and incredibly heart warming to see.
“There is so much negativity around breast feeding, it is absolutely incredible to have this support when I needed it.”
She wrote on Facebook: ‘I am in Treliske Hospital in Truro, Cornwall. I have a 10 month old baby boy who I can’t nurse due to being pumped full of Morphine.
‘I don’t suppose there is anyone who would come and nurse my son for me a couple of times today please? I’d be ever so grateful.’
‘The response was absolutely overwhelmingly amazing,’ said Ronja.
‘I thought Rio would look over at me and be like ‘mum, I’m not doing this’ but as soon as she picked him up he was tugging at her top.
‘He looked at me as if looking for approval, and I said ‘go on Rio’ and he latched on brilliantly.
‘It was incredible.
‘I thought it might feel unusual because it is something special that only Rio and I had shared, but it just felt totally instinctive for another mum to help him in a way he was used to.’
Ronja says around 1,000 women from the 13,000 strong group contacted her offering to breastfeed Rio, and a friend has been sifting through the messages to coordinate feeds.
A message of thanks on Instagram reads: “Thankful to my other angel mama’s who came to my rescue to nurse my son whilst I was unable to do so due to being on unsafe medication in hospital.
The support between us breastfeeding mothers has been incredible and just goes to show that where there is a will, there is a way!!!! Some people may still find this controversial or unbelievably enough think it’s perverse or disgusting and as my last wet nursing photo lost me a good 100+ followers (good riddance you small minded people) I just couldn’t wait to post another photo and educate you lot that this is a totally normal natural thing to do!!
I have been in contact with itv news and this morning, regarding this whole situation as it has picked up a lot of positive press interest, so this is not the last you’ll see of this!!!
I am so thankful for these selfless caring mothers, and we will all have such a great bond and friendship from this, I can’t wait to see you all again, give you all massive squishes, and hopefully one day repay the favour for any of you should you ever need it. You are all like family now, and I think so highly of you all. You all are absolute selfless caring Hero’s!!!!!”
Haters gonna hate
Today Ronja has appeared on This Morning after her decision came under fire from both Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby, who were aghast that she hadn’t even checked the medical history of any of the five women who suckled her youngest child.
She said: “[Breastfeeding] can pass on all sorts of diseases, hepatitis, Aids… I think it was the trusting mother in me.”
“I never in one point said, ‘What is your health like? What is your diet like? What is your alcohol intake?’
“If I was going to find people to breastfeed my son long-term I’d probably ask.”
As Phillip and Holly quizzed Ronja, she sat back smirking – which prompted a vitriolic reaction from people watching at home, The Sun reports.
Twitter erupted in criticism, with many accusing the Penzance mum of being irresponsible or fame hungry.
One raged: “Is this woman for real, wants the best for her baby but gets random women to feed him without screening wtf.”
Others posted: “Got to say think it is disgusting that woman let someone she didnt even know breast feed her baby” and: “There’s no way I’d let strangers breastfeed my child. Too weird and dangerous”,
Another added: “WTF?? She posted this request on Facebook then ends up using a friend. The child is weaned. Give him some food.”
Phil and Holly also heard from This Morning’s resident doctor Dr Ranj Singh, who urged viewers to not let strangers breastfeed their children due to potential health risks.
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