Encore: Military Families: Serving Their Country, Breastfeeding Their Babies

with guest Jarold Johnston

Air Date: November 13, 2017

Like civilians, parents in the military service of their country face many issues: mixed messages about how to breastfeed, living far from their extended families, and having a fairly short maternity leave. But for military families, these issues are intensified, and accompanied by other issues impact breastfeeding. However, mothers who serve in the military—or their spouses—may find that they enjoy some privileges that civilian breastfeeding mothers might not. On this Veteran’s day, join Marie and her guest, retired Army Lieutenant Colonel, Jarold (Tom) Johnston. If you or your spouse or family member are pregnant, lactating, get Tom’s tips to reduce the impact of relocation, Army policy, and day-to-day structure on the breastfeeding and postpartum experience. And—you’ll hear some news about what military breastfeeding families are now entitled to, and some data that show the astonishing success military hospitals have achieved related to birthing and breastfeeding.

Guest Profile – Jarold Johnston

Tom Johnston is unique as a midwife and lactation consultant and the father of eight breastfed children. Recently retired after 27 years in the US Army, he is now an Assistant Professor of Nursing at Methodist University where he teaches, among other things, Maternal-Child Nursing and Nutrition. You may have heard him at a number of conferences at the national level, to include the Association of Woman’s Health and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), the International Lactation Consultant’s Association (ILCA), or perhaps at dozens of other conferences across the country. In his written work he routinely addresses fatherhood and the role of the father in the breastfeeding relationship and has authored a chapter on the role of the father in breastfeeding for “Breastfeeding in Combat Boots: A survival guide to breastfeeding in the military”.
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