‘Bachelor in Paradise’ Star Carly Waddell Opens Up About Her Postpartum and Breastfeeding Struggles, Says She Thought It Would Be ‘Easier This Time’

Bachelor in Paradise star Carly Waddell has recently opened up about how the reality of her postpartum experience has not met her expectations.

Waddell, who gave birth to son Charles “Charlie” Wolfe on November 12, posted an image of herself on Instagram exemplifying the pain of breastfeeding — literally. The pic showed her holding cabbage leaves over her chest to relieve the pain of engorgement.

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It’s been a week since Charlie was born, he is the greatest blessing and one of the greatest lessons for me as a mom. I had all these hopes and dreams that postpartum would be easier this time. But I still ache. I’m healing. I’m tried. Bella was such a colicky newborn. She cried and cried for months. Threw up. Had gas pains. I breastfed for months because that’s what I was told was “best”. When I changed Bella to formula, she was a new, happy little baby. This time, I had hopes that Charlie would be different. But it just isn’t the case. I decided to stop breastfeeding and try him on the same formula Bella was on, and within a bottle or two he was so happy. He stopped crying. He could relax. He could sleep. He smiled. There is such a stigma about breastfeeding. If you don’t do it, you don’t care about your children’s health. You don’t love your kids enough. You’re being selfish. You just aren’t being a good enough mom. Honestly, I know my comments will prob be full of people telling me all sorts of things I could have/should have done to make it work for us. But the one huge thing I found this time is that I made a really hard decision within myself as a mom to listen to my gut about what was best for my child. And you know what…it worked. He is soooo happy and that is all that matters. I wanted to be real and thank you guys for checking in with me on how I have been doing this week. It’s been beautiful and painful at times. Thank you for all y’alls love and congratulations. It means SO much to me ???? #cabbageleavesforthewin

A post shared by Carly Waddell (@carlywad) on

“I had all these hopes and dreams that postpartum would be easier this time. But I still ache. I’m healing. I’m [tired],” she wrote in the candid post.

Waddell continued in the post that her daughter, Bella, was a colicky baby. Waddell had breastfed for months because she was told that was “best,” but when she switched to formula she was a “new, happy little baby.”

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Though she hoped the experience with Charlie would be different, after struggling for a couple weeks, Waddell made the decision to switch to formula. “Within a bottle or two he was so happy. He stopped crying. He could relax. He could sleep. He smiled,” she wrote after making the switch.

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Waddell found that she was not alone. Many of her fans commented to thank her for being so honest about her experience.

“Extremely real, extremely brave,” one said.

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“Every Mom has to do what is best for them! Do not feel ashamed for not breastfeeding,” another fan wrote.

In her post, Waddell noted that there is a lot of societal pressure to breastfeed, but this time, she said, she listened to her gut and “did what was best for my child.” “He is soooo happy and that is all that matters,” she said.

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