Welcome to the MAMAssistance Blog!

Welcome to MAMAssistance! I'm so glad you're here!

Welcome to MAMAssistance! This has been a two-year dream of mine, ever since having my son in September 2020. I am so excited to be entering this next phase of my journey, and I'm hoping to become part of yours. I'm Crystal Griffin, certified lactation counselor and founder of MAMAssistance. I started MAMAssistance because as I was starting my motherhood  and breastfeeding journey, the advice and guidance that I found just wasn't helpful — I absolutely loved being a mom and was completely enamored with my new baby, but it was really, really hard. However, the advice I found didn't allow for those two things to be true. What I did find helpful was talking to other moms who listened without judgment and helped me brainstorm solutions that were actually helpful. They never advised me to do what they did with their babies; they asked me what I was experiencing and helped me to come up with ideas that would be helpful for my family and me. That's what I hope to accomplish here for you. 

Let me introduce myself . . . 

I grew up in Massachusetts, and I'm still here. I stayed local for college, graduating from Framingham State University with a bachelor's in Psychology. Right out of college, I started working in group homes for at-risk youth. I enjoyed working with my clients but hated what the system was doing to them and their futures. Taking a break from human services, I started working in clinical research as a temporary pause with a plan to return to school. Well, I stayed in clinical research for 12 years - whoops! During that time, I met a boy and got married. When we decided to start a family, we came face-to-face with infertility. Not knowing how long it would take or if it was even possible to have a baby, I decided that I wanted something to show for the next few years and went back to Framingham State University to earn my master's degree in Counseling Psychology. I graduated in May of 2020, and wouldn't you know, I was pregnant and due in September! It took us three years, but a baby was finally on the way.

When my baby boy arrived in September, I was overcome with joy, and those days in the hospital were the happiest I have ever been. I was filled with purpose and a fierce love for my husband and this new human that would change my life completely. I also wanted to give breastfeeding a try but the lactation consultant I saw in the hospital was much less than helpful and I left the hospital in pain from repeated bad latches and no idea what I was doing. I thought this was just the way it was and I started thinking that maybe breastfeeding just wasn't for me. But something told me to keep going and I slowly started figuring it out on my own - but wow, it was not easy! I cannot stand the thought of other new mothers going through what I did when all that was actually needed was good AND accurate support along with some breastfeeding education that was actual factual. I now work in a hospital as a lactation counselor and I keep my negative experience in my heart so that I can give the very best support to the new moms I have the privilege of helping.

My happiness continued once we got home, but it was an adjustment. I was not the same woman who left for the hospital only days earlier. Fortunately, I never experienced postpartum depression or anxiety, but it was still really, really hard (also, COVID-19 was an added challenge for sure). However, since I didn't fit the criteria for a mental health disorder, I felt like I wasn't allowed to have a hard time; since I wasn't diagnosable, I was supposed to be showered in new mom bliss that's just not realistic, and that's okay!

In addition to breastfeeding support, I am hoping to bring you some extra support through different blog topics. I'll be writing about my experiences and perspectives on the challenges I faced and how I overcame my own obstacles. I'll also provide recommendations for things that I found helpful, including baby toys/products, books, podcasts, etc. 

My hope is that you find something helpful, or even something that empowers you on your motherhood journey. 


Until next time!