Vanessa Grimaldi says she 'felt alone' in new post on 'pressures of breastfeeding'

Vanessa Grimaldi welcomed her son, Winston, in September. (Photo via Instagram/@vanessagrimaldi30)
Vanessa Grimaldi welcomed her son, Winston, in September. (Photo via Instagram/@vanessagrimaldi30)

Vanessa Grimaldi is getting candid about early motherhood struggles.

On Wednesday, the 35-year-old "Bachelor" season 21 winner shared an Instagram Reel of herself retiring her breast pump paired with an emotional message about the pressures of breastfeeding and the "guilt" mothers face for choosing to formula feed.

The Canadian reality star welcomed her son, Winston, on Sept. 29 with her husband, Joshua Wolfe.

In the video, Grimaldi recorded herself tearing up as she packed her breast pump away in a box. "This morning I woke up feeling good, finally," the on-screen text read.

"I'm ready to retire my pump," she penned before explaining that her son "wasn't latching," and she was "barely" pumping 90ml per day.

Grimaldi revealed that she was recently diagnosed with mastitis, taking antibiotics, as well as feeling "emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted," after the loss of her grandfather.

"I've cried for two weeks straight, battling the same thought of exclusively formula feeding," she admitted. "I need to listen to what my mind and body need, and that's to be happy, healthy and present with Winston."

The Montreal-native paired her video with a powerful caption detailing her decision to formula feed going forward.

"My body couldn't keep up. Despite all the teas and herbs and other things I've tried." she penned to her more than 713,000 followers. "I am not sure where the pressures of breastfeeding all started and why the struggles aren't as commonly shared as the effortless breastfeeding photos spread on social media.

"I felt alone until I opened up. ... You and I are not alone. Mothers share so much of the same joys, anxieties and tears. Today, I decided to share this because I don't ever want another mother to feel alone in her breastfeeding journey, and to especially not feel guilty for formula feeding. Fed is best!"

Fans met Grimaldi's post with supportive messages thanking her for her transparency.

"You have nothing to be ashamed of. Formula-fed babies aren't at any disadvantage, so if your body is telling you not to breastfeed, then you've done the right thing for both you and your son," an Instagram user penned.

Another added: "You are doing an amazing job, mama!"

"You're doing amazing. He's so lucky to have you as his mama!" someone else chimed in.

"Fed is best," wrote another. "You're doing your best, mama, and that's all [a] baby needs."

"You're doing the right thing. The pressure to breastfeed is so intense. This will be such a great path forward for you and baby," a fan penned.

In October, Grimaldi got candid about another side of her postpartum journey.

The reality TV star shared an intimate black-and-white video of herself wearing a black bralette and adult diaper while holding her newborn son.

"My favourite outfit I've ever worn to date," she wrote. "My postpartum look: Greasy hair, adult diapers, chapped lips, a glowing smile, love in my eyes, a beaming heart and a body that gave me the most beautiful gift, my baby boy."

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