LLL Philosophy & Membership

The essential philosophy of La Leche League is summarized in the following statements:
  • Mothering through breastfeeding is the most natural and effective way of understanding and satisfying the needs of the baby.
  • Mother and baby need to be together early and often to establish a satisfying relationship and an adequate milk supply.
  • In the early years the baby has an intense need to be with his mother which is as basic as his need for food.
  • Breast milk is the superior infant food.
  • For the healthy, full-term baby, breast milk is the only food necessary until the baby shows signs of needing solids, about the middle of the first year after birth.
  • Ideally the breastfeeding relationship will continue until the baby outgrows the need.
  • Alert and active participation by the mother in childbirth is a help in getting breastfeeding off to a good start.
  • Breastfeeding is enhanced and the nursing couple sustained by the loving support, help, and companionship of the baby's father. A father's unique relationship with his baby is an important element in the child's development from early infancy.
  • Good nutrition means eating a well-balanced and varied diet of foods in as close to their natural state as possible.

The ideals and principles of mothering which are the foundation of LLLI beliefs are further developed in The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, the most comprehensive handbook on breastfeeding and parenting ever published. It has provided needed answers to three generations of nursing mothers on every aspect of breastfeeding.
From LLLI publication No. 300-17, "La Leche League Purpose and Philosophy."

Membership is not required in order to attend meetings or receive breastfeeding help. However, La Leche League is a volunteer-based, non-profit organization that depends on fundraising and membership sales, along with the generosity of individuals, foundations, and corporations. We encourage all mothers who have been assisted by La Leche League Leaders to consider membership to ensure that other mothers receive the same support and Leaders are able to continue the mission of La Leche League.

With your support, LLL will remain strong in reaching out to breastfeeding mothers and their babies both now and in the years to come.