I have been helping families succeed since the birth of my first child, Isaac, in 2000, first as a childbirth educator, then as a La Leche League Leader, then as an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. My background is in international environmental policy, but when my kids came along, my heart took me in the direction of the birth and baby world. I truly love helping families come into their own. In my spare time, I knit, sew and garden, volunteer, and work for social justice. I am the proud mom of a Western Washington University senior, a Nova High School junior, and am a graduate of Brown University (BA in environmental studies) and University of Washington Evans School of Public Policy.
Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Policy, Brown University (1992)
Masters of Public Policy, Evans School of Public Administration, University of Washington (1995)
The Bradley Method (TM) certified educator (2001)
La Leche League Leader (2001)
International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, IBCLE (2009)
Personalized prenatal classes are either virtual or in home. In about a 90 minute class, we will go over all of your breastfeeding questions and lay the foundation for getting you off to a good start. If you had a rocky first experience with an older child, this is a great opportunity to troubleshoot and prepare for the second go round. Either virtually, using my secure, online portal MilkNotes, or in your home, I work with you, your support team, and your baby/babies until you feel like you’ve figured things out. I’m experienced with helping parents with sore nipples, engorged breasts, fussy babies, babies who won’t latch, slow weight gain, low milk supply, pumping, oversupply, and the baby (or parent) who are just a hot mess and need a compassionate, listening ear. My goal is to help you identify your breastfeeding or chestfeeding goals and to help you reach them in the most practical and pragmatic way possible. I have a specific interest and focus on families with low milk supply. Gently helping families come to terms with low milk supply and with feeding their baby in many different ways is something I truly cherish. In contrast, I have a lot of interest in and experience with oversupply. Whatever you throw at me, I can help. Families often call me a few days after their baby is born when breast tissue is painfully engorged. I have specific, hands on training in relieving severe edema. It is incredibly rewarding to walk in to a visit when a baby can’t latch to an uncomfortable, swollen breast, and walk out leaving behind a baby suckling contentedly and a smiling parent! I also specialize in identifying likely tongue and lip tie and connecting families with practitioners who can diagnose and treat it.
I was slightly skeptical at the beginning of my lactation journey when I first consulted with Betsy Hoffmeister due to some unpleasant experiences with prior lactation consultant; I was hopeful due to the positive experiences of others. I’m glad I followed my instinct and chose Betsy as my lactation consultant. Betsy is very knowledgeable and professional. She is thorough and client-focused in her interactions. I was in a rough place postpartum and spent a very long time trying to explain what I wanted at the first appointment. Betsy patiently listened at every session and helped me become focused on my goals. I consulted with her for the entirety of my lactation journey, and I became confident as a mother by following her advice. She also tailored her knowledge around my needs. Betsy was a teacher, healer, and counselor because she went extra 10 miles at every appointment. It was her wisdom and kindness that help pave the best outcome for my baby. Thank you, Betsy, for being a gem of a person, amazing professional, and a beautiful person (both inside & out) & it was an honor to be guided by you!
- Anjali J.
Working with Betsy was like working with an aunt or close family. Betsy made me feel extremely comfortable, was very professional, and helped so much in regards to getting my son to not tear apart my nipples. He had a tongue tie which made breast feeding incredibly hard. Since this was discovered very close to birth by Betsy I was Able to have the tongue tie snipped and made the breast feeding journey enjoyable for us both
- Bryanna A.
Betsy has been wonderful to work with as our lactation consultant. Our daughter had a lip and tongue tie and I had inverted nipples and a sluggish milk supply to start which made latching and feeding a bit of a roller coaster. We’re now at 6 weeks and breastfeeding with an easy latch and sufficient milk supply thanks to Betsy’s calm but confident guidance and support. We had our daughter outside of the hospital and Betsy has been working with us since day 2 of her life as our midwife recommended her. We felt at ease having Betsy come into our home and she’s the perfect mix of friendly/loving and professional. We highly recommend her!
- Rachel B.
Betsy is the lactation consultant I have on speed dial. I’m a first time mom and was having a very difficult go at breastfeeding. I saw 3 other lactation consultants before I met with Betsy. Betsy gave me the most practical, helpful advice and most importantly, hope that things will get better. She didn’t sugarcoat things (eg I had to pump at least 6x a day. Ugh) but I appreciated her sense of humor — I desperately needed after being in tears over breastfeeding for multiple weeks. I’ve gladly referred her to everyone I know looking for breastfeeding help!
- Joyce F.
Betsy was amazing from start to finish. I’m a first time mom and had so much anxiety 5 weeks into breastfeeding. She responded to my inquiry quickly and we had an appointment set up for her to come to my home. The home visit was great from beginning to end. She made me, my baby and my pets feel comfortable. She shared so much knowledge and helpful tips to really put my mind at ease and help me to know that I was successfully feeding my baby. Every new mom should see a lactation consultant, even if you think you know what you’re doing! Thank you Betsy xoxo
- Megan V.
When I reached out to Betsy via text, I was at such a desperate + low point in my breastfeeding journey. To be honest, I was ready to give up on breastfeeding because I was in pain and confused why I couldn’t get past the uncomfortable sensations I was feeling almost constantly (even between feedings). I had significant anxiety after walking through plugged ducts, mastitis and an abscess. I was so tired and worn down. I randomly Googled for a personal lactation consultant in our area and Betsy was the first page I clicked on. From the minute we started texting, I knew working with her was a great idea. When she arrived at our apartment for our masked in-person two hour session, I was deeply relieved. She listened. She asked me to explain my sensations and struggled and she just listened. And asked more questions. And listened. When I would ask for a quick fix or answer, she’d kindly say, “Let me keep asking questions and digging deeper. I want to make sure I’m getting to the root of what I think you’re experiencing!” None of my other lactation specialists I had worked with dug this deep. She addressed the emotional side of what I had been experiencing (my mind was blown! No one had addressed this side of breastfeeding and the biological link between emotions and sensations we feel in our breast) and gave me an abundance of tips for managing my pain. She gave me new breastfeeding position ideas that were more comfortable, she assured me what I was experiencing was normal and brought the most amazing encouragement. Within DAYS, the pain I was experiencing had ceased. My baby and I practiced her tips and our breastfeeding journey has been 100x better than before. It took work on our part, but Betsy’s guidance and wisdom and encouragement helped us get there (mind you, this was only after the ONE session we booked with her). For those of you reading this, Betsy is completely worth her fee for two hours. I wish I had seen her sooner, but am so grateful to have found her when I did. Thank you Betsy for your care, support and expertise. You’ve changed my breastfeeding journey for the better and I couldn’t be more grateful!
- Emily P.