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Table 1 Content of the interview guides

From: Qualitative, longitudinal exploration of coping strategies and factors facilitating infant and young child feeding practices among mothers in rural Rwanda

Period Questions
First week - For this new baby (the name of the baby), how long after birth was she/he breastfed?
- [If less than one hour] What do you believe are the advantages of breastfeeding the baby within the first hour after birth?
- What factors or circumstances enabled you to breastfeed the baby within the first hour after birth?
- [If more than one hour] What factors or circumstances made it difficult for you to breastfeed the baby within the first hour after birth?
- Was the baby given (by you or anyone else) anything to eat/drink before he/she was breastfed for the first time?
- [If yes] What was given to the baby?
- Why was it given to her/him? [Ask for each food/drink that was given to the baby]
- Who advised you to give this to the baby? [Ask for each food/drink that was given to the baby]
- At the moment, from birth till now, has the baby been given anything to eat or drink other than breastmilk?
- What was given to the baby other than breast milk?
- What was the reason that triggered you to offer your baby (drink or/food item)?
- Who advised you to do that?
4 months Now let’s talk about how the baby was fed after these few days. Please think back from the first week through the first few months
- Are you currently breastfeeding the baby? If yes, how often do you breastfeed?
- Do you breastfeed 1) on a fixed schedule, or 2) each time the baby asks to be fed, or 3) depends on the mother’s availability?
If not, at what age of the child did you discontinue breastfeeding? Why did you stop breastfeeding the baby?
- What type of food was given to the baby; if any, what were the reasons that triggered you to offer your baby ____________ (drink or food mentioned)?
- How did you learn about that? Did you learn it from someone?
- From the last visit, in the first week postpartum, till now, did you make some changes in the ways you feed your baby? If yes, what did you change?
- Did you have any problem or challenge (internal or external) impeding the ideal breastfeeding practices for your child? For every problem, probe to talk more about the problem.
- What elements do you believe help you to overcome those challenges? Is it something inside you (physical, mental, or spiritual) or something outside yourself (social and physical context)?
-
6 months Now let’s talk about how the baby was fed after these few months. From the last visit at fourth month till now, did you make some changes in the ways you feed your baby? If yes, what did you change?
Probing questions:
- Are you currently breastfeeding the baby? If yes, how often do you breastfeed?
- Do you breastfeed 1) on a fixed schedule, or 2) each time the baby asks to be fed, or 3) depends on the mother’s availability?
If not, at what age of the child did you discontinue breastfeeding? Why did you stop breastfeeding the baby?
- Have you given any food/drink to your baby in addition to breastmilk?
- If yes, what was the first food given to your baby?
- How old was your baby when you gave him/her this particular food or drink? If food was introduced before six months, ask why.
- How did you learn about that? Did you learn it from someone?
- Did you have any problem or challenge (internal or external) impeding the ideal breastfeeding practices? For every problem, probe to talk more about the problem.
- What elements do you believe help you to overcome those challenges? Is it something inside you (physical, mental, or spiritual) or something outside yourself (social and physical context)?
9 months Now let’s talk about how the baby was fed after these few months. From the last visit at 6 months till now, did you make some changes in the ways you feed your baby? If yes, what did you change?
Probing questions:
- Are you currently breastfeeding the baby?
- If yes, how often do you breastfeed 1) on a fixed schedule or 2) each time the baby asks to be fed 3) depends on the mother’s availability 4) other....
- If not, at which age of the child did you discontinue breastfeeding? Why did you stop breastfeeding the baby?
If complementary food was not yet introduced at 6 months:
- Did you start giving CF to your child?
- If the answer is yes, when did you start? What triggered you to start introducing complementary foods at that age? If the answer is no, then ask for reasons
- If yes, what was the first food given to your baby?
- Why did you decide to start with this particular food?
- How did you learn about that? Did you learn it from someone?
If complementary food was introduced at 6 months:
- What triggered you to start introducing complementary foods at 6 months?
- What was the first food given to your baby?
- Why did you decide to start with this particular food?
- Did you change anything in the food given to the child, how and when you feed the child during the last 3 months? If yes, what kind of foods (foods, dishes, drinks) is given to the child of about 9 months?
- Are there any foods, dishes, or drinks served only to the child between 6 and 8 months that is no longer given to the baby at the moment? If so, which types of foods, dishes, or drinks? Why?
- How much do you give to your child compared to your own amount (half what you consume, or a quarter)? How do you know that it is sufficient? If you realized it was necessary to increase the amount of food that you give the child, would you be able to do this? What difficulties would you have? What would help you to do this?
- How many times did you feed your baby solid and semi solid or soft food other than liquids during the day and night yesterday? How do you know this is sufficient to give … … times a day?
- [if the frequency is less than the recommended frequency for the age group] If you are advised to increase the number of times you feed the child each day and you agreed with this, would you be able to do it? What difficulties would you have? What would help you to do this?
- [if the frequency is much more than the recommended frequency for the age group] If you are advised to decrease the number of times you feed the child each day, what would be your reaction? Which person would you listen to?
- If complementary food is not yet introduced, what factors or circumstances make it difficult for you to provide CF to your baby? Were there any individuals or groups that disapprove or discourage you from providing CF to your baby?
- Did you have any problem or challenge (internal or external) impeding the ideal breastfeeding practices and giving CF to the baby? For every problem, probe to talk more about the problem.
- What are your current responses to those challenges? For every response, probe to talk more about the response. Are those responses your preferred ones? If not your preferred ones, what would be needed according to you to do this in a better way?
- Have you been advised on breastfeeding practices and CF by anyone during the last 3 months, if yes, who and type of advice received from each?
12 months Now let’s talk about how the baby was fed after these few months. From the last visit at 9 months till now, did you make some changes in the ways you feed your baby? If yes, what did you change?
Probing questions:
- Are you currently breastfeeding the baby?
- If yes, how often do you breastfeed 1) on a fixed schedule or 2) each time the baby asks to be fed 3) depends on the mother’s availability 4) other.....
- If not, at which age of the child did you discontinue breastfeeding? Why did you stop breastfeeding the baby?
- During the last 3 months, did you change anything in the food given to the child, how and when you feed the child?
- What kind of foods (foods, dishes, drinks) is given to the child of about 12 months?
- Are there any foods, dishes, or drinks served only to the child before that is no longer given to the baby at the moment? If so, which types of foods, dishes, or drinks? Why?
- How much do you give to your child compared to your own amount (half what you consume, or a quarter?)? How do you know that it is sufficient? If you realized it was necessary to increase the amount of food that you give the child, would you be able to do this? What difficulties would you have? What would help you to do this?
- How many times did you feed your baby solid and semi solid or soft food other than liquids during the day and night yesterday? How do you know this is sufficient to give … … times a day?
- [if the frequency is less than the recommended frequency for the age group]: If you are advised to increase the number of times you feed the child each day and you agreed with this, would you be able to do it? What difficulties would you have? What would help you to do this?
- Did you have any problem or challenge (internal or external) impeding the ideal breastfeeding practices and giving CF to the baby? For every problem, probe to talk more about the problem.
- What are your current responses to those challenges? For every response, probe to talk more about the response. Are those responses your preferred ones? If not your preferred ones, what would be needed according to you to do this in a better way?
- Have you been advised on breastfeeding practices and CF by anyone during the last 3 months, if yes, who and type of advice received from each?