Is formula really the magical solution I think it will be?

(108 Posts)
Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:01:21

I have a 9 day old baby and I'm getting about 2-3 hours sleep on a night.
He settles fine in his Moses basket during the day, feeds every 2-3 hours.
He goes to bed when we go to bed about 11.30 pm then wakes up around 2.
He then feeds constantly till around 7 or 8 am. If he falls asleep on my boob I lay him in his Moses basket and he screams and starts rooting until I feed him again. Repeat constantly.
I can't do it anymore. I feel like leaving him in his crib to cry.
A few people have told me their baby slept longer on formula. Is it true?

qumquat Mon 03-Feb-14 10:24:01

When do babies tend to stop needing to cluster feed? Dd is nearly 4 weeks and it's killing me. A bit of washing up of formula bottles seems infinitely preferable to constant pain and no sleep to me, but trying to get to 6 weeks.

ditsygal Mon 03-Feb-14 10:31:28

I breastfed for about 4 weeks, then did a couple of weeks of expressing and feeding bm in a bottle. I have to say breast feeding nearly killed me - I got all the help I could find, but I had a little lump on my nipple to start with and I think this always was a problem as it started to bleed early on, eventually as my baby fed almost constantly my other nipple got cracked and bleeding too. I was in agony and crying all the time. Expressing was less painful but meant I seemed to get even less sleep as I had to feed him then express when I put him down.
Eventually I switched to formula - and for us it really was a godsend and saved my physical and mental health. I wish I had taken to breastfeeding better, but it didn't work out and I'm not going to beat my self up about it.
Do what is right for you. If I have a second baby, I will mix feed from early on to see if this helps me breastfeed for longer, and if it doesn't work out I'll switch fully to formula. It really isn't the end of the world. A happy mummy is the most important thing for a baby.

qumquat Mon 03-Feb-14 13:15:34

Thanks for your post ditsy gal. I'm so desperate to stop bfp but feel so guilty. But I cry every time dd wakes up I'm dreading feeding so much, and that can't be good for her either. All she sees is me crying. I wonder if I switch to formula she might occasionally see me smile.

Oly4 Mon 03-Feb-14 14:17:58

Qumquat, the situation you're in doesn't sound good for anybody. I also cried my way through breastfeeding. Formula feeding saved my sanity. If you really want to continue bf is there anybody can help? Can you express and get somebody else to give your baby a bottle? If you do switch to formula, don't feel guilty. My children are thriving on the stuff! Maybe try mixed feeding first? Yes your supply will drop for those feeds you replace with a bottle but I know plenty of people who've mixed fed for months with success. Do what you feel is right xxx

AnythingNotEverything Mon 03-Feb-14 16:57:07

At four weeks you may have breastfed long enough for your supply not to be negatively affected by mixed feeding. Give it a go. You could express of use formula. It is not poison! Plenty of people successfully mix feed. It can also lead to a reduction in supply, but only you can say if that's something you're happy with.

If it's still very painful at four weeks I'd suggest you get your latch checked. Is there a breastfeeding cafe near you? Are you covering yourself in Lansinoh after every feed? At about five weeks I realised I needed to get DD to latch deeper. Even now at 15 weeks I have to re-latch her regularly to get a pain free feed as she naturally seems to favour a shallow latch.

qumquat Wed 05-Feb-14 01:21:45

Thank you. Yes latch is bad but no joy so far in getting a deeper latch. I've been to lots of bf cafés where I'm shown latching techniques but just can't make it work. Am giving a few bottles now to save my sanity. Although I know you shouldn't I feel like such a failure.

jellyandcake Wed 05-Feb-14 02:27:27

Am remembering the early weeks bfing ds1 and starting to feel a bit panicky. The cluster feeding through the night in the early weeks was so horrendous, however, I could sleep through the day...how will I manage this time with a 3yo? I don't understand how co-sleeping works - the advice is no duvet or pillow so how do you get comfortable and warm enough to sleep yourself even if baby does?

Going back to the OP - my baby never needed winding, it all came out the other end! Mw said that's very common for bf babies. Bfing for me 'clicked' ie became easy at about 8 weeks and it was so, so easy. I was so happy I stuck with it because it gave me so much freedom, never having to sterilize anything or pack up bottles in advance of going out. Also a big money saver! It was very hard 2 weeks in - the night before dh went back to work I didn't sleep at all as baby fed literally all night without a break. I cried all the next day! It got better. I am very apprehensive about going through this with a toddler to look after but it was definitely worth it and it calms down a lot.

My son was sleeping long stretches through the night at 8 weeks. He started doing 10hrs a night about 10 weeks in (and then it all went to shit in the 4month sleep regression, which hit at more like 3.5 months). It can and does happen with bf babies.

naty1 Wed 05-Feb-14 08:47:58

I had the same where she slept really well for a few weeks then started waking again. I wonder if it was just too soon to drop night feeds and supply dropped

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