Bottle fed the last one but not sure what to do with the next one

(16 Posts)

I tried BFing DD (now 2.3) in the hospital, was in a couple of days, and she and I really never took to it. At home, of felt like a physical battle to get her feeding and that it was all-consuming. It hurt, she cried a LOT, and poor DH just watched helpless.

I so wanted ot to be the simple feeding solution I was told (by other bfing friends and family) that it would be. I genuinely did not realise how hard I would find it.

Making the decision to bottle feed was easy, and all three of us took to it perfectly. Never found it a hassle.

Im.now pregnant (early days) with number two and the thought pf not even trying to BF seems odd. I know I will more than likely end up FFing, but I quite want to try BFing again.

I explained this to dh who just doesnt understand - he remembers how painful and stressful I found it, and doesnt want me to put myself through it again. I dont want to approach it from the "its better for baby" angle as FFing DD has done her no harm whatsoever, and to say "its better" wpuld feel like what we offered dd wasnt good enough, even though I know it was.

The thought of not offering the new baby the breast seems odd - even though I know we will end up ffing anyways.

I dont know wjat to do

99redbafoons Sat 08-Mar-14 19:50:30

Hi Ken,

I'm in a similar position, tried BF DS (now 2.9) after a long labour and section, we really struggled. He would turn the other way at the breast and eventually on day 5 we switched to FF. I suffered terrible guilt (still do) even though I loved the structure of FF and the fact that DH could help out.

I am now 20 weeks pregnant, I would like to BF but honestly am put off by the every 2 hours, cluster feeding, how much it hurt but I know others who just take to it and never have any issues.

I will definitely try BF and like you, feel it would be odd to have the baby and not offer the breast but I don't think I will last. I think though, that but thinking that, I'm setting myself up to fail.

I also think I took BF for granted, I honestly thought I'd pick the baby up, stick a nipple in the mouth and that would be breast feeding sorted. I'm trying to read up on it and planning to go to a breast feeding group to try and educate myself but I just don't know if I WANT to breast feed enough to get through the hard times which I assume there will be. I know I will give up at the first hurdle because I know where I am with FF.

Sorry to have hijacked, I just feel I'm in a similar position and wanted to say I can totally get how you feel.

No no im glad theres someone else out there who jas been through it.

Im not really the kind of person who would go to clubs/groups for assistance - im a "if I cant do it on my own then so be it" type of person. Also, in the middle of the night I cant ask someone to come and help.

99redbafoons Sat 08-Mar-14 20:01:40

No, I know what you mean, the group I'm planning on going to is before the baby is born to get tips.

Do you think you could just offer the breast when baby is born and take it feed by feed after that?

Scraggyspanner Sat 08-Mar-14 20:03:12

Hello all,

I'm in the same position (minus the pregnancy!) I have an 18 week old whom I didn't manage to BF. We had problems with latching in hospital and not great support so left on day three having admitted defeat and given a bottle.

It's a decision I struggle with every day. I wish I'd tried one more day and I wish I'd tried a bit harder. I also feel an awful lot of guilt about it. I also struggled with other mums' perceptions of me having not tried hard enough and that they deserved to be BFing because they had tried harder than me or wanted it more than me.

However, I have a healthy, happy baby who has always slept well and been calm and settled and I don't imagine that would be the case if we were struggling to BF.

I also, though, can't imagine not putting a future baby straight to my breast after birth, but also expect myself to fail. I would also intend to attend some BF groups and get some support before the birth next time to see if that helps.

Not much help I'm afraid but just another one in the same situation!

HumphreyCobbler Sat 08-Mar-14 20:04:07

You could just try on a feed by feed basis. And that way the baby will get colostrum which is worth giving before moving to formula.

Chunderella Sun 09-Mar-14 10:15:35

Congratulations on your pregnancy.

Regarding feeding, you don't have to decide now. Nothing stopping you just seeing how you feel when the baby is born- your boobs will be there if you want them, as will formula. Or, just breastfeed for the first day, or two days, or whatever you want. You don't have to sign up to doing it for years, it isn't all or nothing.

Sunnysummer Sun 09-Mar-14 10:26:26

Sounds like you have a good approach to be open either way. If you'd like to give it a shot, how about attending a few bfing groups before the baby arrives? It's quite normal and it may also help to hear the stories of people who have eventually made it work, and on the other side you have your experience of having ff working well! It's very normal to have pregnant women attend, and I definitely found it helpful to hear that often it was challenging in the early days, and also to know that I had some great contacts if it was tricky at the beginning. Having done both, I did find bfing much less faff than ffing, and a lovely snuggly evening ritual later on, but there were quite a few tears and a couple of bloody and blistered nipples on the way shock

Either way, sounds like you'll do a great job, and good luck with the birth and your new family member!

Nocomet Sun 09-Mar-14 10:31:52

All babies are different. DD1 hated BFing and never got the hang of it properly.

DD2 just knew what to do, first time I held her to my breast it was obvious she was trying the right things. Second time she just fed.

Yes I got sore nipples and yes there was swearing, but not for one moment did DD2 give the option to do anything, but EBF.

TheKnightsThatSayNee Sun 09-Mar-14 10:44:54

If I was you I'd try for a few days then at least the baby gets the colostrum and then you know you've tried. But that's if I was you. Only a you can decide what's best for you and your baby just don't let anyone make you feel bad either way.

mumofthreeboysS Sun 09-Mar-14 11:17:07

An insight from someone who's done/doing both for what it's worth? smile I have 2 older DC's (3 and nearly 5) and ff both of them. I started bf but each time it lead to cracked bleeding nipples and lots of tears. This time I went into it with the same mentality- I'd try it and if it didn't work I'd just go to formula. Well there were some tears but no cracked and bleeding nipples (bloody sore tho!) and now ds is 9 weeks and I'm still going. I had this Romantic view that it's be all lovely and easy but it has been bloody hard. Having said that I am pleased it's going well and proud that I've got this far.

But I still miss the ease of formula and the fact that it takes less time and it's easier to follow a Routome and know how much ds is having! (And being able to have more than one glass of wine!) but I don't see those as good enough reasons to stop- yet! And it is great to be able to feed and nurture him myself.

It is a very personal decision and don't feel bad about whatever you decide but I agree with whoever said above tht you should wait and see rather than deciding now. Good luck!

mumofthreeboysS Sun 09-Mar-14 11:20:29

Routine not 'routome'!

Yonineedaminute Sun 09-Mar-14 12:55:07

Ah I could have written your post op, but I am now 3 days post partum so into the decision itself.

Last time I gave up bf cold turkey at 3 weeks. It was just too painful, I dreaded every feed, I was never going to go to one of those breatfeeding drop in places. I started formula even though I had never eve considered it and it was the best decision I made. My reasons for giving up were pretty much purely selfish, I had enough milk and ds was happily feeding/putting on weight, but I was miserable. Ff was great, I enjoyed it, didn't find it a faff, ds loved it and is really healthy etc, I loved getting my body back!

This time I didn't know what to do. I knew I didn't want to bottle feed from birth but the thought of going for even a week was too daunting. So I told myself I would try bf in hosptial and then literally take one feed at a time. This time I have some cartons of formula in the cupboard, have got my steriliser and bottles all ready to go at a moments notice and I know I can switch at any time if I want. Last time I went cold turkey because I just didn't want anything, not even a pump, near my nipples, this time I might just introduce some bottles more slowly, so that I don't get quite so engorged (although I had no probs giving up immediately this time).

Anyway, as I said its day 3 and......I am still breastfeeding! But with absolutely no pressure on myself. I am making sure the latch is just right his time and caking on the lansinoh, as I didn't realise how damaged nipples could get until it was too late last time. Dd is feeding well - my milk hasn't even properly come in yet, but she has had lots of colostrum and my boobs are getting bigger by the second!

So my advice for you after that epic essay would be to just not put any pressure on yourself. If you want to bottle feed from birth, to for it. Of you want to try bf, just literally take it one feed at a time, don't put any pressure or expectations on yourself or your baby to make it to a week, a month or whatever. You know formula is fine and that your dd thrived on it, so you don't have that worry either. I don't know where we are going to be this time next week, but I am a hell of a lot more chilled about the whole thing!

Good luck wit the rest of your pregnancy smile

Yonineedaminute Sun 09-Mar-14 12:57:34

Sorry for the million typos there, hopefully you can see what I was front to say!

SaltyGoodness Mon 10-Mar-14 23:50:38

lovely story mumofthreeboys

OP does that sound like something your dh could be okay with... saying you just want to see how you go at least bfing colostrum for the first 2/3 days, no pressure, take it from there.

I just think it would take the pressure off you all to take it a day at a time and not have him worry too much about how you will be down the track. Of course it's 100% your decision but all the literature does say how having partners support is crucial to the success of bfing when it doesn't come easily

good luck smile

Thanks everyone for your advice and own experiences.

Taking things one feed at a time is perfect - no pressure on myself!

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