Please help me feel less dreadful...

(20 Posts)
PotatoPolly Sat 03-May-14 06:46:11

I have been BF DS1 since he was born (5days).

We had no trouble, although the Dr diagnosed a tongue tie.

A few totally sleepless nights and seriously painful feeding led to some FF on the advice of a MW. Ds1 gulped the milk down, he was obviously starving sad

Tongue tie was snipped yesterday, but BF last night was still sore and drawn out- we had 2 periods of feeding for hours, ds was latching, coming off, getting frustrated, looking for my nipple, I was encouraging him back on, the whole thing resulted in ds1 getting frustrated and me getting upset because I couldn't satisfy the poor baby.sad overnight he has been FF.

DH and I have decided to try a combination of expressing and FF to help take the pressure off... Ds has slept well overnight and seems satisfied this morning. His nappies have been both wet and dirty.

Please just help me realise we're doing the right thing by me stopping bf? Deep down I know it's the right thing to do to keep ds full, I just feel so guilty after the midwives harping on preaching about bf. I'm sad to be losing the lovely time together during bf, but I was already coming to dread it sad. I'm so tearful over the whole thing, crying when feeding as he wasn't getting enough, cried when we decided to change to bottles and crying this morning now I've just given him a bottle of formula.

The midwife is coming today, and I need a bit of courage to stand up for our decision... Anyone?

ExBrightonBell Sat 03-May-14 09:03:43

If you have decided that FF is going to work better for you then you don't need to justify it to anyone. If the midwife queries you then you can just tell her that you are aware of the benefits of breastfeeding, but that you have decided to FF. If she pushes it just repeat yourself.

Having said that, it sounds like you aren't happy with the idea of completely stopping with breastfeeding. I would also say that some of the things you've described are normal. Babies do gulp down milk from a bottle, it's a reflex and doesn't mean they were starving hungry. That's why it's possible to over feed a FF baby, as some will keep taking more milk than they need.

The constant feeding you're describing is probably your baby building supply. It doesn't last forever, and it doesn't mean your baby isn't getting enough food.

Also, doing some FF doesn't mean the end of bfeeding. I had to use some formula when my ds was tiny as we had all sorts of feeding problems after a stay in hospital. We gradually moved back to exclusive bfeeding after I had a chance to heal. It also doesn't have to be all or nothing. Some women can mix feed without losing their supply, and do some bfeeding with some FF.

Have a look at the Kellymom website for lots of useful info about breastfeeding and overcoming difficulties.

Hi OP. It took me two weeks both times to get it sorted and I went through lots of similar experiences with both, not latching on, letting go and then crying and trying to latch on again etc etc, but eventually I/we managed it and it was brilliant.

I am not saying you shouldn't stop, you know how much you and your DH can cope with but I would say get some advice from a breast feeding helpline or person. That's what helped me to persevere when I was in the position you are in now. I was trying to hold my baby's head in place which she obviously hated!

It is SOOOOO hard when it doesn't seem to be working, I promise I understand that. Could you give it one last try and speak to a BF counsellor person?

Or maybe you could express and feed him that way?

Popalina Sat 03-May-14 09:21:52

Hi,

I am in the same situation, except 2.5 weeks post tongue tie and still can't bf. I put mine on as an intro to some feeds but she is still chewing and not emptying the breast before pulling off multiple times and falling asleep.it is incredibly painful. You gave him Formula because you followed your instinct and knew he wasn't getting enough. That to me says you are a good mum. TT babies are often not effective feeders. Mine was exactly the same. A four hour feeding session and a hungry baby is stressful.

I find it hard to come to terms with FF simply because this is probably my last baby and I had the same issues with baby 1. I know breastfeeding is great when it works but at the same time my baby seems content on the bottle and I am starting to feel like bfing is just for me now...

My first is fF after some breast milk and is a happy, healthy 2 yr old. He doesn't get anymore bugs than the others.

Got to go but message me if you want to talk it through.

PotatoPolly Sun 04-May-14 22:39:39

Thank you for taking the time to read and reply to my post.

We went to the mw who checked my latch, suggested a new position, helped with nipple shields and made me feel more positive about trying again. I gave it my best shot, but I now know now for sure that bf isn't the best option for me and my baby. I'm one big hormone as it is, & being a zombie on top won't help anyone.

The decision is made to ff ds1, & I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders!

Thank you for all your advice and support thanks

Popalina Mon 05-May-14 06:43:46

Hi potato! Congratulations for making the decision. It's a hard one to make but as everyone keeps telling me, happy mumma is better for baby.

BikeRunSki Mon 05-May-14 06:52:37

Potato, I ff both my babies after a week or two, and went through all the emotions and angst that you are. At 5 and 2 you could not tell which of their peers was ff and which bf. My two are fit, healthy, bright and happy. The top 3 best readers in my 5 yo's reception class were all ff. And you still get to cuddle them giving them a bottle!

There are many ways to nurture a baby. Feeding is just one of them.

Popalina Mon 05-May-14 06:55:18

Good post Bike!smile

GrumpyInYorkshire Mon 05-May-14 07:18:48

Oh potato, that sounds awful, you poor thing. Don't feel guilt about stopping bf. You've made the right decision for you and your family - now relax, get some rest and enjoy your baby.

FWIW, I went to hell and back to bf DS. I prioritised it over everything else and, after exclusively pumping for three months as he wouldn't latch, two hospital readmissions for weight loss and three bouts of mastitis, we eventually cracked it.

But am I glad we did it? Erm, not really. He's 18 months now and eats everything possible, so it debt seem to matter what sort of milk he had. His ff friends are just as strong and fit.

And when friends of mine talk about those early days, cuddling together, going for walks in the park, going to baby groups, I just feel sad. We missed out on lots of that as I was tied to the hospital-issue breastpump. I was also knackered, what with a hungry newborn and having to express every three hours round the clock. And the mastitis was hell!

Don't feel guilty about stopping. Breastfeeding is not the be all and end all. Good luck.

PotatoPolly Mon 05-May-14 07:44:48

Thank you so much everyone, I'm honestly so grateful for your support. This is why mumsnet is so amazing.

I've woken up this morning having been woken in the night a few times yet still feeling human, I have a clear head and in my heart I know we have made the right decision for us. already I'm not sure why I was beating myself up so much, but that's what hormones do to you I guess.

it's lovely to hear the positive stories about ff children, all the information provided to us so far only gives good stuff about bf and nothing good about ff.

Thank you all again smile

BikeRunSki Mon 05-May-14 11:09:34

Hey Potato You've made the right decision for you and your family. I never regretted ff either of my babies. When DS was a week old I was still in hospital wailing "but bf is so good for babies....." whilst the paed was getting DS ready to go to SCBU. In a moment of clarity I saw the irony in this and realised what I had to do. Never looked back.

The most important thing for your children is that their mum is happy and healthy.

On to practical matters, I found the fridge to go really useful for night feeds and days out. It is a bottle cool bag which keep bottles fridge-cold for 8 hours. I'd warm the bottles up under the duvet, under the bathroom hot tap or under my jumper.

And that I said earlier about there being more than one way to nurture a baby - it was my NCT leader who told me that!

You poor thing. I'm glad you seem so much more positive today.
Congratulations on your baby smile Lovely time of year to be born, I remember hanging all DS's (end of April) tiny sleepsuits on the line soon after he was born, and we have had most of his birthday parties in the garden.

violetlights Mon 05-May-14 12:47:35

You ARE making the right decision and I wish I had been brave enough to make that decision with my DS.

Due to a horrible ventouse delivery he was born with a huge cut on his scalp which made it impossibly painful for him to bf - but I was so brainwashed that I thought of he didn't bf it would make me a bad mother, and him disadvantaged in all the ways the nhs tell you. When I left hospital the head midwife told me I try to bf FOR AN HOUR before giving him formula. I ran myself into the ground, got every bf complication going and spent vast amounts on lactation consultants. Eventually he did and we were exclusively bf at 2.5 months. Then self-weaned at 6 months!!! (Yes that does happen...) I totally regret the incredible stress I put upon him and myself and our new relationship.

I still cry when I think that I didn't just grab the nearest bottle and feed him to his heart's content.

PotatoPolly Thu 08-May-14 10:20:04

just one last update I promise!

ds1 is now exclusively formula fed, sleeps for around 3 hours between feeds, which I'm happy with at 10 days old, and is such a content little baby.

thank you so much for all of your advice and support, your personal experiences of ff babies thriving really helped me in making the decision smile

I'm off now to make up a bottle, & actually couldn't be happier about it grin

Popalina Thu 08-May-14 15:38:42

Good potato! I am doing mixed feeding for another few days and then will go ff, like my son was. Only slight issue is missy seems to demand boob and refuse bottle sometimes which is an issue as boob is soooo painful!

violetlights Thu 08-May-14 20:13:15

Hurray for you Potato!

DeadCert Thu 08-May-14 20:24:16

Hooray Potato!! DS is nearly 3 and I beat myself up for so long about giving up breast feeding on day 3, he'd literally throw his head the other way from my boob. I compared myself to every other Mum and blamed myself, felt so guilty he'd been born by section....yadda yadda yadda.

Anyway, as I said - he's 3 next month and ruddy marvellous. He also ate a Cheerio he found under the sofa earlier, his nutrition sources have changed somewhat. It's an emotional time after you've given birth, be kind to yourself potato and enjoy your baby. I'm pregnant with number 2 now and regret all the time wasted on worrying about things that really didn't matter. I plan on trying to BF again but I'm not worried if it doesn't work, I want to cuddle my baby more, and if we FF again, I'm looking forward to having those starey, smiley, cuddley feeds!

BikeRunSki Thu 08-May-14 21:05:48

Potato good for you! I remember the huge sense of relief when we decided to ff exclusively. Both times!

Well done for giving it one last try and well done for making the best decision.

Aw I want to cuddle a baby now.....! Give yours a cuddle from me!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now