People say BF is easier. How is that?(73 Posts)
I have done both and FF is a (very very tempting) doddle in comparison to this. But I see many people say BF is easy, so easy, can be tough at the start but easier long term and so on. That's definitely not my experience. Tell me which you find easier and when and why?
I can't tell you which I found easier as I only bf. However, I did think it was very easy to go out, or indeed, feed in the middle of the night, as there was nothing to sterilise, and nothing to heat up.
No shopping, washing, warming, paraphernalia, sterilising or planning. Portable, free.
Breastfeeding definitely easier for me.
Yup, I would say BF is easier in terms of not having to be organised with feeds, heating milk, having enough stuff with you, getting out of bed at night etc.
However, it is bloody hard work while you are getting the hang of it.
i also did both, i liked for breast feeding you didnt have to carry bottles/water/formula around/ worry about cleaning the bottles etc you literally just found somewhere to sit and fed baby
formula helped me see how much baby was feeding which i couldn't tell with breast feeding.
mastitis was my downfall with breastfeeding it got to painful and in the end i effectively gave up breast feeding dd2 as i was in so much pain and she was struggiling to gain weight, however if i was to have another child i would certainly start with breast feeding it is cheaper and means less stuff to carry around.
I found bfing very hard for the first month or 2 but after that it was a complete doddle. No washing up, mixing bottles, packing bag for going out, risk of running out if you're out longer than planned etc. Way of quieting a grumpy baby/toddler in the time it takes to unclip a bra. Best parenting tool ever!
I can see though that if you have lots of family around to help out and a baby that falls into a predictable and consistent feeding routine then FF could be pretty easy too but neither of those things were the case for me so I am extremely glad I managed to bf
I mix fed my DS, although mainly BF until 6 months, but it was lovely being able to leave a bottle with someone else to feed him, or DH doing a night -time feed every now and then.
I EBF DD for 15 months as she flatly refused bottles/cups and wouldn't take formula or expressed milk. That was bloody hard as I couldn't go out on my own and I had to do every feed all the time.
However, I agree that in terms of no sterilising, measuring, carrying stuff out and about and cost BF is definitely easier. It is nice to have a choice though
I did both. Found breast feeding great when I got the hang of it. Ds2 stopped when he was two. No paraphernalia required, totally portable.
I'm currently bfing my second and my first bf for 17 months and never had formula or even a bottle, so I can't say whether ff is actually more difficult, however, I've never made up formula or sterilised a bottle, and having to figure those things out would certainly put me off giving it a go.
Making up formula seems full of rules about bacteria in the powder, the temperature of the water, hotspots, teat sizes, different types of bottles, different types of formula (comfort? hungry baby?) that I wouldn't know where to start. And how do you sterilise a bottle? The displays of sterilisers, Milton, bottle brushes look quite intimidating.
For night feeds, there seems to be loads of threads about waiting for kettles while baby cries, thermos flasks and so on.
If you go out and about, you have to pack milk, bottles, no idea what you do about hot water, what if you're out a long time and you run out of milk?
I just get my boob out and shove it in!
Obviously bfing can bring problems, but the vast, vast majority of feeds, if you bf for a long time really are no hassle at all, all the equipment is already there and set up.
Much much less faffing with BF.
I only breastfed so difficult to compare, tho ds did have some bottles. I think bf is practically easier, certainly when they're a little older, but mentally can be challenging. I struggled to leave them and felt it was only me who could settle them. But that might have been the case if I'd ff, I don't know. Was very stressful when I went into hospital when ds was 4m.
I formula fed my eldest two and breast feed my youngest. I found it incredibly hard to start with, tounge tie, thrush, mastitis all problems to overcome but now I don't need to think, its just boob out nipple in. I can go out without making sure I have bottles etc, there is no waste, I don't have to worry about running out, no bottles to wash but for me its the weight loss that cinches it, I can eat what I want and the weight is sliding off. Easier than worrying about losing the baby weight.
FF easier in that it didn't make me feel weird / depressed / weepy at every feed, and DH could do some of the feeds. I actually really enjoyed FF as a special time cuddling the baby and focusing on them, without my body flooding with hormones that made me want to kill myself, which is what happened with BF.
It's only easier of you find it easy in the first place. FF is never difficult, just faffy and requires a bit of forethought and preparation. BF can be easy peasy of the most fucking difficult thing ever. I just depends on you.
I found breastfeeding easy, and much easier than formula (or even cow's milk once DS was over 1). No need to wash bottles, no planning ahead around feeds, no worrying about having enough milk in, being able to just spontaneously stay out all day or overnight somewhere. No worrying about waste, expense, how much he was taking, getting out of bed in the night. Oh and no concerns about health, safety, sterilising, food poisoning, keeping things cool or heating it up. When I have babysat my bottle fed nephew I have found it much harder, and that was with using readymade cartoons.
Bf is often painful at first, but is definitely easier overall as you just whip up your top and get going. So easy when out and about and for nightfeeds (never even got out of bed with my two - bedside cot and sleeping). Things like going out for a country walk - no preparation or faffing with bags needed, just put baby in carrier and when he's hungry lunch is ready and waiting, at perfect temperature for him.
Ff is major faff and to do it 'properly" you've got to put boiling/very hot water on to the powder to sterile it. Difficult when out and at night, plus the expense of bottles, teats, formula etc.
I only breastfed, but did have to express and bottlefeed DS EBM as he needed meds mixing with milk.
For me the Positives of BF:
always correct temperature,
always with me in the correct amount/concentration,
The negatives of bottle feeding:
sterilising (although did not do this after leaving hospital),
having to refrigerate/freeze milk
having wasted milk and meds,
worrying that the amount was not right,
At the pool (at an aquanatal session; I don't just flop my baps out willynilly) I once sat on the edge dangling my feet in the water whilst BF and someone said ooh what a faff wouldn't it be easier to FF.
What could possibly be easier than pulling your cozzy down and staying where you are. She obviously thought to get out the pool, go and get a bottle, get it to correct temperature then feed grizzly baby would be easier. HOW?
How old is your baby OP? I can see that FF would have been easier in the beginning, but for me although I have never FF I found BF so much easier than remembering to take drinks and snacks out later on, probably because I'm forgetful! But for me it's easier because there's no preparing, no having to think in advance, if you unexpectedly stay out longer than planned you don't have to worry about finding milk from somewhere. The milk can't go off and it doesn't just feed them, it also calms them down and even gets them to sleep, although I'm sure that a bottle does these things too (and perhaps that's based on personality). I never worried about how much he was getting because I knew if he wanted more it would be right there.
Agree with nearly everyone else - it was hard work to establish at first (which I later found out may well have been due to having an EMCS & DS having serious medical problems which may have caused considerable 'stress' to me when we found out) - however, once out of the hospital environment & back home it was fine after the first couple of weeks.
I was by no means a 'militant' breast feeder and I preferred to feed in private (lovely excuse to go to my bedroom anytime I wanted ) but being lazy there was no faffing about with sterilising etc. And its free. I did then start mixed feeding and would give my DS a carton of milk most days if it suited me. I don't know why mixed feeding isn't promoted more, then you get the best of both worlds .
It depends on the mother and baby.
I ebf ds for the first 6 months, although he had quite a lot of expressed breast milk so there were bottles as well. Mixed fed from 6 to 12 months, but again mostly bf.
I found bf really, really hard to start with and had a horrible time with latch, infection, mastitis, oversupply etc, however ds was thriving so I didn't have to worry about him gaining or reflux etc which would have probably been the nail in the coffin.
Once the latch stuff got sorted/bearable then it was such a piece of piss and I'd often pop out with ds in a sling and a wee bag with a nappy and a pack of wipes . He had a pretty predictable feeding schedule and slept through at about the same rate as my ff friends.
I found expressing very easy after lots of practice in the first few weeks so going out an leaving a bottle wasn't hard. Yes I did all the night feeds, but so did many of my ff friends.
Horses for courses, but having the milk on tap and not having to prepare bottles, even if I'd gone the shortcut route and made up a day's supply at once, made it easier.
DD is 11 months and nearly fully weaned now, I really miss being able to leave the house with just a couple of nappies and my boobs. Now I have to remember food and water etc. As far ad I can see, ffing would have been like this from the day she wad born, poor DD would have been half starved, I am a terrible scatter brain. Can't forget my boobs!
Baby is almost 6mo.
Baby sleeps about 2 hours at a time through the night, I can bf lying down and not get out of bed but I can't sleep through night feeds as dd latches on/off every couple of seconds. Night feeds take about 40-50 minutes. If I had a carton and a sterilised bottle on the bedside table I could feed her lying down and not get out of bed and cut the feeding time in half. Plus someone else could do it!
Carrying stuff around, well I need to grab a bag and pack enough nappies, wipes, clothing changes for both of us, medications for as long as I think we're going to be out - if I want to stay out somewhere I can't if I don't have the clothes/nappies/meds so it's not so much more difficult to add a bottle and carton in there.
I always have to think about what I'm wearing so I can manage to feed when I'm out and about but then I have a boob-refuser so lots of the time I end up with a starving screaming baby when out somewhere who won't eat, and I have to go home, express and bottle feed - which is a heck of a lot of crying for dd. If I take expressed milk out to guarantee I won't need to come home in the middle of something I can only plan to be away for about 5 hours because if DD refuses to feed for longer than than I am very uncomfortable and I need the breast pump if she won't latch. We often waste expressed breast milk if she then refuses again and it can't be reused. I am not great at expressing but I need to pump at least twice a day to keep up supply.
Cost wise I have bought pump, bras, storage bags, bottles, steriliser, I take supplements, vests, BF books, BF pillow, probably works out about the same.
I think I'm getting a raw deal!
That does sound like you're getting a raw deal! When you say she refuses the boob is that a latch thing?
Idaclair I have worked in a SCBu and I think feeding a baby expressed breast milk is the most labour intensive thing ever invented. I am in awe of the mums who do this even for a couple of weeks.
Bfing on demand is a thousand times easier. I have a friend who FF her first and started bfing her second because she thought it would be easier. It was a complete nightmare, her Ds' s feeding difficulties had nothing to do with bf ing and she ended up having to make and sterilize at least 12 bottles a day as he would only take an onze or two at a time, day and night !
I think some babies are just easier to feed than others TBH.
Sorry she switched to formula because she thought it would be easier
In the early days of DD bf was easy. Never got sore, short feeds, she podged up like you wouldn't believe - it was textbook.
I did spend a fortune on new tops, magazines (daily) and M&S ready meals as I was cluster feeding every evening and not cooking. So not cheaper, but less faff than cleaning bottles. I was fed up with it by 5 months though.
BFing DD, my second child. I sort of mixed fed DS. My experience is not normal, as with DS FF was MUCH easier - with him, I was pumping round the clock, sterilizing pump gear as well as bottles, feeding him (in between pumping) and generally working myself into a hysterical sleep-deprived mess. And my supply conked out just as I'd managed to start successfully BFing (he didn't latch properly until he was 12 weeks old). If someone had gently prised me away from the pump and given me a tub of formula, we'd all have been a lot happier.
But DD, after a few weeks of trickiness, is exclusively BF. Much easier in dead of night, and I hated all the bottle faff anyway. But now not easier as, at 8 months old, she won't take a bottle or cup and I am dying for a night out...
I've only BF, but I do know that once he started eating real food I found it really difficult to remember to have food/drink with me vs just loading him up and going whereever I was going, and not worrying about how long I'd be (because the food was on-tap, with me so we could stop and eat whenever we wanted)
Plus, I'm rubbish at managing to run the dishwasher often enough to have clean plates/cutlery for myself - the pressure of having to have however many sterile bottles you need per day would just about kill me!
I gave DS1 bottles (mostly expressed, some ff) until he was big enough for boob, and DS2 full time boob.
I found boob much easier, once the tricky first six weeks are out of the way. Chief is not needing to plan ahead. If baby wants feeding you just feed. No sterilising, no counting scoops and losing count and starting again , no boiling kettles and waiting for them to cool down, in fact no need to move at all. You can bf fast asleep (I did/do this lots).
Also you get to eat extra which is always good.
I've never FFd a small baby so I can't compare. I was also really lucky and had no issues with bf even at the start. I did get a lot of blocked ducts with ds2 but only after about a year - and they stopped after a while too.
I love bf, it's so so so easy, to me - it's always there, comforts them, keeps them quiet, gets them to sleep, it's the right temperature, no sterilising is necessary, no measuring, no washing up
if I was forced to ff I'm ashamed to say I'd run out of clean bottles constantly just like we do with plates especially like now, with a 6 week old and no time or hands free to wash up or cook. In fact I've never been able to cook and follow recipes, do you know what, breastfeeding is like someone coming in and saying, 'hi! You can now cook without measuring or shopping for the ingredients, without any measuring, no precision at all, and it'll turn out perfect! And you don't have to wash up after!'
I didn't stop with ds2 till he was nearly 5 and at school. I hated having to remember to take food with us once they began eating.
Horses for courses though. Also the getting up in the night - argh. I like being able to stay horizontal and just roll over slightly! I think I'd die of exhaustion otherwise.
I have had to buy some proper vests this time though as other babies were summer born. And my stomach was in better condition
That's been the only real outlay...I bought bottles before having him too in case for some reason it went wrong this time.
You just can just feed where ever and when ever the baby needs it.
If DD1 wants to go to the park after nursery that's fine, if a friend wants to go for coffee fine, if the stupid car breaks down in the middle of nowhere that isn't fine, but it's still way less stressful knowing you haven't got a screaming hungry baby to deal with too!
Bf was absolute godsend when DS picked up d&v bug. It's really hard to starve a child under 2. No need to with bf and the amazing ingredients speed up recovery.
Also you get amazing endorphin rush when you haven't fed all day and give them a bonding feed when you pick them up from nursery.
Once I got past 6 months BF felt easy. Boob out, feed, done.
When they were ill, give them bf which comfort and fed them especially when they lost their appetite. Also knew I was helping them get better.
I used to make up ff for my sister and found it a right pain - getting the temp right, and what about when you go out? I'd just have to pack nappies and clothes and done.
Fish, have you tried a straw and cup?
Lean out of bed
Put baby on boob
Lean over to return baby to basket
Back to sleep
What could be easier (once it stops hurting obvs)
I have only ever formula fed so like other posters can't really compare, but I never found making up bottles, cleaning bottles a hassle. I found it as difficult as making a cup of tea and I have to wash dishes any way so the bottles were just an extension of that. It's just what you're used to, I suppose.
Sounds like you've got a trickier deal but it was much easier for me. I never bothered with bottles and expressing for ds2 or ds3 - I had enough washing up and stuff in my bag so an extra bottle wouldn't have fitted among the usual baby+toddler stuff.
I was walking to toddler group with a mum and half way down the hill she gasped "I've forgotten her bottle of milk!" so back up the hill she went while I carried on with my boobs full of milk. I'm one of those people who would have forgotten the bottle/carton so it was one less thing to worry about.
Bf is only easier if you don't have problems bf. If it doesn't come easily too you, then it (and expressing) is the most miserable and soul-destroying thing you could ever experience.
Doing the bottles is not hard, and it's no more hassle to pack a clean bottle and a carton as it is to pack a couple of nappies. The "hassle" of FF is really overstated. Yesterday I was out with a mate and I had a bottle ready and in DS' mouth in the same time it took her to lift her top, unlatch bra and get him to latch.
FF is way WAY easier than trying to bf a baby who isn't keen on the idea. I hope I can bf DC2 so I can really compare the two.
As I wasn't expecting to FF it was scary at first, but now it's a complete doddle! Honestly it is as easy as changing a nappy. After DS goes down for the night I listen to some nice music, wash and sterilise his bottles (done in 8 mins in a microwave steriliser), and make up the next day's bottles. It's actually quite relaxing in it's methodical nature! And on a chilly night it's nice to hold a warm baby in my left arm and a toasty warm bottle in my right.
Much like bf I think, seems daunting initially but then you do it without a second thought. To me the thought if trying to get DS to latch actually makes me shudder.
The expense is the worst part of FF, I think. But then again you don't have kids because they're cheap, right? The best part of FF is on a Sunday morning when I hear DH say "you stay in bed darling, I'll get him up and feed him"
Many people I know mix feed and they do get the best of both worlds I think!
Iggly in fairness I don't think I would consider bf easy if it took 6 months for it to become easy!
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Also forgetting formula is not that common. For me it'd be like forgetting the baby! Wherever DS goes, a bottle goes too. Easy!
Basically horses for courses I reckon. You make the feeding style you're doing easy for you because you're doing it 5+ times a day.
Actually this makes me wonder, for DC2. How long generally is it ok to accept bf to be hard for until you switch to ff? 6 weeks? Christ any longer than 6 weeks of what I went through with DS (only managed 2 weeks) would give me PND for sure.
I think it depends how organised you are - I did used to forget nappies on occasion when we were out and even when I didn't I used to just leave them in the bag constantly which you can't do with milk.
I don't think there is any question of when is it acceptable/unacceptable. I wouldn't judge anyone who decided to FF for any reason at any age. But it's certainly not normal or expected for BF to be difficult, minus the whole frequent feeding thing, past the first few weeks and I'd urge anyone suffering to seek help - specialist help - if they want to continue because quite often the initial support mothers come across with BF is inadequate and sometimes even harmful.
Much much easier! Less faff, no forward planning, totally stress free (after the first few months anyway - ds had a tongue tie, but that's a whole other story). Best of all, when you get acute gastroenteris, your baby doesn't. Happened to me twice, both times the doctor said he'd be protected and he was. Magic.
The other thing that's great is that when you look at the terrifying list of synthetic ingredients on a packet of formula you don't have to worry what you're actually putting in your child.
Bertie I needed you at my house 3 months ago!! Instead of the
witch doctor fucking useless lactation consultant who said that I had to bf, because bf babies are always better bonded to their mothers and refused to return my calls when I said I was considering switching to formula as I was so exhausted from round-the-clock expressing. I'm temped to name and shame her on MN I'm still so furious.
And it's true I'm a bit of a Type A over-organised person so perhaps that helps with all the FF stuff!
OneHundredSeconds - it would be easier to stay asleep and let DH feed the baby
DD has always been a boob refuser. She doesn't stay latched on for more than a couple of sucks unless she is very sleepy or the sun is in capricorn (ie totally randomly). She takes bottles (of EBM) fine. Suck, drink, job done, happy. I didn't start feeling let down or a milk response to her suckling until she was three months old, she would suck a tiny bit and then drop off screaming, and again and again. She still does the same now only with added flashing of my boob to everyone in the room.
Even when she did go for a long determined suck lots of the time she would come off without ever having swallowed. She has bad reflux and was branded failure to thrive, still below birth weight at 8 weeks. I'm not pumping for her, she BFs from source the majority of the time but feeds take either seconds or hours, I get stuck all kinds of places feeding her, on/off for ages, or she refuses totally, and I end up with a hysterical screamer and no way of comforting or feeding her, and I have to literally drop everything I'm doing and take her home. As you might expect from this I've also had mastitis several times, twice was infective needing antibiotics, and we've had thrush from those.
And still no more than 2.5/3 hours sleep in a row for months and months. zzz. Hence just wondering what is easy about this, do you think it will become easy one day? Because I'm nearly at 6 months and I am still hating every minute of it.
Zara she sounds terrible!
OP something is not right with her latch - it doesn't sound like she is "refusing" more that something is stopping her or making it painful, which might be something like tongue tie (very well heard of these days but commonly missed by HCPs) or lip tie or bubble palate (which can cause similar problems but less known about and even more likely to be missed) or even some kind of allergy to something appearing in your milk - although I'd have thought this less likely if she's happy with Ebm. This then leads to feeding becoming a negative experience for her which may be why she refuses outright sometimes even though you know she's hungry.
I don't think in your situation it will become easy by itself - you need to get her looked a by someone who knows about lip & tongue ties. You can also have a look yourself - here are some links.
OneHundredSeconds - it would be easier to stay asleep and let DH feed the baby
But he has to go to work. I don't. Once I'm back at work it's even Stevens, until then il'l do nights. Suits us
Also, for us, and only us, I'd wake anyway when the baby cried, or snuffled or whatever. I'd only semi wake if doing the grab baby / feed thing, whereas is dp had got out of bed to bake a bottle I'd have been wide awake anyway
I'm a very light sleeper, I find it hard to go back to sleep after being woken. I treasure sleep above most other things. The anticipated disruption to my sleep was probably one of my most acute concerns before having a baby
In the event I found the disruption to my sleep minimal and as a result was relatively relaxed and rested in those scary few months
That's just me though, I appreciate everyone has different priorities and alternative ways of addressing them
Unfortunately I have to work too,more than he does. I don't have a job that offers maternity leave, wish I did
Thanks for the information about tongue tie etc, DD had a tongue tie which was snipped at 7 weeks, many of our problems have carried on and on much longer than that. But she has been watched feeding and latching by I think 6-7 people who really know what they are doing from lll leaders to bf consultants to lactation specialist mws, all say latch fine (and one of the things I've never suffered from is painful feeding, never felt so much as a nipple twinge even through mastitis, just felt like I had flu)
Anyway its all just been put down to reflux and painful feeding.
Thank you anyway. I am pleased so many people find feeding so easy. I wish it was something I could enjoy but it's a horrible chore here that limits my life horribly
I bf ds for 15 months, after getting over the first 5 weeks of hellish pain and soreness it was a joy once I got into the swing of it. I was looking forward to bf my dd who arrived 4 months ago. It was as I expected at first, soreness pain etc. she had a slight tongue tie which was snipped but instead of things getting easier they got worse. She was screaming and crying through each feed, constantly clamping and yanking on my nips. It was so painful, demoralising and depressing.
Turns out it is silent reflux, since being on meds and changing her sleeping position things have turned around but this is 3 months in, it was like a crazy endurance test! It's now nice more often than not.
Yes screaming and crying through each feed, sometimes refusing outright, most times throwing up the majority of what has gone in. Night time feeding means full sheet changes nightwear changes, big light on, everyone out of bed, the whole lot.
DD's been on various combos of all the meds, this one is the best so far in that she puts on weight with it but none have decreased the fussiness.
She feeds happily from a bottle.
Then bottles is it Ida. That's what works for you and a person should do what suits them
In the whole big scheme of things it's a teensy weensy no tangible factor [looks ruefully at bf / blw / organic weaved lentil raised DS filling his face with donuts and sugary juice whilst watching trashy tv and wearing cheap, possibly unethically produced clothes]
Sorry, I hope I'm not being flippant but I don't think anyone should beat themselves up over something that just doesn't work for them snd their DC
the first few years are so filled with worry and strife, if we could only go with the flow and accept that our needs ad well as our babies are also a huge factor in being a happy, balanced parent life would be more pleasing
I've done both and the jury's out. Ff not such a hassle as people claim, bf not always easy. 12 weeks in and getting chewed - agony!
ida I think you've really tried with the bf. I'd have given up months ago under those circumstances.
Back to op's question. I think if you just used those wee ready made cartons ff would be as easy as bf. i bf and whilst it is easier it can be a hassle to find a place to sit, baby out pram in cold, baby flash boobs to world. My baby is 9 months old and lots of her wee pals will take a bottle handed to them now. Not that I think babies should just get on with it but sometimes it would be nice to not have my boobs all over starbucks.
Expressing = pain in butt. About 3 months I decided if a bottle was required (e.g out with dad) I'd use formula. I hated pumping away to then have to resign myself to not having produced enough for a night feed but I'd had to stay up late sterilising and pumping. Aarghhhh!
I'm killing myself to try to breastfeed right now and it's literally the bloody hardest thing I've ever done. We've spent tons of money on different accessories, consultants, even surgery for our child as the NHS put us off for tongue tie surgery, even though diagnosis happened Day 1 in hospital (I have a thread elsewhere on here). FF would be so much cheaper!!
If I end up FF (and I hope I can at least express), a big part of the relief will be not having to deal with the guilt and shame heaped upon me by lactation consultants etc. None of them seem to care if someone's had major surgery, a difficult delivery, need rest to produce milk, or so on - it's all about the breast no matter what.
What scares me is that I'm starting to resent my baby for not being satisfied at the breast, despite all our medical issues. I feel like a huge failure. Good thing I've not got PND or I'd really be in a state!
I haven't FF but I see a LOT of mums doing it where I live and tbh is looks a hell of a lot easier than bf.
I was bf while my friend was ff hers - the babies were almost the same age. By 6 months, she was giving two, just TWO, enormous bottles a day while I was only just moving to feeding every 3 hours. I was a bit gutted. Plus, loads of mums have ff babies that settle very quickly into feed routines. If baby needs more, you just up the dose. No cluster feeding - no grotty days of suckling and complaining to increase milk production - I think by ff you can respond a lot quicker to hungry baby cues. Oh, and there are no leaky boobs, night sweats etc that I had early on when bf.
So, will I bf the next one? Yes, because I like it (hormones), baby likes it and I don't think it's actually so great that babies sleep longer, deeper early on. It's fantastic when baby is ill (comfort, antibodies, reassuring mummy hormones again), there's less poo and the poo smells much nicer .
"By 6 months, she was giving two, just TWO, enormous bottles a day while I was only just moving to feeding every 3 hours. I was a bit gutted. "
No reason to be gutted....and to be honest, I am struggling to understand why two enormous bottles a day is better than feeding every three hours. Why is one 'good' and the other not??? If each baby is happy and thriving, then that's fine, isn't it?
Less hassle surely? I just wonder what the baby was doing the rest of the time .
I was gutted because feeding 2 hourly for 5 months was exhausting. It was really around the 6 month mark that he started to go as long as 3 hours in the day and about 4/5 hours at night (sometimes). I was sleep deprived. I don't regret/never resented it at all - he was premature and I reason he needed a LOT of millk for catch-up growth...in fact, he was so fat from all the weight gain, I'm sure if I was ff they would have recommended feeding him less! With bf I always knew he was getting exactly what he needed.
Surely two enormous bottles per day at 6 months isn't healthy! I'm guessing baby must have been on solids too, though, at least?
It might be less hassle, I suppose, only feeding twice a day. Happily, most parents (including you, LeBFG ) accept that the 'hassle factor' of bringing up babies comes lower down the list of importance than the 'ensuring my baby is fed and nurtured according to his needs' factor. Otherwise we would think the baby who lies in his cot and doesn't need feeding or nurturing at all would be best of all
Here's a quote (from US birth writer Kitty Franz) which can be judgmental sounding in the wrong context, so I use it with care:
'You are raising a baby, not managing an incovenience'
I FF from 8 weeks and find FF a lot easier than EBF. I use the ready made formula (big bottles at home, cartons out and about), have lots of bottles so never run short and a good system for sterilizing so we just pick bottle out of fridge and stick it in the warmer. Everybody shares the sterilizing task (DH, grannies, grandads) and now we do it without thinking about it. Poster above was right - its about as complex as making a cup of tea and that 10 minutes gets you the bottles for a whole day.
DH and I share night feeds - night on, night off, so I feel great. I don't have to think about what I'm wearing (not in a fashion sense, just in a 'can I whip this top up in M&S'), or whether I can leave the house without the baby - so not every quick pop to the shops is a performance with changing bag/buggy/dressing baby for cold weather.
When I was EBF I felt that was all I did with the baby because when he wasn't feeding I was getting other stuff done and giving DH/granny time with him. Now DH/granny can do the feed then I play with him on his mat, read stories, dance with him - all of which I hope is equally good bonding time as EBF since I am full of energy and we're not concentrating on the feeding.
If you compare the two delivery methods specifically, then of course EBF is easier (no paraphenalia), but when I stepped back I came out that FF was easier when considered in the round.
Bertie - it's crazy isn't it? Common practice in France where I am though so can't do too much damage. They start solids in general from 4 months too so, yes the baby was getting other forms of food, as was mine by 6 months.
I think it's important to be aware that bf has downsides and not just upsides though. It prepares you better for bf. There are good reasons why, after all, many women choose to ff.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
I expressed for 5 weeks while DTs were in NICU / SCBU. They never 'got' bf'ing and were 31 weekers. When they came home we switched to fully FF. I never found it a hassle, just packed sterile bottles and cartons of milk if out. Can't compare to BFing but it was way way simpler than expressing and bottle feeding them BM!
FF's not complicated (cup of tea for me, bottle for DD) and all the food/kit has clear instructions on. I have bought a little heat exchanger thing that instantly cools the bottle to drinking temperature. It's really helpful. BF, by contrast I found v. painful and complicated. I am in awe of those of you who have spent weeks or even months getting the hang of it...I couldn't bear the thought that feeding would mean me and DD being upset and crying every time and not knowing how long that part would last. Hurray for modern technology, I say.
I did both with both my children and certainly found breast feeding easier, mainly because I didn't have to think about it. But then I never had any problems or pain, both children seemed to get the hang of feeding from the off. When I moved to formula I found it more of a hassle, but still relatively easy as they were both settled into feeding routines by then, so relatively predicable with supplies. It was more of a pain with dd as she was younger and sometimes only took a little bit of a bottle so I might need to have three or four made up for one feed whereas if I'd still have been breastfeeding I wouldn't have had that concern.
I found breast feeding tricky, and ended up with baby being back in hospital on day 10 with severe dehydration and weight loss. We ended up combined feeding with the formula feeding slowly stopping and I breast fed till baby was 7 months. Breastfeeding bloody tricky to get started, but formula feeding a faff. Get all the help you can in the first few days - I felt really rough post-birth so that didn't help. Midwives too busy to notice anything wrong.
Baby riddled with acid when direct from boob, so have been expressing and able to put infany gaviscon into bottle. He finds it hard to ingest if I make it up into a paste after a boob feed, plus its hard to time right if he is off and on the breast. So expressing every feed in advance can get you down as can't go very far from home without needing to express. Have introduced a couple of ff and feel like I'm getting my life back. Got to admit feeling like I might give up the bf, could have been a different story if ds was able to take it direct. Although it has been much better that I know exactly how much he has had and easier to have some kind of routine.
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