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Concerns about BFing...

(27 Posts)
Ilikecooking Tue 26-Aug-14 19:00:44

I'm approaching 28 weeks preg & feel so incredibly bad that I feel so non-maternal about breast-feeding.

Please can someone reassure me that the mothering instinct will kick in??

Will the NCT BF classes help as I'm booked into these? I can't put my finger on it - I think part of me is so used to my body being MY body that to have an unknown person sucking on an intimate part of me in public or in front of relatives just isn't coming naturally sad

I feel so guilty, I haven't even told DH & I'm sitting here in tears.

IVF bubba so desperately wanted.

Do I need a slap?

MagpieMama Tue 26-Aug-14 19:10:20

Bfing is a pretty weird concept if you've never done it before! I can only speak from my experience but it felt very natural once I'd started (though we did have our problems) but before DS was born I had difficultly envisaging how it would be. Still feeding at 10 months though!
Speak to your partner and also the NCT trainer. It'll be good to get your worries out and hopefully get some reassurance!
Congratulations and good luck thanks

MagpieMama Tue 26-Aug-14 19:11:22

Oh and if you do decide it's not for you, don't let anyone make you feel bad about it. I was a FF baby and I'm doing fine!

BananaPie Tue 26-Aug-14 19:14:23

It's not the end of the world if you don't breastfeed! No point crying about it - your body, your choice. I was keen to give it a go as it struck me as less hassle than messing round with bottles of formula, and I was lucky enough to get on ok with it. But no point pushing yourself to do something that you don't want to do!

I assumed I'd try breast feeding but didn't plan on sticking with it for long. I didn't feel that maternal about it either. It does feel odd to start off with but I found the whole having a baby experience really surreal initially.
After a few days it felt fine and I ended up with DD being EBF for 6 months and fed her until she was 1.
Having said that, don't beat yourself up if you don't feel you want to do it when the baby's born. Formula feeding is perfectly fine too

PuppyMummy Tue 26-Aug-14 19:26:42

its not an unknown person though! its a lovely tiny baby that you are literally keeping alive! (of course ff would do this too)

mine is 12 weeks and is BF. to start with I only fed in front of my OH. if we had visitors I went upstairs.

as I got more confident and baby got better at feeding and latching, I just started staying where I was to feed.

same with feeding in public, I didn't until about 6 weeks and I felt confident that I could get him latched on with getting my boob out!
Actually no one really notices or cares!

dont make a decision until you have baby and then try and wait a few weeks to get feeding going well before you decide its not for you. (its hard to start with but then much easier when you both know what your doing)

ShowMeShowMeTheWine Tue 26-Aug-14 19:35:10

Op I just wanted to say I felt really worried I wouldn't be able to separate the sexual side of my body with feeding my baby but it actually was easy for me however I know it's not for a lot of people and that is ok. It's fine not to feel comfortable with it and don't struggle if you can't get on. As long as baby is fed and happy that's all that matters. You might just find you're worrying for nothing though smile. Good luck with baby.

ShowMeTheWonder Tue 26-Aug-14 19:44:21

Antenatal bfing classes were not terribly helpful in my experience as you really need to do it in order to learn how to do it! Doesn't hurt to attend them and get clued up especially regarding sources of support you can access if necessary, but they didn't really help me with the mechanics.

It's a weird idea in some ways - like carrying another person in your body and then pushing them out of your vagina is kinda bizarre, but for me the instinctive nature of it kicked in once my babies started feeding properly (day 6 for ds1, straight after birth for ds2). It became very natural and not weird very quickly.

You don't have to decide now though. If you want to, give it a go when the baby's born. If you decide to ff, there's no reason to worry or feel guilty about it. Good luck whatever you choose!

WiggleGinger Tue 26-Aug-14 19:47:37

I totally understand.
With DD I wasn't sure if I would breast feed but just before she was born I dreamt that I delivered her and she came straight to feed.

I reality she did what the books say and rooted for her milk about 1/2 an hour after birth once all the medics left.

She showed me the way, that made it feel natural. It made it feel like the most natural next step after giving birth to her. (I'm no earth mother !!!) it just happened and I was extremely surprised yet proud at the same time!
DH was very proud too, not because he felt I 'should' feed but more because it was something DD and I just did, together.
Just like growing her, my body got on with it.

Try not to worry or over think it.
Be prepared for both methods of feeding if you wish & go with how YOU & baby feel.

Don't feel bad/ pressured with whichever route you choose

Notfastjustfurious Tue 26-Aug-14 19:55:28

Please don't cry about something that in the big scheme of things isn't that important, as long as your baby is fed the how isn't the biggest thing. Other than that in a few more weeks your body won't feel like yours anymore and after the whole birth experience worry about dignity and who sees what will be well out the window. Bfing is a weird feeling but you do get used to it, 8 weeks in now and although I don't love it I can't be arsed messing about with bottles so am sticking with it. Wait til baby's here and see how you feel then.

Eatscones Tue 26-Aug-14 20:10:17

I agree, relax and see how it goes. I was terrified of being a mum in general first time around. I wanted children, but the newborn phase was the scary bit. I don't like holding newborns and only enjoy holding babies when they are about 6 months old or over and can hold themselves up etc. But when my little girl was born it was amazing. She didn't seem that small (even though she was only 6 lbs) and bf took 24hrs to get working right, but once we got it worked out it became natural and normal. I didn't bf in public or around guests, as I would always find a space I felt comfortable in away from prying eyes!

You'll figure out what works best for your family and be a pro before you realise it!

museumum Tue 26-Aug-14 20:16:52

Don't worry about it, birth changes some of those feelings. It's pretty intimate squeezing a little person out then holding them all sticky and gooey to your chest smile

When I was about 36weeks I squeezed a bit of colostrum out in the shower and it gave me the complete heebie jeebies - but I had no issues bfing.

JennyBlueWren Tue 26-Aug-14 20:20:49

I'm v. maternal but am worried as I don't like my nipples being touched or even rubbing against my clothing. Hope they'll desensitise when I BF.

CultureSucksDownWords Tue 26-Aug-14 20:37:44

I agree with everyone else - you don't have to make any kind of decision about it now. Once your baby has arrived you can take it one feed at a time and see how you get on.

You may find that it suddenly seems ok as your post birth hormones kick in, and as PP have said - giving birth to your own baby is a very intimate experience and it really doesn't seem strange when it's your baby that just minutes ago was inside you.

Also I found that after labour where I didn't care who examined me or who saw me as I was so focused on what I was doing, breast feeding didn't seem anywhere near as worrying as it had done before delivery.

MamadotheBUMP Tue 26-Aug-14 20:52:59

It's very natural and quite funny how ok it can be, for example having a bra fitting was a huge embarrassment for me before I was pregnant, but I got used to internal examinations pretty quickly during my four day induction so by the time my baby arrived (6 medical professionals in the room) it felt totally normal to have a midwife hold my breast to help stick it in this little humans mouth at 2am! Surreal. But normal.

Definitely talk to your oh and mw about it, but take it one day at a time. Aim to breastfeed (the colostrum at the start is especially beneficial) and if you don't get on with it after a day, or a week, or a month, stop and formula feed. Every drop of breast milk is beneficial but there is no shame in formula either x

Gen35 Wed 27-Aug-14 04:26:33

I felt very similar and for the first several weeks of dc1's life I used to slink off to loos to feed her if out/at drs and found it painful and weird. However, you get used to it, it stops hurting and if it works, it makes your baby so happy. My fondest memory of her baby days is waking up after having put her in the bed to bf and seeing a big smile on her face every morning. Ff is just fine and if the feelings don't get better don't feel bad but also I think your current feelings are very normal, it's not a process I like to think intellectually much about but as I said it is a happy memory now (until dc2 gets here at least!).

Gen35 Wed 27-Aug-14 04:32:41

Ps we had a struggle to get dc1, didn't think it would ever happen, don't tie that into other parenting issues or use it to beat yourself up when you're feeling low, you don't have to feel that you have to take every tough option because you've finally received this amazing gift, you should mentally wipe the slate clean. You definitely don't need a slap, conception struggles are one thing and that doesn't mean every subsequent decision must be justified or thought of in light of this. You're just as entitled as anyone else to find parenting hard and all the many decisions it involves.

thinkineed2admit Wed 27-Aug-14 05:06:05

don't worry - nobody remembers if they were breast or formula fed do they? It doesn't really matter which you do. But, I breastfed mine for ages but never felt particularly maternal about it, it was just something I did to feed my girl. I don't think you need all the hearts and flowers and dancing birds around it to be 'doing it properly'. My mum still tells me about how upset she was when she gave me my last breastfeed...I don't remember that with my daughter. S'fine though, I still love her to bits smile

Ilikecooking Sun 31-Aug-14 14:54:55

Thankyou for your reassurances flowers

I am feeling a little more settled, I have read & re-read all the posts smile
& am trying to keep things in perspective.

Dogsmom Sun 31-Aug-14 15:32:12

Don't put pressure and guilt on yourself, I never fancied bf and even when she was born I had no instinct to but that didn't mean I didn't feel a huge maternal instinct towards her.
She was ff from birth and has thrived.
As well as the bf classes look into ff too and make sure you're content with either, I personally didn't go to any bf classes as I never planned to do it but was told by my mw they can guilt trip you a bit so go with an open mind but be happy to disagree if it still doesn't sit comfortably with you.

You'll be an excellent Mother however you decide to feed your baby.

ithoughtofitfirst Sun 31-Aug-14 17:12:46

IME the first week is a massive shock so be prepared mentally. The other thing that would help you stick at it is having everything you need:

Pump - for if you get really engorged and baby can't latch on properly
4 nursing bras
Tops that you can pull down or to the side
Nipple pads
Nipple cream
Snacks!! You will get the munchies big time

You need loads of support too and maybe netflix or similar. It makes night feeds more fun if your partner will sit up with you and help with nappies and burping. Or if they can't make sure you've got something to keep you company like a book, MN or a drama series to watch.

I really enjoyed FF too though and i don't care what anyone says it is as good as breastfeeding. I breastfed for as long as i did because i wanted to and thought it would be good for me psychologically but after about 8 weeks i stopped and didn't feel guilty.

You do whatever makes parenting the most enjoyable for you wine brew cake

kitkat321 Mon 01-Sep-14 21:25:02

I feel the exact same as you - not too keen on the idea but know that I should. I also don't want to become a milk machine who's sole purpose on earth is to feed a crying baby.

I'm aiming to try a mix of bf/expressed bottled and formula but will have to see how it goes.

I had seen friends bf before I had DS and I'm rather ashamed to say I found it a tad weird and embarrassing blush (both said friends are of extremely ample bosom though).

DS was born prematurely, and all I cared about was trying to get milk into him to help him grow (luckily for me he really had the knack, despite his early arrival). I used to sit in SCBU with my whole boob out on show while I fed or expressed, and I just didn't care. For me, I was keeping him alive in the only way I still could, given that my body had ejected him too soon sad
I was much more discreet once we left hospital, but it gave me a lot of confidence about feeding with an audience, because I just didn't give a stuff what anyone thought (whilst trying to respect their sensitivities of course!)

Give it a go, it may be nothing like you expected. It may be easy, it may be hard. Do what is right for you.

Ok, that sounds bad - I didn't mean to imply that generously chested ladies should in anyway feel embarrassed or awkward about feeding. We were in their own homes, they were perfectly entitled to feed however they wished. It is just quite a lot of boob to see when you've not seen it before!
And of course I did exactly the same myself grin

Gen35 Tue 02-Sep-14 17:01:13

Tea I sympathise, I've had the same reaction to other people bf but when you've been through the multiple indignities etc of having the baby your boobs just somehow become equipment after a few weeks and you start to understand how people can just whip them out without scarves etc!

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