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Does it make me a bad person?

(63 Posts)
beth27123 Sun 12-May-13 17:50:48

That I want to FF? I have no problem with women breastfeeding, and if I thought it was best for my dc then I would but after a long chat with OH we think Formula will be best for both me and our future child? I am happy with this decision but feel like a terrible person?

TinkyPeet Sun 12-May-13 17:52:09

It's your decision, your body, your baby. No it doesn't make you a bad person or a bad mother and If anyone tells you any different feel free to slap them x

scissy Sun 12-May-13 18:00:41

Not at all smile. If it works better for you that way then go for it. I suggest looking up the formula feeders faff free fred for some tips that the rest of us have learnt along the way and if you have any questions.

lucybrad Sun 12-May-13 18:00:51

No it doesnt make you a bad person. Just keep your options open, see how you feel at the time. I found there was a little pressure from the midwives and they will probably try and get you to give at least one colostrum feed. Do whatever makes you feel comfortable.

MortifiedAdams Sun 12-May-13 18:04:48

Not at all, however are you sure you are totally happy about it? Just with you adding "but I feel like a terrible person" after it.

I tried BF and was FFing by day three. I never once felt like a terrible person - I was 100% with the decision.

Guitargirl Sun 12-May-13 18:10:34

Of course it doesn't make you a bad person.

But why, if you believe that FF will be best for your child, do you 'feel like a terrible person'? That doesn't sound like someone who is happy with her decision to me.

brettgirl2 Sun 12-May-13 18:51:11

It doesn't but is the decision yours or dps? FWIW both of mine dropped colossal amounts of weight when bf and never gained at all. It was a truly awful experience. sad ff from the start would have in my case been much better for all concerned. If I had another (which I'm not going to) I wouldnt bf at all tbh. That said if it's pressure from dp then you may regret it and that wouldn't be good.

BigBongTheory Sun 12-May-13 18:56:10

No, not at all.

Have it considered doing it for the first 1-3 days just to get some colostrum in? I know some people really don't like the thought though.

BoyMeetsWorld Sun 12-May-13 18:57:39

No! I fully intend to ff too. In myself I have no shadow if doubt (v strong feelings about it) but its the reactions of others that make me doubt myself.

BabyHMummy Sun 12-May-13 19:06:56

beth I feel the same. I want to ff as I need to be on meds that cross the barriers which is a slightly diff situation from yours but I feel like an awful person and have major anxiety issues over backlash from medical peeps. So far everyone has been great though

beth27123 Sun 12-May-13 19:09:12

Its more peoples judgements that are making me feel bad. I never even considered bf as I really don't think Id be able, if I could do it 100% privately from the start...maybe...but I know that's not valid. OH assumed and I was actually flattered he knows me well enough to pick up on that, as his ex bf his others. I love the idea of us making bottles together all sleepy and as a family.

Fakebook Sun 12-May-13 19:09:27

No it doesn't. It's your choice. I've never met a person in RL who makes anyone feel bad about FF. they're all hiding out on the Internet for some reason!

DontmindifIdo Sun 12-May-13 19:18:02

Why don't you think you'd be able? Also have you considered option number 3 - mixed feeding (which most health care professionals seem to hate, I don't see why...) - I know a few woman who did morning, bedtime and night feeds as BF and then formula when out and about. It's one of those things that's not discussed much - most do one or another.

But if you really don't want to BF, then don't. You might need to be firm with healthcare professionals about this.

DontmindifIdo Sun 12-May-13 19:20:01

Oh it might be easier if you don't pretend you tried and failed - because then you'll get people trying to help or checking your DC's mouth for tongue tied etc - that might make you feel worse - just say you didn't want too for personal reasons.

BlackholesAndRevelations Sun 12-May-13 19:23:52

If you've made your decision and you're happy with it, then why on earth would you feel like a terrible person?

I must admit that in the absence of a proper medical reason, eg pp's meds, inverted nipples, history of abuse/body issues etc, I always wonder why people won't at least try, or just give the first colostrum feeds... Everyone knows how good it is for the baby. But hey I was ff from the start and I'm ok.

piprabbit Sun 12-May-13 19:27:23

I would wonder why you hadn't tried it for a few days, there are health benefits from BFing for a very few days.

But I wouldn't think you are a bad person, we all make different parenting decisions.

Namethattune Sun 12-May-13 19:35:42

After being absolutely determined to breast feed, I spent the first 3 months of my dds life in absolute misery, as it just didn't work for us. I felt so much better when I finally gave it up, and now I'm firmly of the opinion that if you're happy, then that's what's best for your baby (within reason obvs.)

lollypopsicle Sun 12-May-13 20:07:20

I think you get some negativity from people no matter how you decide to feed. I chose to bf and had negative comments like 'I hope you don't plan to carry on when he gets teeth' and then when I moved on to mixed feeding I had 'what's the point, it should be all or nothing'.

Anyway, my point is, on a subject such a bf, everyone wants to feel like they made the best choice for their own child so have very strong views that they (well, some) like to impart on you. You know what's best for your family and yes, you may feel judged at times but that's there hang up, not yours.
You will come across people who disagree or openly judge whatever parenting decisions you make. Screw them!

lollypopsicle Sun 12-May-13 20:08:58

*their. I hate mistakes like that! Baby brain blush

BabyHMummy Sun 12-May-13 20:15:22

Lolly is right. It's no one else's concern. Although you will always get ppl who feel the need to comment.

Even if I could bf I am not sure I want to as I want dp to be closely involved with feeding which he can't be if I bf and like you I like the idea of doing bottles together.

steakchipsandfriedeggs Sun 12-May-13 20:15:52

I feel exactly the same, and I also feel terrible for it. Not because I'm not 100% certain about my decision, because I am, and am totally comfortable with my choice. The reason I feel terrible though is because it seems that there is always someone there to make you feel like the worst person ever. It can be midwives, health visitors, parents, in laws, friends or just anyone with a voice and opinion. I'm still trying to work on building up my confidence to speak up against these people, but just remember that you have really thought it through carefully with your OH, and be true to yourself and your feelings! You don't need to answer to anyone else! X

ElBombero Sun 12-May-13 21:15:49

What makes you think it's not best for your DC?

beth27123 Sun 12-May-13 21:21:20

I think the emotional trauma on me would be too great and that would project onto my child. I cant have OH near my breasts and I avoid most contact with them, I won't go into detail but I have a past I have not dealt with yet and I don't want my child to suffer through that.

sittinginthesun Sun 12-May-13 21:26:11

Beth - if that is the case, it would be a no brainer for me. Formula feeding will not harm your child. Don't feel guilty.

The only thing I wonder is whether you feel ready to maybe get some help and support regarding your reasons behind this. I just wonder whether it may become more of an issue later, if you feel ready to talk about it?

I would say - don't rule it out. Breast feeding is totally different to any other kind of physical contact. I'm only saying, don't assume you won't be able to do it and not even consider it.
But choosing to FF for valid emotional reasons is fine and not selfish. Your baby will be just fine on formula. Not sure where this idea of idyllic family bottle prepping comes from though - it's not really like that! But good luck to you.

Startail Sun 12-May-13 21:58:21

it doesn't make you a bad person, but it makes you a fool.

BFing is shit to start with, but then it's 100000000000x better.

I've done both and honestly nothing beats just being able to walk out the house and not worry about keeping milk cool, heating it, having enough if your delayed. At 3am nothing beats snuggling up in bed feeding without a visit to the kitchen.

Being able to comfort a toddler with a quick BF is incredibly useful too.

But most of all it is just incredibly, indescribably special.

Startail Sun 12-May-13 22:02:41

I should add, DD1 never got the hang of BFing and was mixed and then FF, which is why I know you are mad not to give BF a go.

HerrenaLovesStarTrek Sun 12-May-13 22:05:10

Calling the op a fool seems a bit mean.

I ended up doing mixed feeding and then FF, op. If you have breast issues then yes, trying to BF might well be stressful. Alternatively you might find it to be completely different to what you're expecting. If I were you I think I'd have a go, see how I felt and take it from there.

Breast may be best but formula certainly isn't poison. Do what feels right for your family (and don't feel guilty about it) smile

sparkle12mar08 Sun 12-May-13 22:11:39

It doesn't make you a bad person. But, it the absence of any further detail in your post about your specific individual circumstances, it does make you wrong. Breastmilk from the breast is, and will always be, best in the heirarchy of feeding options. Formula is away down below both expressed own mother's milk and expressed donated milk. It is a fourth best option only.

dilemmamomenna Sun 12-May-13 22:13:44

Just to tell you the flip side, people do have very different experiences of bf. If it was all cracked nipples/ weight loss/ sleep deprivation no one would stick at it. For me I just stuck a boob in, happy baby, no washing up or faff going out, boobs fine and they slept fine. If it works like that it's great, so I'd say keep your mind open and don't make decisions before you have to.

DerbyNottsLeicsNightNanny Sun 12-May-13 22:15:17

I am going to ff this baby (2nd). Knew bf wasn't for me first time round with ds, but felt pressurised into it, lasted 36hrs then started expressing which I kept up (to varying degrees) for 7wks - combined with some ffing too. This time going straight for formula as I know its right for me

BlackholesAndRevelations Sun 12-May-13 22:30:35

Reading the op's latest post, I'd say that this thread is another stick for her to beat herself up with.

OP- you have made your decision for you. If you are not ready to confront your issues, don't. Otherwise, if you gave some niggling doubt that choosing to ff is not the best decision for you, then talk to your midwife about your issues. Get some help.

In the meantime, ignore people who call you a fool, and please don't find new ways to make yourself feel bad about this. flowers

Teeny50 Sun 12-May-13 22:31:19

Not at all, if bf isn't for you then you shouldn't be made to feel like you have to, having a baby is stressful enough as it is you don't need to beat yourself up about how you are feeding them too. I have ff one and bf the 2nd - either way, do what is right for you smile

BlackholesAndRevelations Sun 12-May-13 22:31:25

*have, not gave

BlackholesAndRevelations Sun 12-May-13 22:34:46

I'm a fan of breastfeeding and fed both of mine until they were nearly one. I do however know that formula is a good enough alternative, and as soon as your little toddler is weaned, how you fed him or her will no longer be an issue to you (and most probably never will to anyone else!) apologies if I'm making no sense but I'm tired... Was just struck by your latest post and by the other poster who called you a fool. You're not, by the way!

Sleepyfergus Sun 12-May-13 23:01:38

I'd echo what most pp have said and that you shouldn't feel bad about your decision. Having a baby is a wonderful experience and you shouldn't be stressing out over your decision.

However, please don't rule out bf completely, perhaps give it a try? You might actually feel compelled to once the hormones kick in after giving birth. It's very hard to describe! I've bf both mine - dd1 took to it like a duck to water, and luckily so did I. No sore boobs or nipples and good supply. Dd2 though - nightmare for the first 10 days or so until she got the hang of it and until my nipples got used to it again. Had I not known how amazing bf is with dd1, I would have turned to ff without a doubt.

But please do not feel bad about your decision. And it lovely that your OH can be involved from day 1. That is something bf can never do.

Good luck!

sparkle12mar08 Sun 12-May-13 23:07:28

There was a delay between my writing and posting my thoughts. I should have refreshed first. It's clear there are specific circumstances which mean you would be better off formula feeding. Best wishes OP.

Teaandflapjacks Mon 13-May-13 05:16:14

Absolutely not. Please go out today and see if you can figure out who exactly in the street as they walk past was ff or bf? answer - you can't! It makes my blood boil all this nonsense over it. You can get tablets to stop your milk coming in - just ask for them, and be firm about it too. There is this massive movement over it - god knows why they feel the need to add extra pressure to sleep deprived mums over their feeding choices. I ask you - will you have a nice organic field out the back, and feed your toddler home grown organic foods, milk from your own cow, etc etc? of course not. humph!!! Anyway, I know lots of people who mix feed and lie about it to people who make funny comments of various health professional - just ridiculous they feel they have to. A happy mum = happy baby. Yes the colostrum is very good for the little one - but so are many other factors too. Personally i think it is an individual choice - what to feed, how long for etc. Lots of people find toddlers bfing very odd indeed, for example, and then it goes the other way, with people saying they should stop and how awful etc.

Personally, I shall try my best to do so, only because I have no issues with it and fairly sizeable bazoookas now confused. But I shall certainly be stopping by 4 months - because I was to have a nice xmas eating and drinking what I want - I have totally cut out alcohol during pg and want my body back then - I plan of mixed feeding from the start too - with a 'dream feed' at night, and can do one during the day when out and about. I am quite set on this and wont have anyone telling me any guff about it (oh six months is better - you will feel differently then etc) - er no I won't - I know my own mind thanks! Good luck and congrats. xx

KingRollo Mon 13-May-13 05:21:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ripsishere Mon 13-May-13 05:29:50

IMVHO, you do what is best for both you and the baby.
If BFing will stress you, you'll have a stress baby. I was unable to BF, I did try really hard, but nothing came out. I was told I was a failure because I not only couldn't feed my baby, I had her by ELCS shock.
My DD was quite light when she was born, she got thinner and thinner, I got more and more upset. DH decided enough was enough and spoke to a doctor. He needed to get a prescription for her bottles (overseas).
It was the best moment of her life when she finally got some food. I continued to FF until she was one then she started on cows milk.
She is a happy, healthy intelligent 12 year old now.
Go with what suits you.

ripsishere Mon 13-May-13 05:30:31

And good luck with getting your DP to help with bottles. Mine was hopeless at cleaning them.

If you have an issue with your breasts it is a no-brainer. Don't beat yourself up.

FWIW I think some of the vitriol about it isn't vitriol at all. People are remarkably under-informed about breastfeeding and people want them to have all the facts before they make a 'bad' decision based on cobblers. In your case, you know it will make you feel uncomfortable so don't worry.

The only caveat to that is if you want to talk to someone about your breast issues. It is possible that breastfeeding could 'reclaim' your breasts for you if the past issues are ones that you could deal with in this way. No idea unless you talk to a bloody specialised counsellor.

Hakluyt Mon 13-May-13 06:09:22

"And good luck with getting your DP to help with bottles. Mine was hopeless at cleaning them."

shock

GirlOutNumbered Mon 13-May-13 06:17:53

Do as you want but in future, I wouldn't ask opinions on here, or anywhere else for that matter. It will only make you feel shit.

This doesn't make you a bad person op. Fwiw i have FF all 4 of my dc, with pfb didn't even try to BF, or with dd2, but i did give it a try with dc3 & dc4. It wasn't for me, i did give dc3 & 4 the most important colostrum, but after a week my nipples were so sore, i wasn't getting any help and tbh BF wasn't for me unfortunetly.
I think it is good to make the decision whether you are BF or not beforehand as it stops the guilt if you fail, as i felt so guilty with my last two babies. I'm pregnant with dc5 and have decided already like you that FF is best for me and baby and i don't feel bad. All my dc are healthy and loved and that is all that matters.

Layl77 Mon 13-May-13 07:07:19

Regardless of the feeding I think you should seek some help regarding your issues with your body. Don't feel guilty about it you can't help how you feel, however this is clearly affecting your life in white a big way.
I agree you may want to try once hormones have kicked in, it may be kind of therapeutic for you as it's not a sexual thing at all it's empowering way to use your body.
Good luck.

Fancydrawers Mon 13-May-13 07:48:36

Startail, sparkle - why don't you both fuck off. I'm sure you're both perfect parents (not a hint of sarcasm there, nope) you are shit.

OP perhaps try and get some help with your issues, if you want to, but ultimately if you are happy with your decision then that's great - I wish you all the best with your family.

Midori1999 Mon 13-May-13 07:58:59

OP of course it doesn't make you a bad person, but the fact you even have to ask suggests that perhaps you should try and discuss your feelings about it with your midwife. It comes across to me as you may r aren't convinced FF is best at all, but more that you won't be able to manage to BF as you mention you may be able to/want to do it with 100% privacy. If that's wrong of course, please feel free to ignore me!

Teaandflapjacks you may know your own mind, but do you know much about breastfeeding? Such as you can eat whatever you want while doing it and you can also have several drinks too, certainly as many as you'd want to have whilst caring for a baby even if you weren't breastfeeding and for the times you want to drink more than that and have someone else care for the baby, you can give expressed milk or formula until you are safe to feed again.

Teaandflapjacks Mon 13-May-13 10:27:47

Midori Er plenty thanks. With respect there are certain foods one should avoid whilst bfing, you can't just 'eat what you want'.... This is trial and error for each baby - some things give them shocking wind, for example. You must be careful with caffeine, and alcohol. I have, as mentioned, cut this out completely in my pregnancy. Really a small glass between feeds (1-2 units) - I personally do not want to drink any more than that, and you really shouldn't have more IMO. Nowhere does it say, and no doctor has ever said 'have several drinks and then bf' - There is stacks of info on this, and any medical professional can advise. It passes from milk to the baby - yes in very small amounts, but I can't think any alcohol at all is good for a baby, let alone a child - common sense tells me that.

http://www.mumsnet.com/babies/foods-to-avoid-while-breastfeeding

And this is to do with the OP - not me!!!

Teaandflapjacks Mon 13-May-13 10:28:33

OP - you do what you want and tell anyone who gives you grief to sod off - firmly.

sparkle12mar08 Mon 13-May-13 10:28:40

Fancydrawers - did you read my second post? I had started writing my first, left the computer for a while, came back, finished and posted without refreshing. I hadn't seen the OP's subsequent posts where she outlines her precise circumstances. I'm far, far from a perfect parent but it doesn't change the facts of the feeding heirarchy, I'm sorry to say. Try not to take scientific facts personally - they're neutral. It doesn't mean that one can't make decisions along with another set of facts (i.e. the OP's personal history) that is therefore different to one indicated solely by a single set.

beth27123 Mon 13-May-13 10:36:31

Thank you everyone, please don't flame the more negative posters I fully expected them and its good to see another side. I really appreciate all your thoughts and kind words.

Fancydrawers Mon 13-May-13 13:57:00

Sparkle - no I missed it, and for that I apologise. But no woman should be made to feel bad about a choice at such a vulnerable time.

BoyMeetsWorld Mon 13-May-13 17:24:13

It is good to get both sets of opinions. But the vehemence in some of these posts is exactly what makes the bf issue a hotbed.

People often don't even stop to consider the many complicated personal issues which could be behind somebody's choice not to bf before they start preaching.

For what it's worth - however much you "can't argue with scientific fact", I also would argue that nowadays there are a ton of things we do relating to parenting which aren't the 'natural' cave-dwelling way of doing it. There are many chemically enhanced, electronic creations which have replaced the 'norm'. There are a ton of vaccinations, supplements, tests, scans and interventions from pregnancy throughout childhood. None receive quite the same ear bashing as bf'ing.

It may not be 'natural' but there's no evidence that it's detrimental. The modern woman has a choice - and sometimes when it's a choice involving very personal feelings about herself, it's one she's perfectly entitled to make.

Rant over. Good luck Beth, whatever you decide.

justmeunderanothername Mon 13-May-13 17:26:25

I don't understand why you would feel like a terrible person. In my experience the people in hospital/midwives will be absolutely fine with you choosing to FF and will probably positively reinforce the idea that you do.

Teaandflapjacks Mon 13-May-13 17:52:17

BoyMeetsWorld I salute you - could not have put it better myself.

FoofFighter Mon 13-May-13 18:25:39

Really grinds my gears when a mum to be posts here of her intention to FF and people come along saying oh just try it, oh are you not going to even give the colostrum?? Seen it a fair few times over recent weeks.

Back the frig off! angry

OP, do what you want, it's completely up to you, who cares what randoms on the net think?

Phineyj Mon 13-May-13 18:34:08

Do what's best for you and lie about it if necessary! That will save having to explain personal stuff to everyone with a strong opinion. Luckily, we live in a country where FF is safe and easy to do.

And my DH really enjoys making bottles. The sciency side of it appeals to him and he likes measuring stuff.

Phineyj Mon 13-May-13 18:35:37

Oh also no of course FF doesn't make you a bad person. Not feeding your baby at all would be bad...the rest is just detail.

Really grinds my gears when a mum to be posts here of her intention to FF and people come along saying oh just try it, oh are you not going to even give the colostrum?? Seen it a fair few times over recent weeks.

I get that but I also don't want to be on a forum where someone states something and everyone just says "happy mummy happy baby" and "you do what's right for you, hun" Surely people post here because they actually want honest, sometimes uncensored, opinions.

BabyHMummy Mon 13-May-13 20:19:54

mrsterrypratchet had the op been asking for opinions on ff v bf then your point is valid. The fact she states she has made her choice but is worries about other ppl making her feel bad for that choice means that ppl having a go or pushing her to "try it" or "wait and see how you feel at time" are unhelpful and unsolicited.

Quite frankly the only statement should have been "do what is best for you" and "don't let ppl make you feel bad"

I have medical reasons why I can't bf and tbh I wouldn't be attempting it regardless of those issues. I don't really care what other ppl think although I am concerned about the bf Nazi brigade at my local hospital because of other friends experiences. I am making a choice for me and my baby AMD quite frankly "happy mummy = happy baby" is the only consideration for any decision regardless of whether happy mummy = bf or = ff

If you look at my other posts, BabyH I agree with you in this case. OP has her reasons and that's great. However, I have seen other people in these boards saying things about BF or FF that are untrue and those things get challenged.

On the happy mummy = happy baby thing... I agree about a lot of it. There are some times it is untrue. I would have been a bloody happy mummy leaving DD to CIO for the two years she decided to never sleep. However, I would have had an unhappy baby.

I also really object to the words Nazi and BF in the same sentence

lolalotta Mon 13-May-13 22:02:01

Agree with poster who said don't rule breast feeding out. I totally intended to FF my dd when she arrived, even told my midwife outright before hand as I didn't want the pressure after delivery (was planing a home birth) then she was born and it so happened that it just worked for us and I LOVED it, so much so I fed her until she was 2! I never imagined that happening in a million years, i had even bought the bottles/ steriliser/ formula...you just don't know how you might feel when baby arrives. Whatever your decision, enjoy your little baby! grin

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