To think breastmilk is not more important than the mother's wellbeing?

(195 Posts)
Throughautomaticdoors Wed 29-Jun-16 06:10:22

I have expressed for dd exclusively for 27 weeks. It has been horrific but ultimately my choice. It's left me extremely tired and run down as I'm expressing 7 times a day, twice in the night, plus dd is also awake in the night so I'm getting maybe two hours sleep in any one block. I have pnd and also I'm taking painkiller every day as I've started getting awful headaches, I think because I'm so tired. I have an older dc too.

I saw my hv who said that whilst she wasn't allowed to tell me to stop she did think I should seriously consider winding it down and said she would ask infant feeding to speak to me about a plan of how to stop or reduce the expressing.

Infant feeding rang me yesterday and frankly they are ridiculous. The lady I spoke to (who I've encountered before and last time advised me to express every two hours) told me that six months breast milk is a minimum and actually it's better to carry on for two years to get any real benefit. I told her I had pnd and how basically the last six months had been dreadful, how tired I was and how I can't go anywhere because I have to be home to express and she suggested that I go five hours in the day but express more in the night. She said not to introduce formula as it's not suitable for babies digestive systems?! This woman isn't medically qualified by the way, she is a 'normal mum' who breastfed her four children. She told me breastmilk halves the length of any illness they might get and used that aggregating phrase 'liquid gold.'

Aibu to think at some point the health of the mother has to matter more than the supposed benefits of breast milk. I'm quite annoyed about it.

NikiSaintPhalle Wed 29-Jun-16 06:14:23

Who or what is 'infant feeding'? Honestly, OP, you don't need anyone's permission to stop, but here's mine, for what it's worth. Stop expressing now! Prioritise your own health because you sound understandably on the edge.

HalleLouja Wed 29-Jun-16 06:15:24

I am very pro bf and couldn't imagine expressing for so long. If you were my friend I would tell you to wind down and ignore that woman. Maybe keep 1 or 2 feeds of your milk a day if that is do able for you. You have done amazingly to express so long.

MollyTwo Wed 29-Jun-16 06:15:31

You already say she was ridiculous so why do you feel you need permission to stop?

OneEpisode Wed 29-Jun-16 06:15:37

You are a saint. To express for so long and to have apparently had a polite convo with the wombat from infant feeding.
You are important to your dc. Protecting your health is fine.

Throughautomaticdoors Wed 29-Jun-16 06:17:30

Thanks all

No I know she was ridiculous but I think it's awful that she's speaking to a mother who is obviously on her knees and saying things like 'six months is a minimum, to get the real benefits the WHO say you have to do two years.'

I'm never ever expressing for two years.

FlyingElbows Wed 29-Jun-16 06:17:35

Dont waste your time and energy being annoyed by what someone else thinks, just do what is right for you and your baby. There are no awards for suffering! Your baby will be absolutely fine if you want to stop.

BertieBotts Wed 29-Jun-16 06:18:56

Report her. She's being inappropriate. They are not allowed to persuade you either way - it's meant to be a service for information and support.

Find out who runs this 'infant feeding' and complain to them, because their staff or volunteers need retraining.

Throughautomaticdoors Wed 29-Jun-16 06:20:53

I did think that, I actually think it's dangerous to give advice like that to people who are already vulnerable.

KimmySchmidtsSmile Wed 29-Jun-16 06:22:16

I breastfed three kids to 2yrs+ and I AM GIVING YOU PERMISSION TO STOP NOW
Having been where you are now, I should have stopped a hell of a lot sooner, with all three as it happens.
My liquid gold hmm did NOT stop my kids getting sick once they were at nursery. Whether their illnesses were shorter or not I have no idea but that was not the case with strep throat. My eldest is obese so it follows that healthy nutrition has more impact than initial bf.
You do not have to keep going. You do not have to prove anything. flowersTake care of you x

Justtrying Wed 29-Jun-16 06:24:05

Firstly congratulations for expressing for so long, you have given your Dd an amazing start in life.

I am no expert only one Dd, who us now 5. I only managed expressing exclusively for 6 weeks and gave up completely at 10 weeks, it is knackering, if you are not expressing you are feeding, there is little time to sleep, cook or do anything else.

In the uk, weaning is recommended from 6 months with cows milk acceptable from 12 months.

Be kind to yourself, a happy healthy mum, results in a happy healthy baby.

Many babies are either mixed fed or raised on formula for a variety of reasons, it doesn't make you any less of a mum.

In fact when I gave up expressing I had a much better relationship with Dd, I started to get out more and life began to have a brighter outlook.

If you reduce the expressing gradually your milk supply will start to dry up, just as it does with weaning.

WellDoYaPunks Wed 29-Jun-16 06:25:43

I wish someone had told me to stop. Being so stressed and unhappy was not the best thing for my baby! Wi d it down flowers

CarpeJugulum Wed 29-Jun-16 06:27:59

So, I was where you were - except I was on my knees at week 4; DS had an undisclosed tongue tie.

Seriously, please stop. This woman is an untrained (or minimally trained) advisor. Yes the WHO say 2 years, that's official advice, and that is all it is - advice.

Formula didn't kill my DS, it doesn't kill other kids and trust me; my sanity was saved by being able to pass him to DH and say "your turn, I need sleep".

Be kind to yourself, you made it to six months. Your DD will be starting to wean soon anyway. Give yourself a pat on the back and move on. flowers

Lindtnotlint Wed 29-Jun-16 06:28:52

Stop. Now. This is nuts. Really. :-)

LaurieMarlow Wed 29-Jun-16 06:31:29

Stop, now. You know that's the right thing to do. Expressing is an utter killer.

MrsPatrickDempsey Wed 29-Jun-16 06:31:55

Op you are bloody amazing to have achieved this.

greenfolder Wed 29-Jun-16 06:32:36

A few essential facts

It is your body

It is your child

You are perfectly intelligent and capable of making this decision

You have come to a logical conclusion

Sgoinneal Wed 29-Jun-16 06:33:12

Very glad to see you are being told unanimously to give yourself permission to stop OP. you have done so well and you should be rightly proud. But formula is not poison and you are not well. Give yourself a break.

greenfolder Wed 29-Jun-16 06:34:46

Oh, and I had a nightmare feeding dd1. When I had dd2 the only thing on my birth plan was that I was bottle feeding!

captainproton Wed 29-Jun-16 06:34:51

I'm a peer supporter, please report this woman!! I give you permission to stop (you don't need it btw). There are unfortunately a few BF supporters unable to see that the real world can get in the way of BF. I've sat and heard it all in my training, and they are not meant to guilt trip anyone into anything, but they just think formula is poison, it's not, it's food! Getting to 6 months is amazing btw you will have given so much goodness to your LO you should be proud!

Kr1stina Wed 29-Jun-16 06:35:07

I have no idea who " infant feeding " are but I guess they are neither the police or the inland revenue so you don't have to do what they say .

You say you made the choice to express. I assume you made that choice for your own reasons and knew that it woudl be exhausting and impossible to keep up in the long term, unlike BF. It sounds like you are now at your limit and can't go on .

You have done very well to get this far . Yes, in an ideal world, mums woudl BF for two years . But that was never going to be possible for you as you prefer to express. 27 weeks of BM is better for your baby than 20 . Or 6 . Or none . You have done your best and it sounds as if you know you need to stop now .

JedRambosteen Wed 29-Jun-16 06:35:17

Ds2 had a spell in nicu and would not breastfeed, despite my best efforts. I managed to keep expressing for c5 weeks, then switched to formula. It was sanity-saving and he's been far less poorly than my other son (EBF to 6 months). You have PND and you've managed 27 weeks? You deserve a bloody medal, not a dressing down by an unqualified numpty. Do what you feel is right for you (you have my 'permission' to stop if it helps). Please report your concerns about the infant feeding volunteer too - despite your PND, you sound v grounded and measured, but her next 'client' may be more vulnerable & driven to the edge by her advice.

EarthboundMisfit Wed 29-Jun-16 06:36:42

I would certainly stop at this point. You've done amazingly, I managed five weeks of just expressing with my first and I basically had a breakdown.

SecretSpy Wed 29-Jun-16 06:36:52

www.nationalbreastfeedinghelpline.org.uk you can call these guys for support, they are properly trained.

They will support you to meet YOUR breastfeeding goal, whatever that may be. If you want to stop, they'll help you stop safely (stopping suddenly is usually unwise because you can get very sore)

SecretSpy Wed 29-Jun-16 06:38:13

And you have done a brilliant job.( Another person here who breastfed forever but couldn't imagine exclusively pumping for so long)

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