AIBU Breastfeeding or Bottlefeeding - who's business is it?

(42 Posts)
1stTimeMummyAnna Thu 15-Sep-16 17:02:10

I have recently been struggling a lot with the decision over whether to breastfeed or formula feed. I am 6 months pregnant today so I am still in two minds but the decision plagues me at the moment - there are pros and cons to both in terms of my situation and my personal circumstances may dictate one over the other. HOWEVER, THIS ISN'T THE ISSUE.

The issue is this...

After having told my mum at first, she was v supportive. I actually couldn't believe it as sadly she normally never is. Unfortunately, it was too good to be true. Weeks later she brought it up and said she felt she had to as she doesn't agree with me. I feel like this is a really unfair thing to do especially knowing that if I had the best of circumstances then yes, I probably would breastfeed.

On top of this, my dad (who does not speak to my mum at all) said to me at a family occasion, " I heard you're not breastfeeding?". This, he had heard from my brother who, despite living in the same town as me, has not bothered to contact me for the last 10 weeks (even though he is aware that in that time, my partner has been made redundant and my partner's mum is battling an aggressive form of cancer). I was so, so angry my mum had chosen to discuss this with my brother and even more so at my brother, for discussing something he heard second-hand which is very personal to me, yet he knows very little about.

At the family occasion, I couldn't even look at my brother and I didn't speak to him once. He is aware of the reason why and still has not bothered with me at all.

It's really difficult as I'm aware that everything just gets put down to being hormone related and therefore irrational or unreasonable but the fact of the matter is, I am just extremely hurt by this all.

FlumptyDumpty Thu 15-Sep-16 17:05:54

How you choose to feed your baby is nobody's business but yours. I would just harden my attitude to family and state that I will be feeding the baby how I wish, and it is not up for discussion.

Be warned, though, that once you are pregnant/have a baby the world and his wife seem to think they should have an opinion on what you do with your breasts. And that they have every right to express that opinion to your face. So get your tin hat ready.

1stTimeMummyAnna Thu 15-Sep-16 17:15:02

Thank you FlumptyDumpty.
Yes, I am slowly realising this.
Even my sister, rather than just being understanding about it all
, was still trying to convince me to breastfeed!

WorraLiberty Thu 15-Sep-16 17:20:14

They sound bloody bonkers - the whole lot of them confused

Do they also discuss which sexual position the baby was conceived in?

Of course it's no-one's business but yours.

katiegg Thu 15-Sep-16 17:20:26

Nobody's business but your how you choose to feed your baby. I am a firm believer that a healthy and happy mother is far more beneficial for a baby than any amount of breastfeeding. I tried to feed ds, lasted 12 hours before I asked the midwife on the post-natal ward for formula milk. I would probably have made myself very mentally unwell had I persevered with breastfeeding and I have no regrets about my decision. I won't even attempt breastfeeding when dc2 is born.

Try to stay confident in your choice (it's hard, I know, as everyone seems to have an opinion) knowing that no one knows your situation and what is best for you and your baby better than you do.

WeedlesHatOfDisappointment Thu 15-Sep-16 17:21:43

Do what ever is right for you and your baby, the decision is yours and no one elses. Also, when children are older, you can't tell which ones were bf and and which were ff. What matters is that they are fed, not the method.

cautiousoptimist1 Thu 15-Sep-16 17:25:32

I was the opposite to you, wanting to try breastfeeding being happy to bottle feed if it didn't work out. My Dad was very uncomfortable with it and still is to a certain extent but my little one is now 3 months old and breast feeding is working for us.
FlumptyDumpty is right and the only people you need to please are yourself and your other half.
From now onwards you'll have advice on absolutely everything - especially if you're out on your own with a crying baby so use this as an exercise in smile, nod then do as you please!
Congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck with the last trimester!

SlightlyperturbedOwl Thu 15-Sep-16 17:28:02

You probably need to start being very vague about everything and not share your decisions, unfortunately everyone has an opinion about this sort of thing.

whirlwinds Thu 15-Sep-16 17:42:49

I am a breastfeed supporter through and through, on the general topic, BUT I will not say anything to friends or family who make the choice to bottle feed their babies. No one in my family bottle feeds, and only one friend chose to bottle feed which I supported as a friend. It's her choice like it is yours, but make sure it is informed. I gave myself a 6 month minimum trail as it was painful in the beginning (3-4 weeks) but after that it was smooth sailing, and breastfed dc for longer then the 6m. Be vocal that this is my choice and that this is how we will do this, whichever way you go though please for you and your baby try to breast feed the first couple of weeks.

Pineapplemilkshake Thu 15-Sep-16 17:45:33

YANBU. Unfortunately you made the mistake of telling anyone about your mistake in the first place - but hindsight is a wonderful thing. When you have your baby, you will unfortunately be the recipient of a lot of unwanted advice for years to come, about literally everything. It's a PITA grin

Do whatever is best for you. I'm fed up of seeing new mums bullied and made to feel guilty about their choices. I've even seen a few cases of postnatal depression, which I'm certain was exacerbated by this (I'm a GP). Make sure you have a good response for whenever you get the inevitable head-tilt and lecture from the midwives!

1stTimeMummyAnna Thu 15-Sep-16 17:52:56

Thanks everyone.
I understand people have strong beliefs about breastfeeding but without knowing anything about our personal circumstances I'm not entirely sure how they can form an opinion on what I should do.
I suppose as well, I was just looking for some support. I know it can be such a funny issue that can really polarise people but I was hoping that if anyone, my family would be supportive sad

ateapotandacake Thu 15-Sep-16 17:54:59

It begins with feeding, no actually pain relief and birth decisions, then feeding, then every other fucking thing. Do what works for you and your family, ignore the rest.
Good luck and enjoy, babies are ace.

HeCantBeSerious Thu 15-Sep-16 18:03:17

I tried to feed ds, lasted 12 hours before I asked the midwife on the post-natal ward for formula milk. I would probably have made myself very mentally unwell had I persevered with breastfeeding and I have no regrets about my decision. I won't even attempt breastfeeding when dc2 is born.

It takes a few days for your milk to properly come in....... What were you expecting v what actually happened?

HeCantBeSerious Thu 15-Sep-16 18:04:52

I understand people have strong beliefs about breastfeeding but without knowing anything about our personal circumstances I'm not entirely sure how they can form an opinion on what I should do

Apart from taking medication which renders breastfeeding unsafe, or having had a mastectomy I'm not sure what circumstances anyone should be taking into account. confused

oblada Thu 15-Sep-16 18:04:55

Whilst I do think infant feeding is not just an individual choice, it is also a wider issue for society, like vaccines, healthy eating, exercise, schooling etc etc it does remain primarily a decision for that family unit (mother and father) to make and certainly judging or putting you down is far from helpful and quite inappropriate. It is sad that this is happening within your wider family. Nobody should form on opinion on what is right or wrong for you. What we need for bf to increase is accurate information and non judgmental support.

WeeMadArthur Thu 15-Sep-16 18:06:12

The same thing happened to me and I let it go on for too long before eventually telling everyone I didn't want to discuss it anymore. I wish i had said it two weeks in. Unless they are being completely supportive they need to butt out.

WorraLiberty Thu 15-Sep-16 18:06:46

Be vocal that this is my choice and that this is how we will do this, whichever way you go though please for you and your baby try to breast feed the first couple of weeks.

FFS

I'd start by being vocal now OP.

For you and your baby...

Justwanttoweeinpeace Thu 15-Sep-16 18:08:53

Do your own thing, but be prepared to take criticism no matter what you do.

As prep suggested, go vague!

Mari50 Thu 15-Sep-16 18:12:51

Nobodies business except your own, do what suits your family and don't entertain anyone else's opinion because it doesn't matter. I was very precious with my DD and if I'd known how much haribo and other shite she'd eat once she was exposed to the wider world I'd not have bothered with my pfb nonsense!! You can't tell the difference between BF baby and a ff baby but I bet you can tell the difference between a baby with a stressed overwrought mum and one with a happy chilled mum!!

Itsmine Thu 15-Sep-16 18:12:54

Your family is the problem, not how you feed your dc.

You need to be firm or else they'll be forcing their opinions on you for everything.

Smile, be vague and keep details to yourself. If they offer an opinion look puzzled and say 'sorry, what? what's it got to do with you?'

Amalfimamma Thu 15-Sep-16 18:16:28

I wanted to BF DD but unfortunately she e finished up in an incubator for 12 days after an EMCS and I was trying to pump. When she got out of the incubator I had a mastitis (was on antibiotics and ended up having to get it drained), and the midwife urged me to keep pushing, pumping. I did, it hurt like a bastard and was getting very little milk. Took DD home and on the way acknowledge from the hospital bought formula, just in case. Tried to latch her on, I cried in pain, she cried with hunger and there began the bottle feeding.

Together with the MIL trying to (forcing me) to latch on DD. DH finally had a word and told her to stop stressing me out even more.

DS also born with EMCS, incubator for one month so no latching on, tried pumping, got another bloody mastitis so stopped and FFS when he came home too and if anyone asked I told them to mind their own

Amalfimamma Thu 15-Sep-16 18:17:37

Pressed send too early

Do what you want, feel comfortable with and are happy doing. When the inevitable many syaty on smile nod and give them a mental middle finger.

kiki22 Thu 15-Sep-16 18:19:24

What mari50 said you really cant tell the difference my ff ds has never has any health problems but my best friends ebf dd has a few small but bothersome health problems so ff/bf hasn't made a difference equally we are both very close to out children. You can 100% tell when a mum is unhappy and stressed though and can usually see that come out in there children.

HeCantBeSerious Thu 15-Sep-16 18:24:53

You can tell at population level.

That1950sMum Thu 15-Sep-16 18:30:07

HeCan'tBeSerious I don't think you're being helpful at all. You have said you're in favour of breastfeeding, I get that. The OP has said however that she wants the space to make her own decision. Bottom line is both methods are fine and new mothers shouldn't feel pressured to decide either way. Each to their own.

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