Sick to death of breastfeeding(19 Posts)
I feel awful about this but I am getting well and truly fed up of breastfeeding 18 week old DS.
He has almost always refused to take a bottle even of ebm, which I VERY rarely have time to express (also have adorable if hectic 20 mo DD and a lot of other stuff going on at home as we are desperately trying to move house - have had house sale fall through rwice since ds was born and now on third attempt).
He has only ever taken 2 bottles and that from his grandma. No one else has ever succeeded. The other day he refused point blank to take bottle from her as well.
He is a big baby and feeds A LOT. As he shows a lot of interest / excitement when we all eat, in this last week I have very tentatively introduced some purees / baby rice / formula milk from a cup, but it is literally tiny volumes and then he just screams for the breast. If anything introducing "solids" seems to have increased the amount he wants to breastfeed.
I know it is selfish and I must sound like an awful mother but i am actually starting to resent him as I just want one night off, just one!!! I have managed two "nights out" since he was born but did not get to leave the house till nearly 9 o clock and then home and in bed by 12 then obviously back up at 1, 3 and 5 to feed him so really not worth it!
DH says he really wants to help out and take DS for the day / an evening so I can have a bit of time to myself or at least some proper 1on1 time with DD but wont do it because of the bottle issue. I feel like if I was not there and there was no other option but the bottle then DS would take it but it is like DH does not have the guts to try this.
DH has had several nights away (for work and for nights out) since DS was born plus a long weekend in Majorca with his mates so really starting to resent him too!!!! LOL.
Any advice please as while I can make a joke about this it is actually really starting to get me down and I have moments where I just want to walk out and not come back.
It can be relentless
I had one who wanted to feed all the time and one who was less bothered but small, so I wanted to feed all the time
if you can express enough for a feed I would, and then just go out- if the baby is hungry it will eat, and at 20 weeks, even if he refuses, he is old enough to go a few hours and then make it up later
chin up, you are not being selfish at all
if you don't feel like you can do one big long outing, can you do lots of minibreaks eg your dp has the kids while you have a long soak in the bath/lie in/read a book or something for an hour, but multiple times iyswim
I don't have much to say, except that the introducing solids thing will probably, as you say, increase his demand for milk (solids not as many calories as milk), so a bit self defeating.
If you're hating it, you could try mixed feeding (if you can crack the bottle thing), but only if you're prepared for the BF to fizzle out if it doesn't work.
I know how bloody hard it can be. I BF my two for a year apiece, but only because DD1 was allergic to dairy and didn't get a referral and prescription formula until a year; and DD2 completely refused to take a bottle, has never ever had one, so had to wait till she was taking a reasonable amount from a cup. In a way, the fact that I didn't have a huge choice made it easier to continue.
Sounds like you've got a lot going on besides and you are justifiably completely knackered - is there any way you can get a day off where you just have to feed, but absolutely nothing else - go for a walk in between, have a bath, a sleep etc? Could help you to get a bit of space and decide whether you actually want to carry on BF or not. No one is going to flog you if you stop, only yourself, so if you're happy in yourself with stopping then do it!
I think your DH needs to toughen up a bit - if you go out and it's a choice between being hungry and a bottle, your DS is likely to choose the bottle. I'd really work on that.
Don't forget that in a few short weeks a sippy cup will be a real option. DS was a bottle refuser but when we started offering EBM in a cup he took to it well enough for me to get away.
Would DS go longer if you were out and about more, would he sleep in the pushchair etc?? Just thinking the more your out and about spending time with your DD, the longer he may go between feeds.....especially if he is feeding for comfort/bit board etc.
I agree with MoonUnitAlpha DS won't go hungry.
guess i will just have to find some time to express, but I hate that too. Just being difficult now I know! Does not help that the times I have expressed he has always refused it so just does not seem like a valuable use of time and effort.
Guess all this is just a symptom of having had two children so close together, feel like I have changed from the intelligent well-educated and well-dressed career woman I once was into a slightly scruffy, scatterbrained milking cow!
I know these days will fly past and before I know it the problems will be drink and drugs not breast milk. But hey all I want is the occasional chance to be "me" again.
MoonUnitAlpha I agree I need to put my foot down with DH but last time I tried this and just left him in the house with the kids he got in a blind panic as DS was crying so much and refusing the bottle that after less than an hour I got emotionally blackmailing texts telling me to come home for the sake of our son etc etc.
On another note is it too late to go backwards on the introduction of solids? I really feel in my heart of hearts I should not have started them but I bowed to pressure from MIL and Mother saying that it would fill him up and make him sleep better again (he used to sleep through but for last few weeks has been waking 2 or 3 times a night again). It has not worked (as I said he actually bfs more now) and I am really worried I have started too early and should just go back to bf and just focus again on trying to get him to take ebm/formula from a bottle/cup once or twice a day so I can get the odd break...
Feel really alone in all of this as what I genuinely want to do seems at odds with what everyone close to me thinks I should be doing. Arg.
I would stop the solids, and try and get someone else to give him a cup.
He is very unlikely to accept a cup/bottle from you as he knows you have the boobs!
Also a bottle is so different from a nipple, some babies just won't take one (my DD3 was one). We went straight to cup with her - could you try and get someone to give him EBM (which is familiar) from a non-valved sippy cup, or open cup?
I also think his increased feeding and night waking is related to a growth spurt so if you can ride it out it should settle down again soon.
Hope things get better soon
Personally I would say stop the solids for now but work on him taking formula from a bottle or a sippy cup - some with soft teats are suitable from 4 months so you could try that now, eg this:
Doesn't sound like there is much point in expressing, because you don't enjoy it and its much less stressful to throw away formula than breastmilk!
Tell your Dh (or someone else) you are going out for the whole day with your older child for both days at the weekend. Do something nice with your older child. Your baby will drink from the bottle or cup when he gets hungry enough. It would be a bit unfair to leave him with both children.
Another idea is a bottle with a bag as you can squeeze the milk in initially - eg
slummy - I know you want to get back to normal but it sounds like you are rushing it to me. Your baby is 4.5 months old. In a couple of months you will be increasing solids more and possibly doing less feeds. As time goes on you'll be doing even fewer feeds and most likely in a year you'll be down to 1-2 or maybe no feeds at all. My dd is 2.5 now, I stopped feeding a year ago and I can barely remember it, even though at one point she was feeding allllll the time.
You will get back to normal, I promise, but you have a small baby at the moment. It's just a tiny slice out of your life, go with it.
I think you're right that if left, your DS might well take the bottle - even if not, he will survive till you get back! I would tell your DH firmly that you are going to give it a try and go out for the evening. The worst case scenario is that your DS refuses the bottle and bawls at your DH - well they will both survive that for one evening and you will get a bit of your sanity back...
I really sympathise tsm, this is me! Only my daughter is 6 months, she's taken a bottle twice only and I have had to abandon various nghts out (including a wedding!) to get back and bf her because of this. I know breast is best but could kick myself for not introducing a bottle sooner.
I weaned at 24 weeks and she will now sip water from a free flowing tommee tippee sippy cup. I hate expressing so have tried to introduce bottle of formula at lunch to no avail, this week I've put the milk in a sippy cup but she takes 1floz max so still end up bf 6 times a day.
I'm interested to see what works for you as don't know what to do next and have got another wedding in 2 weeks that I really want to attend.
ok so following you guys' advice i didn't give any solids yesterday and went back to ebf on demand and he slept through!! Amazing how a little sleep makes you feel more human.
I know it is a such a short slice of life and should just chill - I remember being really gutted when DD stopped feeding at 6 months - and I dont expect things to get back to "normal" (whatever that is when you have babies!!) just want to share the load a little more with DH every now and then ;)
EBF is such a massive responsibility which I don't think other people realise unless they are fellow EBFers!
Thanks for all the supportive messages, gotta love mumsnet!!!
Hooray for a nights sleep! Hope it was repeated last night as well....
helloo totally yummy mummy. it could be me writing your story. ds 6mo refuses bottle and dummy. just will not have it and i am very keen on droppin his last feed, it takes 2 hrs. solids for me have helped during the day, from abowl n spoon tho which he now gets excited about when he sees the bowl. the night he turned 6mo i bought some good night milk n thought we would try him with a bottle. he lapped up 6oz n slept for 10 hrs, great we thought, cracked it untill the next night and the next 10 when he would not have the bottle. very keen to hear how u get on and if u have any tips to sucess.
TYM - feeling very sympathetic for you here!
Do what you need to do to get through without beating yourself up. And, re MIL, I have a personal motto not to take too much heed of advice from someone who has not had a baby of their own within the last 2 years (because we all forget/reinvent the tough bits as soon as we can). For every 5 years post partum, increase the pinch of salt twofold. Even if your MIL does genuinely mean well, she will have missed out on an entire generation's worth of paediatric study.
Good luck x
Hi slummy. Can I just say this is a difficult point in BF I think - especially as there's quite a big growth spurt/developmental leap around now which messes with sleep etc.
Ignore well meaning advice re solids. I've found them more trouble (solids) as some foods give my DS a dodgy tummy - things like green veg
Also can you get your DH to just look after your DS for an hour or so and see how he gets on? My DH struggles with just one so giving him both DCs might have been a bit much for him? You should also tell him about your feelings of resentment - I tell my DH and he's taken DS off my hands for the afternoon and looks after him more at the weekends to give me space.
slummy, you've had some good advice here. It is relentless, isn't it? I've only been out in the evening once since my 6.5 m.o. DS was orn, and then I took him with me. (He woke about 6 times as well - boo.)
Waking up more at night is totally normal at this stage, as Igglybuff says. You could try co-sleeping even if just temporarily so you can get a bit more rest during night feeds. It will pass.
Everyone will tell you that your baby needs solids, but the NHS weaning advice (which is based on scientific research, not hearsay) explicitly says that many babies between 3 and 5 months start waking more often, but that doesn't mean they're ready for solids. My DS's sleep has been more disturbed since starting solids as it gives him wind which wakes him up.
Perhaps your DH could take your older child so you can have a little bit of time when your little one is napping? Or he could take the baby for a couple of hours after you've fed him - it's not long but would give you a short break at least.
Hi Slummy, just wondering if you have tried any different types of bottles cause my DD was the same. Trying to get her onto a bottle was a screamfest until we discovered Breastflow bottles from First Years. They have two teats one inside the other and the action used is very similar to that used for BFing. Worked for us and now four months on she will take any bottle - well she would before last night when she just stopped completely but thats a different thread!
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