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What would you tell an antenatal group about breastfeeding?

(129 Posts)
PurplePidjin Tue 11-Feb-14 13:23:43

I've been asked to talk to the latest batch of mum to be about breastfeeding. Ds has just weaned at 15 months, and according to the mw who runs our breastfeeding group I'm an expert hmm

So far i reckon:

it's the same amount of work as Ffs but all the hard stuff is in the first 4-6 months

formula isn't poison so don't feel guilty if you need to give it, for your own physical or mental health as much as your baby's

breastfeeding is nature's way of telling you to sit and rest after birth. you have achieved something by keeping your baby fed, if you manage dressed with a hot meal on the table you're superman

anything else? grin

givemeaclue Tue 11-Feb-14 13:27:54

It takes all day. Do not plan to do anything else.

Don't feel guilty if it doesn't work for you. Don't let the pressure to bf become too much eg midwife constantly harping on about it.

You will have to do all the feeds yourself.

You can snuggle/ love/ bond with your baby just as much without breast feeding and partner gets a look in too.

You can get pg whilst breast feeding

fivepies Tue 11-Feb-14 13:28:32

If you can master feeding lying down it makes life easier (and makes it easier to have a nap while baby sleeps).
If you want to boost your supply get in bed and have skin-to-skin time with baby. I must admit doing this a couple of times (with no supply issues, I just liked the rest!).

TwelveLeggedWalk Tue 11-Feb-14 13:29:35

Don't set yourself unrealistic targets, just take it one feed, one day, one week at a time

TinyTwoTears Tue 11-Feb-14 13:33:27

I didn't know that the very slight chin movements that babies do after they have their initial drink is still them getting milk. I thought that was dd using me as a dummy blush

Cluster feeding in the evening is normal.

When someone asks 'how long as you going to be' when feeding, the answer is 'as long as it takes'.

JRsandCoffee Tue 11-Feb-14 13:37:19

Don't think that it's not working for you if it hurts a bit. It is utter bollocks that it doesn't hurt unless something is wrong, for some people the initial sore nipples and general starting up pains take longer to ease up, in my case about six weeks, it was a pretty nippy feeling at let down until about ten weeks. Still feeding at nearly 15 months, yay for all that teeth gritting in the beginning!

leedy Tue 11-Feb-14 13:39:46

You can have the odd glass of wine when breastfeeding. Possibly while breastfeeding.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 11-Feb-14 13:41:43

if it hurts or there is slow weight gain have your baby checked for tongue tie by an expert. Don't necessarily believe anyone who says it is not a problem

namegame2 Tue 11-Feb-14 13:43:28

one feed at a time
Every feed counts

Get support from Breast feeding group

Initially it is hard, painful, tiring and emotional at times but eventually it is so simple, pain free, relaxing, beautiful, wonderful thing that it is hard to remember the early days

Take one feed at a time

Don't need to find time to sterilise, make up a bottle when baby cries for a feed you can feed straight away.

Baby gets nutrition, comfort and antibodies in one.

take one feed at a time
Every feed counts

OrangeMochaFrappucino Tue 11-Feb-14 13:45:46

Cluster feeding is normal and doesn't last forever.

It's very hard work for the first 8 weeks but becomes so easy and convenient after that.

Feeding in public might be scary at first but most people don't bat an eyelid and you will become a pro very quickly.

You won't necessarily lose loads of weight just through breastfeeding sad

Kittymalinky Tue 11-Feb-14 13:45:55

That bf babies can get colic and reflux (as my bf dd did) and that as a result they will probably feed more often that your friends babies, it has nothing to do with your supply.

A baby wanting to feed constantly doesn't mean you don't have enough milk/ you have a hungry baby needing a too up/ you should wean them early. It means they are cluster feeding and that's just what they do.

Ff babies don't always sleep through before bf babies.

Direct them here, this board have me the confidence to mentally tell people to fuck off when I heard all of the above reasons not to beast feed.

Oh and you're not a mental, codependent mum if you feed past a year!

ListWriter Tue 11-Feb-14 13:46:44

Watch out for growth spurts when you might as well just get a boxset out. And nipple shields can be fab. They do not affect bonding and they can be particularly useful helping small babies latch.

HoratiaDrelincourt Tue 11-Feb-14 13:47:00

Nearly everyone can do it, but that doesn't mean it will necessarily click straightaway. You won't expect baby to walk smoothly the first time he touches his toes to the floor! Give yourself time and space to learn together.

And if it doesn't work, remember how many millions have gone into ff research. It truly is an excellent substitute nowadays.

MyNameIsAnAnagram Tue 11-Feb-14 13:47:14

Talk about growth spurts and how the first few months is full of them.

PenguinsDontEatKale Tue 11-Feb-14 13:50:03

Yes, that a lot of the work is front loaded. You may feel that your ff-ing friends are having an easier time, but your pay off is later on. The joy of taking a 6 month old out of the day and only having to worry about nappies and not feeds, feed times, when you'll be back, etc.

That you should ask, ask, ask if you need support. And that HVs and MWs are not necessarily experts. So if you have an issue like tongue tie, they might not be the right person to ask.

PenguinsDontEatKale Tue 11-Feb-14 13:50:59

Dont' be pressured to express. Your partner does not need it to bond with the baby. Your MIL does not need a go. Express if you want to be away from your baby, or want to otherwise miss a feed, but don't do it for other people.

TwoJackRussellsandababy Tue 11-Feb-14 13:56:09

That it doesn't always work and you shouldn't torture yourself with feelings of failure hmm

AGoodPirate Tue 11-Feb-14 13:57:34

It gets easier and easier.
Look into cosleeping.

PurplePidjin Tue 11-Feb-14 13:58:53

this is brilliant thank you! keep them coming grin

Jennyl131 Tue 11-Feb-14 14:04:22

All of the above, especially one day at a time.

It really is do much less hassle than ff once you and baby get the knack.

If you will ever need/want them to take a bottle then introduce one early on whether it be ebm or formula - having to leave a baby who will not take a bottle and is not yet on solids is not fun.

The growth spurts....

The need to keep hydrated and well fed. And in my case to take iron supplements. And lots of cake and biscuit and brew helps too.

HoratiaDrelincourt Tue 11-Feb-14 14:09:25

Most new mothers are SAHM for the "only milk" stage. They typically do 90% or more of milk feeds. Choosing a method that's more convenient for the less-than-10% but less convenient for the 90+% would be daft.

On a similar note, choose the pram that suits you, not necessarily DH! grin wink

BoffinMum Tue 11-Feb-14 14:09:27

You need a mission control for bf in the early days, with a comfy chair, lots of cushions, changing bag to hand, and a basket with cartons of juice, snacks, muslins, wipes, breast pads, magazines, TV remote and anything else that makes you comfortable. Otherwise you get worn out and dehydrated.

My other tip would be to get used to feeding lying down so you can do it when knackered.

BoffinMum Tue 11-Feb-14 14:11:19

Oh yes, and if they get teeth and nip you, you just take them off, say 'no!' and look serious. They won't do it again after that. (Group will probably look worried at that point but reassure them it's not all that painful as the number of teeth is obviously very limited).

PurplePidjin Tue 11-Feb-14 14:22:41

oh yes the extra 500 calories! i definitely needed those!

feeding mum is feeding the baby - dp got in the habit of bringing me coffee and porridge while i did the morning feed, very handy grin

PenguinsDontEatKale Tue 11-Feb-14 14:24:19

That no one actually says 'breast is best'. They say 'every feed counts'. If for you that is one week, that is still a big achievement and not one to be sniffed at. But that if you don't want to bf at all, that is perfectly ok and don't ever feel bad. Own your choices as a parent (or those that are forced upon you by circumstance).

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