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I'm close to giving up bf...i know I'm selfish!

(25 Posts)
Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 14:25:58

Dd is 8 weeks. I'm EBF. No problems etc.

I'm exhausted. Dp isn't picking up the slack. The house is in a state. I'm exhausted. i can't even get dp to give me a proper break. This is dc4 so household is very busy.

At least with formula i can dump the baby on dp & he can feed her. I long for sleep, with formula he could feed her. If he feeds baby an expressed bottle now, its physically soo painful as i end up encouraged the rest of the day.

It's all too much now. i feel guilty. I wish I hadn't bothered bf as it's made everything complicated. I was proud but now I feel like a bit of a mug. I've ended up doing everything. No wonder so many men are supportive of their partners bf - they end up doing nothing!

I'm so intensely irritated today as I'm so tired - how do I deal with all of this?


cakeymccakington Tue 01-Apr-14 14:29:04

personally i think you need to give your partner a kick up the backside rather than changing how you feed the baby.

what if he won't feed her? if he won't do anything else around the house what makes you think he'll do that?

time for a big old talk with him i reckon. he needs to shape up! or pay for a cleaner at least!

obv if you WANT to stop breastfeeding because YOU don't want to do it then that's a totally differnet matter. But if it's just because your 0partner isn't pulling his weight then I think you could end up regretting it.

tiktok Tue 01-Apr-14 14:39:14

Socks, what does your DP say when you tell him how you feel?

If he was to feed the baby a bottle of formula, my guess is you'd be doing other stuff round the house or for the children - it would only 'free' you to do more house/family related work smile

And he would be sitting down with the baby.

Probably feeling great he was being a terrific help.

With formula, someone has to buy the formula, make up the bottles, wash the bottles and teats, sterilise them and store them....wonder who that would be?

MaxsMummy2012 Tue 01-Apr-14 14:56:12

You're not selfish, 8 weeks is a fantastic acomplishment - be proud. That said, only switch to formula if it's what you really want; if you are just doing because hubby is a lazy arse and you don't really want to stop then dont. I do agree with pp about kicking hubby up the jacksy and making him sort the house out - why should you have to run around cleaning and tidying while he gets to snuggle and feed bubs - it should definitely be the other way around. If I were you, whether you continue bf or switch to ff, I'd go on strike, sort baby and sit on the sofa and dont move, let him sort dinner, house and your other kids - it's the least he can do. Big hugs, being shattered is crap. X

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 14:57:40

I ff all the other dc. Mix fed dc3. It's nice not doing bottles but i don't think it's the massive deal many on MN make it out to be!

Yes I would be doing all the stuff with the other dc & house. Dp works shifts so it's really annoying that he does so little.

I'm wondering if i would feel like this even if dp was more helpful as I'm so restricted. I can't go anywhere without the baby!

TheScience Tue 01-Apr-14 15:00:16

I'm bfing DC2 at the moment (4 weeks) so get what you're saying about the sleep. However, bfing is the only thing that only I can do iyswim - DP can get up with DC1 and get him ready for school, cook dinner, clear up, tidy up toys at the end of the day, run the hoover round, put laundry away, change nappies, do bath time etc.

Breastfeeding is no reason for the non-bfing person to do nothing!

I agree with what the others have said - switching to formula isn't going to solve the problem if your DP still isn't going to do anything to help.

It also isn't just a choice of breast or formula - you could implement a formula feed at 10/11pm for example so you get to go to bed early and get a decent chunk of sleep? Your supply will adapt to a daily bottle.

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 15:06:43

Dp works shifts so i haven't bothered with a bottle yet as it's a one off & i end up engorged.

As Posters have said, there's loads he could do but he doesn't. I actually thought if I stopped c doing stuff he'd pick up the slack but he hasn't.

Mothers Day really optimised it...He woke me as he couldn't find the dc clothes...that's cos there's none left in the wardrobes! He took the dc out & i spent all of mothers day cleaning & getting the dc stuff ready for the week.

Mummyanbump Tue 01-Apr-14 17:44:47

Am bottle feeding but couldn't help reading this yes as others have said you need a long hard chat and tell him how you feel. Plus I wouldnt change if you are not sure about it be 100% sure before you do . Remember if you do change and dp still isn't helping ,you have the job of cleaning bottles to add to your long list and for Mother's Day I would of took my self away from the house and would of had a break . By the sounds of it you needed it really feel for you .

cakeymccakington Tue 01-Apr-14 17:47:17

what happens if you ask him to do specific jobs?

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 17:57:10

Sometimes he will do them.

The problem is I'm so tired & it's draining explaining exactly what needs to be done to another able bodied adult!

As he works shifts he's never really dealt with dc unless I'm out of the house. With the other dc we would take it in turns to do night feeds depending on his shift.

I was up every 2 hours last night. He's off today. He's spent the whole day in the garden painting fences that don't need to be done today. I've dealt with chores & rest again today!

TheScience Tue 01-Apr-14 17:59:05

Can you make the nights a bit easier for yourself - feeding lying down means you can sleep through a lot of the feeding for example.

cakeymccakington Tue 01-Apr-14 18:01:00

dp and i have had issues around this kind of thing in the past. he will generally look past things that "need" doing and choose to do jobs that he would like to do!
he will normally argue that "they need doing though!" and i will normally argue back that "but the children need clothes!" or whatever

what we've found useful is to have a list of jobs we'd like to complete over a weekend (in our case, as that's when he is home) or a day (if he has a day off) and then we can just tick them off as we go along.

i get that it's tiring having to explain everything but once he has done things a few times you shouldn't need to any more.

i don't know if this is relevant, but I am a bit of a control freak and it's taken me a while to accept that it's ok for him to do things a different way. so now i try not to tell him HOW to do a job, I just ask him to do it. I do find that difficult though, just have to keep reminding myself that as long as it gets done it doesn't matter if it's different to how i do it

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 18:10:08

I tried laying down to feed her but I find the feeding goes on all night as I fall asleep, jolt awake, start again. I can't sleep propley as I'm scared dp or i will roll on to her. I have tried making a sort of nest but it didn't help much!

Good idea bout the lists.I don't care how stuff is done, just need it done! Dp days change every week. So hes off today. Will be off next Thursday. He's on latest next week so 3 pm - 2am. Following week, 10-8 pm. ..not good for family life!

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 18:19:13

I use a sling in the day but it would be nice not to have her with me every minute of every day!

cakeymccakington Tue 01-Apr-14 18:27:17

aww it sounds like hard work.
the early days of breastfeeding are incredibly intense, but it really does get easier as time goes on.
obv it's exacerbated when you have 3 other children and a shift working husband!

would it be possible to hire a cleaner for a while? how old are the other children, can they help out too?
what else can be done to make it a bit easier for you?

i'm pregnant with dc4 at the moment and while I was feeling ridiculously shitty early on I had to stock up on ready meals for the kids because I couldn't stand up long enough to cook dinner....
think of things like that that might make parts of your day easier

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 18:35:10

A cleaner won't help now as there is zero organisation in the house. Dc get Easter holiday on Thursday.

We're already doing crap/easy food. Online shopping. Only 1 dc old enough to help. Get younger ones to watch the baby/run up& downstairs etc.

I think i will start to wean her on to formula soon so at least i know i can get more sleep!

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 18:37:31


My point being if I'd just ff I wouldn't be feeling so guilty or exhausted now. i would hate dp so much!

I feel so jealous that other dc's actually share childcare & housework!

tiktok Tue 01-Apr-14 21:52:32

Sorry socks, not following you. Are your dcs old enough to help or did you mean dp?

Why would you hate him if you ff?

Wheresmysocks Tue 01-Apr-14 23:07:49

I meant dp not dc.
If i ff this baby like the others I wouldn't be so exhausted. It feels like I'm neglecting the other dc by bf. If i stop bf I'm letting the baby down.

i didn't mean i hate dp... some sort of predictive text going on there but i am really angry at dp. The lack of support, help & care are deeply offensive.

I tried talking to dp but he's really clueless as to why I'm so cross. His solution was to give baby a bottle of formula tonight. I'm out all day tomorrow so I really don't want to be engorged as it's so uncomfortable.

I just wanted an hour today. i haven't had a nap once since this baby was born. A soak in the bath... sod that I haven't had a dinner since Saturday!

Mummyanbump Tue 01-Apr-14 23:41:48

I don't think anyone has answers for this as we don't know the whole situation. I think if you are not going to tell him straight and demanding you need help and still nothing. I would turn to family or friends if you have anyone else that could help . By your posts you sound angry which who wouldn't be. The not eating if you don't look after your self how you going to look after baby and children that's all my mothers says to be when she's know am stressed or not taking time out for myself .

Wheresmysocks Wed 02-Apr-14 10:53:43

Thanks * Mummyanbump* your right -im very angry. I've compromised & sold myself short. I thought dp would be more clued up with this baby.

I do tell dp very clearly what needs to be done. But when I say I have to tell him , I mean in incredible detail such as the dc pack lunches. He will ask me every single time what to put in them. If it's something like bed times he wont wash the dc or read to them...

tiktok Wed 02-Apr-14 11:09:35

sad sad Socks

This isn't a feeding problem. Nor is it a problem of whether to bf or ff.

I don't think it is helping you to frame it in this way.

A dad who needs detailed instructions on bedtime for his pre-school children to ensure he includes washing them in the routine (FFS) ....well, words fail me.

This sort of serious helplessness should not be something you feel obliged to sort out. He has to want to be a better help for you.

Mummyanbump Wed 02-Apr-14 11:35:25

Totally agree with tiktok

squizita Wed 02-Apr-14 11:53:56

TikTok I agree. Just a lurker here picking up tips while pregnant... but I work with families and tbh this sounds like what you say.

In a few months it will be DP useless as OP tries to wean.

In a couple of years it will be DP useless as she copes with a toddler and potty training.

In a few more years, will she be at the end of her tether as DCs run riot coming to see me while DP is clueless? ...possibly.

It's a DP problem. sad Time for a long and serious talk.

cherylypop Wed 02-Apr-14 22:59:00


I don't think its selfish wanting to bottlefeed. My little boy is 20 months old and I struggled with breastfeeding-not because of anything physical but because I was so exhausted-it was constant and I felt so guilty about giving formula. Husband and I got into a bit of a routine (where we could-also a shiftworker) after about 2 weeks of breastfeeding where he would give a bottle of expressed milk at the 10pm ish feed which meant I could got to bed at around 8/9 and maybe get 3 maybe 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep. This soon turned into a bottle of formula as I struggled with the constant feeding/expressing. I have to say once I'd shed some tears and lost some sleep (sounds ridiculous but yes lying awake crying because I wasn't feeding my baby 'properly' even though our son was sound asleep) over feeding my baby formula (or what I thought was poison at the time), I think I was a lot happier for giving my baby a mix of formula and breastmilk. I sort of felt it was the best of both worlds-I could get a bit of a break, more sleep (we found the ff at 10pm ish gave us an extra hour of sleep than bf), plus my baby was still getting some of the bm goodness and I think I was a happier and better mummy for it and really I think that that's best for children. I envy those people who just find bf works for them but I don't think I've met many of them.....

O and yes in my experience men have blinkers and somehow manage to not see what needs doing. Would love a pair of them. When we've been at odds about it my husband has said that I should write a list of the things that need doing and how often they need doing.SOunds ridiculous but might be worth dong, and giving different jobs out.

Hope it gets better whatever you do x x

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