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Would you have formula in the house?

(44 Posts)
CherriesInTheSnow Mon 25-Sep-17 12:49:11

Am 34 weeks pregnant now and have finally (after much internal irrational anxiety) decided that I do want to try and exclusively breast feed my DS, who is my second baby. I had up until today planned lots of complicated/convoluted routines to either pump, use nipple shields or combi feed, and a big part of me was just assuming I would go straight to formula.

I've now had a bit of a mental breakthrough and am just wanting to stop complicating things for myself and give breastfeeding a go. My question is, would you have formula ready at home as a backup? My my mum brought me a big tub of formula after I came home with DD and I very quickly turned to it when I started struggling as I just wanted to make sure she was fed.

For those with experience of breastfeeding ( I only lasted about 6 weeks of formula heavy combi feeding and pumping last time), would you recommend or advise against it? Should I just wait until if/when I need it, or is it stressful to not have in around as a backup?

Dawnedlightly Mon 25-Sep-17 12:51:11

Where's your nearest shop? I never did because I knew there were 24 hour shops 2 mins walk away, I never needed to either and like you I'm sure not having it in helped.

PotteringAlong Mon 25-Sep-17 12:51:53

No. I haven't had it with any of my 3 because I wanted it to be a conscious decision if I decided to use it, not an easy grab. I knew that we had shops / garages open all hours that sold it if needed. Although, saying that, I'm not sure I had any bottles in the house with dc1...smile

PotteringAlong Mon 25-Sep-17 12:52:19

I never needed to go and get it, by the way.

NerrSnerr Mon 25-Sep-17 12:53:20

We had one of those starter packs for both, didn't need them but was useful to have.

Winteriscomingneedmorewood Mon 25-Sep-17 12:53:21

Never bought or used formula with any of mine.
Just assumed bf would be fine and it was.
Very lucky I realise. .

Looneytune253 Mon 25-Sep-17 12:55:17

No I didn't. Purely because I knew it would be tough and in the first weeks if it was easy to hand it would have been easier to give in when things were tough.

Babyblues14 Mon 25-Sep-17 12:55:39

We have one tub just in case, you never know what will happen. Your milk could become blocked and I would hate to have a panic in the middle of the night of trying to find somewhere to buy it from.
Not needed it yet but it's nice to know it's there for emergencies.
If baby wouldn't feed off me, I would go to the breast pump first before I tried the formula.

user1493413286 Mon 25-Sep-17 12:56:03

I had a couple of ready made cartons of formula but left the bottles still in their wrappers so not sterilised or anything. I breastfed until 5 months and in that time I only used formula in a planned way; having it in the house didn’t make me use it when I was struggling with breastfeeding. It reassured me having it though just in case I was ill in the night and couldn’t feed or something like that.

MelvinThePenguin Mon 25-Sep-17 12:57:18

What was your experience like with your first baby and feeding? What is your willpower like? How much does it mean to you?

I had some for both babies. DD1 was exclusively breastfed until my DH intervened because my mental health was shot to pieces. Having it in the house wasn't a temptation because I wanted to do it so much that DD had to be taken away when it went awry.

I had it in the house for DD2 because I wasn't going to go back to that place if those feelings came back. Sadly, they did.

GoldenOrb Mon 25-Sep-17 12:58:56

I had formula and bottles just in case with my first. Breastfeeding was utter hell for about the first 4 months, but I never used the formula because I am ridiculously stubborn

I found it reassuring knowing that the formula was there if needed. My husband worked long hours/nights, so if I was desperate in the middle of the night I wanted it there just in case rather than being completely stuck and having to strap a screaming baby into the car and driving to a shop.

Spudlet Mon 25-Sep-17 12:59:20

I had a few bottles of readymade stuff. I didn't need it, but we're not near to anywhere that would sell it. It made me feel better having it in.

SometimesItRains Mon 25-Sep-17 13:02:20

I breastfed both of mine to about 8 months. I had a carton of ready made formula in the cupboard from about 5 months with DS1 - he was a terrible sleeper and woke to feed every hour at that age. Sleep deprivation was really getting me down and so I thought I would try formula with him one night, but I found that just having it there to use if I needed it was enough. It made me feel that this wasn't being forced on me and I could get DH to help if I needed it, which turned it into a positive choice to carry on and got me through the hardest bit until sleep got better.

AtlanticWaves Mon 25-Sep-17 13:06:32

I didn't because I am stubborn and was determined it would work.

Fortunately it was reasonably easy for DS1 and although much harder for DS2, I knew I could do it so I persevered.

When DS2 was 9 days old I had to bottle feed him for 48 hours because I needed an injection following a birth complication. I just went to the nearest shop and bought bottles, steriliser and formula on my way home.

Then went back to BF.

CherriesInTheSnow Mon 25-Sep-17 13:07:49

Thanks for all the quick replies!

I am not great at trusting my body to breastfeed. I am hoping having experience of a newborn will make me much more relaxed with DS though - I actually had a fine latch in the hospital but just didn't trust DD was being fed and the first sign of her crying was enough to make me panic and give her a bottle.

I have spent this whole pregnancy planning how I am going to feed; every single option apart from simply breastfeeding has been considered! Unfortunately I have a lot of anxieties around feeding due to being so devastated it didn't work out last time and lots of failed attempts to relactate. This is why I am so reluctant to use formula!

I actually posted a thread on here a while ago asking about pumping and posters did point out I was making the whole thing too complicated for myself. I am finally on board with trusting my body (I unfortunately have a mindset of "formula is probably better than my milk because of xyz anyway" which I have found hard to shake. I just want a content and well fed baby above all but this is my last baby and I would give anything to breastfeed successfully.

retreatwhispering Mon 25-Sep-17 13:08:44

I think it depends how determined you are and how strong your willpower is. I was determined to breastfeed and never bought any milk or follow on milk. TBH my willpower is quite weak and I didn't want to reach for it in the middle of the night when knackered. Just my preference, obviously.

MiaowTheCat Mon 25-Sep-17 13:11:49

I had a starter set of bottles and steriliser. It was a bloody lifesaver to be honest as she was premature, couldn't latch so we went home expressing - but because I had the bottles at home I could get DH to bring them into the hospital prior to discharge to make sure she'd take that particular bottle and teat combination. Wasn't exactly circumstances I wanted to be sending DH out blindly on a search and retrieval mission while I was stuck in hospital.

Hadn't got formula in - but we don't exactly live in the arse end of nowhere where supermarkets are concerned.

CherriesInTheSnow Mon 25-Sep-17 13:13:52

I think I am like you, retreat, I know that tiredness will probably make me just whip up a bottle if it is overly easy to get. I am hoping my supply will come in a bit quicker too, and also I do have 2 breast pumps so perhaps should express as a first point of call? Or should I altogether be avoiding anything that is not the breast? My DD did seem to refuse the breast quite quickly after receiving a bottle and I really want to avoid that.

retreatwhispering Mon 25-Sep-17 13:15:08

OP I've just read your update. So sorry to hear that you had such an emotionally draining time last time. It sounds like you have a very good chance of breastfeeding if you want to do it. You've done it before and are determined. But you will have in no way failed if it doesn't work out.

Be prepared for the first few weeks to be tiring. Don't bother buying formula if you'd prefer not to use it. In a dire emergency someone can pop out and get some. After the first few weeks you'll hopefully reap the benefits of breastfeeding in terms of convenience! And your baby will be fine, whatever you decide.

retreatwhispering Mon 25-Sep-17 13:17:43

Cross posted again! Sorry OP. I wouldn't bother pumping TBH. Just put the baby to breast every three hours to start with (advice I was given) and take your cue from your son.

Do you have a LaLeche League group near you? Kellymom has good advice online too.

CherriesInTheSnow Mon 25-Sep-17 13:19:04

SOrry Miaow cross posted with you, that's a good shout I think; I think I will stick with bottles for now, we do have 24 hour Tescos near us, although unfortunately local Co-Ops do not have the formula I want, so all the more reason to avoid formula smile

Doublechocolatetiffin Mon 25-Sep-17 13:20:11

I think based on your last post I'd say no, don't have any in the house. You really seem to want to do this, but could be very easily dissuaded in the middle of the night when it's not going brilliantly. For that reason I would make it just that little bit harder to reach for the formula because it might be enough to keep you going.

I didn't have any in the house with my DD and I think it was a good thing in the first few weeks. Get lots of lanolin to use after every feed and use different feeding positions - I found that really helped because your nipples weren't always being pulled in the same direction.

Good luck, I really hope it works for you this time. Have you considered booking a lactation consultant for the very early days? It might help reassure you that everything is going ok.

Malapropist Mon 25-Sep-17 13:21:42

OP, are you in touch with any local breastfeeding support groups? My local one welcomed expectant mothers too so that they could ask questions and get support in advance of the birth - so it was all right there for them afterwards and they had the contacts they needed if they were struggling. It might help you to have more confidence in your milk and also see what is normal breastfed baby behaviour (such as cluster feeding etc).

You can do it!

To answer your question, no, I wouldn't have any in the house - and I didn't when I was pregnant. I would speak to a lactation consultant though and have them come over to check on you and help boost your confidence. I visited one the week after DD1 was born just to make sure I was doing it right!

Good luck OP!

KinkyFruits Mon 25-Sep-17 13:24:42

I was glad to have it even though I never used it. I can't stand the thought of leaving my baby hungry. BFing was easy for me but I have some friends who had a harder time. They went to great lengths to BF, sometimes at the expense of enjoying the early days with baby and even their own mental health. I support BFing wholeheartedly, but the amount of pressure put on women to do it these days is ridiculous. I hope it works for you, OP, but there's NO shame in using formula if you feel you to. There is shame, however, in leaving a hungry baby with nothing to eat.

Mixedupmummy Mon 25-Sep-17 13:34:51

Hi OP. I had a similar experience to you with trying to feed my first baby. Nightmare!

Successfully bf fed my second until 13 months. Lots of differences and reasons I think. I was generally more aware/educated regarding breast feeding and potential issues. (I read the womanly art of breast feeding by LLL. It was useful!) had met lots of friends by then who bf.

crucially though dd2 was different and fed brilliantly put on weight really well despite a tongue tie. Unlike dd1 who was sleepy didn't latch well and lost loads of weight.

Incidentally I did have a 4 pack of ready made formula and bottles to hand but didn't need.

If I've learnt anything how you feed your baby really isn't the be all and end all. I read a great meme recently. I'll try to find it. But it was something along the lines of;
I formula fed
I breast fed
In the end they were all eating crisps off the floor.

grin

Good luck xxx

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