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Just been to see HV... ARGH!

(32 Posts)
eilidhfi Wed 27-Aug-08 17:26:17

Took DD to baby clinic this afternoon to get her weighed. Saw a health visitor we haven't seen before who was very nice, weighed DD, measured her, then asked if we were having any other problems I said no.

HV: Is DD feeding ok?
Me: Yes
HV: Taking all her bottles?
Me: No, she's breast fed.
HV: Oh. Is the breast milk still enough for her?

hmm DD is 16 weeks old. I'm now a bit angry, had I been having any problems I very much doubt she would have been able to help and it would seem that she was more than willing to suggest weaning shock. Surely assuming all babies are bottlefed completely undermines bf?

I'm not being oversensitive am I?

elkiedee Wed 27-Aug-08 17:29:06

No, it seems a bit inappropriate to say the least.

onceinalifetime Wed 27-Aug-08 17:29:33

Do you live in an area where there's more bottle feeding than bf? I do and hvs were in the habit of saying bottle because of this - have to say they were always pleasantly surprised to meet anyone bfing though. Giving them the benefit of the doubt but it is annoying.

eilidhfi Wed 27-Aug-08 17:33:09

Yeah I don't know anyone else who is bf so I suppose ff is very much the norm in my area, all the more reason for hv to encourage those that are bf imo. Not helpful to infer tha bf babies need weaned earlier cos bm 'is not enough'


ajm200 Wed 27-Aug-08 17:34:12

I take no notice of the HVs. I'm sure half of them don't have children and have learnt everything from a book.

The last time I saw one she offered to refer my son to a specialist has his age/weight ratio didn't match their nice graph so he must be obese. He was 18 months old, skinny as a rake and taller than most of his two year old friends. My family, male and female, average 6' in height so his height is not a surprise. At the time, 9-12 months trousers fitted round his waist but looked like shorts so I wasn't just a blinkered mum with a fat baby.

Just take no notice.

crokky Wed 27-Aug-08 17:36:43

I haven't ever taken my DD to the clinic (she's 5 months). It's a total waste of time IMO. I only take her to the docs for stuff like vaccinations. I used to take my DS regularly but have learnt from this mistake!

moondog Wed 27-Aug-08 17:38:44

Eili,not surprised you are irritated.If the insidious undermining of breastfeeding that goesin in our society is also practiced by HVs, what bloody hope is there???


eilidhfi Wed 27-Aug-08 17:46:34

ajm - if they learn everything from a book it must be a very short one

I don't ever take her for any other reason than to get her weighed cos I'm interested to know!

Moondog's point is exactly what I was trying to say, albeit less eloquently!

ajm200 Wed 27-Aug-08 17:47:02

I'm hoping to become a BF counsellor to help prevent mums having to rely on HVs who give such dappy advice.

I was told by an NHS BF clinic to wean my son at 5.5 months because he was being fussy at the breast and they only support mums up until 6 months so they couldn't really help. Hence my decision to train as a BF counsellor. Just need to get this latest baby out into the world first.

eilidhfi Wed 27-Aug-08 17:51:57

Good luck with it ajm (and with impending birth!) my mum was a bfc so I've never really relied on hv's for advice which is lucky considering the advice that has been thrown at us thus far!

onceinalifetime Wed 27-Aug-08 17:58:09

My hv didn't have any dcs when I had my first and used to recite from some sort of 'book'. Since then has had one dc and currently on mat leave - last time I saw her she confessed that since having children, she realised that everything she had spouted previously was a load of crap and she had changed a lot of her advice and was much more understanding.

TheProvincialLady Wed 27-Aug-08 18:10:09

Ah now you see, your mistake was made in the first line of your post - nay, even in the very title of your thread.

Just been to see HV...

Is there anything they can't fuck up?

bababelle Sat 30-Aug-08 11:14:56

eildhfi - when we took our DD for her 8-month check recently we got:
HV (reading from form in red book) - is she still having any breast milk?
us - she's still completely breastfed (with food too of course!!) [ie she has never had a bottle]
HV - oh. does she have any other drinks?
us - yes, water
HV - and what does she drink water from?
us - a Doidy cup
HV - and when she does move on to other milk, will you be giving it from a bottle? it's not good to give a bottle for too long. it's important to move them on from a bottle you know by a year old


fedupandisolated Sat 30-Aug-08 11:20:22

Bloody hell - this fills me with despair.blush
Why not just say "I'll consult the MN HVs if you don't mind as they are better informed".grin

My own HV was great - a temp one they had just looked blankly at me when I said I was weaning DS using BLW though.

spottyshoes Sat 30-Aug-08 11:28:07

I trot out this story alot but it still makes me angry. When DS was 12mths I took him for his last weigh in. HV asked how much formula he was on and I replied he'd never had formula as I was still Bf'ing.

She looked shock and hmm and asked "Why?" she managed not to add a disgusted "FFS" at the end but her tone implied it.


spottyshoes Sat 30-Aug-08 11:31:00

Oh yes! BLW - I wont go into their response on that one. Hence to say the rest of the weaning class left better informed and I wasn't invited to anymore baby classes at our Dr's surgery grin

fedupandisolated Sat 30-Aug-08 20:06:07

Is this a good time to mention I am a HV spottyshoes grin

suey2 Sat 30-Aug-08 20:12:31

yep. Yadnbu. I took my eight month old dd to the hv Thursday. Only then did she mention that both of us should be taking vitamins from 6 months as she is breastfed. Do they just expect everyone togive up at six months therefore not even mention it ?

spottyshoes Sat 30-Aug-08 20:52:36

I would just like to point out I was not slating all HV's, just mine (you're not mine are you? [oh shit emoticon])

Suey2 - I didn't give my DS vits and am still bf at nearly 17mths. As he was BLW he wasn't getting the appropriate vits from food until about 7mths. He is fine! smile

I was not told about it either but dont know anyone who was told who actally used them

AnyFuleKno Sat 30-Aug-08 21:07:32

I am not surprised to be honest. Every health care professional we have come across bar one has assumed dd was bottle fed.

"Has she had a bottle today" or "When did she last have a bottle?"


fedupandisolated Sat 30-Aug-08 21:35:01

grin No spottyshoes - I seriously doubt I am your HV - I would never ask such bloody silly questions.

Don't get me started on growth charts either - my opinion is that they are a tool to wind up parents with...and a tool which most HV's appear unable to interpret accuratelyhmm

Our area is bringing in breastfeeding targets. Hope they bring in some spectacular breastfeeding education for midwives and HVs at the same time.

JordTyler Sat 30-Aug-08 21:41:34

I can't belive some of this! I thought it was just my HV who was sh*t. I was having trouble feeding DS and her answer was "just feed him in the morning and before bed if your finding it hard". Of course i wasn't asking for a way to wean him off, but that was what i got. Good job i'm a MNer and know better, i sure wouldn't have got this far (13weeks). Scares me though how many people they have told this tosh to who then gave up, or worse followed bad advice in good faith and then hit big problems and gave up.

GRRR! from me to

negril Sat 30-Aug-08 22:38:26

some find it easy breastfeeding some find it hard as ong as the baby does his business and he looks well and is gaining good weight then dont worry.

RedHead81 Sat 30-Aug-08 23:10:50

My HV keeps telling mums to "top-up" with 3oz of formula after every feed "because they haven't got enough milk" or "their babies are too hungry" !!!! ?????

Also, the HV at our BFing group (she's a really good one - not like my one at all) said that they are not allowed as HV's to give out weight charts based on a BF baby because they are sponsored by SMA!!! How wrong is that!? No wonder they want babies to be on bottles! (makes you wonder whether they get any incentives for mentioning certain formulas??? hmm )

mrshippy Sun 31-Aug-08 00:11:07

Blimin HV's!!!

I live in a Surestart area.

There has been a big BF drive.

HV's here are no longer allowed to suggest 'topping up' unless there is clear evidence of failure to thrive and everything else has been ruled out....this is because, quite simply, topping up is the first step to destroying BF...

Formula articifically stretches the babies tummy so BF's are less satisfying AND the supply/demand system - which can be very sensitive - is interrupted. So mum's milk supply gets a know, then more formula is introduced and so on.

If any of the HV's gave the advice you've been given, they would probably get into trouble here.

You are not being've worked hard to BF your baby and are rightly proud of doing it. Who is she to undermind all that. Did you notice any SMA post-it notes or pen's in her office?

If you had been seen by one of the HV (who have all just been retrained for BF) you would have got praise and anchouragement for what you are doing.

Report her hononamously if it makes you feel better.

Rant over ;)

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