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Considering BF a friend's baby to help her keep going!

(39 Posts)
ChairmumMiaow Mon 08-Sep-08 21:09:19

A friend (who I posted about here a few weeks ago) is still struggling to BF. She carried on expressing and cup feeding, switched to bottles and is now struggling to express. She still keeps trying her DS with the breast, but is getting quite upset about it and is foreseeing giving up.

When her sister visited her at the weekend, they were wishing for someone else to try her DS at the breast just to see if he would give it a go. I had previously thought it would be wierd, but recent contact with lots of teeny babies has made me comfortable with the idea of feeding someone else's baby. (and the timing of this is quite funny with the current discussions going on!)

I have no idea if offering her DS a feed would actually help, but I think if he would take a feed from me (who would be relaxed etc and could get let-down going using my own DS!) it might give her the confidence to try a little harder (I think she's very scared of failing and is resisting babymoon/bath ideas)

Am I being crazy or could I actually help?

beansprout Mon 08-Sep-08 21:10:27

You would have to ask her but it's a lovely idea. I wish you both well and hope it works out. smile

ChairmumMiaow Mon 08-Sep-08 21:11:17

Her sister is going to offer (it would be easier for her to say no that way) and we'll see.

Twiglett Mon 08-Sep-08 21:11:51

Personally I can't help feeling that this could tip a new mother over the edge into feeling totally incapable .. I mean if you manage succesfully what does that say about her?

Can you not find other ways to help her .. let her go to bed and bring her food and drinks .. naked skin on skin for the weekend .. ply her with magazines and tv stories .. she has nothing to do but bond and bf

AbricotsSecs Mon 08-Sep-08 21:12:03

Message withdrawn

CatMandu Mon 08-Sep-08 21:12:16

I don't think you'd have anything to lose, once you get your head around the idea of it.

watsthestory Mon 08-Sep-08 21:13:54

Message withdrawn

thisisyesterday Mon 08-Sep-08 21:14:43

if she feels that the problem may be with the baby and wants to see if he can feed then I can't see any reason not to do it.

but if she wants to make breastfeeding work then SHE has to work at it. remember that every feed he gets from elsewhere (formula, or you lol) is one less feed her body thinks it needs to make.
she needs to get in touch with breastfeeding counsellors. she needs to have lots of skin to skin, baths with baby, try some biological nurturing perhaps.

the baby isn't suddenly going to just do it all ok without any input from her

Twiglett Mon 08-Sep-08 21:16:36

I think it's a step too far .. and even suggesting it to her makes it sound like you and her sister feel she is incapable and just look what would happen if you relax like Chairmum, now aren't you a silly moo


I understand that's not what is intended, but seriously .. a hormonal new mum? I would have absolutely freaked if anyone had even suggested it

fishie Mon 08-Sep-08 21:16:57

i think it is a very kind offer but agree with twig, it could be just too much that you can do this and she can't. or it would have been for me. although i do appreciate that you have heard that she is fairly receptive to it.

can you help her to find some more effective support to bf herself? what is the problem, does it hurt, is she dreading it?

callmeovercautious Mon 08-Sep-08 21:20:49

She needs to babymoon. It is hard to just stop everything else but she really does need to and now. Make sure she has a BFing councellor to advise her and just help her out.

Twiglett Mon 08-Sep-08 21:22:03

what's babymoon <interested>?

thisisyesterday Mon 08-Sep-08 21:25:23

babymoon when you lounge around in bed for a couple of days with baby just feeding and being naked and have people bringing ytou stuff

I think the fact that the woman herself has thought about someone else feeding the baby means that she may just need to see for herself that baby CAN do it.

but as I say, it isn't going to improve for her unless she really perseveres. breastfeeding can be incredibly difficult to establish and takes a lot of hard work sometimes

fishie Mon 08-Sep-08 21:25:36

babymoon is to go to bed with no top on (mother and baby) and feed. for a weekend, a few days or a week. i did an enforced one when dh did some fierce diy and wish i'd tried it earlier. works a treat.

Twiglett Mon 08-Sep-08 21:27:22

aha like I said in my first post grin .. only it has been named an insipid foul schmaltzy name since I last breastfed [bleugh]

ChairmumMiaow Mon 08-Sep-08 21:32:54

I would never offer out of the blue, but it wasn't me that brought up the idea!

I can see where you're coming from with making her feel worse, but a "helpful" midwife called her DS a "breast refuser" and I think she's convinced that he's just not going to do it.

I think if she does think its a good idea, there would have to be a serious chat about it first!

I get quite emotional when people who wanted to BF struggle, so will jump on anything I can do to help!

pointydog Mon 08-Sep-08 21:37:38

I can't see how this would help.

thisisyesterday Mon 08-Sep-08 21:38:05

I had a breast refuser.
he refused for 10 days and then suddenly did it.
there are lots of things she can do to help. has she tried a supplemental nursing system?

expressing to get a let down and then latching him on?

fishie Mon 08-Sep-08 21:39:22

yes babymoon is yuck, but 'skin on skin' isn't very alluring either. still not as bad as my uttermost hated 'dreamfeed'.

fishie Mon 08-Sep-08 21:41:39

cm she needs proper qualified bfc help, not an unhelpful midwife. you say a few weeks in, how old is the baby and is she just feeding ebf or formula too?

ChairmumMiaow Mon 08-Sep-08 21:46:08

baby is just over 3 weeks, and she's still coping on just EBM but apparently expressing is getting harder, hence her worries.

The trouble is that she won't phone one of the helplines, so I guess I've jumped on something that she has thought about doing, that might help.

It just makes us sad that she was so determined to BF when she was pregnant, and its not happening for her at the moment.

supercollider Mon 08-Sep-08 21:47:14

I think it's a lovely idea in theory, but the answer might depend on how close your friendship with her is, and whether she would feel that she can discuss the idea with you completely honestly. Which is something that only you can judge, probably!

Also agree that she should get some proper BF advice, if she hasn't already.

pointydog Mon 08-Sep-08 21:52:21

She won't phone a helpline but she'll have someone else bf her baby?

What's her fear?

Hangingbellyofbabylon Mon 08-Sep-08 21:55:21

I had a similar situation with dd1 - we went down the cup feeding and expressing route and after about a month (dd never latched on) my sister offered to try and feed her and said I could try to feed her 6 month old dd. My sister had small boobs and small nipples versus my mega boobs and nipples. Anyway, my dd latched on to her straight away to her and guess what her dd refused me. tbh it was a bit heart-breaking, I wanted to breastfeed with all my heart and it was upsetting to think that she would accept another breast but not my own. As it happens I went on to express full-time for her for 6 months but I still have that image of my little dd sucking contentedly away at my sisters breast. I did manage to express for 6 months so it ended up a very positive story and then went on to breastfeed dd2 who was premature and tube-fed and in theory should have been the harder one to breastfeed. I would think really carefully about offering to do this for you friend and it could back-fire; offering your support for expressing would really be good. It's really tough at first just coping with all of the continuous steralising etc.

MayBloom Mon 08-Sep-08 21:57:33

I wouldn't because I think having another woman feeding my baby is icky (so shoot me!) and I think it would make her feel completely crap if it was successful, in all honesty.

I think it's great that you're so pro breastfeeding and want to help, but I'd worry that this is perhaps a step too far. What would happen if her baby bf from you, but then refused to feed from his mother? Not only would it make this poor woman feel like a complete failure, it may push her into an early bout of pnd. It could also rock the relationship between the both of you if she sees that her baby accepts your breast, and not hers - resentment, jealousy?! I know I'd start harbouring sad/angry feelings towards a mother that could feed my child when I couldn't. Honestly, how shit would you feel? Especially in the early days when your hormones are all up in the air.

I'll say it again, being pro breastfeeding is great, feeding someone elses baby is a completely different matter and imho, not a great idea in this situation.

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