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The guilt of giving up breast feeding.

(12 Posts)
mammaemma Thu 06-Aug-09 21:34:19

Hi there,
Help i am beating myself up so badly at the moment, i have a daughter who is 3 that I breastfed til she was 4 months and my new daughter is 3 months old (13 weeks) and i have been giving her a bottle of formula before bed for about a week as she was sucking for an hour and a half before bed which meant no time for DD1.
So anyway now DD2 tends to pull on and off the boob to have a good nosy round I am also finding it difficult to breastfeed whilst out and about with DD1. I think both of us are ready to move over to bottles but i can't stop beating myself up and it has been going on for a week and driving my husband potty as to them its just black and white. I don't really know why I feel so bad about it, perhaps its because that phase will be over with but I am not even sure I will miss it. Plus I feel I am being selfish and not giving her the best.... any words of wisdom, comfort or understanding would help!! either that or i am going to give myself fifty more lashes ! :-)

TurtleAnn Thu 06-Aug-09 21:43:44

Good luck with whatever you decide. I remember the guilt phase, it seemed to last forever.
No words of wisdom, sorry, but love to you

WobblyPig Thu 06-Aug-09 21:59:52

I know exactly how you feel. Have a 11 week old and a 2.10 DS. It is very difficult IMO to give time to other child if breastfeeding is dominating your life.
You must do what you feel is best for the entire family I think. You have given you baby a good start and I think that the ability to feed by way ofthe bottle and move on with the rest of the day untilt he next feed is useful. I have been debating this for a while as my baby feeds every 2 hours or so.

ALso understnad about the DH thing. They can't understand the emotional aspect of BF or giving it up. My DH is forever saying ' make a decision and stick to it' and I can tell he is sick of me discussing it all the time.

minxofmancunia Thu 06-Aug-09 22:02:26

hello mammaemma please don't feel bad about this, you've done amazingly by bf for as long as you have, there is NOTHING WRONG with swapping to formula. Bf just isn't doable or practical for a lot of families and ff is a safe and viable alternative.

I'm pg with dc number 2 with a 3 year old daughetr and can't see myself bf for very long tbh, was hellish last time and made me miserable. Will prob try to get to 3 months same as you!

It's a bug bear of mine that women are made to feel gulity for using formula. It's their choice and they should be supported in what ever feeding choices they make.

thisisyesterday Thu 06-Aug-09 22:17:33

mammaemma, you shouldn't feel bad or guilty about this as long as you feel you have made an informed decision and it's definitely what you want to do.
it's not a very easy thing to undo if you decide afterwards that you've made the wrong choice, so i wo9uld say perhaps stick with it a bit longer to make sure you're certain,.

i say this from the POV of someone who gave up bf at around 4;5 months with my firzt child. i was gutted and it took me a very, very long time to come to terms with it, i felt awful.
i've since successfully breastfed 2 other babies.

it IS hard work in the early days, there is no denying that, but i can honestly say that it does get easier, and having done both it really, really is much easier andless time consuming than bottle feeding in the long run.

i wonder if you have a local breastfeeding cafe or something? sometimes it can help to talk to other mums who are experiencing the same thing as you (ie, difficulties feeding out and about) and you cqan usually get some good tips from the more experienced bf'ers about how to get round it.

anyway, like i say, if you're sure you're making the right decision then there really is no need to feel bad about it. you have to do what is best for you and your family

MamaMaiasaura Thu 06-Aug-09 22:37:41

excellant post by thisisyesterday. I agree it is hard in early days and i felt guilty that ds1 was not having my time while i was (and still am at times) with ds2. Think is it can take just as long to settle with a bottle so that issue isnt going to change. Also I think parenting is a permanat guilt rollercoaster.

kidcreoleandthecoconuts Thu 06-Aug-09 22:43:26

Don't feel bad or guilty. I've just stopped bf my 18 month old DD. She was ready to stop and so was I. i don't really miss it TBH. i think I gave her the best start and that in the end she became nonchalant(sp?) about it anyway.

thisisyesterday Thu 06-Aug-09 23:04:48

just wasnted to agree with Awen too, that sometimes it can seem that breastfeeding is causing certain problems. so you switch, and you find that the problems are still there, but now you not only have to deal with them but also with the time of making up bottles etc!

mammaemma Fri 07-Aug-09 10:14:28

Wow how nice to wake up this morning to all these lovely messages, thank you so much I really appreciate it. It has helped a lot. I certainly agree that it is one long guilt rollercoaster and it is hard for DH's to support us on that as its difficult to understand! Thanks again, this website is so useful xxx

girlsyearapart Fri 07-Aug-09 10:17:10

Don't feel bad. The guilt is immense isn't it though? When dd1 had her first bottle- given by DH - I stood in the bathroom and sobbed. He didn't get it at all!

staylucky Fri 07-Aug-09 11:50:32

I haven't got as far on as you yet but struggle with finding time for my older child too so I know how you feel. I agree with what others have said in that once the descion is made you can't go back so please make sure you give it a lot of thought and don't feel you are overdiscussing it with your dh. He's there to listen as much as for any other reason and it won't be your main concern forever.

Can you combine a feed with a bedtime story for your older child maybe? I find when I can do this my little one is quite soothed by our voices and we get to all spend sometime together too.

I wasn't prepared for hoe guilty I'd feel about dividing my time between my two children, I've come to the conclusion that actually I just can't do 1 on 1 with my dd at the minute and have explained this to her best I can. She is actually ok about it at the minute and dh is helping by making extra effort to spend time with her when I just can't.

All the very best whatever you decide love, it's a thankless job sometimes!!

LeonieSoSleepy Fri 07-Aug-09 12:33:45

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