Biting my tongue!(18 Posts)
I don't want to come across as a bit of a bee-atch or smug but I find myself biting my tongue at so many groups and just wanted to vent!
I'm still ebf my DD at 18 weeks and I get so many comments at groups from women using lame arse excuses as to why they no longer feed their lo's. 'I didn't have enough milk' being the most used excuse in the book and I find I have to bite my tongue almost in half to stop myself from jumping down their throat.
Now I know there are women who do have this issue but most of these women fed their lo's for a few days and then 'had to put them on the bottle as they were just sooo hungry!'
There was even a woman with a 5 week prem baby at my massage saying that even though she had no problems bf'ing at all, she decided it wasn't worth the hassle. I really wanted to take her to one side and explain why she should persevere, even if just for the first few months but stopped myself. Not helped by her next sentence which stated that his poos were like marbles that morning - poor little thing!
I know it is every woman's choice and I guess it is a sign of how under pressure women feel to breastfeed that there is always an excuse! I just wish women could get more support to help them continue - and this is from someone who lives in an area with excellent help and who used it to the max.
Just wanted to get that off my chest - phew!
oh go on - just let it all out
<<grabs popcorn and comfy beanbag>>
Hey Skillbo - it was just so refreshing to hear you vent your spleen!
I had almost the opposite problem, and struggled to get any support or taken seriously. I was keen to breastfeed but my baby wouldn't settle and got so angry with my boobs during feeds. She was only 14 weeks but she'd kick, squeal, bite, punch - almost as if she wasn't frustrated and getting enough milk. I'd stopped leaking and I kept telling them I thought I'd run dry but it was only when she began losing weight they took me seriously.
Then, the immediate reaction was to tell me to go on bottles! I was shocked. After all the selling the NHS does to try and tell us breast is best, as soon as you hit a snag, they retract it all and say bottle is best.
I had to really fight my corner to try to continue with breastfeeding.
I had to go on to bottles while I worked out how to bring my milk back, and found out about medication after many a google, but was faced with GP's telling me it wasn't available in this country (total codswallop!) and sending me to pediatricians insisting the problem was my daughter, not me. All through this, I was meeting Mums who had given up breastfeeding voluntarily and were moaning about leaking everywhere while I struggled to express even an ounce... how to make someone feel inadequate?!
Luckily, I have a great NCT breasdtfeeding counsellor who watched me try to feed, recognised the symptoms of low milk straight away, supported me and among other things, fed me 'lactation cookies' with brewers yeast in them. I eventually found a GP who prescribed me motilium and within a few days, whoosh - milk everywhere!!!
I'm now down to breastfeeding most of the time and giving her just one bottle a day to fill her up, and we're hoping that will have gone completely by next week. But hey, it was a fight to get here.
First child I see?
Listen, it's very easy to judge people that probably haven't had the support they needed to b/feed. Or have been told by family or even their HV/GP/MW (who are often woefully misinformed) that they don't have enough milk etc.
And they probably feel guilty as well.
So, have a quick squiz at the archives (although you may well have already), and check out how many people have felt so terribly disappointed that they couldn't b/feed or were entirely misadvised by family and professionals, or suffered a total lack of support.
I think you'll find that there are very few women who actually didn't want to b/feed. They aren't lame excuses. It's a fact that support for b/feeding is severely lacking.
I imagine you have been very lucky. I found b/feeding my first very easy. Did so for 7 months. Stopped too early.
With my second child I had nightmares with it. Had mastitis, thrush, more mastitis and thrush. He wouldnt latch properly yadayadayada. I ended up feeding him for over 2 years. But I had the support of people here and a bloody good HV too.
things arent always what they seem.
Skillbo - I've had a few bottles glasses of wine so probably not wise posting this but I've felt the same as you on lots of occasions.
Have had friends bleat about how they just had to put baby on formula as he wasn't gaining enough or needed 'topping up' as advised by midwife/hv. Largely it's for the easy life.
There isn't a single hcp in the land that would have so easily convinced me to give up bf'ing. 13 months on and going strong it's the best decision I ever made (although it wasn't a decision tbh just me following my natural urges - I knew from finding out I was pregnant that I would bf)
Btw your dd is absolutely beautiful - wow!
Oh my goodness Skillbo (hello from the June thread, BTW!). I think this is going to turn into a blood bath. Your language is quite inflammatory and I think it's going to upset quite a lot of people on here.......
If I'd only had the positive BF experience of feeding DD (20 weeks and counting, yey ), I'd be feeling the same.
However, the horrendous BF experience I had with DS will stay with me forever and is, by far, the most traumatic, painful, emotionally draining thing I've ever gone through. It was the hardest thing I've ever done making the decision to FF him after 10 days and I still feel guilty, to this day.
It's lovely that you've found it so easy, but please bear in mind that it's not so easy for everybody and for a lot of women it's really hard. There is nothing to say that you'll find it so easy next time (I really hope you do, I wouldn't wish my experience on anyone). I have friends who found BF easier than breathing with their first, and then had huge struggles with their second.
<<passes Skillbo a hardhat, as she's going to need it>>
None of your business!
NO ONE has to justify to anyone their choices & do you not think that if ff was seen as a little more acceptable, that mums wouldn't have to come up with 'lame arse excuses' as to why they haven chosen to stop breastfeeding!
Just to clarify my post - I am not having a go at women who formula feed. I just wish people didn't feel the need to constantly justify themselves to me as if I am judging them. Everyone is entitled to do as they wish and I just wanted to see whether anyone had a similar experience whereby every time you feed your lo in public, other women just come up to you and feel the need to explain why they no longer feed in depth. I find I bite my tongue not to explain how they could have perhaps extended bf'ing and instead just smile and say how hard it is.
For those of you instantly judging me, I struggled for over 2 months to feed my DD and fully understand the call of the bottle. I don't feel the need to justify this to ff'ers so just wish it worked both ways!
>>>There was even a woman with a 5 week prem baby at my massage saying that even though she had no problems bf'ing at all, she decided it wasn't worth the hassle. I really wanted to take her to one side and explain why she should persevere, even if just for the first few months but stopped myself. Not helped by her next sentence which stated that his poos were like marbles that morning - poor little thing!
your OP was really quite insensitive, your later attempt to backpeddle notwithstanding.
the bit about the mother of a premature baby was what caught my eye.
i have a 5 week prem baby.
let me tell you what bf him was like - hand expressing my colostrum in hospital (every 2-3 hours around the clock) til my milk came in and hoovering it up with a syringe to give to him .
3 weeks of exclusively expressing every 3 hours, 24/7.
cup feeding him so as not to risk nipple confusion.
painstakingly transitioning to the breast, once he woke up (which I might point out took over 3 weeks)
after lots of worry over supply, taking meds to increase it. consults with lactation consultant to fine tune latch.
lots of telly for my 2 year old.
lots of tears and worry from me.
i don't know how i persisted, but i did.
having been through bf hell with ds there were many times when i nearly quit, in fact prob the only reason i persisted was the sure knowledge that my body could do it - i fed dd for a year and a half.
how dare you judge this woman or any other. you don't know what her struggles were like, or her circumstances, or her breaking point.
fwiw had he been my first i may well have stopped. he is now 20 weeks old (15 corrected) and it is only now that i feel at ease with everything regarding my bf relationship with him.
>>I find I bite my tongue not to explain how they could have perhaps extended bf'ing
what good would this do, except to rub salt in a wound?
keep biting that tongue, karma's a bitch.
All I can say is I'm sorry - I guess I should keep my opinion to myself and am sorry that I have upset people...
Will ask MN to remove this as don't want to hurt anyone else.
Skilbo, often people justify themselves becuase they feel bad because they couldn't bf when they really wanted to. They overcompensate by over-explaining because they feel they are being judged. So perhaps think about WHY people are justifying themselves to you. More often than not, they are justifying their "decision" the themselves.
Or at least, that is what I did.
Skillbo your OP is quite insensitive cheeseandeyeballsarn... did warn you immediately - to grab your hard hat!
I'm not sure why you feel so annoyed when other mother's justify themselves to you. It is so obvious that they do this because they are dealing with the very difficult fact that they are no longer or never did breast feed and maybe they want to talk it through, maybe they're saying it because they want your support???
I find (well not so much now as DD is 7 months) myself justifying why I'm not breast feeding DD. I do it because I hate it, I hate the fact I'm not feeding her myself and have struggled to cope through the whole feeding saga which began when she was born. And I do sometimes feel that other women who are bf their LO have judgemental attitudes, based on the things they say, I hear things like what you wrote in your OP.
Don't feel annoyed with them, help them out listen and talk about it with them as one day you might be reaching out for support with feeding in this way!
Skillbo, you have changed tacts in your 12.48 post! You were judging!
Using emotive language like 'lame arse excuses' 'biting my tongue' mentioning the woman with the prem baby & calling it 'poor little thing' like it was being let down!
The support isn't there, I don't care how much you say it is. I was given a leaflet at hospital (in UK) in 2003 when dd1 was born. She was prem & prems are hard to bf, but no one helped me, no one told me to express, how to get her to latch on. NOTHING!
With dd2 last year (born in Australia) I had midwives falling over themselves to help me feed. One spent an entire afternoon helping me get my milk in, showing me how to syringe feed dd2 while she she slept, therefore getting food into her & getting my milk in. Not a drop of formula passed her lips until 4 months. That's when my supply didn't meet her demand. And before you judge, I was told that by a lactation consultant, a dr & a nurse! She was a hungry baby at the stage & wanted more than my body could make.
I managed to get us to 5 months, on probably a bottle of formula top up every other day.
It was bloody hard too. I had mastitus, she started to refuse to feed at 3mth in the evening, leaving both of us in tears because I couldn't even express due to the stress of her not feeding. One evening I tricked her with boiled water, which brought me an hour to relax & express a paltry 2fl oz. This went on for a month before I introduced the formula.
So there is more to it than 'lame arse excuses' believe me! Only my own stubbornness & sense of failure to bf dd1 kept me going as long as I did. I often said to dh that I understood why women didn't bf, or gave up early!
It is not your place to feel sorry for babies that are ff. Or to judge mothers who are just trying their hardest to get thro those first tricky months!
I found the same thing - I was lucky and ff was being suggested in the first 48hrs of DD birth because of latching/feeding problems, the MWs were all getting jumpy - but one made a couple of helpful suggestions and left me a couple of syringes and we managed to get going. You are at a very vulnerable time in those first few days and it's usually make or break as far as bf goes, and no, there is precious little support to get going. There is pressure to 'bf is best' everywhere you look, but you and your baby need some input to get going.
I felt guilty when I went to my NCT meet as everyone else was not BFing, and got the same thing mentioned - new mums trying to explain to me why they weren't BFing, which surprised me, but I guess they were trying to get it straight for themselves as it all happens so quickly after birth that you don't have the energy/time to question it yourself at the time. I did want to say to them 'did you try this, could you try that' but felt I couldn't as it was the last thing I wanted, to make them feel that I was judging them, which I wouldn't do, I just wanted to try and help/support if it was wanted. But it is a very emotive subject! Best left well alone I find.
I felt lucky to have had the tiny bit of direction I did in getting started and feel that the MWs simply don't have the time or expertise to help mums and babies BF and so most new mums are not getting the opportunity to make a proper choice.
I do know women also who have told me they Bfd for 3 weeks/ 6 weeks then gave up as it was too much bother.... but then at least they did have a choice.
I can identify with some of skilboos thoughts, but I think they came out all wrong in her OP, perhaps, so go easy.
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