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This might be a stupid question about your choice of feeding in hospital but...

(25 Posts)
yousaidit Tue 07-Oct-08 16:34:15

... with ds1 i wanted to bf but he didn't bf. we tried for apx 4 weeks before having to resort to bottle, trying to express milk for as long as poss.

The problem i have or issue if you like, is that after 4 days in hosptal after ds's birth (both me and ds fine, no probs before, during or after birth) i hadto request rather demandingily to be letr home! Ladies who had had caseareans and who often didn't want to go home were being sent home before me! It was made clear that i would be let home once ds fed from me. I'm aware from past issues with brothers kids that hospitals have breast feeding charters and must promote breast feeding and will keep you in until you are classed as having successfullf bf (thuisis result if long discussions with staff after my brothers children where let out of hospital after a few issues resulting from feeding)

so, the question is, when i go in to have my next dc (am 36wks pregnant) i want to tell the hospital that i am planning to bottole feed, so that i am not kept in until the baby latches on. (i am planning to bf if i can, but i know from experience after having so many different nurses grabbing my boobs and trying to get ds to latch on that there is no science in how the hospital try to get babies to feed), this might sound odd but after i left hospital with ds my dh ended up taking me to dr's thanks to how low i felt, and i am not having the same witht his pg. So, if i staste that i am bottle feeding: do you have to take in all your own supplies: botkes, sterilisers, milk, etc, or do the hospital styilllet you use the milk with the teats that screw on? any advice so i go in prepared thanks!

TheProvincialLady Tue 07-Oct-08 16:47:14

I understand completely where you are coming from because I had a similar experience in hospital with rough and unknowledgeable MW - but I think it would be a better plan if you didn't lie to the hospital staff. If you got some support from one of the BF organisations you could write a plan for what you will do re BF in hospital. LLL are helping me do this (am 29wk at the moment) and it will basically say KEEP YOUR FLIPPING HANDS OFF ME AND MY BABY! because when they are left to do what comes naturally almost all babies will BF. It is when people intefere that problems begin. If you are forewarned with all the information on how to avoid any problems, things to do with the birth that will help etc, then you will probably find that your baby is a master at it!

If you did want to be discharged when your baby still hadn't successfully BF then you could still do it because you are a voluntary patient in a maternity hospital, not someone who has been sectioned in a mental hospital. No need to lie, just state your reasons. You have been in this position before so it is not like you would let your baby starve - you know how to express and bottle feed etc if the worst came to the worse. And you could organise some postnatal EXPERT advice rather than the patchy at best 'help' you can expect in your average UK hospital.

RhinestoneCowghoul Tue 07-Oct-08 16:54:06

I avoided this situation with DS by having a homebirth wink, not always an option I grant you! Only prob was nobody seemed that interested that bf wasn't going well and we ended up in hosp when he was 5 days old as he was jaundiced and losing weight.

I think if you do want to bf, it's best to be up front about it - and like TPL says, be very clear that all the manhandling was not helpful last time. Talking to one of the BF helplines beforehand will also help with this.

My (otherwise fab) MW that helped deliver DS at home still did the boob-squeezing thing, which I hated and now I'm preg again I think I'll put something in my birth plan about it.

FWIW when DS and I were admitted to the hosp I had some really great support from the staff, no squeezing or shoving (altho some lonely hours with the breastpump to...) so it doesn't have to be terrible.

Hope you get the support you need this time

domesticslattern Tue 07-Oct-08 16:57:28

I had countless strangers grabbing my tits, it was horrendous. SO I understand where you are coming from.

I still wouldn't bother lying about the bottle feeding. I would just say, thank you very much, we are bf, I tried it before, and if I need any help I will contact you/ MW/ HV/ BF line. They can't refuse to discharge you.

pollyblue Tue 07-Oct-08 18:06:10

When my dd was born, early by section, I tried feeding her but could get bugger all out, despite some awful squeezing and manhandling by a couple of midwives. After about 12 hours one said that dd needed feeding and what was I going to do about it? So i opted for formula and it was supplied in dinky bottles (there was a choice of 3 brands I think) with the screw on teats. So if that hospital had a breast feeding charter I don't think anyone was paying much attention to it!

Flamebat Tue 07-Oct-08 18:07:33

Just say you wanna go home. If you say you want to bottle feed then they will help you bottle feed...

Wade Tue 07-Oct-08 19:16:28

Doesn't a community midwife visit you after the birth? Tell them you will follow up any problems with her and you are leaving now. Fingers crossed this one will just take to the boob really easily.

fabsmum Tue 07-Oct-08 20:38:23

If you want to try to bf in the medium or long term you are setting yourself up for failure if you bottlefeed in hospital at the beginning.

Don't lie to the midwives. Tell them you want to breastfeed but you were very upset with the way you were treated last time and have no intention of staying in for four days and being manhandled again.

They can't keep you in hospital if you want to go. They can only advise you to stay.

Bet you find things are different this time around - hopefully the birth will be easier and this could make it all so much better for you with bf.

Try to get loads of skin to skin contact with your baby in the hospital and put him or her to your breast straight away after birth. Don't panic if things don't go to plan straight away - give it time and ask the midwives NOT to push your baby's head on to your breast, because it makes them less likely to latch on, not more! Babies sometimes instinctively pull back when they're handled in this way.

Watch this video for some tips: here

And when you get home phone a bf counsellor if you have problems.

Good luck!

conkertree Tue 07-Oct-08 20:53:45

exactly the same thing happened to me although luckily ds did catch on eventually and am still bf him at night at 14 months, but it really annoys me how often this seems to happen to people.

I have no doubt that the mw who did this to me thought they were being helpful, but they really werent. and we were on our own when he did eventually manage to latch on - so the shoving him on probably did no good anyway.

my sister had similar with her ds but with ds2 they asked her if she bf her first, and when she said she had until he was 14 months, they left her alone to get on with it.

so maybe if you were going to tell them anything, you could say that you did it before with your first, but since it was a while ago, if you have any problems remembering how to, you will ask them, otherwise, please leave you alone. that would give you the option to ask for help, but hopefully alos give you time to try it out for yourselves first. good luck.

SharpMolarBear Tue 07-Oct-08 20:57:07

angry that' awful

yousaidit Wed 08-Oct-08 13:48:11

Thanks everyone: The commonsense replies are making me re-think and tell the hospital that i'll try but i don't want to stay in for breastfeeding when i've got the experience of knowing there's not much done at hospiutal that can't be done at home. This is the only thing that's really making me not 100 giddy about the impending arrival. Knowing my luck, it'll pop out, wail and reveal two rows of razor sharp little teeth!!!!! grin

TheProvincialLady Wed 08-Oct-08 14:01:21

Have you been told that you are expecting a kitten?grin

brokenrecord Wed 08-Oct-08 14:08:18

I was treated very differently as a second time mum, and was pretty much left to get on with it.

Hopefully it wil be the same for you.

yousaidit Wed 08-Oct-08 14:08:33

As long as there's not a litter of seven that i have to carry to cardboard box with my teeth by the scruff of their neck then i wouldn't mind!!!!! grin

('twould not make as much noise, methinks, either!!)

TinkerBellesMum Wed 08-Oct-08 14:19:36

No one should touch your breasts in hospital (aside from an examination if you need one) that's not the way to get you breastfeeding!

I wouldn't lie to them, but I would request a visit from their BFing person. Take the time in hospital to get there, some babies are slow to start and this country is quick to worry. Don't let them manhandle you.

jennieflower Wed 08-Oct-08 14:29:35

I had a similar experience with DD 5 years ago. I still feel angry at the bitch midwife grabbing and squeezing my boobs, muttering something about having to make my nipple the right shape angry

I had my son 3 weeks ago and really didn't want a repeat performance so wrote a birth plan and said that I planned to breast feed but didn't want any intervention or assistance from the midwife unless I asked for it. The lovely midwife was brilliant, at one point I could see she was itching to try and help but she stopped herself. DS latched on and was feeding within a few minutes of birth.

Good luck!

LadySanders Wed 08-Oct-08 14:36:39

i got a bit manhandled with ds1 in hosp which obviously didn't help, but as soon as i was alone with him he b/f straightaway.

ds2 born in v busy london maternity ward, i don't think anyone even asked whether i was b/f or f/f (although 12 year old doc insisted on dressing him before she handed him over, which wouldn't have helped if i had been worried about establishing b/f...)

as regards leaving hosp, just to reiterate you can leave anytime. with ds1 i left without doc permission and with them giving me dire warnings. with ds2 i had to resort to dialling 999 on my mobile as the m/w were refusing to discharge me and said they would get security to stop me. its all excitement with me. but in any case, they did obviously have to let me go. hope it doesn't come to that!

swottybetty Wed 08-Oct-08 18:42:00

wow lady - you dialled 999? i am pg with no. 2 and am hoping for a homebirth largly because of my fear of being kept in hospital for long after the birth. what did you say to 999?? and how long after the births did you leave?

Wade Wed 08-Oct-08 22:19:32

LadySanders - they were going to call security??!!! (Imagining burly security guards wrestling new mother and newborn to floor...)

TinkerBellesMum Thu 09-Oct-08 00:02:36

Whilst they can't force you to stay they could get difficult if you try to leave when they're not happy for you to. I'd hate to start our new lives together with a social worker being called because I wanted to leave hospital. Not saying to not go home, but I know how difficult hospitals can be from problems my SIL had and from the amount of time I had a visit from Mum when she was in the hospital visiting another patient.

whatironing Thu 09-Oct-08 12:04:11

I'm sure the hospital experience put loads of mums off bfing. I was kept in, had loads of people man handle me, was made to express to feed ds with a syringe etc all because he wouldn't feed for 15mins in front of a MW. I was only let out when someone who had actually bf herself saw me. It was humiliating and very very annoying. The lady next to me had similar treatment and was practically begging the MW to let her give a bottle seeing as how it clearly wasn't working. In 8months of successful feeding ds never fed for more than 10minutes.

LadySanders Thu 09-Oct-08 14:16:44

swotty and wade:

i wanted a homebirth with ds2 but twas not to be. had to have section friday morning and explained very nicely that i wanted to be out within 48 hours. they agreed i could leave at 9am sunday morning.

it got to 5pm sunday evening and i was still sitting on bed with dp and ds1 who had been waiting all day with me for doc to discharge us. so eventually i said, righto, we're both clearly fine, so we're leaving now.

hosp m/w said "you can leave but you can't take your baby"

i say "i've been waiting all day, i need to go home now to be with my family"

she says "you can't take your baby unless i authorise it, i will tell security guards not to let you take ds2"

i say "are you seriously threatening to kidnap my baby? if so you'd better call the police"

she starts ranting that i can't leave and that my notes are incomplete because i wasn't tested for HIV and need that done before i go (weird weird weird)

i call 999

she sees sense

we leave

and live happily ever after!

swottybetty Thu 09-Oct-08 15:00:34

hurrah lady <<round of applause>> that is good to know re cs. had assumed that five days was a minimum, no compromise. will remember you tale....

monkeymonkeymonkey Thu 09-Oct-08 15:18:11

Swotty, I have had 2 sections, and been out the next day both times.
There was no drama from the midwives either, I think that the amount of time they expect people to stay in hospital after a section is less now than a few years ago.

bikerunski Thu 09-Oct-08 15:44:06

After much struggling, much perserverance by me, much resistance by DS, a poorly baby, a lot of support by mw, bf support workers and lactation specialists, many many tears, a paedeattrician wanting to put DS on a drip in Special Care, 23% weight loss and a week in hospital we decided to bottle feed. The hopsital does have a bf charter, but after all our efforts, they persuaded me that DS needed a bottle. They supplied everything. I picked a brand at random.

Also had an em cs, routine to keep CS ladies in for 4 days, but one lady persuaded them to let her home sooner as it was her third. Another lady refused to go home without morphine, hopsital wouldn't give her morphine to take home, and she was still there when we went home. 34 years ago my mum stayed in for 2 weeks after cs.

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