Advanced search

What's for lunch today? Take inspiration from Mumsnetters' tried-and-tested recipes in our Top Bananas! cookbook - now under £10

Find out more

OK, so twice in the last couple of weeks I've been reminded why I don't like putting young babies into routines

(106 Posts)
hunkercaribou Wed 17-May-06 13:07:39

Twice, I have seen babies screaming for a feed and their mothers "trying to make them wait for it" because "it's not time for a feed yet".

[heart breaks]

What would you do in this situation?

MrsBigD Wed 17-May-06 13:11:12

not much one can do if it's not your own child Have to admit that when dd was very little I was one 'of those' who tried and make her wait for it... simply because she was feeding every 2h and eating nearly nothing, so thought if I stretch to 3h she'd eat more... well she didn't so went back to feeding on demand

mythumbelinas Wed 17-May-06 13:11:15

babies may not necessarily be screaming for a feed ..
my good friend made the mistake of thinking crying (when didn't have dirty nappy) was to give feed. Result was a baby to toddler who climbed his mum all the time, having very little milk everytime, whinging .. and mum having to take at least 6 bottles out with her wherever she went

hunkercaribou Wed 17-May-06 13:12:56

No, both times these were hungry babies, both were less than 3mo. Mum knew the baby was hungry (not first-timers, not that this necessarily makes a difference).

foxinsocks Wed 17-May-06 13:13:35

(is that you hunkermunker?)

perhaps the baby had reflux and had to wait a bit longer to be fed

arfy Wed 17-May-06 13:13:52

I really, really, really can't see the point with babies that young - they haven't got a CLUE what's going on and they're not doing it on purpose!

hunkercaribou Wed 17-May-06 13:14:43

Yes, tis I.

These are mums I know, btw, not ones I just saw in the street and assumed things about.

No reflux, no other special circumstances, just hungry babies on routine feeds.

mythumbelinas Wed 17-May-06 13:15:59

well, if 3m or less .. hmm
it is a hard one, because every mother does things differently

mythumbelinas Wed 17-May-06 13:17:39

have to say i kept more or less to a routine and it worked great for me but sometimes .. growth spurt .. need to give a bit extra .. no problem let them have it

WigWamBam Wed 17-May-06 13:18:48

What would I do? Probably nothing, but would feel awful about it. My dd wouldn't go for more than a couple of hours without a feed, but I couldn't have tried to force her to go longer, it would have torn me apart. Seems a shame to try and force routines onto such a tiny baby, when eventually they all seem to find their own routines anyway.

arfy Wed 17-May-06 13:22:21

yes, because you may know exactly what routine you want, but obviously that means nothing to a tiny baby, and I don't think it necessarily 'teaches' them anyting either. Seems a lot more trouble and heartache than it's worth. also little babies get comfort from feeding too, it's not just about nutrition.

I went for a feeding routine a bit later on when it had all settled down a bit, despite my mother constantly wittering on about how much easier it would be for me if I fed every 4 hours like in her day. Listening to DD scream would not be easier. Besides, IME, the more you can get into them in the day/early evening, the more sleep you're likely to get at night!

happybebe Wed 17-May-06 13:23:20

well to be honest its the mothers that are getting it wrong not the routines they choose to follow, yes i am a GF routine follower and never would i have dreamt of making my DD wait for a feed just because it wasnt time. IMO a routine is fine as long as you accept it takes time for babies to get into it, if at all, you cant just expect to put them on it and they last 4 hours between feeds straight off. ridiculous. if you know these mums hunkermunker, i would remind them of this as politely as possible, what a shame for those poor babies.

Mistymoo Wed 17-May-06 13:30:29

I was a bit like this with my first. With my second I was more relaxed as I realised they don't stay that way for long and it is only a short period of your life in the grand scheme of things!

FairyMum Wed 17-May-06 13:40:54

I agree. I always fed on demand. I don't understand why the mums don't just give themselves a break and just give them what they want. Seems very old-fashioned to me, but I admit I feel more sorry for the mums than the babies. The mums probably have some mother or mother-in-law in the background who has told them not to "give in" to the baby.

pablopatito Wed 17-May-06 13:52:30

How do you know why a baby is crying? Pre-baby I was always told 'you just learn what his cries mean when you have your own' but neither myself or my partner have ever had a clue why our baby is crying - all his cries sounded the same to us. Are we just useless?

mumfor1standfinaltime Wed 17-May-06 13:54:18

I used to grab the bottle whenever ds would cry (when he was small).

Looking back I think sometimes it was more to do with ds being tired or wanting a cuddle with his bottle as sometimes he would fall asleep after couple of ounces. Dont think its always about hunger, think ds just wanted to be close.

bluejelly Wed 17-May-06 13:54:28

Was walking behind one of the school mothers the other day, she was pushing screaming newborn in pram and it nearly broke my heart. Baby only about 6 weeks old and crying its little heart out. Could not understand for the life of me why she didn't stop and feed it, or at least comfort it. If she really couldn't bear to feed in public she should have been running home to feed it surely-- instead she was dawdling and chatting to other mothers. Sorry just don't get it.

PanicPants Wed 17-May-06 13:58:09

Fed on demand when b/f but when I switched to bottles I did try the 4 hour routine, and have to say ds didstick pretty close to it, guess I was just lucky. If he was really sobbing I would let him have it earlier though.

mumfor1standfinaltime Wed 17-May-06 14:00:09


No you are certainly not useless! It can take time to recognise your babies needs. There is a point where it will click - you will think, he/she is tired, hungry, fed up etc. It helped me to look at ds body language and it used to depend on what sort of day he had etc.

I have a dvd of ds when he was small which we made, just day to day stuff and I watch it now and think - he is tired fgs, put him to bed!

mythumbelinas Wed 17-May-06 14:01:01

i just don't get why other women feel the need to give disapproving looks when they see somebody elses baby crying. Mums should be able too recognise why their OWN baby is crying .. thus tend to their need appropriately .. and not for somebody else to say 'feed it!' If the mum is okay about letting their baby cry for a while it is up to them .. let it be .. ALL babies cry!!!

FrayedKnot Wed 17-May-06 14:06:28

Under 3 mos I would also be sorry to see this happen, and not understand the point.

DS only had to squeak to be stuck on , and I hated to hear him cry. And regardless, by 6 months or so he was having feeds at quite specific times, despite not having ever denied him, or tried to delay a feed, so I can;t see it serves much purpose.

I eouldn;t say anything, but I would question it.

crunchie Wed 17-May-06 14:33:33

Well I am going to throw teh proverbial cat in, if you cannot interpret your babies cries (as it does take time to learn them) how do you know you are feeding on demand? How do you know that cry is for food? I did push (gently) a 3 hrly routine on my DD2, from birth - or about a week old. Basically there were good reasons in my mind to do this. I was breast feeding and it really hurt with cracked nipples etc, therefore the longer I could leave it the better. Also it worked better in that I could spend decent time with DD1. Luckily I had a baby that fitted into this well, if she seemed to want feeding before the 3 hrs I would try to distract her for a little while, but after 2.5 hrs I would feed her.

As far as leaving a tiny baby to yell in a pram as you pushed it, I am shocked you found this that odd TBH. Or did your baby never scream for no apparent reason after you had tried feeding, soothing, jiggling, changing, playing etc etc. And did you never need to get somewhere quickly, totally knackered and have no choice? I remember trying the pram pushing after various different options to get my baby to sleep.

bluejelly Wed 17-May-06 14:44:26

I see what you are saying crunchie but that baby was definitely hungry. It wasn't whimpering or whinging, it was screaming for food...

pootlepod Wed 17-May-06 14:50:58

Bluejelly, perhaps that little chat was the only adult chat the mum was going to get that day?

I know my baby screamed for no apparent reason a fair few times.

pablopatito Wed 17-May-06 14:53:28

"I see what you are saying crunchie but that baby was definitely hungry"

OK, now I want to eat a Crunchie.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: