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"Bottle feeding is a woman's right" About bloody time they said this

(616 Posts)
lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 07:37:52

I tried really hard. I really wanted to breast feed. Turns out, my failure was nothing to do with being lazy or not caring for my baby, I had undiagnosed MS - a relapse caused by an infection picked up at the hospital where she was born.
When I finally decided I couldn't manage to exclusion bf, I was treated like I had suggested heroin as an alternative for dd. Was I seeing sneers and "looks" that weren't there? I dunno, I was ill with a baby just a few weeks old.
Treat women like grown ups not box ticking exercises. And accept that those who won't help you meet your bf target are real women not useless wasters.

IloveJudgeJudy Tue 12-Jun-18 09:06:35

I couldn't agree more. I had to FF both DSs, did BF DD, but caused myself mild depression by doing so as she was never satisfied and I got upset. I really wish that FF had been discussed in the antenatal stage instead of never being mentioned.

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:10:43

I'm sorry you had a tough time too @IloveJudgeJudy .

stuckficks Tue 12-Jun-18 09:12:48

Hear hear! I've been lucky and managed to breast feed without too many problems but if I'm honest I really resent it. Borderline hate it.
I wish I could be brave enough to switch to formula but when my first was 11 months I was already 5 months pregnant with my second, supply was affected and DD was becoming increasingly frustrated with every feed so I stopped. DD1 became ill with an ear infection and I got tons of judgement from medics for not still breastfeeding her so I quietly bf my second while counting down the days to me stopping...

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:15:54

I really believe in bf as a positive, I really do. But the lack of support and the horrible way you are treated if you can't is a scandal.

angemorange Tue 12-Jun-18 09:18:26

Glad to see this come out as a statement. It's about time. Luckily I had an 'old school' midwife who didn't make me feel like a failure for not being able to breastfeed. My DS is now a very healthy teen smile

Hoppinggreen Tue 12-Jun-18 09:21:11

I ff, totally from choice - I feel no need to justify it with a backstory
I never felt judged or pressure to bf but I know some people do. I am an older Mum I suppose and come across as pretty confident
When my baby was 1 month old I drove 45 minutes each way to show sil how to ff her starving baby as her MW refuses to help with ff advice.
I also “rescued” a sobbing new Mum in the baby food aisle in Sainsbury’s who asked for advice from her MW who told her to “figure it out”
If you want to and can bf then I agree there are some advantages over ff and you should receive full support. However, ladies who want to ff should get the same support

BertrandRussell Tue 12-Jun-18 09:24:38

Considering how very few women breast feed, I'd say the message is getting across OK.

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:26:16

Thanks @BertrandRussell . Your sympathetic contributions are always welcome.

Pretamum Tue 12-Jun-18 09:26:56

OP, I feel your pain. I also was really desperate to BF, thought it would be a doddle. DS latched on easily for the first feed not long after birth, but after that it was a total nightmare. I was given a chart in hospital to fill in to monitor how often i was feeding him and for how long - no pressure whatsoever! When he wouldn't latch and it became evident I was getting nowhere while he was getting hungry, the nurse brought along a syringe and I had to squeeze my nipples and collect the milk into the syringe - it took an hour to get a few drops out, and was easily the most humiliating experience of my life. After 2 nights in hospital following the birth and getting nowhere I nervously asked the midwife / nurse for some formula, and DS took to it instantly. Didn't look back, but the nurse who had previously tried to milk me saw me later on with the bottle and was clearly repulsed. Glad the guidance has changed, it can be really disheartening to be dismissed or judged because you've made a decision that works for you and your baby.

Noeuf Tue 12-Jun-18 09:30:34

I agree with @BertrandRussell

I see so many mums FF out and about - our society is clearly getting the message wrong somewhere if mums who FF feel they are disapproved of but still do it.

BertrandRussell Tue 12-Jun-18 09:30:45

Oh sorry. Is this a support thread for individuals who are struggling, or a thread about how policy about infant feeding should be managed? I honestly thought it was the second. My corribution would have been very different if I had thought it was the first. The problem is that we need to talk about policy and education. But that can't happen on the same thread as women seeking help and support for their own individual situations.

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:34:44

@Noeuf I ff my baby because she would die otherwise.

happymummy12345 Tue 12-Jun-18 09:35:24

I fully agree that it should be a mother's choice and that she should in no way feel pressured or judged.
But I think professionals push the breast is best so much it can be hard for some mums to feel they do have a choice.
I chose to to even try breastfeeding because I didn't want to. I had an awful student midwife trying to lie in my notes and say I would until I threatened to complain. It wasn't for me, I'm happy with my decision, my baby is fine, and I won't be even trying breastfeeding with any children I have in the future.

ALittleAubergine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:37:54

ive ended up doing mixed feeding for my DC. always with so much guilt attached, like i'm ruining their futures, they won't be as healthy and intelligent as they would've been if I had exclusively breastfed them.... DH doesn't seem too phased by any of it, he thinks as long as the baby gets fed and mother and baby are both ok, then there is no issue.

Noeuf Tue 12-Jun-18 09:39:31

And nothing I posted contradicts that does it? But it's not every woman who FF that has such an emotive reason.

As Bertrand says, is this a discussion on policy and the message or a support thread?

I misunderstood and thought it was the former.

mustbemad17 Tue 12-Jun-18 09:40:31

I just had this chat with my mum today, it baffles me that in 2018 we even have to make statements about feeding being a mum's choice. I ff my DD after three days of hell trying to bf; she is happy, healthy & meeting all her milestones. If you put her in a line up you'd not be able to tell she was ff.

Time to stop shaming mums & making things a competition. We should be able to feed our babies & get support whichever path we choose

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:42:07

You may have wanted a discussion about policy but this is such a visceral experience- made to feel like a failure from day one.
You don't know women 's personal stories. Turns out, there are more women in distress than you think @Noeuf .

MrsElla Tue 12-Jun-18 09:42:52

Im avoiding Formula at all costs if i can. Too much salt and sugar in them and the chemicals! Strongly believe its linked to obesity and tooth decay rising in young children

aaronburr Tue 12-Jun-18 09:42:53

It's weird because as a BFing mother I came across the opposite attitude towards FFing.

The MWs in hospital who encouraged me to give DD formula rather than help me with my latch at 2 days old.

The MW who visited me at home who suggested I supplement with formula.

The GP when I had thrush who told me BFing had run its course. She was only 7 months old.

It honestly felt like everybody was very keen for me to FF. I can never understand where all this so called sneering is coming from when hardly anybody BFs.

Parker231 Tue 12-Jun-18 09:43:29

I ff by choice. It is 100% good for babies - there is never any reason for hospital staff, midwives and other mothers to criticize the method of feeding. There is only one rule - the baby must be fed.

lostinsunshine Tue 12-Jun-18 09:43:54

I must have imagined the sneering.

BertrandRussell Tue 12-Jun-18 09:44:18

"You may have wanted a discussion about policy but this is such a visceral experience- made to feel like a failure from day one."

Does that mean that this is a support thread or a policy discussion? I'm a bit confused now.

Sillydoggy Tue 12-Jun-18 09:45:35

I am very pleased to see this policy. Mums need support with feeding their babies however they are doing it. The previous policy appears to have given licence to health professionals and other parents to bully women who can’t or won’t breastfeed.

GorgonLondon Tue 12-Jun-18 09:46:29

Yes, I think you probably did imagine it.

As Bertrand said, considering that only 17% of babies are EBF at three months old, there doesn't seem to be a problem in women understanding that there is a choice.

The problem is more that the overwhelming majority of women choose to FF.

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