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AIBU to give up breastfeeding?
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MisselthwaiteManor · 21/08/2013 16:24

I've just about had enough.

Baby has a lip tie which GP says no one in the country will cut. She was cupfed from birth against my will and has never been able to latch properly. I have been expressing every single feed for two months (she's now 10 weeks old). My milk supply in one boob dried up so its one boob getting pumped every time, my god the pain.

My milk supply has now more than halved, I don't know if it's due to the fact I'm on my period. For the past week I've been expressing every half hour to get enough for the baby, it's still not been enough and we've been giving the odd carton of formula.

I've just had e-fucking-nough of getting up every hour in the night and all day to wash the fucking pump and express again. Every feed is a nightmare because if there isn't a bottle waiting in the fridge she has to wait and she obviously gets distressed. DH gets no sleep either because he feeds her while I express the next bottle to try and stay ahead.

I would be onto formula like a shot if it wasn't for the amount of shit I am getting from every angle. The midwife drummed it into me all through my pregnancy how the baby will be full of disease if I use formula. The GP has said under no circumstance switch to formula because the baby has bad reflux and apparently it'll make it worse. Home start have been badgering me twice a week for weeks asking if I'm breastfeeding properly yet. I told them I don't need their help anymore (they tried and couldn't get her to latch either) but they will not go away. The health visitor is the same, phonecalls all the time asking if I'm doing it right yet.

AIBU to tell them all to fuck right off and give my baby formula? She's upset with the situation so I can't see a benefit to breastmilk for us anymore but I feel like the worst mother in the world.

I have PND which is clouding my head and my judgement so please tell me what you would do.

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teacher123 · 21/08/2013 17:06

I exclusively expressed for the first 3 weeks of DS's life before we got bf established, but it was hellish, I remember sobbing when In a sleep deprived haze i knocked over a whole bottle of milk that I'd just expressed. I think it's the worst of both worlds, as you have to do everything twice, and I was constantly panicking that we'd run out of milk. We eventually managed to get him back on the boob at 3 weeks, but I was days away from reaching for the formula. You've achieved an amazing thing, now go and get some cartons of cow and gate and have a g and t. All the best x

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chillinwithmyyonis · 21/08/2013 17:06

I see what you mean, could you ask a dentist as a last resort? They may be more used to these strange mouth anomalies!

I'd definitely switch to FF if you get nowhere though, I've done both (FF dd as she was prem, BF ds) and theres not much difference, if any, from my experience.

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SimplyRedHead · 21/08/2013 17:08

Huge congratulations on your baby and a huge well done for going through so much hell for so long to try to help your baby. This obviously proves that you are an amazing mum.

You said I know she would be happier on formula.

That seems to be your answer!

(ps I gave up BF quite soon with my prem baby because it just wasn't working. It immediately made my life so much easier and I was able to bond better. I had previously BF very easily with my first and am now mix feeding my third, as I don't seem to making much milk. Just goes to prove that the success of BF depends on so many factors.)

You're doing a great job.

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Wheresmycaffeinedrip · 21/08/2013 17:08

You are not useless!!

It's not your fault

There's nothing more you could have done. I hope over time you can learn to be ok with giving formula and not feel bad because there's nothing to feel bad about. When you are stronger and more rested it might be worth putting in a complaint because what they are doing is not right. No mum should ever be made to feel like that by so called professionals.

You have done amazingly really!!!! X

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chillinwithmyyonis · 21/08/2013 17:08

And I never got on with expressing either, I've been BF 2 yrs now and I swear if I got the pump out now I'd get naff all! Its such hard work, harder than regular bf.

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Steben · 21/08/2013 17:09

You poor bloody thing! Go for formula ignore all the interfering busy bodies and enjoy your baby. You have given it a go for ten weeks!!! Ten weeks and its not happening - give yourself a break.

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Sanctimummy · 21/08/2013 17:09

You do what you feel is best. I'd want a second third and fourth opinion on the lip tie snip as you seem to have been very persistent with the expressing!

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FeelingStoopid · 21/08/2013 17:14

I feel so sorry that you have had to endure this bullying and lack of real support in establishing breastfeeding and well done for getting to 10wks.

I've bf both my 2 DC, and despite some minor issues at the beginning and feeling like I've had to persuade others to support me in different ways, I would NEVER have made it to 10wks expressing. I just wouldn't have done it. The whole point, for me, about bf was the ease and really, expressing is not easy, and the worst of both worlds. If one of the reasons why ff can be hard is because of the washing, sterilising and careful making up of feeds, then expressing is even more so. Plus, you have to take care about what you eat and drink like bf, without any of the perks... I really admire your perseverance and determination.

Whilst, as a nation, bf is important, on an individual level, it just isn't as important as bonding with your baby and helping with your PND. You really don't need the Internet to give you permission, but nobody would judge you for stopping now. Do what feels right and definitely do seek advice about other options for managing your DD's reflux.

And when you've got yourself back on track and things are getting easier and you're in a happier place, do make a complaint about the 'support' you have received. It is awful that you have been made to feel this way. I am also led to believe that nobody should be manhandling your baby at the breast - it really doesn't help, as you know!!

Good luck with however you decide to proceed.

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FreeButtonBee · 21/08/2013 17:21

Tell them all to fuck off and do whatever you want. I am bfing 6mo twins who were both TT so at the slightly lunatic end of the bf spectrum but fuck that for a game of soldiers. It's entirely your choice, your baby, your breasts, your mental health. I am all for perservering through the initial difficulties but you are miles beyond that. Tell them all to back off, get a few types of formula and deal with the reflux if it turns up.

Hope you feel better soon.

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jacks365 · 21/08/2013 17:23

My dd got fed up and screamed the house down every time it was feed time. I had help with her latch, help with expressing to boost production, this advice and that advice but had to call it a day. She changed from a miserable crying baby to a happy contented one very quickly on formula and I'm happy I 'gave up' truth is I didn't give up I made the decision that was right for us.

You are an amazing person for doing so much now do what you know is right for both of you and start enjoying your daughter.

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enjolraslove · 21/08/2013 17:23

I completely agree with everyone here- stop, please stop. You have done amazingly but stop now- time to enjoy your baby and stop going through hell. It just isn't worth it.

For context - I love bf, fed for 3.5 yrs till dd self weaned but the difference was it was pretty easy, it was not painful after the first couple of weeks, it was quicker etc. if it wasn't those things I would never have continued it.
There is more to life.

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VisualiseAHorse · 21/08/2013 17:27

If giving formula will improve your relationship with her, and it will improve your mental health, DO IT!

No amount of breast milk will fix PND, but being able to think clearly, and feel joy when you feed your baby certainly will help!

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BlackholesAndRevelations · 21/08/2013 17:27

You've done incredibly well to get as far as you have, no question about that. Also your PND is probably caused by this, as opposed to exacerbated by it!

I'm horrified that someone would physically hold her head to your breast; no wonder she screamed. Imagine someone holding your head to your food!! I'm sure a properly trained bf counsellor or peer supporter would be dead against that as a strategy.

Get thee to a supermarket and get some formula!! You are currently experiencing the worst of both worlds, and you just need to start enjoying being a mum before it all gets far too much.

Chin up!

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Tabby1963 · 21/08/2013 17:34

I think that by now you'll have got the message that switching to the bottle is the best think for you and baby.

With my first I was desperate to bf but was rubbish (what a shock that was), my baby lost weight and I thought I was killing her (was devastated and lost the plot at the baby clinic). Eventually when she was three months tried the bottle, baby very happy at last. Me, felt rejected for a long while, but got over it. With the second baby, I bf and had a bottle handy in case he was still hungry. Gradually weaned him onto the bottle by three months.

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Yidhra · 21/08/2013 17:39

Agree with pp, you need to do what's best for your whole family and it sounds like formula is the way forward. Health professionals can be very forceful in their advice but please try to remember that the most important things are that your baby is fed and that you're all happy.

For what it's worth my mum and sister both ff from the beginning and one of my closest friends bf for a few week with each dc before switching. Me and my sister, my nephews and my friends dc are all perfectly healthy and in fact my friends youngest has been ill less than my ebf youngest DS who is a few months younger.

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nocarsgo · 21/08/2013 17:42

Giving up on BF and introducing formula was the best thing for my already VERY shaky mental health (and my starving baby's physical health, for that matter). You've tried so hard, but some BF problems really are insurmountable.

Sometimes you need someone else to give you permission to stop. My mum did that for me. Shame the HCPs you've been in contact with haven't done the same. It really is ok to stop now.

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SmiteYouWithThunderbolts · 21/08/2013 17:43

I think I've said before that they don't come much more "yay breastfeeding!" than me, but as everyone else here has said, for the sake of your sanity you would not be at all U to switch to formula. You're a fucking trooper for making it this far expressing. Far more than I would have done.

The bf v ff thing (in terms of influencing personal decisions) is all about balancing and reducing risks. Bf reduces risks of x,y and z but if that comes at the cost of your general or mental health, then that is why formula exists.

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strawberrypenguin · 21/08/2013 17:44

I have no idea how you have done that for so long. Switch to formula, it will NOT hurt your baby and you will all be happier in the long run as you and your DH will be able to sleep more making you you both feel better too.

If it help you to know I expressed for a week and that wasn't for all of DS's feeds so he's been pretty much FF from birth (not by my choice but for medical reasons/me not producing enough milk) DS is, better than fine in fact and is a healthy and happy nearly two year old.

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Littleen · 21/08/2013 17:44

Good job for trying, but your little one will be okay with bottlefeeds. You can't control circumstances, and this time it isn't happening. Perhaps if you have another child you will be able to/baby will be able to, but don't give yourself a hard time because it didn't work out this time. Good effort though :)

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thebody · 21/08/2013 17:46

your NOT giving up your moving forward.

tell the world to just fuck off. say mumsnet said so//😃

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yourcruisedirector · 21/08/2013 17:48

I'm sorry I don't have time to read the full thread but there are two dental surgeons in the UK who will laser remove lip (and frequently also present tongue) ties in the UK. Dr Malcolm Levinkind is one - he's excellent.

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HesterShaw · 21/08/2013 17:49

Stop now.


Bastards :(

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Bumbolina · 21/08/2013 17:51

Another pro breastfeeder here... you've done all and more than you possibly could have done. Now put the pump down - give your baby formula, snuggle up, and start enjoying your baby rather than worrying about the pain, and whether there will be enough for the next feed.

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roundtable · 21/08/2013 17:51

You've done brilliantly. Get the baby onto formula pronto and see if you can get one for reflux prescribed.

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highlandbird · 21/08/2013 17:51

Wow, you have had such a hard time, I'm very pro-bf but must admit I would have given up weeks ago in your position, you should be so so proud of yourself for having made it this far and giving your baby the best possible start in life.
If I were you I would be switching to formula so that you can get some rest and ENJOY your baby instead of battling with painful expressing all day long...think how much time you will free up to catch up on sleep, relax and enjoy these early months.
Please don't feel guilty, and don't let these HPs make you feel bad for any choices you make.
I had pnd with DS1 and I can imagine its making you feel ten times worse, hope it gets better for you soon Thanks

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