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Breastfeeding/Bottlefeeding – Who Cares?!

Breastfeeding/Bottlefeeding

At the risk of turning this blog into a “Mummy Blog” I do want to post about the whole breastfeeding v bottle feeding debate. I was inspired to write about my experience after reading this post.

Pressure to Breastfeed

The pressure to breastfeed is ridiculous! I am fully aware that “breast is best” and whilst I don’t doubt that there’s medical research to support it, it isn’t always best for mother and baby. My belief is that when mother and baby are happy then that’s best for everyone.

Admittedly, prior to giving birth to my girl, I had fully intended on breastfeeding. In fact I couldn’t understand why women wouldn’t choose to breastfeed. However, soon after Little Miss’ arrival I finally understood why. Here’s my story…

Breastfeeding – My Story

I gave birth to my girl via c-section after 36 hours of non progressive labour. It was the worst thing ever! She did not want to come out! So when she did arrive, she (and me) were all drugged up! I couldn’t move due to the operation so I couldn’t even get out of bed to lift my baby to feed. Unfortunately I had to rely on nurses to attend to me. Luckily on the first night that I was the only one in recovery so we had full attention of the nurses on duty.

When I did try to breastfeed my girl wouldn’t latch on. She was too spaced out. The fact that the bed was uncomfortable didn’t help either. On the first night the nurses took her away to feed her some milk I’d expressed. Now that was painful! Not only were my boobs manhandled to get some expressed milk but I then couldn’t even watch her drink my milk. It was heartbreaking!

Trying My Best But Apparently That Wasn’t Good Enough

On the second day the drugs were wearing off and she was screaming. She wanted milk. But because she couldn’t latch on she wasn’t getting any. I had a nice midwife who did try to help me but I just felt awful that I couldn’t do it.

When she left for the day I then had a horrible bitch of a midwife who didn’t seem to want to be helpful and just made me feel awful. When I said I was having difficulty she actually said to me “you stupid girl”. Even thinking back now it makes me cry. I kept trying and kept trying but the second night was just all screaming from my girl and crying for me, neither of us slept and neither of us ate. The woman in the bed opposite had the opposite problem, whilst my baby wouldn’t feed, her baby fed all night long. None of us got any sleep!

Decision to Bottlefeed

After that night I was exhausted. I just wanted to go home. The nurses were charting the feeding and I overheard them say that I wouldn’t be allowed to go home until they were sure I could feed my girl. Can you imagine hearing that? It was at this point I phoned the hubby to discuss switching to formula feed. The girl in the bed next to me hadn’t even tried breastfeeding and it seemed as if she and her baby we’re doing great. So I made the decision to switch over to formula feed. The change in Little Miss was instantaneous! She downed a whole bottle and was calm and content. I was happier because I knew she was feeding well. And it was a huge relief.

But the point is this, why was it so difficult for me to make the change? I felt like a failure because I couldn’t breastfeed. I shouldn’t have felt like a failure. At the end of the day I did what was best for me and my baby.

To reiterate, I am not against the “breast is best” campaign. All I would ask is that the medical profession and breastfeeding experts please acknowledge the emotional and physical trauma that is being caused to mothers who cannot breastfeed.

A Word of Caution to New Mothers

So a word of caution to those expecting their first baby, be prepared to accept that you might not be able to breastfeed and if you can’t, you are not a failure! And one final piece of advice I’ll give to any new mother or any new parent for that matter, always do what is right for you and your baby. 

Rebecca

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10 Comments

  • Reply bevchen

    The way I see it, plenty of people were fed formula and have turned out perfectly fine. Yes, breast milk might provide some advantages, but the most important thing is to have a happy baby who is actually getting fed! (Probably easy for me to say, as a clueless non-parent).

    March 17, 2015 at 9:32 am
    • Reply Becster

      Well exactly! Both me and hubby were formula fed and we turned out ok I think! 🙂 Ok so we might not be MENSA graduates or anything but hey we’ve done well! 🙂

      March 21, 2015 at 1:58 pm
  • Reply Kerry @ XO Kerry

    What’s wrong with mommy blogs? 🙂 Kidding, I didn’t mean to take mine there but it appears I have!

    I agree with this post 100%! As long as baby is getting fed who cares where it comes from! My experience in the hospital was a lot like yours. I had one helpful nurse and the rest could care less! I had to ask for a lactation consultant to come visit me. And even then we had issues with latch. I’m almost a month in to breastfeeding and can say it’s honestly the most stressful thing I’ve ever done. The first two weeks she wasn’t eating enough because she slept all the time! And now her latch is so shallow that it hurts ALL THE TIME. I’m going to keep at it with the hopes that it gets better but if we have to switch to formula I will not let anybody else’s opinions bother me.

    Do you have to have a repeat c-section? It is hospital policy in our state that they don’t allow vaginal births after c-sections.

    March 17, 2015 at 5:21 pm
    • Reply Becster

      Nothing wrong with Mummy Blogs! I don’t want my blog to be exclusively a mummy blog as I’m more than just a Mami! But I am a Mami and proud of it so there willbe Mami posts in future!

      I’m sorry to hear that you had a horrible time in the hospital. It’s not fair is it? Giving birth is a stressful thing, being a first time Mam is also stressful but then having to deal with bitchy midwives are not on. I’m also sorry to hear that you’ve had trouble butI’m in awe that you’re still persevering with the breastfeeding to be honest! So proud of you!

      I don’t have to have a repeat c-section I am allowed to try for a vaginal birth. But because of the trouble I had first time around then the likelihood is that it’ll be a repeat c-section. In all honesty, if second baby is as big as the first (Little Miss was 8lb 7oz!) then a c-section is preferred!! 🙂

      March 21, 2015 at 1:56 pm
  • Reply Holly Hollyson

    Beautiful post! I loved hearing your story – a brave story too and one that I am sure that many people need to hear. I like Mommy blogs 🙂 that midwife sounds just awful 🙁

    March 18, 2015 at 11:31 pm
    • Reply Becster

      Thank you – I’m glad you liked it. I may have given up on the breastfeeding too soon but in all honesty, I just wanted to go home and destress with my girl. We were both so much happier after the switch! The Midwife was a bitch! The one I had throughout my pregnany was lovely though! 🙂

      March 19, 2015 at 3:06 pm
    • Reply Becster

      Thank you I’m glad you enjoyed it. I just felt that there’s so many studies coming out saying breastfeeding is better which may well be true. Trouble is it makes formula feeding mothers (like me) feel guilty for not doing it. Oh and that midwife was a cow! I did leave a complaint about her on my feedback form.

      March 21, 2015 at 1:48 pm
      • Reply Holly Hollyson

        I am glad because she really sounds terrible. I totally understand what you mean, I would have felt exactly the same way!

        March 23, 2015 at 2:30 am
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  • Reply tayanna01 .

    Love it ! Very insightful !

    March 29, 2015 at 6:46 pm
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