Breastfeeding. Why it is okay NOT to!

After depression, way back when, then feeling better about it and now strongly believing that I did it perfectly right. Yes I did!

 

Breastfeeding is a huge deal online and offline. If you’re about to become a new mom, you’ve probably been already asked a million times if you are going to breast feed. The pressure is on. Of course, every new mom wants THE BEST for her new little precious family addition and everyone just knows… the milk produce of your breasts is just simply the best for your baby. You probably will going to make the promise to your unborn that he’ll/she’ll get what she deserves, only the best,  breast milk. Which is a good thing.

 

What buggs me about this is, that the people that tell you that you SHOULD breastfeed also tell you that breastfeeding will give you the very special bond between you and the baby. I call that BULLSHIT! Seriously… you don’t think I can have a special tight bond with my baby while holding him or her tightly and lovingly in my arms and holding the bottle to feed? I still hold the baby lovingly, I still have eye contact, I still cuddle and talk calmly to the baby. Why should that not give us the special bond that you get from breastfeeding? Skin to skin you say? Yes… absolutely… I can have skin to skin as well… I can bottle feed naked… I can cuddle naked, I can co-bath naked… and we can nap naked.

 

So here is what I did…. Baby Mila didn’t latch well after she was born. She had her lungs and filled with slime and it was plain uncomfortable for her. After about 12 hours of not drinking (in which I was pumping my breast milk) the nurses bottle fed her with my breast milk. After that… she happily took the bottle every few hours.

 

And I did NOT wake her for feedings. Babies naturally wake when they are hungry (unless they are born premature) and despite the nurses giving me shit for not waking her every 3 to 4 hours to feed her she did very well. Babies need their sleep and I believe you should never wake a sleeping baby, this will only create sleep issues for the future. But I’m drifting off from my original topic.

 

Anyways… the nurses were still pressuring me to try to latch her, which I did …and I tell you what… I DID NOT LIKE IT! … That’s right. I did not like the feeling of her sucking on my breast. So why would I force it? Babies feel when their mom is unhappy. Why should I do something that is uncomfortable for me? It did hurt a little and yes… from all corners of breast feeding moms and nurses and who knows who else came forward to tell me that “the hurt will go away…keep doing it…you will get used to it” … what nobody understood was that it wasn’t just the wee little hurt that I didn’t like… I just didn’t like the whole “holding baby to breast and stuff my nipple in her mouth” thing… seriously. It felt very awkward. I still pumped my breasts, so I definitely dealt with the hurt (and I didn’t get used to it and the pain didn’t get less).

 

I was very happy with feeding her with baby bottles, not only because I was getting rid of the awkward feeling, also because my husband was able to gain the special bond with our daughter while holding her lovingly, cuddle and make eye contact, talk to her while feeding her and I was able to get some well deserved rest and sleep!!! I never ended up sleep deprived…because a. I let her sleep for as long as she wanted (which always has been at least 5 hours in a row) and b. my husband and I took turns…he fed at night and I fed during the day. that way he was able to sleep longer in the morning and nap during the day and I was able to sleep through the night.

 

I pumped my milk for 4 weeks. Because I slept through the night, my supply was getting less and less and I also had to take stronger medicine that wasn’t good for breastfeeding. At first I felt bad and depressed about giving her formula but once my milk supply was completely gone and my breasts didn’t hurt anymore I started to feel better… then realizing that I have given her the most important part in breast feeding, which is the colostrum that has all the most important antibodies, I accepted that it was okay to formula feed.

 

I tell you what…. I have planned to do the exact same thing again with my next child. Pumping breast milk for as long as possible and bottle feeding it to her and once we don’t have enough milk anymore then I will switch over to formula.

 

It’s all good… don’t stress if you don’t like to latch your baby onto your breast, don’t stress if you don’t produce enough milk anymore at some point and have to go over to formula. I feel that it is important that the baby gets your colostrum but it’s fine after that.

 

My baby grew big and strong, she is very smart and well advanced with all her milestones. Her pediatrician is impressed and nurses said “whatever you do, keep doing it because it is working”  AND we do have a very special bond, strong love and need for each other.

 

… Don’t let people pressure you into trying over and over again, going against your own feelings, enduring loads of pain. Some women’s nipple are less sensitive than others and so it will feel different for every single woman. If you love breast feeding, that’s good as well…keep doing it for as long as you want. If you don’t like it…then don’t do it.

 

End of story!

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4 thoughts on “Breastfeeding. Why it is okay NOT to!

  1. hamonious January 16, 2014 at 8:09 pm Reply

    I breastfed both my boys and the experience was COMPLETELY different with each one! There is no one way to breastfeed and I agree that as long as mom is healthy and happy, the baby will be happy as well. I breastfed one son for 7 months and the other one is fed breast milk through a bottle and I feel the same connection with both of them!

    • anna_lu_lu January 16, 2014 at 8:29 pm Reply

      Hello hamonious :) thank you for the great comment on this. It is nice to hear it from Someone who actually was able to compare the experiences. Thank you for sharing. This just shows me that my feelings and thoughts about this are right.

  2. dearbrynlee January 17, 2014 at 11:17 pm Reply

    I love this post. I am a first time mom and I strictly breastfeed. Yes it’s weird I’m committing on this when I believe 100% in breastfeeding. It’s hard work and it’s exhausting but it’s easier for me because I am staying home with my daughter. I’m so happy you tried. For one if it’s uncomfortable for you then it will be uncomfortable for the baby. When you stress the baby knows it. If it hurts you and you don’t like it the baby will catch on. You did the BEST thing for your daughter by giving her formula. I knew from the beginning that my daughter might not latch or I might think it was weird and would have to switch to formula. I always weighed that option when I found out I was pregnant. Don’t ever let anyone give you a hard time about not breastfeeding. Way to go momma!

    • anna_lu_lu January 17, 2014 at 11:46 pm Reply

      Hi dearbrynlee :) thank you for your nice comment! It’s nice to see that there are actually breast feeding mom’s out there that are open minded about the formula deal :) also thank you for the compliment. I doubted myself only in the very beginning. I struggled with myself and shed quite some tears over it but after talking to other formula feeding mom’s and thinking about it in depth I started to see it from a different perspective. It got rid of the depression and made me a happier mom. Happy mom, happy baby.

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