I'm very pro breastfeeding but I know there are times when I think how nice it would be to have the freedom of FFing.
Now, I should preface this by saying that my DD never liked bottles. We tried giving her pumped milk around 9 weeks (I think?) and she was not a fan. I thought it was good to wait a while but later heard that I may have missed the "window". I also did not produce well for the pump so I really did not put much effort into it. She only had maybe 2 bottles in her life. She nursed three times a night for a long time and we did not share a bed so getting up that many times was rough. Two times a night was easier and when we finally got to once a night it felt easy compared to what I had done before.
I also never left Jordan for more than a couple of hours at a time. I saw one movie while she was breastfeeding and I felt like I was up against the clock the entire time. So much so that it was hard to really enjoy myself.
Now that I'm about to start this all over, part of me is looking forward to the closeness, the bonding, the wonderful feeling that I know I'm doing what is best for my baby. However, part of me is dreading how much of the responsibility will fall on me again. I was really the only person who put Jordan to sleep because she nursed to sleep for a long time. I think until she was about 15 or 16 months? There were nights that I wished I could have a break and let DH put her to bed but once I was in her room, rocking her, I was always happy to be there.
Anyway, this is just me rambling at this point. I want to BF my next baby just like I was able to with my first DD. I want all of the wonderful things that come along with it. I feel good about my choice. There is, however, a part of me that has enjoyed the freedom of not BFing. It's a little hard to admit that sometimes.
I understand your feelings of needing a break once in awhile. If you didn't pump at all and she wouldn't take bottles you had no breaks, that can be hard sometimes. If I were you, I'd try to introduce a bottle around 6 weeks or so, and give yourself a break every so often letting your DH feed the baby. My DD would take a bottle for daycare, but wouldn't for my DH. I would go out once a month and he would try the bottle, she wouldn't take it, would go to sleep for him though and then she'd just wake up more often during the night to feed. It worked for us.
Ethan - June 21, 2009
Olivia - December 5, 2010
5w3d - October/November 2012
My Ovulation Chart
Once DS accepted solid foods, I felt liberated. We didn't have a babysitter 99% of the time, but I knew if I did have to leave him for a few hours he'd be okay since he ate solids. Even though he's still BFing, I think he'd adjust okay if I wasn't able to nurse him. One thing we did over time was have me nurse Aiden and then hand him over to his daddy who actually put him down. He'll let most people put him to sleep (there are definitely struggles but he will sleep for them)!
I stopped all jealously about FF during a playgroup meeting one day last year. During the playgroup, this little boy (just a few days older than Aiden) started fussing wanting a bottle. While the mom went digging through her diaper bag for the formula, water, and bottle Aiden started fussing wanting to BF. I latched him on and fed him a full session before her son was done with his bottle. Then she made mention about needing to wash a bunch of bottles later and how he was low on formula and she had to drive two hours away to get more the next day (remember I lived in Del Rio then lol). I was suddenly grateful to feed Aiden so quickly, even if it meant not really ever getting much of a break.
Remember that every baby is different Kayla. Maybe this time you'll have no issues with bottles and can pump for breaks when you need them.
No, never. Introduce a bottle around 3 weeks, its the prime time. Have your husband do it. Freedom was the key to my enjoying breastfeeding ~ without it I would have had to give up some of my life passions and would have been terribly resentful! Bottles and pumping on occasion are GREAT!
Don't feel guilty, I would only feel guilty if I had let it impact my life and marriage, and pumping and bottles on occasion freed me to be a healthy adult, not just and only a milk machine! It worked wonderfully for us. Good luck and stay positive!
I was so worried about nipple confusion this time around because my baby was smaller... and now I wish I wasn't and that I'd have given her a bottle when she was real little. But I'm honestly not sure it would have made a difference. I don't have enough milk to pump to try EBM, but she flat out REFUSES the formula. And I tried the other night of dropper feeding it to her hoping it was the bottle itself and not the contents, but she wouldn't take it that way, either.
I went through a period of resentment around 4 weeks old and then that past. Then again around 8 weeks old. It comes and goes. Right now my issue is that I really would like to have a drink or two, but since she won't take the formula, I can't because I can't avoid feeding her. I tried a few weeks ago and the most she took of formula was half an ounce then she just gave up and went back to sleep. It was really sad.
You are NOT alone for being slightly jealous of FFing mommas. I got lucky with my first two and they went back and forth with no issues at all.
Just remember the positives of why you want to BF.
Hopefully your next one will allow you to have a break. I feel your pain.
Janelle and Brad 8-25-01
I took kiddo to the movies with ear protective muffs when he was wee. I wore him in a sling and stood/sat in the back. We went out to eat or to have drinks. We went to art museums.
Once he was about 4mo, he could handle my being gone for an hour or two to workout. I hated pumping/expressing, so I didn't do it. DH could entertain kiddo by walking or singing or whatever. Didn't need to have a bottle on hand so long as I nursed right before I left. And it's a small town, had there been an utter need to feed, DH could've just as easily come to the gym/pool with the babe. Formula was not at all an option as I have some severe food allergies and there's not a single formula I can *touch* without reacting. When he was younger than 4mo, DH came and sat in one of the lounges at the gym, because kiddo sometimes needed to nurse more frequently. But he was almost always happy to just go in a sling with DH and have a nice long walk downtown.
There's nothing wrong with drinking while nursing--just don't do it to excess. The amount that actually gets into your bloodstream/breastmilk is tiny and it metabolizes out quickly. A drink or two won't harm anyone, provided your child doesn't have a liver disorder.
I didn't really find that breastfeeding affected freedom at all. I simply took DS wherever with me and nursed him as needed and I'll do the same with the next babe. It's part and parcel of mothering. Life changes. Before we had a kid, DH and I spent our "together" time hiking and when we added a dog to our family, he came along. Taking a child with us just meant packing a different bag.
I completely understand those feelings. Ben refused pumped milk in a bottle and I didn't try it until he was 6 months. I think I was worried that it would affect my supply because I didn't get to exclusively breastfeed Grace this long. Thank God he is taking it in a sippy cup now and I was able to leave him for 2 nights while DH & I were away. Grace had formula starting at 6 months and I breastfed her as long as I could until 10 months. So there are lots of days when I'm running around busy that I think it would be easier to give Ben formula in a bottle but I remind myself of how I felt when I couldn't get Grace to nurse anymore or make enough milk for her. I think it's normal to just imagine the opposite scenario than what you are currently doing. Definitively pros and cons to both. ITA with Jackie that this child may be different.
Nope. Never. Not once.
I feel like I waited too long to introduce the bottle. We first started trying at 6.5 weeks because that's what I'd read was best and by then DD was already determined to refuse them. She more or less never took a bottle. It created a lot of stress but ultimately wasn't a big deal. She just waited until we were together. Having the benefit of nearly 18 months of BFIng, I now honestly don't believe in nipple confusion. If you're BFing 100% of the time for the first weeks and then 90% of the time for the next few, baby isn't going to get confused. Seriously, we BFing mamas need to give ourselves more credit than that. Can you really believe that your baby is going to confuse a rubber nipple for the warmth and love that is your breast? Next time, I plan to wait until the newborn craziness calms down and then introduce the bottle if baby is otherwise BFing well. For my DD, that would have been around 2.5-3 weeks. Before that, I wouldn't want to be bothered with pumping and I feel like the baby needs as much boob time as possible to work on his/her latch.
As for pumping, perhaps the flanges on your pump are not the right size. They do come in different sizes and switching can sometimes help to increase success.
We introduced bottles at like 3 weeks I want to say. He took them for 2 weeks and then refused when we tried after that. I think the fact that we didn't give him a bottle for over a week after those first 2 weeks hurt us. We should have been a bit more consistent, but he clearly had a preference for the boob the whole time (no nipple confusion) and we didn't press the issue. Worked out in the end for us (I got over NIP), but if I had to work I would have keep with it I'm sure. No motivation = Aiden refusing bottles for the rest of those months (we did try on occasion but it wasn't consistent at all). Once he hit 6 months he would take pumped milk out of a sippy cup if desperate enough.