BF-ing/formula questions

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from WhirledPeasPlease. Show WhirledPeasPlease's posts

    BF-ing/formula questions

    My DD will be three weeks on Thursday and she's so awesome. She's also a really good baby (she thinks midnight-5 am is party time though!) but I've been having a hard time. I'm seeing a therapist for post-partum depression and I think it's affecting BF-ing (they put me on BF-safe meds and those have helped). 

    I had no idea how hard BF-ing would be, first of all. It's so overwhelming. Just being on call around the clock and feeling like I've lost myself...not sure how to explain it, but I just don't know if I can do it anymore. I feel guilty about wanting to stop, like I'm letting her down (why?? I don't even know!) but during about half the feedings I'm crying and that can't be good for her either. We've been supplementing with formula overnights for a week or so because that's the only way we can sleep. I talked to DH about switching to all formula and he suggested that I pump because initially I really wanted to breastfeed.

    Now I'm thinking that maybe I'll just pump and give her the bottle of breastmilk during the day and at night we'll keep doing formula. Has anyone done this? What are the logistics of switching from BF-ing to pumping? How often do you do it and when? I don't know why, but I feel so much better when I'm giving her a bottle rather than BF-ing. 

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Congrats on your DD! First thing you need to do as a mom is take care of yourself so you can take care of your DD. If it means pumping great, if it means formula great. There should be no guilt in what ever you decide. You are doing the best thing for the both of you! Happy Mama=happy family!

     

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    WPP when I had my son in 2000, there wasn't laws that said employees had to give me a "space to pump" so for me it would have been a bathroom stall (yuck). At five weeks I stopped so that when I went back to work at 8 weeks I wouldn't have any issues. I had a hand pump I don't think they had the nice ones like they have now so I HATED pumping, I tried it but just couldn't get enough and got frustrated, we went to formula. I did feel bad at first, but DS was fine and healthy. You tried your best with it. Mom needs to be happy and take care of herself before she take care of her baby. 

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from IPWBride. Show IPWBride's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    WPP - if you are crying while you are BFing, and not because you are in pain but because of the stress, then I'd say it probably isn't for you.  And you know what... its just not for everyone, and that's totally ok!  Same as having kids, or international travel, or skydiving... they are not for everyone.  So please, please, please no guilt about your thought process and decision.  I can only speak from my one experience so far.  But my DS got formula in the hospital due to weight loss, we also tried BF'ing.  And it was ok.  Not great, but ok.  We supplemented at home probably 2 more weeks trying to BF and also added in those tiny 2 oz pre-made formula bottles for weight gain.  I was actually shocked when BFing really took off for us... so I was able to do that for the most part of his first few months.  But I was a horrible pumper once I started!  And man did I feel guilty about that as soon as I had to add in formula bottles once I went back to work.  I was able to give him the occasional BF bottle, morning and night BFing, and formula the rest of the time.  And it all just worked, and I forced myself to get over any guilt.  Once I stopped attempting tp pump, and only nursed morning and night, I was so much happier.  And what a difference that makes in taking care of your child (especially your first).  My experience is different that what you are having now, but I just wanted to share that once you let yourself do what makes you feel better, emotionaly and physically, especially since you tried BFing, you will feel a sense of relief, and so will your daughter and husband.  No guilt!

     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from jennifyr78. Show jennifyr78's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Hugs to you, WPP!  You do the best you can, and that's what matters. 

    I can only give advice from my experience, and that is with exclusive breastfeeding and pumping when I went back to work.  But many people supplement with formula for some of the feedings, or exclusively pump, or do a combo - it's really about what works for you and your family.

    Anyway, my experience with pumping started when DD was still in the hospital, since she was having latch issues, and we used pumped milk (colostrum) through an SNS feeder to try to encourage her to latch.  I stopped pumping once we got into a good routine, then started up again around 5-6 weeks to start building a freezer stash for when I went back to work. 

    I would pump right after the morning feeding (when you generally have the most supply).  Then when it was time to go back to work, I pumped 3 times a day, generally replacing the normal feedings with pumping. 

    To start, I would try to pump after a feeding or two to get a little bit of a buffer of extra milk.  Then, once you have a "meal"'s worth, you can give her a bottle, (or have DH give the bottle) and you pump to "replace" that milk.  Then you can use the freshly pumped milk for the next feeding, and pump again during that feeding so you have milk for the next one, etc. 

    You should basically be pumping every time you would normally be breastfeeding.  Maybe you can try only pumping for one of the feedings, to start.  Maybe just having that reprieve will encourage you to keep breastfeeding at least once or twice a day, so you aren't giving it up altogether. 

    Like I said before, it's definitely got to work for you, and no judgment for those who do not keep up with the BF'ing, but it sounds like you felt strongly about it at one point, and if you still do, then I can only offer my encouragement and tell you that IT DOES get better! 

    A note on using formula at night:  Personally, I found it easier to BF in the middle of the night, rather than fumbling with bottles and warmers, etc.  While I never used formula, we definitely had the hassle of bottle filling/washing/sanitizing when she was doing day care, and as emotionally draining as BFing can be, it also allowed me to get back to sleep faster, which was much easier on my sanity!  If you do need to supplement with formula, but are still BFing, maybe try the formula before you go to bed, while you're still awake enough to mix it/warm it, and BF in the middle of the night. 

    Also, maybe this will help?  http://www.blogher.com/open-letter-breastfeeding-new-mom-0

    I can definitely relate to those feelings in the first few weeks of being a milking cow, on call at all times, not having any personal time, and just feeling "blah"! It is very tough, but once they get a little older, they aren't quite as needy, and you get a little more time back. 

    I'm glad you are getting the medical help you need, as well. Good luck!

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from jennifyr78. Show jennifyr78's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Or this one:  http://hellogiggles.com/dear-breastfeeding-moms-who-feel-like-giving-up

    YOU ARE NOT ALONE!  Many of us felt this way.  You need to make the decision that's right for you whether you will continue, switch to pumping, or stop altogether, but just know that you are not the first new mom to feel this way. 

    I hope these blogs/articles help you realize that you can do it if you are determined to do so, and if you decide to stop, then you have given your daughter the best start you could, and you need to feel happy and healthy and strong for her.  If that means you stop BFing, then you should do it without guilt (as hard as that probably sounds). 

     

     

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from siena09. Show siena09's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Congrats on your new daughter WPP!  I'm sorry about the BF troubles.  It's not always fun and easy. You've already done a wonderful thing for your daughter by giving her 3 weeks of BF.  

    Re. pumping, why don't you start giving it a try with one pump per day and see how it feels for you?  For me, pumping is emotionally tough and physically uncomfortable in a way breastfeeding is not, but probably it's different for everyone.

    Also, some women seem to have a biological dysphoric response to letdown.  You might read these links and think about if that seems related to your experience, and if there is anything helpful:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dysphoric_milk_ejection_reflex

    http://www.d-mer.org

    Hugs!  You are the best parent to your daughter, and only you can know what feeding system will work well for your family.  

    I will add that the time you spend breastfeeding goes down a lot over the next 4-8 weeks, as baby gets more efficient, and that helps a lot with feeling like you have more control over your body and schedule.  

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from misslily. Show misslily's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Nursing is hard! I think you're doing a great job trying. When I had my twins in 2009 they wouldn't latch. It was really hard because I wanted to nurse them. I pumped and supplimented with formula for 8 weeks. And then I simply couldn't do it anymore. That pump was like having to feed a third baby and just looking at it made me want to cry. So I took it back to Isis and started giving them 100% formula. Did I feel guilty? Yes I did, and I wish I hadn't wasted that time feeling bad about my choice.

    My four year old twins are totally happy and healthy - and they got 8 weeks more of mommy's milk than I ever did from my mom.

    To be quite honest I wish I'd tried to put them back on the breast. I have a friend who was successful doing that. The pump adds a whole extra layer to the feeding. If you don't want to exclusively nurse, then don't - maybe nurse during the day and suppliment at night - or nurse 3x a day and suppliment the other feedings. Or just forget it and go to bottles. I have plenty of friends who didn't nurse for one reason or another including a friend who said, "I have no interest in nursing." Everyone has totally healthy and happy kids.

    Talk to your doctor - but I actually think the pump is going to make your stress worse, not better. You still have to feed the baby the bottle - and then you have to pump. But there are a million ways to get to the place where you are happy and comfortable. I know you'll find what works for you.

    Good luck!

     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from clc51510. Show clc51510's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions


    WPP - I think you've already received a lot of good insight.  I agree that this is a choice you need to make for yourself but here's my experience.

    I BF DS for 3 weeks.  He had an awful latch and resulted in him taking out a chunk of my nipple.  After an LC and OB visit they had me switch to pumping to give myself time to heal.  DS did great taking a bottle right away and would never go back.  I wanted to BF so I did several more visits with the LC but DS wasn't having it and I was so stressed out that I finally decided to exclusively pump.  It was hard, really hard, because it take a lot of time to do a feeding between pumping and also feeding DS the expressed milk.  I stuck with it for all of my maternity leave.  As I was getting to go back to work my supply plummeted and I had to supplement.  I was so upset about supplementing in the beginning but once I got over it and relaxed my supply rebounded.  I was able to continue EP while at work and only had to supplement one feeding a day.  I would pump 6 times a day which took a lot of time.  As DS approached 6 months I realized the stress I was putting myself through to pump that many times a day was really getting to me and not worth it.  I slowly stopped pumping and was totally done by the time he hit 6 months. 

    In the end I was very happy that I was able to provide bm for my DS for that long but not sure the amount of stress I was putting on myself was worth it once I started back to work.  We are trying for #2 now and if we have another I want to give BF another shot but not sure I would go with the EP method again.

    I hope this helps in some way.  In the end you need to do what's best for you.  Having a happy and healthy mama is what's best for your DD!  Good luck!

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from cwagner13. Show cwagner13's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    You will need to do what is best for you - bf or formula or both. Although I am fortunate to have been able to nurse for as long as the kids (second is still nursing), DH and I always had known that we would need to prepare for need for formula and made peace with that before the babies were born (we always had some formula on hand for just in case I could not nurse for whatever reason, and did use some formula with my first for a few weeks due to low supply and too much weight loss). I know both times with my children, the first 6-8 weeks were the most difficult  (both times, I had cracked and bleeding nipples and tough latching). It was definitely much more difficult with my first due to initial low supply and we had no idea how hard it would be especially at night time - we did fight and I did have many crying spells too. But all the mothers I know who bf'ed said the same thing - that the first 6-8 weeks were basically the toughest period and once they made it past those first two months, then it was so much easier to nurse.

    I agree with Jennifyr - I found nursing at night time easier than bottle, especially once DH and I worked out a rotation where every other feeding, he was responsible for getting up and bringing the baby to me so I would only be half awake instead of fully awake. (second child, we just hired a post partum doula for overnights twice a week for that first 2 month period - and it made a huge difference when someone else brought the baby to me for night feedings and I did not have to really wake up - I was definitely much less tired second time).

    A note about switching to pumping - usually pumping will impact supply negatively, so you do need to anticipate and be okay with that. The first 6 weeks is the period when the supply is basically established, and unfortunately, the wildest period as your body tries to figure out what the baby is demanding especially as I recall this seems to be the period when the baby hits multiple growth spurt periods. I also found that my supply was at its peak at like 4-5AM (if I pumped then, I would get twice as much as pumping any other time of the day - the evenings were the lowest point of my supply) - so you want to know when is peak time for your supply if you plan to pump only.

    The most important thing - you and DH have to be on the same page, and both of you have to move forward in the direction best for your family, guilt free. This is sort of like the stay-at-home vs daycare debate where ultimately it seems that the children did best when the parents felt they picked the best option for their children to thrive, and I suspect ultimately, it can translate basically - when the parents are confident they made the choice to allow their children to thrive, then the children pick up on that and they reflect that. So I would say same here - formula, BF or combination of both - your and DH's attitudes towards your choices is just important for your child to thrive. You did the best you could - more than many people I know have done, and you should be proud of what you have done so far, and whatever choices you make, you need to make sure you can move forward without regrets.

     

     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from amy-lynn. Show amy-lynn's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    WPP - you will figure out what is best for you, and I hope you find it quickly. The stress of making a decision is sometimes the worst part. And the "breast is best" mantra we've all been told can contribute to a whole lotta stress. 

    For my own two cents - I hate pumping. I would rather breastfeed or formula feed and skip pumping altogether. I do pump a little, since I am a SAHM, I don't have to pump daily like I had to with DD, but even the little bit that I have done, I wasn't crazy about it. I had no problems breastfeeding DD, but DS has been a whole other story. He had a lot of problems properly latching, and my nipples got soooooo sore and cracked. It took many phone calls and a few visits to lactation consultants to get us to a place where I wasn't dreading feeding time. It also took time, so he was over a month old before we really got the hang of nursing. And I was a second time mom!! I thought I knew how to do this! What kept me going was that each time I got a little help, it seemed to be getting a little better. If things had gotten worse, or even stayed the same, I don't think I would still be nursing. So I guess my point is nursing is hard, and if you are miserable, and it doesn't seem to be getting better, keep supplementing, or switch to formula, but don't beat yourself up. There just isn't enough time in a day to feel guilty about it. Save the guilt for the tantrums you will get when you refuse thirds on peas until DD eats two bites of meat ;-)

     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from luvRIboy. Show luvRIboy's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Just another voice to support you whatever you decide.  Especially if you're dealing with PPD issues, sleep is so important, so if your husband can take one one or two night feedings to allow you to sleep for 5 or 6 (or more) solid hours, I hope you'll let him! 

    I echo what others have said about pumping being so much harder than nursing.  With DD (now 3), I nursed, pumped and supplemented every feeding for the first 2 months, when she decided just the bottle was easier and refused to nurse anymore.  I kept pumping until she was 6 months, usually 5 times a day, but always needed to supplement.  When I transitioned to all formula at 6 months, I was so relieved to be through it.  I used the measure that if I couldn't pump enough for her to use at daycare for the day, I wasn't going to keep doing it.

    With DS (now 14 mos), I also had to supplement, but he was a much better nurser.  He nursed until 1.  I pumped at work until he was about 9 months, then after that, I'd just nurse when I was with him, and use formula all other times.  Again, once pumping was done, I was relieved.  And again, I stopped pumping when I couldn't get enough for him to have at daycare during the day from the pump. 

    Every baby and mom has to figure out what works best for them.  Like others have said, if nursing is important to you, keep trying it.  I know for me, I found more success nursing in the beginning if I supplemented a little before hand (maybe an ounce)...it meant he wasn't starving, so he wouldn't get as frustrated.  Once he caught on, we stopped doing the pre-empt.  It was something I figured out on my own, and it worked great for us...because when he was frustrated, I was frustrated, and when I was frustrated, milk wouldn't let down! 

    Know that whatever you do, you are doing the right thing.  :) 

     

     

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from Beavj11. Show Beavj11's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Hello!! I'm relatively new to the boards (after lurking for a long time) and I just wanted to put in my two cents, as well as wish you a big congratulations on your awesome baby girl WPP!! As everyone above mentioned, do what is best for you and feel confidant in your decision. We are so lucky to have the technology and capacity to feed our babies in a variety of ways these days. 

    Just wanted to share my story - my DD was born 3.5 months ago and I absolutely remember the challenges of BF-ing in the beginning days. It was so HARD. It consumed my life and almost every waking moment (and there were much more awake moments than asleep moments) in the first few weeks. Baby girl had a very strong latch and was VERY hungry, and I experienced cracks, blisters, as well as a piece of my nipple falling off. I was kinda shocked and surprised at how hard it was - cringing every time it was time to nurse, and curling my toes and holding my breath for the first 20 seconds of latching. I actually had oversupply issues, which resulted in all kinds of pain and some uncomfortable moments for myself and DD (in one sleep-deprived moment I had to laugh at the fact that I was pretty much "waterboarding" my baby Tongue Out) In retrospect I realize that I must have complained about it to EVERYONE I talked to in the first month or so. Lol, only because everyone since then as asked to follow up on how BFing is going! That said - and as much as I *did not* believe my friends/family who told me this - It. Gets. Better. I think breastfeeding should come with its own "It Gets Better" campaign, because it truly does. My mom (who is a NICU nurse) told me that it's a learning process, not just for you but for the baby as well. You are both learning about each other and what works. I think another good analogy that help me is that it's kinda like breaking in a new pair of shoes (in a bizarre, personally intimate way). So painful at first, but after the skin "toughens up", things get easier. I remember reading this article - http://www.pregnantchicken.com/pregnant-chicken-blog/2011/8/9/breastfeeding-all-about-chemistry.html - and thinking this is *exactly* how I feel. 

    It's clear you want what is best for your precious baby and to reiterate what everyone says, what works for YOU is what is best for the baby. Breastmilk, formula, any combination of the two - what makes you comfortable is what is best for your child. I just wanted to let you know that if you would like to stick through it, it does get a little better. As the other ladies said, pumping results in a little more work all around, but if it makes you feel better to give her the bottle go for it! It's totally understandable. And if you choose to EBF, don't give up on the bottle! I found pumping to be a chore so I haven't pushed the bottle much lately and DD went on a bottle strike! I think we have nipped it in the bud, luckily. 

    Good luck with everything and we are here for you if you need it!!

    ETA: I also just wanted to say that I understand what you mean about being on the clock and losing yourself...I remember that was a huge challenge for me too, after so many years of being on my "own" time and schedule it was really hard (and bizarre) to revolve EVERYTHING around feeding DD. That gets better too, and soon you will find some semblance of a schedule. These first few weeks can be so life-altering, but I am hoping you will soon get some relief and normalcy. And if not, my mantra is "tomorrow is a new day"!

     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Hi WPP - You've received some great support and advice, but I wanted to add mine and say congrats on your DD!  I love her name.  You mentioned that you often cry during the feedings, so I was wondering if you have a sense of what's behind that.  Is it related to the PPD?  Exhaustion?  Is the baby having trouble latching?  Are you worried the baby isn't eating enough?  I agree with the others who have said you have to do what is best for you and your baby.  If feeding formula or bottles will make you happier, it will be good for her too.  That being said, I would also like to echo the previous poster and say it gets easier and easier.  If there is anything specifically going on (latch, weight gain, etc.) maybe we could offer some advice.  Best wishes!!

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from WhirledPeasPlease. Show WhirledPeasPlease's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Thanks for the support and sharing stories. I haven't checked out the links yet, but I definitely will. It's good to hear where other people have been with all of this. I saw my therapist today and it could be that my struggles are related to PPD. She mentioned something about "dysphoric dissociation" from breastfeeding and said she'll give me more information about it. 

     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from summerbride09. Show summerbride09's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions


    Congrats on your DD! This can be such an exciting but overwhelming time. I tried BF in the hospital but due to issues with my body, my DD couldn't latch. Add to this that I was not producing even a single drop of anything (not even colostrum). So while I was there they had me pumping to get my production going, and meanwhile DD got formula from bottles. Even after I had met with several LCs, and was sent home with a pump- it took until about day 4 PP until I started getting even colostrum while pumping. It stressed me out so bad I too, was in tears while pumping and it would make me feel sick with so much pressure on myself to just even look at the thing! I had many tearful conversations with my DH who encouraged me to keep trying, but alas he didn't understand my hormonal changes and feeling like a failure for not being able to feed DD like my body is "supposed" to. I ended up giving up after day 5 or 6. I literally could not take another second of the stress it put me under. I wish it had gone better, and that I had actually gone to the additional LC appointment I had made instead of wimping out, but once I put it behind me, I was able to relax and focus on caring for and enjoying my DD instead of being stressed to the max.

    Point is, you need to do whatever you can manage and what makes you happy- if trying for some more time is OK for you- then do it. But if you really are unhappy and it's making your time with your LO more miserable than happy, then it may be time to reconsider.

     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from Chiclet831. Show Chiclet831's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    WPP - I echo everyone else's senitments. Breastfeeding is hard! You've already toughed it out 3 weeks because you're a rock star! Someone told me to give it until 6 weeks and it was already better by that point. DS had some really tough latch issues that made things very complicated for me, but it doesn't sound to me like that's the same situation. One of my goals as a mother is to not make anyone miserable. There's absolutely nothing wrong with saying, "This doesn't make me or DD happy, so I'm going to do things differently." You're allowed to change your mind. You're doing all the right things. You and DD are figuring everything out right now and it is a completely overwhelming time. Have you been to a new moms group? My pedi's office has one, but the hospital you delivered at probably does too. It really helps to be with other moms. It makes you realize that everyone has issues! :-) 

    That said, I had to EP for about 6 weeks to help DS gain weight and that was very difficult for me. The hardest was sitting on the couch with the pump while he sat next to me. I'm glad I did it because we were able to fix DS's latch and now I can BF him with little issue, but I honestly only kept going because there was a light at the end of the tunnel. If you're thinking that you may want to BF in the future, I would recommend pumping to bridge the gap from now until a time that you're feeling up to it.

    I wish I could give you a hug and a cookie right now! Try to get a little rest, if you can take your eyes off that amazing little girl you made. You got this!

     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from Micromom. Show Micromom's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    Sending more support for you, as you your way through a challenging time.  Exhaustion, frustration, anxiety, hormones etc. are all normal parts of new parenthood.  You're doing all the right things trying your best and seeking professional advice and support.  You're normal, and you're not alone.  Hang in there.

    As for breastfeeding, I always say it must have a great publicist, because you never hear about the hard parts - And it can be really hard!  It was for me.

    I have two kids, BFing the first was tough because he was premature and it was primarily pumping.  It was not the "magical, bonding, natural" experience I had expected.  Due to supply issues, I eventually transitioned to pumping.  I tried everything to tough it out and I TORTURED myself with guilt and fear about "letting down" my baby.  Well, that baby turned out happy, healthy, smart and cute.  There were no repurcussions to formula feeding at all.  If anything, taking the pressure off, getting some help from my husband, and being able to actually relax and enjoy my baby instead of dreading feedings made us all MORE bonded as a family.

    For the second, I was determined to give BFing a real try, thinking it'd be different with a full term baby.  Turns out, it was still awful for me.  Painful and frustrating and I just wasn't comfortable with it for a lot of reasons.  Ironically, it didn't feel "natural."  Switching to formula was the best thing for our family.

    People have a lot of opinions about BFing, and some, even well intentioned comments can feel critical, or pressure-y.    I wish someone had told me that formula is a perfectly viable option, so I'm telling you now.   It will be OK either way (or both!)

    The first few weeks are kind of crazy, it's a lot to process.  Be patient with yourself, give yourself some treats, small stuff like a favorite snack, or going out for a quick cup of coffee with a friend can make a world of difference.  

    Big hugs and cheers to you mama!

     

     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from mm379new. Show mm379new's posts

    Re: BF-ing/formula questions

    WPP, I'm on my third round of screennames, not sure what happened to my original one of MM379.  I don't get to post too often, but just wanted to say please feel ok doing what is best for you right now b/c ultimately, if it is impacting your bonding, increasing anxiety, and just so stressful that you are preoccupied, BFing probably isn't helping you bond with your baby.  I put TONS of pressure on myself w/ DS who didn't latch well, took forever to nurse plus I had a low supply, and I also didn't have the best anatomical set up for the situation but was not at the time offered things like shields that could have hleped.  I had PPD, but with primarily anxious symptoms, and it was really causing me to be so pre-occupied with our BFing troubles, I could not enjoy my child, recover physically, and I really felt that urgent "on-call" 24/7 sense that you describe.  I could barely shower without being anxious about being away from him and how long did I have to get dressed and dry my hair before needing to BF again.  I ended up switching to formula gradually, being completely done around the 8th or 9th week mark.  It completely made a world of difference in terms of bonding, confidence, anxiety and for us at the time, was the absolute best decision.  

    For DD, knowing what I had gone through with DS, I told myself "no pressure."  She was a little small/early so latching was an issue.  B/c that caused me to start pumping right away, and I was able to be diligent about it and pump every 2-3 hrs those first few weeks, my supply improved.  I did EP with her for several weeks and that worked just fine, was easy and more portable, even with a toddler running around.  I pumped in the car and in a few discrete locations.  My supply was enough to get enough of a serving (several ounces) in about 20min, which compared to DS would would take about 50min to nurse at the same age, I could pump and feed her in almost less time.   I used a little formula also and managed to have some BM in the fridge, so I was never pumping the immediately needed feeding - I would have a bottle ready and at that time, pump the next feeding which REALLY helped take the pressure off. Formula at night was a little easier, but in those early weeks to keep the supply up, I still pumped around the clock.  Ultimately, when faced w/ returning work, I switched over to formula completely b/c I just didn't feel with my exact job and two little ones, it would work well for us to manage pumping without me being completely stressed.  

    The PPD and anxiety can really impact your bonding.  If it is a barrier, please do not feel guilty about not BFing or switching to formula.  No matter what you decide, you are making a decision that is to benefit your relationship wtih your child.  I will say, my pediatrician was SO supportive of our decisions at every step, even when switching to formula, which I can't say all my friends had the same level of support when struggling with that decision.  It really helped.  Also, my husband seemed to push me to continue BFing or pumping which REALLY upset me, until part way in he reminded me of a conversation we had prior to given birth where I basically made him promise to keep me BFing and help me get through it.  Duh.  Told him: "Well forget I ever said that!!!!"  ugh - didn't know what it would really be like for me beforehand and my own guilt/rigid thinking about what was "right" probably caused me further distress and took away from bonding.

    Best wishes and WHATEVER you decide is ok!

     
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    Re: BF-ing/formula questions


    WPP - how's it going?  I saw this blog post and thought of this thread.  I hope things are getting better, regardless of what choice you made!

     

    http://www.chicagonow.com/baby-sideburns/2013/11/breastfeeding/  (lots of swear words in the post - just a warning) :)

     
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