Monday, 21 March 2016

Breastfeeding & Formula

Breastfeeding vs bottle feeding always spark a passionate debate on my social media. Jamie Oliver's comments about breastfeeding have spark yet another debate between mums and dads.

I have always wanted to breastfeed L, we had lots of bottles prepared, manual and electric pumps, breastfeeding cover and a very comfy breastfeeding cushion but on the window seal in the corner, hidden away from every one else we had a starter pack with formula. 

Every time we had midwife around who wasn't happy about L's weight gain even though it was steady but slow I doubted myself, I doubted my ability to breastfeed. I felt so awful, first they shake their heads, then say that I'm doing a great job, if that was their way of supporting it was pretty rubbish! 
My husband saw the state of me and insisted on introducing formula, to me it felt like the most selfish decision I could have made. Why would I do such a thing?! I would do everything I can do breastfeed L, I would stick at it and prove to myself and other people that it is possible to do no matter what.

Almost 2 years later I'm still very passionate about breastfeeding and proud at what I have achieved but my opinion about formula has changed.
I put enormous amount of pressure on myself and didn't give my husband a chance to offer a bottle and be more involved in feeding. I didn't leave L for longer than couple of hours, I didn't go out to enjoy myself, we couldn't go out to a pub or cafe because she was either hungry or upset, it is of course all worth it, but I wish someone told me to take it easy. 
Now I see no harm in mixed feeding, as we would be so much calmer and relaxed. I'm not saying I am supporting formula feeding more now I will be always a breastfeeding advocate, but I do understand and support those who have tried breastfeeding but have low milk supply, those who have twins, health condition or premature babies but opted to bottle feed.

But I do not yet understand those parents who have opted for formula without trying breastfeeding first. I know I don't have to, it's their choice ..

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