Motivational Monday: Breastfeeding – Things I would have done

Differently

To be completely honest I think if I could go back and do it all again with my first son I’d have possibly just stopped breastfeeding him after he’d had the colostrum. I was too tired,  and too selfish and too busy doing my A-levels. I didn’t appreciate how much he needed feeding and honestly, don’t think I fed him enough. I think I breastfeed because I felt under pressure as a teen mom – with everyone waiting for me to fail at it – so I wanted to prove them wrong. I think switching to formula was the best thing because I didn’t have the time or patience to breastfeed him.

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With my second child I would have not listened to the professionals.

I would not have given him orange juice when they told me he was not pooing enough. As I know now that breast fed babies don’t poo as much because there’s not as much waste – this can be weeks. In saying that, there’s nothing wrong in giving him formula – it was the reason I was forced to that annoyed me. He was 4 months old and I also started weaning him onto solids so think his weight loss was also due to the fact that he was, possibly, ready for more.

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I would not have put him on formula when they told me I didn’t have enough/my milk wasn’t good enough. As now know it was just because sometimes breastfed babies want feeding all the time and so would have just fed him more, as there wasn’t anything wrong with my milk, just that I wasn’t giving him enough.

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My third son I wouldn’t have listened to people telling me that he had a reflux and tried medicines, or tried to wean him off – especially at night. Some babies are just sick – and this could be just the same with a formula fed baby.

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I am truly content that he self-weaned some time before his fourth birthday.

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My fourth son I would have had more confidence in myself.

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I would have breastfed him more and not be intimidated by being told that he wasn’t putting on enough weight and would have pushed further to find out what was the real reason behind his weight loss.

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I would have been more aware that babies born at 35 weeks are likely to suffer with Jaundice – and that is different to breastfeeding jaundice. I’d be more comfortable with Tandem feeding and would have put in a complaint against the way I was treated, and our son’s infection missed.

Whether you breast or bottle feed – is there anything you would have done differently? Or any advice you feel you could offer others?



16 thoughts on “Motivational Monday: Breastfeeding – Things I would have done”

  1. My daughter was born at 35 weeks also. She was my first, and I was shell shocked. The doctors decided that because my milk hadn’t come in, and she didn’t have a suck/swallow response yet, she should have a nasal tube and have formula, the amounts being scientifically worked out according to her weight, and increasing each day.
    Before this point I had been determined she would be exclusively breastfed, and it still breaks my heart that she had about 5 days of formula before we began feeding properly. Though I’m not sure i could have done anything differently, I wish i’d been with it enough to voice my concerns and question the doctors.

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  2. My advice would be to try and identify someone within your friends and family who you can get help and advice from. My cousin and friend helped me far more than any professional. Trust your instincts. This is really difficult, especially as a first time Mum but, looking back, mine were right even though people who were being paid to ‘help’ me were saying different to what I wanted to do. I genuinely believe that I would never have established breastfeeding with my son if the community midwife who was visiting us had her way. It was only sheer determination and bloody mindedness that kept us at it and we went on to feed until past his second birthday.

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  3. I think I would have done things a lot differently but when you’re a new mum you spend your entire time worrying (even when it’s your second or third!).

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  4. i think its extra hard during those first few days/weeks with a newborn anyway with our emotions being all over the place so we doubt ourselves more than we may normally anyway due to being so tired too. i was lucky because my partner’s Mum helped me with breastfeeding and i dont know if i could have succeeded without her time and help.
    dont beat yourself up, all four boys are healthy and fine and that is what is important lovely x x

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  5. Good post Joy, I was the same hanging on everything I was told for the first and doing it all my own way by 4, 5 and 6!

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  6. Great post.

    We didn’t have any issues with breastfeeding and I know we were incredibly lucky in that respect. The only thing I would do differently is not switch to formula at 5 months.

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  7. Having never had children I honestly don’t know what I would have done. I have learned over the years not to listen to doctors but to listen to your own gut instincts. Every child and adult for that matter is different and will react differently to different meds, situations etc. You did what you thought you should do at the time.

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  8. I breastfed all four of my kids (they are now teens). With my first, my husband’s family was not very supportive, they had never really been exposed to breastfeeding and didn’t know much about it. They truly made me feel like I was doing something wrong and that it was something unnatural (they didn’t want me nursing around their kids, made comments that I was starving my son, my sis-in-law actually told me her husband “would never allow her to do that” etc.) UGH! . I was working full time at the time so I eventually just caved and quit breastfeeding around 3 months of age. I will always regret that decision. With my other three kids, I really didn’t care what anyone thought or said, I knew I was doing the right thing for me and my kids. I was no longer working outside the home so it was much easier. I breastfed each of them until around 15 months of age. It was a wonderful experience that I wouldn’t change for anything.

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  9. Shy had colostrum only before I stopped breast feeding the night that my actual milk came in when she was 3 days old. This was mainly due to the pain – my nipples cracked after her first feed on each side so by day 3 I was in tears with no proper advice. I was told she wasn’t latching properly although when they watched, she was latching fine. I just have very small nipples and probably could have benefitted from a nipple shield! I cried the first time I gave her formula as I felt like a failure and then when she had gastric reflux I had to wonder if it was because I stopped breast feeding but I think anyone who feels unable to rbeast feed should never feel bad about formula feeding – your baby has to eat so do what’s best for BOTH of you!

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  10. With my first daughter I was young, 20 years old, and had nipple trauma a week. I pumped and fed her out of a bottle and was very lucky that she went right back to breastfeeding after my nipples had healed. For my second daughter, I am now 30. I again had nipple trauma after just a few days. I went back to the hospital for lactation services and they showed me how to make her latch wider. After two days my nipples healed and we are not having any other issues. She is definitely feeding like a champ. I would suggest to get all the help you can and not give up, because breastfeeding is such a bonding and rewarding experience!!!

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  11. I breastfed both my kids until they were 6 weeks – but both were supplemented with formula from just days old. No matter what I did, my milk didn’t come in. With my first I went to a lactation consultant, pumped between feedings, weighed her before and after each feeding, kept detailed notes, but after 6 weeks of that, I just decided I would be a better mom if I switched to formula. With my second, I decided to give him what I could for 6 weeks, then stop. I did still pump to see if I had better supply the second time around, but still no luck. While I do know breastfeeding is the best nutrition, it isn’t best for every family. Thanks for sharing your story!

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