Wow can this topic can be a heated one! After reading a funny blog on this debate, I thought I would share my side on it.
I decided, before my first was born, that I would bottle feed my babies. I have absolutely nothing against breast-feeding mothers, but this was a personal choice. While being bottle fed, my children were still getting breast milk which I was expressing.
You are always told breast is best, and I wanted my children to have the benefits of breast milk. But I wanted to keep an eye on my supply. Apparently it took medical professionals a few months to realise that I wasnt getting enough out of my mother’s milk. I remember being told this when I was younger, so I always had this worry that I too would be like this. A part of me is glad that I did this, because I had an incredibly low supply (which got slightly better with each child, but was still always poor). My eldest son was never able to have a full feed of breast milk. Within a couple of weeks, I caved and turned to formula. It hit me hard. I was devastated. I felt like I couldn’t provide for my son. I now realise that breast-feeding
nazis ,*ahem*, protagonists, put such a social stigma on new mothers, that I felt like a failure for being physically unable to produce milk. I tried everything under the sun to help boost supply, to no avail.
But once we turned to formula, my were children settled for longer, grew normally and didn’t suffer any ill health. The one time that each of my boys were hospitalised with bronchiolitus…guess what! They were still drinking breast milk!
Now, I hate this crap “benefits” excuse that breast-feeding helps you bond with your child. Sure it does, but it didn’t stop me from bonding with my children. It also didn’t stop them bonding with their father! I wasnt obligated to get up in the middle of the night for every feed. I could nudge my partner in the direction of the bedroom door when I was too exhausted to move. It also helped with the bonding with grandparents, who were great babysitters when I had to work (oh yes…Im one of those terrible working mothers too!)
Sure, breast-feeding means there are less dishes…but what is an extra couple of minutes at the sink? I sure as hell didn’t spend hours there! But what about those breast-feeding mums who have to express to relieve themselves? Do they have less dishes? Not really.
I have to say, I also enjoyed being able to have the occasional glass of wine, or not having to worry about what any medications may pass through the milk to my child, or being able to eat what I enjoyed without having to worry about upset tummies.
While in town, I didn’t have to stop what I was doing to sit somewhere to attach to my child, or worry about embarrassing other shoppers by possible boob exposure. I could pop a bottle in and continue to push around the trolley or pram. Day time hours can be precious to get things done!
Also, breast-feeding can hurt! Yes…I at least tried it. I was one of the lucky ones, it came easily and I felt no pain (unlike other mums) but mastitis, cracked nipples, thrush…eek!
Breast feeding saves money. Yeah, probably. But I constantly felt starving while expressing my breast milk. Any money saved on formula probably went towards the food I ate! I have to admit, that was one thing I missed when my cystic fibrosis son ended up on a special prescribed formula for his weight…it was only costing us $5.30 a month. So when he no longer needed to be on this formula, I was disappointed when it became $15 a week.
It may seem that I am attacking breast-feeding mothers, but please don’t take it this way! It is the female body’s natural function. Like I mentioned before, it was a personal choice for me. Most bottle feeding mothers having nothing against breast-feeding mothers. It’s just a pity that so many breast-feeding mothers can’t be as accepting. It really angers me to see people jump up and down about bottle feeding parents. Why put them down? The babies certainly aren’t suffering! I hate hearing about how formula should be prescribed. Why take the choice away from parents?
Promoting breastfeeding as being best is fine, but having a go at mothers who bottle feed is not.