My Bottle Fed Baby

When I was pregnant I’d always planned to breastfeed, I’d bought myself creams and pads and did all the boob massages beforehand to encourage milk flow and all that jazz. I was however a realist and did buy a cheap set of bottles, a steamer and 48 hours worth of milk just in case. I thought they wouldn’t go to waste if I could express some milk.

As it happened my boy was born early in traumatic style and I had a condition which made breastfeeding incredibly difficult. Together we spent a week in hospital and during those long, hard days every midwife for miles around tried to milk me, to no avail. Not a drop could be found. We collectively gave up and resigned ourselves to having a bottle fed baby.

breastfeedingHonestly I don’t have a problem if parents choose to feed their baby by breast or bottle. As a parent you’ve got to go with what works for you and your family. If you can’t breastfeed, even with experts on hand to help you, then there is no point at all beating yourself up about it. Parenting throws enough guilt your way.

Yes, I totally get the breast is best argument. But I look at my nephew and my son who are only 6 months apart in age. My nephew was breastfed and my boy bottle fed and there is no difference. They are both lively, happy, engaging, intelligent boys. Both healthy, cheeky and thriving.

Breastfeeding is an emotive subject, one which everyone has an opinion on and one which is a real parenting hot potato. For me as with most things, my attitude is do whatever you want but don’t pour scorn on those who do things differently. That’s just good manners and respect.

So, breast or bottle? What did you do and if it didn’t work for you like me, how do you feel about it?

13 responses to “My Bottle Fed Baby

  1. expressionconfession

    Totally agree! Your boy is a happy and healthy child, full of energy! x

  2. I like your stance on this. I had good intentions of BF both my boys, but in both cases and for different reasons ended up FF them both. Both times I felt a lot of guilt, but as I see them grow up that feeling fades.

    I do think BF should be given a try, but I don’t think it’s the end of the world if a child is FF, and women shouldn’t ever be made to feel bad about the way they feed their babies.

  3. Don’t normally reply to this type of thing, but here goes.
    I breastfed both my boys. Tough at first but a doddle afterwards. It did get to be a bit of a drag though, as neither would ever take a bottle – expressed milk or formula, so it was me and only ever me that could feed them. and weaning them off the boob – especially the elder was tough. Reckon he’d still be there now if I’d not called a halt.
    Seriously though, it’s a choice. Like you said, some people just can’t for a whole host of real, honest, undeniable reasons, and NOONE should be made to feel negative about the choice they make. Yes, breast is best, but don’t come to me with a whole load of baloney about far fetched health benefits. Both my breastfed boys have a developmental disorder, and the younger also has coeliac disease despite vigilantly exclusively breast feeding for six months before introducing other foods etc. He also has execzma – breast feeding is meant to help prevent that one too!!!
    I have a friend who breastfed her daughters until they weaned themselves naturally – aged about six I believe (!!!) She’s a militant breast feeder – and nothing gets up my nose more than some of her sanctimonious links on FB.
    Raising a child is a marathon, not a sprint, and there are far more important and significant parenting dilemmas to be had than the boring old breast v bottle debate.

  4. I totally agree that there is enough guilt in parenting without having to feel guilty for the way in which we feed our babies. I know that I would have felt “guilty” if I hadn’t been able to but I also know that it would hVe been irrational. I don’t think anyone has the right to pass judgement. I do believe everyone is allowed their opinion but I just don’t understand this attitude whereby one mother tries to make another feel inferior for what they do (choice or no choice, it’s irrelevant). In North African society there is a lot of nonsense whereby some are obsessed with the fact that breast milk isn’t sufficient for a baby and I have been made out to be a bad mother for not giving a bottle 🙁 Like you say, it’s impossible to tell who has and hasn’t been breastfed so people can have their opinions but keep their judgements to themselves. Xxxx

  5. glad to see we are on the same page on this topic…its weird how from day one we put way too much pressure on ourselves to be superwoman 🙁

  6. Naseema Hosein Hoey

    Nothing is wrong with bottle feeding even though us women can make other women feel guilty for not doing so. I have gotten a lot of stares from those women who thought that I was doing a horrible job just because I formula fed my son, midwives included. I think first time moms should prepare themselves just in case bfeeding don’t work out. I do agree that breast is best but not everyone can breastfeed. My son is also formula fed and he is one of the healthiest, happiest and most chilled out lad I know. I think focus should be made on happy baby happy mummy rather than all this social pressure to force yourself and starve your baby in order to encourage milk flow. Maybe my case was one in a million but it certainly got me turned off the midwives when I had my son. Only one midwife actually listened and encouraged me to bottle feed because of poor milk flow. If I do have another though I would try bfeeding again 🙂

  7. Thank you all so much for your comments, I’m pretty laid back about most things, especially parenting, I’ve got a chilled out boy to prove that. Like I said in my post, do whatever is right for you and your family, follow that rule in all things and you’ll not go far wrong.

  8. the mmmmm family

    I really like this post, its so nice to see someone who is confident enough to go with what they think is right and not worry about it too much. Parenting is fraught with worrying and guilt and we really need to try and ease off on ourselves for a bit!

  9. Lovely post. I love how much support there is for one another on this subject at the moment. This needs to continue 🙂

  10. Chantelle Hazelden (@MamaMummyMum)

    I totally agree with what you’ve said. In my opinion neither is better, as long as mummy and baby are both happy and healthy everything else doesn’t really matter x

  11. I agree too. You can’t tell BF/FF babies apart in my opinion – except perhaps the nappies! Too much pressure and unnecessary guilt. I have been lucky enough to not have any problems BF but have witnessed my bestie’s experience struggling then turning to formula and the pressure and guilt she felt was heartbreaking to watch. You have to do what is right for you and baby regardless of the BF police out there waiting to raise an eyebrow.

  12. I tried so hard to breastfeed and just didn’t manage. Instead I expressed for months, which I’m quite sure led to pnd, the pressure to put breastmilk in my child was so extreme. I bottle fed eventually. If I did it again I would do whatever worked out easiest for both of us. Screw everyone else – they aren’t the ones dealing with my screaming newborn in the night!

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