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Bottle Feeding Stigma?

I'm expecting my second baby in April, and with so much focus on "breast is best" I'm worried about being stigmatised for choosing to bottle feed.
Problem is, I breastfed my daughter for 3 and a half weeks and was told to switch to formula as she was losing weight. I found it incredibly uncomfortable and can't stand my nipples being touched at all anymore! I just feel safer bottlefeeding, and will appreciate the OH on night duty as I have my nearly 4 year old to deal with all day, I'm self-employed and OH works full-time.
Has anyone else felt ganged up on for choosing not to breastfeed?
~Saz x


  • not quite the same but i mixfed ds until he was 7 months old and i used to go to a breastfeeding group however when i first started going the woman who runs it said i wasn't allowed to bottle feed ds there and wld either have to bf that feed or go outside!! then when i stopped altogether i was informed that unless ur a breastfeeding peer that she trained up u can no longer go once u've stopped (grrr), then the other group is a bumps to babies wuith a breastfeediing group in one, so same blood woman and her to of her 'peer supporters' decided to jibe at me about stopping (at 7 bloody months might i add, with a milk intolerant baby) but in their opinions anything less than one yr was not good enough and i wasn't trying my hardest. anyhoo, i've also been on the other foot tho where bottlefeeding mums wld turn there nose up if started to breastfeed, or coments by passers by, these days u can't win, u have to do what is right for u and ur baby, who cares what anyone else thnks? who cares how u feed, or how others feed? baby is getting fed, top priority! if anyone gives u stick for wha&tever way u choose to feed and for howlong , simply tell them to mind their own. xx
  • I just know all the health pros are going to try and persuade me to breastfeed and not sure how to say "Pee Off!" without sounding rude!
    How awful is that, being told to bottle feed outside!
    People are already asking if I'm going to breastfeed and I can't help feeling judged for saying no.
    ~Saz x
  • God dammit! People really do pee me off sometimes! Can't believe you were treated like that siany..

    I tried breastfeeding but unfortunately, because of the very strong drugs that I had whilst I was pregnant, we came to the conclusion that I was not going to produce any milk. We're actually not sure whether it was the drugs or the fact that my body was buggered from 9 months of hell! However, I got lots of grief for not trying whilst I was still in hospital (had csection so had to stay for a while) and then felt that people thought I should have persevered harder.

    TBH, 9 months on, I know I did the right thing for me and my little one - I also know that it would have been good if I could have done it, but I couldn't, so tough!

    One thing I would say is that the girls who came into my ward and said they were bottlefeeding straight away didn't get any hassle from anyone and were given milk left, right and centre... Hope you get that sort of experience...

    C xx
  • you've tried once - it didnt work. You could try again and it might work/not work again, but I can understand that with an older child it would be easier to ff and not go through more stress than necessary in the first few months.

    dont worry about sounding rude if you need to tell them to pee off.
    Start out by saying that you've already chosen how your baby is going to bed fed thank you very much, and if they still push then just say pee off! image

    The ward I was on if mums were ff they were given bottles of milk and their babies were taken to the nursery for the night so mums could rest - I had a cs and had to ask for help to feed lo and each time (except for one mw who i knew from my peer supporters course) they literally shoved my breast inside and walked away. although lo wouldnt feed for the first 24 hours - I had no choice but to let them do it that way until I could move around better by myself and work out what way worked for me and MJ.

  • This is a topic very close to my heart. I asked a very similar question when I was pregnant, and worried about it literally day and night until my LO was born. I would even make my hubby go and get the milk from the midwives station in hospital (stayed in 3 days after c-section) because I did not want to be questioned. I also had a bit of a hard time at my NCT classes because of the whole thing, but thats another story.
    My LO is my first and I chose not to breastfeed, for the simple reason that I cannot bring myself to do it. I have absolutely nothing whatsoever against other mothers breastfeeding and agree 100% with all the health benifits, but it is something I have just never felt was natural for me. So much so that when LO was born I tried to express and could barely bring myself to try. I remember sitting on the sofa trying to express and crying thinking I was the most awful woman in the world for not wanting to do the best for my LO. THEN.... the most wonderful midwife in the whole world arrives and gave me some advice and I never looked back! A happy mother = a happy baby! Simple as!
    It is your baby and you do what feels right for you! Dont let anyone tell you otherwise. And I do also think that we make it look and feel a lot worse in our own minds, as new mums we tend to judge ourselves a lot harder than most people do! If I look back now, most of the questioning and the judgement came from other mothers, not the health professionals I saw.
    When I have my next, I will FF again from birth and I will not feel the need to justify myself to anyone. My LO is now a very happy, very healthy 7 month old and I am a very happy mother!

    Best of luck with your new arrival xx
  • Thanks for the reassurance ladies! Nice to know I'm not on my own. My daughter is nearly 4 now and has done well on formula, plus I feel more at ease being able to see how much baby's taken each feed. My daughter fed every 4 hours on the dot, slept well through the night, was rarely ill and is too smart for her on good! It just worries me that other people will make me feel like a failure for not trying to bf again.
    ~Saz x
  • As the other ladies said, your baby, your decision!! I bottlefed from birth and found some midwives were good and other were very bullying about breast feeding, I simply said " I have had all the benefits explained to me and all the emotional blackmail I can take, I still am bottlefeeding my baby, whether you like it or not" I wasnt always as blunt but found I needed to be after a while. Oh and i've got a perfectly happy, healthy baby who has been ill a great deal less than all the breast fed babies I know!!
    Good Luck!
  • It's totally your decision, I appreciate that breastfeeding is probaby better for the baby as its been proven etc but I dont think bottle feeding is bad at all, I also FF from birth and my 20 month old hasnt had a single cold or illness this winter (YET! Lol). He's a perfect weight on the 25th centile and eats well. No one can force you to do anything you don't want to do, and that includes breastfeeding....One of my friends BF her first dd till she was 9 months but she would not take a bottle at ALL and was a nightmare with feeds, sleep etc so now she has had her 2nd daughter she chose to FF her from birth. It's a shame as hospitals push natural births with minimum pain relief, bf, etc but sometimes they dont consider whats best for the mother too. Personally, I don't think I could cope with my Lo in the day , plus bf-ing a newborn 2 hourly at night. I applaud those that do!! But I dont think bf is for me image
  • True, my friend and I actually decided that people don't actually care about mums, only the babies we work so damned hard for!
    I feel much better and more confident to stick by my guns now =]
    ~Saz x
  • my son is 10 years old and i tried to breast feed him. for me it was the worst feeling in the world ever. I could not associate my breast with feeding or food and I literally felt disgusted every time I tried to feed him. I would cry as i tried to feed him and when he cried would subconciously try every last thing before i tried food as I dreaded it so much.

    I ended up changing to bottle and felt like a leper for it. I was ashamed and felt like a failure BUT it was the best decision for us as we were able to bond as I was no longer afraid of his cries or to feed him and I felt better in myself.

    I actually do believe that breast milk is best but I do not belive that formula is bad and will be bottle feeding this bub when he arrives in August. I am deciding if I will try to breast feed or get him to try immediatley after birth but honestly the though fills me with dread so will probably bottle feed with the Tommee Tippee closer to nature bottles and feel confident that I am making a choice that will ensure that both my baby & I are happy....and fed!
  • I forgot to mention that reading this thread has made me feel better about my decision again as even though I know it was best for me and will be again I haven;t had the guts to tell anyone yet. Now I will! x
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