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Weaning - guilt not BF


Forum: July, August & September 2012 Playroom

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  • 1 Post By Starr33
  • 1 Post By hope71012

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  #1  
September 1st, 2012, 08:18 AM
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UPDATE/New Question:
So, weaning is not going. I'm with baby 98% of the time. I thought because hubby was home for a long weekend (he took off 2 extra days to make a 5 day weekend) he could actually HELP in the weaning process. Nope not at all. Since he obviously isn't going to be a help with bottle feeding or to try to wean her I feel like I'm left with two options:
1. Suffer myself. I don't love nursing, but my baby is fed and happy. Its only for a year at the most. We can keep offering bottles when out and about and as desired.
2. Both of us suffer. Its short term, but in the last 5 days it is extremely hard to see my baby hungry, looking to nurse, and refusing a bottle. Knowing that she is taking JUST ENOUGH to satisfy hungry from a bottle and not a full feeding.

I'm thinking option one is probably better. I'm an adult, I can cope with my feelings. I don't love it. It's not a bonding experience. BUT, my daughter needs to eat and both my daughters need a mom who is at her best emotionally. At least she DOES take a bottle and will continue to offer her a bottle at least once a day. Knowing that she does take a bottle is helpful because at least I can have some freedom be gone for a few hours as needed.

I've work with kids for years, many breastfed and taking a bottle for the first time. Its so much easier when its not my own baby to work on weaning. And I'm sure easier for mom because she is not the one giving the baby a bottle, hearing the baby fuss, and look to nurse. I know its short term and in a month she could be taking bottles perfectly. I just can't do it on my own


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If you've weaned or couldn't BF how do you not feel guilty.

I struggled from day one about nursing. I wasn't going to nurse at all. I didn't even want to try. I nursed my older daughter for over a year. I hated every moment of it. Feeding her was never a bonding experience that it should be. I felt trapped. I felt exposed. I never felt "safe" to nurse (due to a whole array of reasons). I kept going along because DD1 wouldn't taken a bottle. When she was 9 months old, I bought formula tried and tried to get her to take a bottle. If she was hungry I offered the bottle until 8 hours she had not eaten at all. I cried, she cried. I just suffered through hating feeding my child. Trying to distract myself not just during a letdown (which I've heard termed DMER), but an entire feeding. I hated hearing her cry when she was hungry, etc.

I said for DD2, I would try. The first 2-3 weeks were fine. She's 5 weeks today. The last two weeks especially have been horrible. All those feelings are creeping back up. I try anything and everything to distract me from actually feeding her. When we go to the park after school or soccer practice, I find myself giving the baby a pacifier to hold her off until I am somewhere "safe" to nurse. I'm so fixated on feeding her at certain times because I don't want to get caught at the play ground or the soccer field or anywhere out in public while she's hungry. I'm constantly on edge and my anxiety is through the roof. I hate to hear her hunger cry because it means *I* have to expose myself and have someone suck on a very private part of my body and just really triggers me to the past. Sometimes if DD2 is just comfort nursing, it is even worse.

I know that I need to wean her. I know that what I am feeling is not normal or healthy. I can only think of one pro and that is breastmilk is free. I know formula is harder on baby's belly and that it has its own set of issues, but I also know that bonding with my baby is my number one priority. Any benefit of breastmilk is secondary. Yet, here I am feeling guilty. Wanting to keep going, even though I've tried to work through the issues. I can't. I can't even make eye contact with my baby while nursing because it brings me back to the past. I mainly don't want to be judged and am fearful that DD may not tolerate formula well or something.

DH is home most of next week. He can help (while I cry my eyes out because I know she will want to nurse). I keep trying to wait for that magical mark when everything "gets easier." Everyone said 6 weeks it gets easier, but with how I am feeling and knowing how I felt with my first it isn't going to get easier and I do not want to sacrifice my bond with DD2. She's such an angel and a huge blessing, I don't want to fail her and keep doing something that has negative consequences long term. I keep trying to remind myself that we've given it 5 weeks of nursing. Each day, each feeding its getting harder and harder. When I've mentioned weaning to people IRL, the response is why - you have enough milk and she's doing great...why wean? Keep pushing through it. Practice nursing in front of a mirror, etc. Not to be a debbie downer, I really don't think that will help. And yeah, I can seek professional help for the issues - but really its something personal I would rather work through on my own (and have been, slowly).

In the words of my wonderful 6 year old (as I was crying talking to DH...didn't know she was hiding in the hall), "being a mommy is a really tough job" followed by a big hug. So true.
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Last edited by hope71012; September 7th, 2012 at 07:59 AM.
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  #2  
September 1st, 2012, 09:39 AM
Mrs.Julie's Avatar Mommy to 3 Princesses
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I so feel for you. The most important aspects of eating as a baby are getting nutrition AND feeling emotionally satisfied. I think a bottle with bm or formula would be better than being bf but being upset, sad and anxious, which she is feeling if you are. Just be happy she got 5 weeks. That is still really good, she got so many benifits from that. Most babies never have a drop! Just be proud that you tried and did best for baby, she got all of the important colostrum and first few weeks for all of that immunity from you and now move forward with whats best for baby both physically and emotionally. What baby really needs is you to be happy!
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  #3  
September 1st, 2012, 04:26 PM
therevslady's Avatar Built for Birth
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I'm so so so sorry you are dealing with this. I know it's not easy. My only advice is to figure out what is most important for you and baby and do that. To help lift the guilt if you need to wean, are you comfortable pumping? Are you comfortable taking donated breast milk? Is there a formula that you might feel less guilty using? Many mothers have a lot of success nursing at home and supplementing while out of the house. There are a lot of different scenarios that present more options than just weaning, but it all depends on what you want and what you feel is most important.
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  #4  
September 1st, 2012, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~~Que~~ View Post
I'm so so so sorry you are dealing with this. I know it's not easy. My only advice is to figure out what is most important for you and baby and do that. To help lift the guilt if you need to wean, are you comfortable pumping? Are you comfortable taking donated breast milk? Is there a formula that you might feel less guilty using? Many mothers have a lot of success nursing at home and supplementing while out of the house. There are a lot of different scenarios that present more options than just weaning, but it all depends on what you want and what you feel is most important.
In the ideal world, I wouldn't mind nursing PT (while at home). I think I would feel a lot better doing that. What Dh and I talked about was very gradually weaning her. Start doing formula during the feedings I'm at work and at the ball fields. Which would equal 2-3 bottles a day. Then nurse the rest of the time and see how it goes. Also, we kind of figure if she doesn't tolerate formula well for some reason, my supply hasn't completely dried up and we can always go back.

I don't mind pumping, I thought about that as an option (pump full time). The only problem with that is I am NEVER at home it feels like.

We gave her two formula bottles today and it was a much needed relief. It was enough to bring my anxiety down several notches!
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  #5  
September 2nd, 2012, 06:07 AM
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I am sorry you are going through this...You just have to do what feels best for you....We are in the opposite boat...I wish I was still breastfeeding, but I did not have a large milk supply and after BF for an hour, I still had to give a 4 oz of formula...I feel guilty about not breastfeeding anymore....Cause he still searches to breastfeed....but in my case the milk supply was not there....
Good luck in whatever you decide to do...Remember the most important things is that you and baby are healthy...And even if you give Formula you baby will still be happy, cause she has your love.....
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  #6  
September 3rd, 2012, 07:34 PM
maddy and tommy's mommy's Avatar Lovin my precious kiddos!
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I am SO sorry you are going through this! I had HORRIBLE guilt with my first, and then just a little this time around with Thomas. I had different reasons for stopping BF and even pumping, but it doesn't matter what our reasons are. I told myself I wouldn't feel guilty this time around but I still did, just not as much as with my daughter.

That relief that you felt when you fed your daughter formula... In my opinion, that's how you should feel all of the time. A happy mommy makes for a happy baby. Period. Of course there are benefits to BFing, but if you are sad and miserable all of the time, they will not outweigh the benefits of weaning.

Hang in there mama! I know that truly no matter what anyone says, you will still feel how you are going to feel. But believe me, making the switch made all of the difference for me and my emotional state. And my daughter felt it too.

Keep us posted... If you choose to!
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  #7  
September 4th, 2012, 06:27 AM
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Thanks all

We are on day 4. I think my supply has taken a huge hit on my right side (not so much the other). But, it felt so good to not feel the anxiety of "omg she needs to eat, how can I put off feeding her, or where is the least public place, etc.". Not to mention daddy got some time with both girls so I could babysit. And I didn't fret about pumping after. It was more relief.

Seeing my baby happy and content after feedings and feeling relaxed myself is priceless. And nursing the rest of the day, is much much easier on me.
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  #8  
September 5th, 2012, 11:38 AM
mommy2lilmen's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I could of wrote this post out myself! I have had guilt since stopping, even befor stopping, its affecting my parenting. My only pro was it was free to. I to had to put him on a schedule WHEN he could eat cus of the other kids, cus of my other duties here. DH was shocked I even started to breasfeed as he knew this was the case with the last one I did it for about 6 weeks, not no more. I feel so guilty cus he is spitting up alot and isnt sleeping still at night. i feel I done this to him, to me, to my family. I cry daily, Im so angry daily.. Ugh.. it will get better hun. Let all the feelings out, and do talk to people, take time to you and keep reminding yourself that its for the best. Breastfeeding I find is linked to depression, in my case, I dont care what others say that it isnt, its a relaxing drug so to speak.. its not in all. I found that breastfeeding made me very anxious, total opposite of what it should of been. They sell and make formula for a reason, give it. I do enjoy giving him a bottle instead of wondering what clothes to wear that will be easier to feed with and so on. HUGS, I just read that you are on day 4 now, so glad your feeling a bit better. Just wish I would. HUGS
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