I have diligently been trying to breastfeed LO but he just will not latch. I am supplementing with pumped breast milk for now but he gets so mad when I give him some time to try and nurse that he gets sick. It's just making both of us miserable and I'm not enjoying baby time. Not to mention between trying to nurse, bottle feeding AND pumping I'm not finding time to take care of myself and my diabetes. :(
So, my questions are, if you formula feed...
Did you feel guilty and/or did anyone make you feel guilty about formula feeding?
What's the reason you decided to formula feed?
What kind of formula are you using?
Will it really be that awful for my baby if I don't breast feed?
I was in pretty much the EXACT same situation you're in. Xander and I were both so unhappy with nursing. If I even STARTED trying to nurse him he got upset. I knew that most women can work through it with additional breastfeeding counseling from an expert, but... I'll be honest, the ONLY real reason I considered a lactation consultant was because I was afraid of what others would say if I gave up. I was also severely depressed and doing talk-therapy on top of a modest dose of Wellbutrin wasn't enough (and, of course, breastfeeding while on medication is always a bit of a concern). When I talked to my husband about wanting to stop pumping and attempting to nurse, he asked why. I explained how I was feeling about everything and then he told me that he thought it was OK and, "if it makes you feel better to know my opinion, I actually think it's the right decision."
And then, something amazing happened.... absolutely NO ONE criticized me for stopping, and feeding became a wonderful, sweet, stress-free time to snuggle with my son. I know a bunch of people who are very big on extended breastfeeding, but not a single person ever said anything about seeing a bottle. Well, actually, a guy friend said, "Oh, he's off the boob now, huh?" I said "yep," and that was it. In the end, everyone recognized it as ultimately my decision and none of their business.
Our pediatrician also didn't bat an eye when we told him, which was another relief.
Oh, and I was able to think a little more about my blood sugar, which was getting out of control!!!
Some people are going to tell you what to do. The "right" answer is to do what feels right to you. If you feel you should visit with a lactation consultant and give it another hard try, do it. If you feel ready to just switch to bottle only, do it. Breast milk is almost always best, yes, but your baby will also do just fine with formula.
(As to another question you asked, we chose to start him on soy formula because I'd read some studies linking dairy formula to increased risk of T1 D. When we asked his pediatrician, he said he doubted there was really a risk but was 100% fine with soy formula. So we stuck with it.)
Thank you SO much! This is very comforting! How long did you try to breast feed (if you don't mind me asking)? I have an appointment with a LC on Monday and it has only been a little over a week for me but it has felt like a month!
I stopped at two weeks... but that last week was a pretty poor effort, I have to admit.
And you're welcome. There's SO much pressure on us to make specific decisions for ourselves and our babies, but only YOU know YOUR specific situation.
Good luck with the LC, and good luck in either decision you make!!!
Sarah, sorry, I don't. I do remember that I decided to go with soy because the study had focused on DAIRY. If you google for some of the key words, you'll find articles. They even made a special formula that they thought least likely to cause issues. Let's see... Here's one article that talks about the study using the alternative formula: http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2010/11/10/can-infant-formula-prevent...
One group of children received Nutramigen, a hydrolyzed formula based on casein. The other group of children took a formula specifically tailored to the study: 80 percent intact milk protein (Enfamil formula) and 20 percent hydrolyzed milk protein. Mothers were encouraged to nonetheless continue breastfeeding their children as normal, and use the assigned formula when breast milk was not available.
Researchers followed the children up to age 10 to see if they had autoantibodies predictive of diabetes, or had progressed to develop type 1 diabetes. They found that children who had taken the Nutramigen as infants had about a 50 percent decreased risk of the autoantibodies that are predictive of diabetes.
There was also a study done linking the hormones in cows milk to T1D. I remember seeing this is a Type 1 Diabetes facebook page. Though the study wasn't done here in the states.
I felt guilty at first for formula feeding. I lost my supply fully three weeks after my son was born. I never really got in a good supply. The nurses at the hospital were just too busy to help me at all. Though my son was also 6 weeks early and at first had oxygen on for the first 3 days so I pumped and pumped for him. We ended up supplementing with the Similiac Neosure for preemies with my breast milk. At the three week point we ended up just putting him on the Neosure fully for the first 2 months. We tried everything to get my supply up. We meaning my OB/GYN and I did. I was even seeing a lactation consultant. No one could figure out what happened and why I lost my supply.
My son was on Neosure for the first two months, then he was switched to Similiac Soy because he at first seemed to have a sensitivity to the other formulas. Around 6 to 7 months we switched him back to Similiac for Spit Up. He will take the Similiac Advanced but not as well. Guess he like the Rice Starch added to it. He's now 9 months and extremely healthy and happy. He's not overweight like people claim are going to happen to formula feed babies. He's now 20 lbs 5 ozs and is 28 1/4 inches long. He's a tall baby.
No it won't be awful if you don't breast feed your baby. There are mommies out there that will try to make you feel like you're a bad mother, but you're not. You're doing what's best for your baby. You could always pump for him if you would like to continue to give him breast milk.
People will say that not breast feeding is linked to Type 1 diabetes but I'm living proof that this is not the case because I was breast feed when I was a baby and I've had Type 1 diabetes for 12 years now.
I am not formula feeding, but I decided to answer because we also had a bumpy start to breastfeeding.
Only after having my son did I realize that breastfeeding is not as easy as it looks. Some mother-baby combos have no trouble, but I think that most of us get off to a rough start with the first child. You are both learning something entirely new!!
My son did not seem able to latch and was fussing because he was hungry. The hungrier that he got the harder it seemed to latch. The nurses at the hospital told me to use a nipple shield. I REALLY resisted it because I had read that they led to nipple confusion and it didn't seem natural. But at the end of the day, I saw that our son could latch onto the shield, but could not latch onto my nipple. I decided just to use it while I was in the hospital and then I would try and stop using it (and call a LC when we got home).
During my last night in the hospital, a nurse came in because our son was SCREAMING and I couldn't calm him. She helped me so much because she told me that the latching problem was because my breasts were too full. We pumped a little and then we was able to latch on without the nipple shield. On my own, I still struggled to get him to latch on, but after pumping a bit it went better. So we used the shield for the first 2-3 weeks and then we both were getting more comfortable with it and stopped using it all together. He will be one year old next week and is still breastfeeding.
If you are considering stopping breastfeeding, I would try the nipple shield first. If you know that stopping would be the right thing for you, then I would still try to nurse as long as you feel you can. Every day or week with breast milk will give great immunity to your little one. You can also try to pump and freeze a lot now and then stop and give the stored milk for as long as possible. I read that 100mL of breastmilk per day is enough to give the immunity benefits. Of course, exclusive breastfeeding is best for their health, but it is your decision. You may also consider trying to get donated breast milk.
From my discussions, I think that there are very few moms who enjoy breastfeeding in the beginning. So if you can, I would try to hang in there for a couple more weeks. I think that I started to enjoy nursing our son when he was around 1 month old. For me, at first it was tiring and frustrating. Some additional benefits to breastfeeding:
(1) My blood sugars were MUCH better (breastfeeding prevented high highs)
(2) I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight by 1 year without ANY diet (really I am eating more than usual)
(3) I find it much more convenient, especially when traveling and leaving home. For the first six months, I always had his food with me and didn't have to worry about it.
I had the EXACT same issues with my daughter latching on and it was stressful for us both. We had a lactation consultant come out to tell me that I have small nipples. She suggested that we use a nipple shield. Once I put it on my daughter fed like a champ. A month later I'm still using it since I haven't been able to ween her from it. People also suggested having a doctor look at the baby's tongue tie (skin under tongue) to see if that is an issue. I'm making an appointment at a pediatric ENT to see if this is an issue too. Good luck!
I also used a nipple shield at first. If you are willing to give it one more try, get yourself one (medela makes them, and they're available at Babies R Us and online). There are different sizes, so if you can talk to a lactation consultant, she can tell you which size to get. But if not, you could just try a couple sizes. My daughter did SO much better with the shield, and I was able to wean her off it at 4 weeks.
If you do decide to stop breastfeeding, you should certainly not feel guilty. I will just tell you that I had a very hard time with it at first (even with the nipple shield), but that it is now one of my most favorite parts of being a mother. I'm really glad I stuck with it.
Just remember, Happy Mommy = Happy Baby!!! The quicker you learn it, the easier mommy-hood will be! I asked a question about the type of formula to use as well, since I tried using Nutramigen and my baby hated it! It was probably Aug/Sept of last year, feel free to look for it if you think it'd be helpful.