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Breastfeeding at any cost??? - Page 3

post #41 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmzbm
"Children will do to the world what is done to them."
That is an excellent quote! I love it!
post #42 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmzbm
I agree all those things are birthrights too.
And I still say - to the mom who was pumping 8 oz. of blood to BF her DC... Someone *should* make her a badge. Is what she did a symbol of good motherhood?! Damn right!
8 oz of pure blood? no milk mixed with that? I sure hope she didn't become anemic from that much blood loss. I never pumped that much blood, thankfully. Never more than about an ounce. I sure hope things went better for her after that!!!
post #43 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mohawk River
That is an excellent quote! I love it!
I stole it from PeaceLovingMama!
post #44 of 474
We had a NIGHTMARE for the first five monthes, Crakced and bleeding SEVERE thrush up in my ducts and all, a hole the size of a eraser in my one nipple. I will never forget when he spit up ALOT of blood and I relized it was from my nipples! Iif you can name it, I endured it and I am beyond proud to be still nursing that Big Boy, 15 monthes later! Now that being sayed...

I can see why people throw in the towel and I have no problem with that, as long as they gave it there ALL and I mean all they could to make it work. What makes me so: : are the people that I know ( not friends with) or people I saw today. When a soon to be grandma asked her pregno daughter ( or DIL) if she was going to breastfeed the hurried and IGNORANT response of " uh, NO of coarse not! We will be using bottles!! Like was it even a question! Repeat : :
That is the shit that makes me furious!! She probably went outside to smoke a cigerette after the question to calm her nerves from a well intendted Grandma. (You see alot of that around here) Here mom or mil was looking at those ugly Winnie the Pooh baby holders so I looked over at them and told them that I sold slings ( Big E was chillin in ours) and was explaining to here how much better they are because of the differant postions and other health benifits and how I still nurse him in it ( he is 15 monthes) ( that is what stared the whole BF thing) and the pregno was like, why would I take him out of the carseat and put him in something like that when he is fine where he is. I just turned on while heel and walked away. Better than throwing up on her feet or just flat out going off on here ignorant ass.

That is the shit that gets me going. I really am a nice person! Thanks for reading and have a great day :
post #45 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mohawk River
I find the topic very confusing myself.
On the one hand I'm disturbed that pumping oz. of blood, having badly scabbed nipples, and consistent thrush for six moths, is consdered a badge of "good Motherhood". Now, do not read too much into that, because of course, any woman, who goes through any of that is incrediable and deserves several badges. What I mean is difficult to voice, but perhaps others understand? I am of the mind that human milk is best for human babies, and in the case of a vegan family (we are except honey and wool), it is the only option. But motherhood is so, SO much more than boobies. (I know my dd doesn't agree, but oh well... ) Anyway, I know I'm sounding kind of fuddled, but it just seems sad to me that the ante keeps getting raised, in this department.
"My nipples are SO scabbed and raw, I just can't do it anymore , please tell me I'm not a bad mother!" "Have you tried some lanolin? I know, BTDT, I've pumped pure blood before. Hang in there."
KWIM? Or am I still not making sense? *sigh*
And the whole "birthright" thing. a child has the birthright to a mother that loves it uncoditionally, and doesn't cry when it needs to eat, tells it that she hates it, and is distant and removed, and potentionally resentful. Ah birthrights. Should we even go there??? Here are mine, which many MDC'ers will agree with: to be breastfed, to be intact, to be slept with... here are some more slightly controversial ones, (even here): to be vaccination-free, to never step foot in day-care... and even more strange: to be taught by their parents, to not be left with baby-sitters of any kind, to be raised vegan, etc, etc... Oh I could go on. My veiws of my children's "birthrights" are strong, and yet undoubtably differ from others veiws of "birthright". For the many Jewish families who are not part of the new intact movement, to them circumcision is indeed a "birthright" of their sons.
Anyway, I've probably lost you.
You've articulated it better than I, but I agree.
I am bothered by the need to be a martyr for breastfeeding.
I am also bothered by people who don't even try.

And then there is the "IMO, if you're REALLY devoted you'll make it work," which is just one more way of making mothers who couldn't breastfeed (and there are PLENTY here at MDC) out to be lazy, not trying hard enough, etc.

Oh and NYCveg - while we have not had the same nursing struggles as you (different ones), you are NOT a bad mother for being upset, stressed, sleep-deprived, and resentful of your daughter. I won't say "all", but I think that many mothers go through the same thing. You say it, then you look at your little baby and hate yourself for not appreciating this little creature like you should. And that means even more stress and anguish. I have been there. You are doing a great job. For what it's worth, the first 8 weeks were the hardest. Any day now your daughter will start rewarding you with smiles - and at this age, it's not just the face, but a full-body smile - and coos, and that makes it all soooo much easier.
post #46 of 474
We need to find a balance between:

Keep at it, it will get better, do not give up!

and

I don't care if your nipples are FALLING OFF. You WILL breastfeed or you are a BAD MOTHER who is denying your child their BIRTHRIGHT because you're SELFISH.
post #47 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by boingo82
We need to find a balance between:

Keep at it, it will get better, do not give up!

and

I don't care if your nipples are FALLING OFF. You WILL breastfeed or you are a BAD MOTHER who is denying your child their BIRTHRIGHT because you're SELFISH.
Oh, yeah that. That pretty much exactly articulates my entire issue with this thread.

I think I'd also like to add that I think this is far too emotional an issue to be resolved in any way. The women on the board here who persevered through incredible trouble to maintain a bfing relationship (and I include you EP'ers in that number- I'm utterly in awe of you ladies) have so much invested in their bfing relationships that there's no question to them that it was worth it (and I would never say it wasn't).

The women who gave up want to feel justified in having done so. And that's reasonable, too. No one wants to feel like a bad mother. And it's absolutely true that none of us knows any individual poster's limits.

I do have to say that it bothers me sometimes the "helpful" advice given in these boards- you ff your baby because of iatrogenic sabotage, tried to relactate and failed, but STILL advocate for breastfeeding? The answer is not "Wow- way to turn your pain into something positive! You rock!", the answer is "Have you tried fenugreek? You could try again to relactate!".

At some point, it just needs to be let go, and that mama's experiences and choices respected.

Julia
post #48 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by kalirush
I do have to say that it bothers me sometimes the "helpful" advice given in these boards- you ff your baby because of iatrogenic sabotage, tried to relactate and failed, but STILL advocate for breastfeeding? The answer is not "Wow- way to turn your pain into something positive! You rock!", the answer is "Have you tried fenugreek? You could try again to relactate!".

At some point, it just needs to be let go, and that mama's experiences and choices respected.
Very well said!
post #49 of 474
Quote:
My dd is 2-months old and we have had a horrific nursing battle (cracked/bleeding nipples, several rounds of thrush...dd has a somewhat problematic palate and I have Raynaud's syndrome). We're still nursing exclusively, but it has been horrible. To make matters worse, I was (am?) suffering from some depression and the nursing pain was making things far worse. I was so emotionally destroyed from the way that nursing was going that it was really preventing me from bonding properly with my dd.
Hugs to you. This sounds like my story.

My DD has a "bubble" palate. It took till she was 4 months old for anyone to figure this out--and yes, I went to LLL and saw two LCs. I can remember two or three times in her whole nursing life when nursing was not painful--and I do mean excruciatingly painful. The LC told me that I could not experience the correct feel of nursing because DD could not draw the nipple back to her soft palate. I developed Raynaud's, bled into the pump, had multiple open sores, and got thrush, too.

Yet I kept at it. I nursed her exclusively at the breast till she was 6 months, and then I went to mostly EPing and kept that up till she was 15 months, pumping 5-6 times a day for at least 20 minutes every time. That is countless hours of my life--note, too, countless hours attached to my pump, sometimes while my baby cried. (As a side note, a pet peeve: BFers who blithely say that they would have pumped for 2 years had they had any issues. Well, TRY pumping FT, many times a day, with an active baby and see how hard it is. Try figuring out how to chase a newly-crawling baby bent on destruction while your nipples are tethered to a machine; try soothing a screaming teether while you do it. I can't even imagine pumping FT with more than one child. Doable, but my god, nothing to just assume you'd do, la ti da, easy-peasy. I joked about burning my pump when I was done with it. It was only half a joke.)

Anyway. All this was THE HARDEST THING I HAVE EVER DONE IN MY LIFE, bar none.

Was it worth it? Was it really worth it? I am not sure. Flame away, but I am not sure. I am so incredibly glad that she got all that breastmilk. She is and was a gloriously healthy child. But.

I was so fricking miserable. I sobbed through so many feedings. I'm not talking about a few toe-curling feedings at 2 weeks--I'm talking about nursing a 5-month-old and sobbing, because it still hurt that much. I was so.burned.out. I would hear her cry and my skin would crawl, because I knew it was time to nurse. There were many days when I dreaded picking her up because it hurt to have her move and kick against my nipples. There were days when all I felt as I nursed was rage and horror. We could barely leave the house, because I could not NIP--I needed 80 billion pillows and the right chair and so on to get the angle even remotely right so that it would hurt a little less. I had pretty bad PPD, and I'm very sure that my breastfeeding issues had everything to do with it. Later, I felt so terribly ashamed of the bottles I used. I beat myself up over the bit of formula I had to supplement with. I cringed every time I had to talk about how my baby was fed.

After I weaned, all the skin peeled off my nipples. They are permanently scarred. I think I may have done nerve damage. It took several months post-wean before I was finally able, for the first time in 15 months, to sleep without a bra at night. (Anything rubbing against my nipples was torture).

An acquaintance of mine had a baby with palate problems a while ago; she had persistent nursing pain and issues. She'd heard about my struggles through the new-mom grapevine. She asked me for my advice. It cost and cost me, but I told her the truth: I'm not sure it was worth it. If I had it to do over again: no. I would not take it that far. I was wrecked by it, and I "missed" a lot of my baby's first year.

I'm as annoyed as anyone by moms who give up too easily or because they get bad support. It's much more common that situations like mine. But situations like mine DO exist. And I am here to say: martyring yourself into a pure ball of misery for the sake of 100% breastmilk? For months, for more than a year? I don't really think it was the right choice for me. I think it impeded bonding and drove a sharp, invisible, yet painful wedge between me and my DD. I wish I could remember her first 6 months without mostly just remembering that pain. I will never get that time back.

And now I'm crying just thinking about it. I hope my story reaches someone.
post #50 of 474
It is the epitome of arrogance for one to think they know better than another what they, themselves, should do in their own life.
post #51 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by spughy
And I think that is the key differentiator right there: a woman WILL give up on bf'ing if the pain and anguish she is experiencing are worse than how she will feel for the rest of her life if she uses formula. If she can't face herself after she feeds her baby formula (exclusively, I mean - any bm is better than none at all) then she will keep breastfeeding no matter what.
The phrase "unable to face herself" is sticking in my head. Please think about what that phrase really means - what the life and relationships of a person who was "unable to face herself" would really be like. Because I can't believe you actually think that anyone who can't hack the bleeding-nipples routine deserves to have a hardcore psychological breakdown. And how, exactly, would that be good for the woman's baby?

If I hadn't stuck with breastfeeding I would have felt quite guilty. But I wouldn't be unable to face myself. "Unable to face yourself" is for the Andrea Yates of this world, not the NYCVeg's.

Quote:
This is why I think society needs to demonize formula a LOT more and make using it a shameful thing. (Within reason - it has medical applications that should not be ignored. But it should be treated as a drug, not a food.)
Two observations:
unless you think the use of necessary drugs should be a shameful, demonized act, you are explicitly contradicting yourself, and

the way the standard "medical necessity" disclaimer was so easily appended to the stuff about how women who give up on BF should be "demonized" and "unable to face themselves" and be in "pain and anguish" for "the rest of her life" shows how little such disclaimers are really worth as they are thrown about in MDC BF discussions. Apparently, as long as you tack that on at the beginning or end of your post, you can attack other women without limit.
post #52 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by May May
It is the epitome of arrogance for one to think they know better than another what they, themselves, should do.
Yes.
I will say this:
I trust completely every mother here to know exactly what their limits are when it comes to breastfeeding.
post #53 of 474
I have to say that this post upset me quite a bit. There are people here saying "That's not the mentality here" and going on to put down ff moms in the same paragraph.

My DS gets about 1/3 of his nutrition from breastmilk. I did absolutely everything. He was a month early, had thrush for the first 2 months, couldn't latch, then used a nipple shield. I was on fenugreek, blessed thistle, drank mother's milk tea, used domperidone and I'm now on Reglan.

There were times when I hated my son. And if that would've continued, I would've stopped breastfeeding in an instant. There are much more important things than breastfeeding.

The biggest thing I learned through this is that being pro-breastfeeding is more important than being anti-formula. I was so overcome with guilt when we had to start giving him formula that I actually refused to give him more than 1 or 2 bottles a day. He stayed on my breasts almost 24 hours. And 2 or 3 weeks later when I took him to the pediatrician, he was malnurished and dehydrated.

Nobody should ever be made to feel guilty for having to use formula. Do I judge the mothers that ff from birth? Yeah. But to tell a woman that she didn't try hard enough, or that her reasons for stopping breastfeeding aren't justified is terrible.

I'd heard this "most of women who stop was because of misinformation" crap. And if that hadn't been so drilled into my head that it's possible for almost everyone, then maybe we wouldn't have gone through the terrible time we went through with my son already being early, low birth weight, and then malnutritioned because of my stupid pride.
post #54 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonprysm
Nobody should ever be made to feel guilty for having to use formula. Do I judge the mothers that ff from birth? Yeah. But to tell a woman that she didn't try hard enough, or that her reasons for stopping breastfeeding aren't justified is terrible.
This is so right. In fact, I think this is the heart of the problem with the lactivist movement.

Julia
post #55 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCVeg
I just wanted to say thank you for saying this. My dd is 2-months old and we have had a horrific nursing battle (cracked/bleeding nipples, several rounds of thrush...dd has a somewhat problematic palate and I have Raynaud's syndrome). We're still nursing exclusively, but it has been horrible. To make matters worse, I was (am?) suffering from some depression and the nursing pain was making things far worse. I was so emotionally destroyed from the way that nursing was going that it was really preventing me from bonding properly with my dd. I started seeing a therapist, and I *think* (hope) we'll make it through.

But, I felt too embarrassed to post some of this on MDC. I know there are so many mamas here who have worked through worse pain, and I felt like I wasn't as good a mother as they were, that I wasn't trying hard enough, that the failure was all my fault. I spent so much time crying, not only over the way nursing was going, but even more at the thought of giving my dd formula--and wondering if I could ever show my face in AP circles again. I felt that if I gave my dd even one bottle of formula to provide myself with some relief, I would have to spend the rest of my life wondering if every cold or illness she got was my fault. I can't tell you how hard this was--and it made the bonding issues with my dd even worse. As I said, things have seemed a bit better in the past week or so and I'm trying to be optimistic. But I do feel that mothers here are sometimes shamed for their choices and I think that seeing and fearing that shame actually made my post-partum/nursing issues worse.
I am, so sorry that you had to deal with feeling judged and shamed on top of everything else.

I truly love this site and the magazine but while the boards were down I realized that I needed to pull back from here and some other "AP" activities because the level of judgment and shaming that goes on at times is too much.

Shay
post #56 of 474
What concerns me about threads like these is I feel in a lot of ways we are once again giving moms who have not truely tried to BF an out--a free ticket to FF because we don't want to judge them and we really don't know what they have tried and we must respect what is best for them--BS!!!! Like I said before MOST women can BF!!!! There are very few medical reasons a woman can't BF if she truely tries. I'm not saying there aren't women out there who haven't had troubles in this area because as this thread points out there are a lot here who have had troubles I can't begin to imagine and have continued the BFing relationship even if they have had to supplement some with formula. Hats off to these women!! Again in answer to the question: I'm sorry but everything should be tried--even if it means some discomfort or emotional distress--you signed up for motherhood and sometimes that means we must sacrifice some of ourselves for our children's best interest.
post #57 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by treemom2
What concerns me about threads like these is I feel in a lot of ways we are once again giving moms who have not truely tried to BF an out--a free ticket to FF because we don't want to judge them and we really don't know what they have tried and we must respect what is best for them--BS!!!!
Okay, I'm going to say it. I don't CARE how anyone feeds their child. I. DON'T. CARE. I don't think it's my business. I don't think it's your business. I think it's the business of the parents and the child, given that the parents are meeting the basic needs of the child. And here, let me digress to say that formula qualifies as meeting those basic needs. It is "nutritionally adequate" (and no more) to quote a book that I just read.

It's not your job, or my job, or MDC's job to give or deny any mother any sort of ticket, free or otherwise.

I do think it's our job (and here I feel like I ought to be over on the Lactivism board) to do our best to remove roadblocks from women who WANT to breastfeed. To advocate for legal protection. To advocate for the cultural normalization of bf. To advocate against ignorance and sabotage by medical personnel. For that matter, to try to educate so that more women have the knowledege to want to bf.

But it is NOT our job to decide whether an individual mom's feeding choice was right or wrong.

Julia
post #58 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by treemom2
What concerns me about threads like these is I feel in a lot of ways we are once again giving moms who have not truely tried to BF an out--a free ticket to FF because we don't want to judge them and we really don't know what they have tried and we must respect what is best for them--BS!!!! Like I said before MOST women can BF!!!! There are very few medical reasons a woman can't BF if she truely tries. I'm not saying there aren't women out there who haven't had troubles in this area because as this thread points out there are a lot here who have had troubles I can't begin to imagine and have continued the BFing relationship even if they have had to supplement some with formula. Hats off to these women!! Again in answer to the question: I'm sorry but everything should be tried--even if it means some discomfort or emotional distress--you signed up for motherhood and sometimes that means we must sacrifice some of ourselves for our children's best interest.
Thank you!!
post #59 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by kalirush
It is "nutritionally adequate" (and no more) to quote a book that I just read.
It is nutritionally INFERIOR by Far!
FF by choice is wrong, no way around it.
post #60 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmzbm
It is nutritionally INFERIOR by Far!
FF by choice is wrong, no way around it.
It lets babies grow from infanthood to adulthood without starving to death. It is therefore nutritionally adequate, if no more than that.

And don't be silly. There is no way to absolutely say that choosing to FF is the wrong choice in every situation. Most situations? Maybe. But not every case. For example, you going to sit there and tell the 19 year old who just gave birth to a child whose father shot himself while the babe was in utero and doesn't even want to hold the child because the babe looks like the dad that she'd best whip out that boob? If she had, more power to her. But she didn't want to, and I'll stand by her that it was the right choice for her to make at the time.

I hate that I'm defending formula feeding in this thread. : I bf, my mom bf'd, and I've been advocating for bf since I was in my teens. But there needs to be respect for other mothers here.

Julia
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