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Hello - my 4-month-old DS is EBF. I have always intended that I would NOT use bottles and instead always use my breast since I'm now a SAHM and with DS all of the time anyway. I'm not a big fan of doing things differently with DS only in the name of convenience - that's why I've never considered pumping and using bottles. I guess I feel like I chose to have a baby and so I shouldn't be too busy to give him my breast (whether that's rational or not... I'm guessing it's probably not <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> ).<br><br>
Having said that, I was talking to a friend a few days ago who BFs and also pumps and does bottles here and there (breastmilk only). She kind of got me jazzed about introducing a bottle for those rare times when nursing is a real pain in the butt for whatever reason. Because I only BF DS, I can really never be out of sight from him for more than 2 hours or so. Sometimes, that leaves me feeling a little panicky - I have to race home from my dance classes and if I go to the grocery store alone, I am speeding through the aisles in case I should get "the call" from DH that DS is starving. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/yikes2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yikes">: Also, I am going to a wedding in a few months and DS has been having a bit of trouble nursing in public because he is so enthralled with looking at everything around him, except the breast. On top of that, if I try to cover him with a blanket to limit his view so he can eat, he gets super sweaty - not to mention the spraying milk since it's so darn hard to see under those things. So the situation becomes him being overheated and still hungry because he won't feed (therefore fussy) and us racing our buns out of wherever we are and getting home so he can eat. Needless to say, I don't want this to happen at the wedding. I want DH, DS and I to be able to enjoy ourselves and not have to scurry out of there for this reason (and hopefully for no other reason either). <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I am torn. I know it probably sounds crazy, but I have this knot in my stomach when I think about DS taking a bottle - like since it's not coming directly from me it's cheating him or something or I'm breaking our bond. And I also feel like the bottle companies have won since I have a milk delivery device (the breast), but would be choosing to purchase an artificial one for the sake of my conveinence, not because it's better for DS. I picture giving DS his first bottle and looking down at him and the expression on his face saying, "Did I do something wrong? Why can't I have the milky right now?" Does this affect babies psychologically at all? They have to at least know that it's not your breast, right? And my biggest fear of all is that he would prefer the bottle and refuse to BF again which would BREAK MY HEART. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/bawling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bawl"> What's funny is that when my friend told me that they use bottles, I didn't think twice about it really - it's working for them and that's great. So why is it that I would give myself a hard time if I were to give DS a bottle? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/confused.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Confused">:<br><br>
So, here are my questions...<br>
1.) What are the cons to giving DS a bottle of breastmilk?<br>
2.) What is the likelihood that DS would prefer the bottle and refuse to BF (he's 4 months old) OR be psychologically traumatized (I'm sure some of you bottle-feeding mamas are laughing your butts off right now!)?<br>
3.) Am I the only one that has this guilt complex about about giving my BF baby a bottle?<br>
4.) IYO, are there occasions in which doing the convenient thing is not selfish?<br>
5.) Any suggestions on bottle/nipple/pump types if I so choose to go this route?<br>
6.) <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/help.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="help">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>happy2bamama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7999690"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">So, here are my questions...<br>
1.) What are the cons to giving DS a bottle of breastmilk?<br>
2.) What is the likelihood that DS would prefer the bottle and refuse to BF (he's 4 months old)?<br>
3.) Am I the only one that has this guilt complex about about giving my BF baby a bottle?<br>
4.) IYO, are there occasions in which doing the convenient thing is not selfish?<br>
5.) Any suggestions on bottle/nipple/pump types if I so choose to go this route?<br>
6.) <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/help.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="help"></div>
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1. Possibility of nipple preference. AND remember you need to pump when you give the bottle. Being engorged and leaking is no fun at a wedding either.<br>
2. It's possible.<br>
3. I just never used a bottle.<br>
4. Depends. I think the convenient thing is to just nurse. No worries about bottles and warming them and pumps and pump parts and freezing milk and defrosting milk and washing bottles and and and.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
-Angela
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Angela: Thanks for your quick response! - do you think that giving DS a bottle as rare as once a month could give him nipple confusion and lead to him refusing to BF? Have you heard of instances in which this happened? Also, how did you deal with never using a bottle... did you ever feel anxious about not being able to be away from your DC for more than a couple of hours? I want to BF as long as DS wants to, but I also don't want to jeopardize our BF relationship because I am too fried by always waiting for "the call" when I'm on my own for a few minutes. But, I also know that being a mother is being on call 24-7. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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<b><br>
1.) What are the cons to giving DS a bottle of breastmilk?</b> A lot of breastfeeders might give you a bad time. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> But, seriously, a bottle less then once a week is not going to do one single thing to you baby or your breastfeeding relationship. More often, particularly daily, and you might affect your breastfeeding. Your supply might diminish.<br><br><b>2.) What is the likelihood that DS would prefer the bottle and refuse to BF (he's 4 months old) OR be psychologically traumatized (I'm sure some of you bottle-feeding mamas are laughing your butts off right now!)?</b> Next to no risk if you are only doing this rarely. I think the risk is greater that your baby will just flat out refuse a bottle. That was my problem. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br><b>3.) Am I the only one that has this guilt complex about about giving my BF baby a bottle?</b> I felt bad but it also felt great to get my back pain worked on at physical therapy or go out once a month with my friends. Mama's have needs too and those needs do not have to be buried completely just because you have kids. You can be a selfless, loving mom and leave your baby with your dh or a babysitter on occasions.<br><br><b>4.) IYO, are there occasions in which doing the convenient thing is not selfish?</b> It is not selfish to want a bit of time to do your thing. Mamas have needs and as long as you are taking care of your baby you are not being selfish. It is very wrong and very mean, imo, to make a mama think she has to be nursing 100%. How many mamas stop nursing because of attitudes like this? Mamas have a right to an occasional break so long as they leave the baby in the care of a loving and nurturing guardian. Do not let anyone make you feel bad for wanting this. That is just plain wrong of them to inflict guilt on you. One of the major precepts of managing and preventing post partum depression is to take care of mama and make sure mama's needs are met. PPD can happen after 4 mos, especially to those mamas who are still not getting enough sleep and still not letting their needs be met. It is great that some mamas want to and can nurse exclusively. But it is wrong to imply that wanting a bit of time to yourself is not ok. It is fine. I mean, geez, you are talking about giving your baby a bottle of breastmilk on special occasions. That is fine!<br><br><br><b>5.) Any suggestions on bottle/nipple/pump types if I so choose to go this route?</b> Medela makes good products.<br><br>
Take care of yourself and your baby. You are a good mama!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>happy2bamama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7999793"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Angela: Thanks for your quick response! - do you think that giving DS a bottle as rare as once a month could give him nipple confusion and lead to him refusing to BF? Have you heard of instances in which this happened? Also, how did you deal with never using a bottle... did you ever feel anxious about not being able to be away from your DC for more than a couple of hours? I want to BF as long as DS wants to, but I also don't want to jeopardize our BF relationship because I am too fried by always waiting for "the call" when I'm on my own for a few minutes. But, I also know that being a mother is being on call 24-7. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"></div>
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Nipple confusion is a fickle fickle thing. Some babies really do go back and forth without a problem. Some won't take bottles at all. Some only want bottles after one try. It's really hard to say. So very individual.<br><br>
Honestly, I didn't leave dd until she was 18 months. I mean a walk down the block, yeah, but I didn't run errands without her or anything. So no, it never stressed me out <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> That was our choice. It worked fine for us. I understand that it won't work for everyone. She would have been fine being left for a couple of hours with daddy by a year or so, we just didn't have the need.<br><br>
-Angela
 

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Okay so you kinda sound like me. I DIDNT want dd to have a bottle I wanted to give her myself. I didn't want that to jepordize anything. I did ONE time have a class about a week and half after she was born and she was syringe fed. That was the BEST Thing for us. She never took a bottle, I'm a SAHM and I didn't want her to. I Have NEVER had a problem being with her at all times. I just plan things around her. It does get easier as they get older, KWIM? They slow down on the nursing every 2 hours, well mine did anyway. I personally HATE pumping, I'm NO good at it.<br><br>
Another reason I didn't want to do a bottle (probably the biggest reason of all) My dh's family was all bottle fed, ff, and they had all tried to talk me out of bfing. I was scared that if I taught dd to take a bottle then I would get the "I" can give a bottle so you guys can go out, or I will give a bottle so you don't have to feed her from EVERYONE including dh. I didn't want them to take my special time away or to cause problems between my bfing relationship. My dh is NOT very supportive and I knew if a bottle could be given he would want me to give a bottle ALL the time espeically in public and I was not falling for that.<br><br>
As for getting out: Sure there are times that I would LOVE to go off and leave her. However I COULD do that but I don't really really want to go for that long, KWIM? Even at 20 months I just don't want anything to come b/t our time. I don't stay gone for too long. Now we have gone ALL day without nursing (she doesn't nurse in public either) just morning and night but that's it. It is much easier when theyre older.<br>
I hope this makes sinces it's 1:08am here so I'm not sure it does. I'll ck again in the morning and make corrections. HTH you out a little.!
 

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Well, remember that in a few months he'll probably be able to have solids and small amounts of water, so even if you never introduce a bottle, you're not going to be "tied" to him forever.<br><br>
At the wedding, the simplest thing would probably be to find a quiet, private place to nurse. Or just hang out in the "lounge" part of the fancy ladies' room and "let it all hang out" while chatting with the women who are fixing their lipstick.<br><br>
Yes, there's a risk of him not nursing well after trying a bottle, but that's pretty easy to fix if it happens- ditch the bottles and have a nurse-a-thon at home for a few days. There's actually a better chance of him NOT taking the bottle at all at this point, or refusing a bottle after previously taking one if he's only getting them once a month.<br><br>
There are a ton of different bottles and artificial nipples to choose from, but IMO I don't think it makes too much difference which one you choose. Breastfeeding is already very well established and it's unlikely that he'll try to nurse from you the way he nurses on a bottle. He'll know the difference. You also don't need to worry about selecting the ideal bottle for his jaw/mouth development since he won't be getting very many of them. Or you could skip the bottle and try a sippy cup.<br><br>
If you really feel weird/uncomfortable/whatever introducing a bottle, then don't do it. You know yourself better than anybody else does. It's OK to get a break for yourself if you truly feel that you need it, and there's no reason to feel guilty about wanting your baby to take the occasional bottle. OTOH, if you feel really sick at the thought of the baby using a bottle, you're not being "neurotic" or "overprotective". You're not going to hurt the baby in any way by not offering the occasional bottle of ebm!<br><br>
Try having somebody other than you offer the bottle- most babies won't take a bottle if the boob is handy.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yellowpansy - thanks so much for your thoughtful post. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> I can imagine that it felt great to be able to go to PT and (gasp) out with friends! I currently am getting PT for a mild uterine prolapse and it is a bit of a stress because DS is with me when I go and it's about 45 minutes away and once I'm there I have to entertain DS when he needs and also try to focus on exercises and what my trainer is teaching me. I can't leave DS at home because with driving there and back and with the session time, I would for sure be pushing DS to his limit - at least sometimes. If it were somewhere closer it would be fine because I could be home lickity split, but I'd hate to get a call from DH with DS crying in the background and have to say, "I'll be home in 45 minutes!" I also agree with what you are saying about having mama time. In 6 months, I don't want to be fried and look back and say, "Why didn't I make it easier on myself when I could've?" I definitely think that I need to be happy in order to be the best mama I can. I'm just having a bit of a tough time figuring out what I feel are acceptable "conveniences" and what are not. It's always helpful to get feedback from friends and MDC, so thanks for your input. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"><br><br>
BTW, did your DC ever take a bottle or did you just drop the issue when DC wouldn't take it?
 

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Without a reason to give a bottle, I just don't see a need for it. I tried with all three of my children--the first so if I needed to I could, the second & third so I could get through grocery shopping without them flipping out and screaming (I can't nurse in a sling, boobs are too big).<br><br>
Did you know that there's a baby equivalent to flipping someone off? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I should have learned after the first one, but I didn't. I got through nearly five years without ever having to give a baby a bottle of anything (I went to work shortly before DD#3 turned one, and she took a bottle for a while before deciding she'd rather just wait for me to get home).<br><br>
Honestly, after the first couple of months, which in this household was "latched on around the clock" time, I could get away for a short time if I really needed to--which I didn't. I didn't <i>want</i> to be separated from my babies for any length of time, and their refusal to take a bottle was a GREAT excuse to get out of stuff that would have annoyed the crap out of me (Does going out on a river boat, getting drunk, and making a giant lei out of trashbags sound like a fun evening to <i>you</i>?).
 

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Mommy21princess - I know what you mean about your FF, bottle-fed family! It hadn't dawned on me until you said it, but one of the reasons I don't even want to even introduce one itsy bitsy teeny weeny bottle is because I know my mom (who did NOT BF me) will do an "I told you so" about bottle-feeding and won't shut about about what a "wonderful bonding experience it is for dad and baby." I don't disagree about the bonding, but that is her justification for not BF me, so she will feel vindicated for her decision even though it was formula and mine would be breastmilk!! We are co-sleepers, but we have a crib for the rare nap or whatever (basically a gift from my mom - she just couldn't understand how we could not have a crib) and my mom always asks, "So, has he slept in the crib lately?" and so I know she'd start in with, "So, have you given him a bottle lately?" too. Issues like this with my mom are so tough because I don't want to just rebel and do the opposite of what she did because she did get it right here and there, but I also know that anything I do that is similar to what she did as a parent makes her all of a sudden feel like EVERYTHING she did was right (like feeding me bottles of rice cereal at 3 weeks old so I would sleep through the night)!! I digress.. anyway, thanks for the post! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Ruthla - thanks for reminding me that it gets better as they get older. I sometimes forget that the stage we're in right at this very moment will not last forever!<br><br>
Sagesgirl - I know what you mean about not wanting to be separated from DS - I'm not looking to get away from my DS at all - I love having a buddy with me and of course, love him to pieces, but I just don't want to feel like I'm on Supermarket Sweep on those occasions I go to the grocery store alone!
 

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Off topic for one quick second -<br><br>
Sagesgirl - I forgot to mention... you had me at river boat. That alone does not sound fun much less making leis out of garbage bags. I think I would actully enjoy the drunk part as to make me hopefully forget where I was and what I was doing. I have to agree about the beauty of having an excuse to get out of ridiculous things, especially if you have a ridiculous famiy. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
Okay, back to bottles... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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We tried to introduce a bottle a few times at first. I had briefly entertained the idea of going back to work, and so it would have been helpful for my son to take a bottle when I worked.<br><br>
He wouldn't take it, though. I think one time, dh managed to get an ounce into him. That's it.<br><br>
So, even if you do introduce a bottle, be prepared for him to flip you off, as a PP said (i love that thought, btw, cause that's exactly what ds did <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> )
 

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I'm having the same sort of thoughts. I pumped and got one little 4 oz bottle for on tuesday/thursday nights so I can take my old TKD class and not worry so much. That said, if he doesn't like it/take it, I'm not worried - its just 2.5-3 hours tops, so he'll survive either way<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I agree with a PP who said if there isn't a need, why introduce a bottle? I've had 3 babies, about to have #4, and have yet to use a single bottle. I was in school full-time with my first, and would have used a bottle, but he absolutely refused. He would very rarely drink and oz. or two from a cup if he was starving, but usually preferred to wait for me.<br><br>
Using the very occasional bottle at this point will probably not negatively affect your breastfeeding relationship, but if it isn't necessary, why start? As Ruthla said, in just a few months, you'll be starting solids, and will likely not need to nurse as frequently.<br><br>
As for the wedding, by the time my first was a year old, he'd been to 6 weddings (he went to his first at 6 weeks!). We nursed through all of them. When he went through the wiggly, unfocused stage around the same age as your baby, we just found a quiet room to nurse in. It's really not all that difficult, it just takes a little bit of thought and determination. You can do it!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>happy2bamama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7999886"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Yellowpansy - thanks so much for your thoughtful post.<br><br>
I'm just having a bit of a tough time figuring out what I feel are acceptable "conveniences" and what are not. It's always helpful to get feedback from friends and MDC, so thanks for your input. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"><br><br>
BTW, did your DC ever take a bottle or did you just drop the issue when DC wouldn't take it?</div>
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It is hard to figure out where you needs fit into it all. PT for a medical problem is arguably a definite necessity. I also think an occasional time period away by oneself or with just friends is a need. I have a hard time understanding why anyone would disagree that mama's have needs. I mean, I think we would all agree that a whole day at the spa is too much time away and not a "need" but that does not mean mama has to stay with baby 24-7 for the first few years. It is good for babies to spend time with daddies, actually, as it helps them develop their own relationship and bond.<br><br>
I used to take my dd to PT sometimes, too, but it was hard to focus. So, I started leaving her with dh more and more. It was about 2 hours in all. A rare night out with friends was about 3 hours. I would nurse before I left. Dd took a bit of a bottle now and then at first, never enough for a whole meal. It was always such a waste of a bottle of breastmilk! The whole thing would have to then be tossed as it was used. As she got into solids, that became a choice and as she got closer to one year, she switched to a sippy cup of either water or whole milk. She loved a sippy!<br><br>
But, I do know another friend who also, like me, nursed her child into preschool age and she also did PT for birth injuries starting when her son was about 4 mos. Her dh gave their son a bottle of either bmilk or formula once or twice a week, at most, and he did fine. He nursed until he was almost 3. He also took a pacifier and none of it affected his relationship with his mom.
 

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My dd gets a expressed breast milk about twice a month from my dh. We have only left her once with my mom (to go to dinner and a movie) and she did well with a bottle. For the last couple of "daddy-milk" feedings, she has been using a cup instead of the bottle. She doesn't get any more bottles and she is learning a new skill. Like a pp said, if she doesn't take the expressed milk well, she will be nursing again soon enough!<br><br>
a little off topic, but... Has anyone really ever had a 4 month old exclusively breastfed baby take a bottle for the first time and then refuse the breast? I guess anything is possible, but I can't even imagine that! My dd would rather have a boob than anything else in life. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> It's not about hunger/food for her.
 

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My son gets the occasional bottle of ebm. We introduced the bottle at about 4 weeks. He has no trouble going back and forth. I would say he has more trouble with the bottle than the breast because he wants to latch on to the bottle like it is a breast and winds up pushing the nipple out of his mouth. Same problem with pacifiers.<br><br>
I felt REALLY guilty the first time he had a bottle, but I was severely sleep-deprived. It made me a better mama to have my BF do a handful of night feedings so I could get my sanity back (It took me a while to master the BFing in the dark while lying down thing). I got over the guilt, because he is bf'ed the vast majority of the time.<br><br>
As far as the wedding goes, I'd just whip it out and nurse wherever. But this is coming from a gal who shoved a boob in her son's mouth to keep him quiet during a funeral service a couple of weeks ago. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I have no modesty left.
 

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I have no problem at all using bottles ESPECIALLY if it makes BFing more do-able or appealling for you in the long term.<br><br>
I WOH, so I use bottles.<br><br>
I don't see a big risk of him preferring the bottle as long as you, personally, don't give bottles but only nurse him when you are around. I agree that the bigger risk is that he won't take a bottle @ all, in which case, things are no different than they are currently.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>JaneyHD</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8004805"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I have no problem at all using bottles ESPECIALLY if it makes BFing more do-able or appealling for you in the long term.</div>
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I totally agree. With my last baby (#3) I was really needing some "me time" so I signed up for an exercise class a few evenings a week and my dh fed ds a bottle while I was gone. Sometimes it worked out that ds didn't need to eat while I was gone and I would just bf when I got home. I usually pumped in the morning when I was the fullest and I used a Medela pump.
 
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