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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
DS is 6 weeks old today. I have been told (by my doctor, no less) that 6-8 weeks is the ideal time to introduce a bottle--before that, you risk nipple confusion and after that, they may not take it at all (which is what happened with my doctor's daughter, apparently). DH has been saying that he would like me to start pumping so that he will have something to give the baby to eat if I'm not around (so far, of course, I have not left my baby, but this would give me the ability to do so or maybe to sleep for more than 2 hours at a time). I know that I will eventually have to pump when I go back to work, but he will be a year old by then. So is it important to introduce a bottle now so he will take it later?

I talked to the public health nurse about pumping, which she told me not to do before 6 weeks, and then she said that hand expressed milk is more similar to what the baby extracts from the breast than pumped milk. Yesterday I hand-expressed 1 oz. I figured that if I keep doing that for the rest of the week, there will be enough for his father to give him a bottle next weekend. But now I am having second thoughts. Is this going to compromise our BF relationship? We have had no problems at all with breastfeeding to this point, so I can't imagine 1 bottle making a difference, but I am scared.

And if the idea is to make sure he will take it later, do we have to give him a bottle regularly after that point to make sure he remains used to it?
 

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ime, if i didn't pump regularly, by about 6 months or so pumping was a futile experience. also, my dd3 would NEVER take a plasic nipple of any sort. not at 1 wk, 6 wks, 4 mos, ever. she was cup fed when i couldn't be with her. at first from an open cup and then from a sippy (at 4 mos +).

they might have suggested hand expressing because some women don't respond to the pump as well as skin-to-skin? i could never hand express, so i'm a bit clueless there.

i know you are probably exhausted, but trust me, the temptation to give a bottle and sleep a bit CAN be detremental to the bf relationship. i had over supply early on this time, had a tubal at week 9 and let dh feed her bottles so i could rest and recover, and WHAM my supply tanked. now, here we are 12 weeks after the tubal and i'm still struggling to get my supply back up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
So... you are recommending that I start pumping regularly by 6 months?

The hand expression is supposed to extract milk more similarly to the way the baby does, resulting in a more similar make-up of hindmilk/foremilk balance or something like that. Obviously, it doesn't work for large quantities, and I will have to pump eventually.

It wouldn't be too bad if he never took a nipple, as long as there were other ways to feed him (i.e., cup or sippy cup) if I was not around.

I suspected that replacing night-time feedings with bottles would be the most detrimental to the bf relationship, but I was hoping that 1 bottle one time only wouldn't be that bad--preferably in the morning so that I could sleep in.
 

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I am not at all an expert pumper, but with my ds2 I had a little I had put in the freezer that I had pumped when I was engorged. When he was 8 months, I got a stomach virus and was dehydrated, lost my supply. He was hungry, NEVER had a bottle before, dh thawed out the milk and he took it right down. He was a very high needs/fussy baby and he had no problem. So don't think you have to intro a bottle now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for sharing that, Lineymom. Did your supply come back after your virus passed?

I think we have decided not to introduce a bottle for now, but I will work on building up a freezer supply for "just in case."
 

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We introduced an open cup instead. I felt much more comfortable using a cup vs. a bottle & still had the security of knowing he could get his milk in an emergency. Plus drinking from a cup is a necessary skill later on anyway. I also froze a bunch of milk around the same time but we've never had to use it... I used the manual pump the hospital gave me & expressed just a couple ounces every few days.
 

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If it's not a regular thing I dont see a problem with your DH giving your babe a bottle every now and then. It is mighty nice to be able to swim laps at the gym or get your hair cut/pedicure, aka "me time" occassionally. We introduced the bottle to DD at 3 wks and she took it easily, no issues with BM supply. DS has had a few bottles so far and he doesn't particularly like them but he'll drink an ounce or so from one. I try to make sure he has one about every few weeks so that he remembers daddy's feeding method.

In one way I feel it's good to have them accustomed to a different feeding method that way it's not a huge shocker if they suddenly *have* to one day- like if mom has to go on prohibited medication, go back to work unexpectedly, etc, but that's just me.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by NSmomtobe View Post
Thanks for sharing that, Lineymom. Did your supply come back after your virus passed?

I think we have decided not to introduce a bottle for now, but I will work on building up a freezer supply for "just in case."
Yes, he only needed the one 5-7oz bottle and it came right back.
 
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