Apprehensive about Breastfeeding.

  •      Hi! So my first little guy is arriving soon (May 11th), and my family has supported me thus far. But when it comes to the matter of Breastfeeding, I'm really uncomfortable with the idea. What creeps me out about it is taking the concept of the breast, which was a point of pleasure before between man and woman(or whatever), and having that area which was a pleasure zone become a feeding zone... I know I hear continuously how breastfeeding is a much healthier way to go if you can do it. But it still gives me that wierd chalkboard feeling switching what that area means. And how do you switch that thought process? Is it truly a different experience? Or am I getting this erked feeling for the right reasons, and the feeling isn't different. I am a new mom, so everything including this subject is new to me.

    Please let me know how you felt about this at my stage in the game(before babies arrival), and how you feel about it now.

    Also, what other solutions are there to make it seem less >wrong?<

    Don't get me wrong I understand logically-wise that it's a natural thing... I don't Know, please give me any input you have on this matter.

    Thanks

  • I have a 6 week old little girl that I am both breast and formula feeding.  When I was pregnant, I didn't really have much interest in breastfeeding and was pretty sure that I wouldn't like it.  However, I felt that I shouldn't make that judgement until I at least tried it.  So I did, and the first few weeks are HARD.  If you are not really interested in breastfeeding it is so hard to stick with it.  Although the pain got better, I still hated it so much I felt like it was interfering with our bonding.  When I started to introduce formula a few weeks ago I began to feel like such a better mother--I wasn't dreading feeding time (which is ALL the time!) anymore and I wanted to hold her and interact with her so much more.  When I was breastfeeding I would watch the clock waiting for it to be over.  I still pump a few times a day so she gets a few breast bottles, but will probably be stopping that as well over the next few weeks.  I admit it is really odd the first few times to see milk be pumped out of your breasts.  Bottom line is, give it a try if you feel its the right choice for you, and then reevaluate after the first few weeks if you need to.  Some women really end up loving breastfeeding when they never thought it was right for them.  I was not one of them.  It is a natural thing, but it doesn't come natural to all women and I have watched our little one thrive on formula.  Don't feel guilty if it isn't the right choice for you.  After watching me struggle, my mom finally told me that a happy mom makes for a happy baby, and it is so true.

  • you are not alone here, me too!  due in 2 weeks!

  • Hi!  I'm a Mom with an 8 week old lil boy.  When I was pg I was bound and determine to breast feed, if it worked out.  Baby was delivered 3 weeks early as a matter of safety and ended up in a special care nursery.  His sucking reflex was not developed and ended up on an IV.  When I introduced the breast, he was not into it.  It took some getting used to a bottle for him, but finally we got him taking formula from a bottle.  Then the gas started- 3 weeks after he was born when I thought we were smooth sailing.  I am now in the process of trying the third formula that he may digest w/o pain or some other dissatisfaction.  Three weeks into it and I was really second guessing the fact that I did not persist harder on breast feeding him.  I will tell you, I agree, it sounds weird, breastfeeding.  But, as an ambivalent person to the concept, I can appreciate the value.   Once your baby comes, I don't really think you will think about the breast as a former pleasure zone and now feeding zone.  If you are still unsure about it after he is born, one thing you might want to think about is pumping in the hospital anyways.  I know that sounds crazy, but you will want to stimulate the milk production, so you have the choice.  I didn't and by the time I came around to want to "try it", it was much too late.  I also am a new mom, at 40, I can relate to your predicament.

  • Hi!

     

    Breastfeeding is definitely a personal choice to make and you should not kick yourself either way if you choose not to do it. I am currently 15 weeks pregnant with my third child and have breastfed both and plan to breastfeed this one as well. I think the biggest issue with breastfeeding is that most women latch the baby to the breast incorrectly causing pain. Many women think that the baby should latch only to the nipple which is incorrect. I learned this the hard and painful way on baby #1. If you plan to breastfeed, I say start by readying your nipples now. While in the shower, apply a bit of pressure to them daily so they are not as sensitive. When breastfeeding, make sure the baby does not latch on to the nipple only but to the entire areola. This is the pink/brown portion around the nipple. Make sure that the baby's mouth is also wide open when nursing as well. This also helps. If your nipples tend to dry out or crack, squeeze your breast and then apply some of your breast milk to the nipple. There are creams out there for this but breast milk is natural and always on hand. If the baby doesn't latch properly the first time, release the seal by placing your finger at the corner of the baby's mouth.

     

    I hope some of these tips will help. As for the way you "see" breastfeeding, this may change after you give birth. You will find that breastfeeding is a great way to bond with your baby and spend quality time. As I said earlier, if you choose not to breastfeed, do not beat yourself up over it. It does take some time and practice.

     

    Good luck to you!

  • I was also wierded out by the idea when I was pregnant with my first.  Something about having a baby hanging off that part of me!  But after hearing all the facts on how breastmilk is the best food, hands down, I decided that I would at least pump milk to give to the baby in bottles.  When #1 arrived 8 weeks early, I pumped like crazy and supplied the NICU with my milk to give him.  He came home after 3 weeks and I continued pumping pretty much every 3-4 hours around the clock for the next 6 months.  Having a fridge and freezer full of milk is a very satisfying feeling!

    When #2 arrived just 3 weeks ago, I decided to give natural BF-ing another chance, the first two weeks were painful, like everyone says, but we are in a groove now and I love it. 

    My advice is to just try it out and see how you feel about it after the baby arrives.  You'll have hormones that will help you feel that "motherly"' connection to your baby and it may feel more natural than you think now.  Once you see that little face everything changes!

  • Hi, your feelings may change, you'll be surprised. Funny, that's my child's birthday. Anyway my cousin had babies before I did and she nursed and I was weirded out, ugh, I'll never do that. Well when I became pregnant with my daughter I also had no intentions of breastfeeding but as soon as she was born that was all I wanted to do. I'll never forget the day I walked into the nursery to feed her and there she was with the nurse getting a bottle of formula. I walked right by her, didn't even know it was her. They we're so sorry and offered to take it away from her immediately, of course what kind of mom would I be. I let her finish the formula and they vowed not to give it to her again. Well I went from having no intentions to nursing to not stopping until she was 13 months old. This is when she first learned to walk and got her 1st tooth. I tried wiening her at 10 months so  I could start getting prepared to take her to a sitter and myself back to work but she would take nothing at all. Other moms recommended I just give her regular milk...not recommended by her pediatrician, so on the breast she stayed for 3 more months and then straight to Silk Soy Milk. It was a great experience but this time around I will plan to wien earlier, maybe nurse for 6 mos, if all goes well. Whatever you decide it's your choice, good luck.

  • When I was pregnant with my little boy, I was so determined to breastfeed. My little guy came about 4 weeks early and the first few days at the hospital was an eye-opening experience. Since my guy was still in the NICU, the nurses asked me to start pumping immediately after giving birth. I thought they were crazy but I gave it a try. To be honest, it was painful and weird the first few times but it was fine after that. I continued pumping until he's ready to drink from my breast. Compared to pumping, I would prefer feeding the baby from my breast. There's a sense of closeness and his suckling was definitely less painful than pumping. At about the 6th week I suffered from baby blues/depression that caused me to cry whenever I breastfeed and I lost the feeling of love for my baby. Feeding became a chore for me. After 2 more weeks (at 2 months), I decided to stop bfing completely and continue formula feeding exclusively. My depression went away almost immediately and I felt a lot happier. My love for my baby has never been stronger and I'm happy I made the decision to stop bf at that time that I did.

    When I was bfing, yes, I did have cracked nipples and my breasts were engorged so many times. It's painful, it's a lot of work, it's weird at first, but if you are able and determined it is the best feeling in the world to provide nutrition that only you can give to your baby. However, If you decide to formula-feed for any reason, don't blame yourself. Even moms with the best of intentions to breastfeed sometimes are not lucky enough to do that and have to formula-feed. Your baby will not be happy if you are not happy, so make a decision that will make you happy regardless of what other people say. It's YOUR baby after all.

    Best of luck to you!

  • OMG!!!! I am going through the same thing. I am due May 30, but my dr told me I may be 2 weeks early. I have been tearing myself up with the choice of breastfeeding. I feel the same way as you do. I feel that the breast is a pleasure point for me and I get disgusted thinking about it being a feeding point for the baby. I have talked to several obgyn's about the option of just pumping the milk and feeding it threw a bottle. Some say that is ok because now a days, us working moms have no other choice. The electric breast pumps can stimulate the breast just like a baby can. But others say that even though the baby will still get your milk if you pump, it won't be a good supply of milk. I say, everyone's body is different and I decided to pump exclusively and what I may lack in supply, I will substitute with formula. That way, I am comfortable with the feeding process and my baby is getting what she needs from my breastmilk.

    I hope this helps.

  • Yeah.  Breasts are highly sexualized in this country.  We use them to sell everything from hamburgers to cars.  It's very rare to see breasts used for nature's primary purpose.

    Spending more time around other nursing mothers definitely helped normalize breastfeeding for me.  I'm so thankful for La Leche League and for other parenting groups.  It's completely normal for me to go out with a group of friends and there are a few of us nursing...children as young as a couple months and as old as a couple years.

    I wish I'd been  exposed to nursing mothers much earlier.

  • I am now on my fourth child and have always adhered to the mantra - to be a good mom, you have to be a happy mom.   If breastfeeding feels totally uncomfortable to you, you won't be happy doing it.   No doubt, breastmilk is best.  However, it's not like you have to choose between breastmilk and kool-aid.   Plenty of children are formula fed and grow perfectly!   I agree with another poster that you should consider giving it a try before making a final decision.   But if you are really that uncomfortable with the idea, save yourself the stress and do what will make you happy.   Having a newborn is stressful...  no need to add to that stress unnecessarily!

    Congratulations and good luck!

     

  • Practice makes perfect!

     

    We're often uncomfortable with new things.  Then we get into the swing of it and it feels like we've been doing it forever.

    I know a mom who used to feel the way that you do. Now she's breastfeeding her 20-month old whenever and wherever her toddler needs.

     

  • Its a different mindset. I have a 2-month-old and I breastfeed. You dont even think about it being "your boob" you are so concerned about the baby  latching on correctly and getting the baby fed that thoughts of " this is weird" and "i used to like this with my partner" dont even surface. But, if you plan to breastfeed stick with it, its hard but worth the effort. Also, pumping is great also but formula works just fine. Just do what is best for you and your baby! In the end, if its still hard for you to think about breastfeeding then do what works best for you.

  • I had the same apprehensions.  I really wanted to breastfeed, but it's just a strange concept.  What I would recommend is getting a nipple shield.  I had to get one because my daughter wouldn't latch on, but it might eliminate the weirdness of having your baby breastfeed because it won't actually be sucking on your nipple.  You still feel the pulling, but it might make you more comfortable.  It also kept me from having to deal with the cracked nipples (not the soreness, unfortunately, but that doesn't last for too long).  But like everyone else has said you don't really think of breastfeeding and sex together, and if it doesn't work for you it doesn't make you any worse of a mom.  :)  Good luck!

  • I soooo agree!! I want my baby to have breast milk because of health and to build a strong immune system. However, I am not comfortable with the actual act of breast feeding. Not to mention I can only be home with the baby for 6 weeks before I have to go back to work. I have decided (against my moms opinion) to pump and bottle feed for the 1st 4-5 weeks and then slowly introduce formula and gradually ween off the breast milk to make sure there are no issues with him taking formula. I feel that pumping at work will be awkward and difficult. The dicisson is yours, do NOT feel "un-motherly" or "un-nurturing" for breast feeding "ikking you out"! You are not alone in your boat!! Smile Not to mention feeding breast milk from a bottle allows dad to feed and bond with the baby too!!!