thread: Not enjoying breast feeding...

  1. #1
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Not enjoying breast feeding...

    ATM I am finding it less than enjoyable to breast feed. I don't have sore nipples or anything (and I have been lucky in that respect) but I just don't feel as great about it as many women seem to do.
    I find that it creates self-doubt. Is she getting enough? Am I producing enough? How long to I leave her on for? I hate maternity bras. They are so uncomfortable and do nothing for my breast shape. I can't wear a bra to bed so I end up waking up wet every night - even if I put a towel in place.

    Do you think it's because it's still very eary days for me? Did anyone else feel this way about BFing in the beginning then grow to like it more?

    I don't want to give up (especially for such selfish reasons) and I intend to keep going for as long as I can. I just wish it was a more enjoyable experience.

  2. #2

    Hiya Debbie

    I would be the first one to admit I hated it !! I persisted till Kameron was 4mths old and he was always so skinny, at 4mths I started on solids and breast milk till 6mths then we switched to formula where he just stacked on the weight.

    I fed Lachlan for 3 wks, cause of the whole breast is best thing but he was feeding every 2 hours and with looking after a toddler as well it was doing my head in. Even my GP said if I didn't stop something was going to give as I wasn't getting sleep cause Kam would be awake all day. So at 4wks old Lachlan went onto formula and I didn't regret it for a minute.


  3. #3
    Registered User

    Feb 2004

    Awww Deb, you poor thing I can't comment really cos Zander has been bottle fed since day 4 cos my milk never came in. Just wanted to say that you need to do what is best for BOTH of you.

  4. #4
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Kathryn - I can imagine with a toddler AND a newborn it would be hell to have to feed every 2 hours.
    That's why I have a new respect for the decision my step sister made when she chose to bottle feed her 2nd from the beginning. If she so much as turns her back, her eldest gets into something so she just couldn't sit for ages and BF.

    Another reason why I am not really enjoying it is because my huge F cups boobs are from from discreet. My areola is really big and dark too so I get people commenting on it all the time. Again, a selfish and silly reason but it's embarrassing. I am hoping I get over it soon!

  5. #5
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Thanks Sarah.
    I think I am going to try and aim for at least 4 months then re-evaluate the situation. I think if I give myself a smaller goal, it may make it easier to deal with. Uno... kind of like losing weight. If you focus on losing 20 kilos it will seem to take forever. But, if you make smaller 5kg goals, it doesn't seem so hard. Kind of trick my brain iykwim?

    As it is, my Mum is very unimpressed that I am giving her a comp feed. Maybe I should try and sell it do her. If I bottle feed later, she will be able to baby sit sooner for longer!

  6. #6
    Registered User

    Feb 2004

    I must admit that I really didn't like breastfeeding in the beginning, it hurt, had cracked nipples, hated waking up wet, had mastitis. But I presisted as bf for me I am determined to do right as there is a greater chance of Matthew not having coeliac disease when he is older if I bf him for at least 6 months.

    Now, I love it. I love looking down at him while he is feeding, he is so peaceful sucking away. I am constantly amazed that I am able to do this for my son. I also now have the confidence of whipping them out anywhere to feed lol! Some of the looks I have gotten, usually from older grandma types, looks of disgust! But I don't care.

    I understand that you feel uncomfortable about doing in front of people, especially since they are commenting on you (and how rude I must say!). Have you thought of hetting one of those privacy blankets things or using a bunny rug? I see women use them all the time, just tell them that Gabby gets too distracted if people are watching her feed.

    I'd say hang in for a bit longer if you can, good luck!

  7. #7
    Registered User

    Sep 2004
    Melbourne, Australia

    Hi Debbie,

    I hope that breastfeeding can become more comfortable for you.
    Do you have a good Maternal/Child Health Nurse? (I found mine bent over backwards to help make breastfeeding more convenient) Or could you link with a lactation consultant? It can make it feel easier with someone supporting you.

    Remember that breastfeeding goes through different phases as the baby gets older, so it may not feel as demanding as time goes on.

    For my premmie breastmilk is such a precious source of goodness, and I'm sure breast-feeding contributed to my first baby being so healthy too.

    Good luck with whatever you decide

  8. #8
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Thanks Nellbe. I am going to persist. Considering I haven't had all the problems that you had (not even a cracked nipple), I feel pretty selfish.
    I guess once Gabby gets bigger and can smile up at me it will help.
    I do use bunny rugs but getting attached whilst covering her is difficult so there is still some initial exposure. Ah well, people will have to just get over it, hey?
    Thanks for your reply. It's good to know it gets better as you get the hang of things.

  9. #9
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Thanks Berry.
    I did see a lactation consultant at the Day Stay program here in Geelong but she just managed to confuse me. She was telling me that Gabby was draining my boobs within a few minutes. She also changed the way I had been holding her. So for a couple of days there, Gabby was really unsettled because I was taking her off way before she was finished and I was so uncomfortable holding her the "proper way".
    My Mum told me to just go back to what I was doing before. She has been putting on weight so obviously what I was doing wasn't so bad.
    We are back to feeds taking at least 30 minutes but I don't mind because at least I know she is getting enough.
    I have had a temp. MCHN because the one I am meant to have has been on holidays. I have been told she is good. I will meet her next Thursday at Gabby's next weigh-in so hopefully we will get along ok.
    Thanks for your feedback

  10. #10
    Senior Moderator

    Nov 2004

    I hated breastfeeding. I had E cup boobs before I bf, they then went to GG and I felt like a cow. And I didn't have a particularly good supply either.

    I felt SO good when I stopped breastfeeding at 5 months. Lots of people tried to make me feel guilty, but I just didn't care. It simply wasn't for me.

    I will try to bf this next bubba, we will wait and see. I do know it's better for them, but each Mum needs to work out what is best for them.

    BTW, as we knew I was going back to work when Alex was pretty little (14 weeks), he always had at least one bottle feed a day. A lot of it was EBM, but certainly he had formula. And as they forcefed him in hospital (he was a premmie and IUGR) he got formula then too. He's just Fine!

  11. #11
    Registered User

    Aug 2003
    Melbourne, Australia

    Debbie I didn't like breast feeding. I found it to be a very stressful experience and was getting to the point where I dreaded having to feed Alana. I was getting upset and crying about it. The first time I gave a bottle to Alana I cried with relief.

    I had people tell me that I was making the wrong decision. A nurse from my hospital even went as far as saying that I would be basically harming Alana when she gets older by bottle feeding her. I tell you I could not stop crying after that. But of course that is so untrue. I was bottled feed and the formulas these days a ten times better than 31 years ago!

    What ever your decision, please don't feel guilty. Good Luck!

  12. #12
    Registered User

    Oct 2003
    Forestville NSW

    Debbie I felt exactly the same as you. I had no problems as far as bb's were concerned, I couldn't express, I felt under pressure heaps because everytime Matilda had a feed she would scream after, I worried about her having enough, as I've said before she would feed for HOURS and then some and every 2 hours and I was exhausted.

    When she was diagnosed with reflux (6weeks) the GP warned me that bf was best but she might have to get formula, or I might have to express all her feeds & add a thickener.... that made life heaps worse because I knew that BM was best for her nutritionally, but not for the reflux.

    Comp feeds helped, and I started to wean her at 4 months planning to continue bf'ing morning & night for comfort. But after a week I started drying up. I was happy about it at the time, but then two months later, I missed it, I don't know why because I really didn't like it at the time, but I did.

  13. #13
    Registered User

    Feb 2005
    out and about

    I was always stressed about wether they were getting enough andDH said we need a meter on each BB so we can see what bubs is drinking!! I too felt it uncomfortable to wear a bra to bed, ( ,most people only leak at the start of the BF relationship, after a few months I hardly ever leaked.) I wore one of those singlet top bras to bed ( with a cloth nappy tucked in) and found this much more comfortable to sleep in, I have a G cup prior and a H cup whilst!

    Stare back at people looking at you. Right in the eye! this usually makes them aware of what they are doing. ( and embarrassed) I always figured they were the ones with problems and never covered up ( mind you with twins its a bit hard too)

    I agree with your mum, do it how you feel comfortable, even with no 3 they were telling me how to position, and I did it, but just felt odd, so went back to how bubs and I were comfortable ( and it was much better)

    IF you want to give up, don't feel guilty or a bad mum etc etc, you have to do whats right BY YOU. like cloth vs disposable, there are always 2 sides to every thing.

    As muchas they say its natural rubbish, its a learnt skill, that takes time to master and feel comfortable with, so you need to give yourself time, I fed my twins til 14 mths, and the 3rd til 17 mths, and after a while it felt comforting, I went back to work with all the kids when they were about 3 mths, and never comp fed.

    All the best with whatever you decide to do, breast or bottle, ( if you chose breast just hang in there it will get better!!)

  14. #14
    mooshie Guest

    hugs to you debbie - yup breastfeeding can be one of those, i must admit i really don't enjoy it but i do it. i breastfed 1st dd for 12mths (nearly gave up at 3mths - but remember the gas strike - well i couldn't boil water etc) didn't think of the kettle back then lol so i persevered, ds was a shocker and i bottle fed from 12wks, when i was prg i said i would not beat myself up about feeding i will go with the flow. i must admit having done it differently with both the breast feeding is so much more convenient and if bubs is fussy and you don't know why a bit of boobie nearly always does the trick.

    i think setting little goals might help this is what i have done with lani - ie i will b/feed until 3mths then at 3mths i thought what the heck i will keep going - lani is 7mths and has 2 breastfeeds a day, 2 bottles of formula and a top up bottle for rollover. i to have biggish boobs 16dd and i hate having to think about what to wear if i go out and i need to feed - but i just do it, it does get easier you are still just getting to know gabby and gabby is just getting to know you. try not to stress and feel done about it cause gabby will pick up on that, and i think you should just make sure you get as much rest as possible. when i gave up breastfeeding my son at 12wks i was very very sad - but he wasn't gaining and was a shocking feeder so i had to do what i had to do - but i missed that closeness. as they get older the frequency and length of feeds will lessen and you will think nothing of sitting down having a cuppa and feeding bubs at the same time. take it easy and just do what you think is right for gabby and you.

  15. #15
    Registered User

    Sep 2004
    Sydney's Norwest

    Deb, I think there are days when all bfing Mums doubt themselves or their bb's. I have had split/cracked nipples almost since day 1 with Tehya. Teh other day I was in tears putting her on. While I have smaller sized boobs I have BIG nipples, both Noah and Tehya had/have problems getting it all into their mouths. I investingin some nipple shields and while they worked great with Noah, I am finding this time around I am blocking up when I use them so I either have cracked nipples or blocked boobs ](*,)

    AS long as Gabby is gaining weight then you know she is gettin genough from you. The comp feed won't hurt her and you shouldn't feel the need to defend yourself on it. As for people looking when you are going to feed I think some people do it without realising. I myself have done it before but I only look because I think that it is such a beautiful sight. I love watching my babies feed from me and knowing that I am giving the best that I can from my body. I fed my first 2 until they were 9 months old and Noah til he was 20 months, who knows how long Tehya will last for. Hopefully just as long as Noah although with a busy toddler it really can be hard to just sit and relax to feed. I feed because I love it, not because it's what society says I should do.

    Do what you want to do. Whatever makes you and Gabby comfortable, that is the right thing for you.

    Take care

  16. #16
    BellyBelly Life Member

    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...

    I didn't like breastfeeding at all either... I found it stressful and tiresome and it turned me into a nervous wreck for those first couple of weeks as Aidyn was refusing to attach and screaming constantly..... which is probably why I stopped doing it.
    I look back now and wish I had perservered a bit more cause I just think it would have been such a lovely bonding experience to have with Aidyn... however it just wasn't meant to be.

    All the best with whatever you decide to do Deb. Please don't let your Mum give you the guilts about comp feeding... do things with how YOU feel comfortable with! She should be supporting the wonderful job you are doing, not critiscising you because you may be doing something a little different to her.

  17. #17
    Debbie Lee Guest

    Thanks guys.
    It is just so amazing how different our experiences are.
    Whether soley breast fed, soley bottle fed or given comp feeds, it seems that the one pattern is that once you are doing what you feel comfy with, the baby thrives!
    Mum hasn't been overly critical. I can just hear it in her voice when I talk about the comp feed. Other than that, she has been an absolute God-send.
    Thanks for all the wonderful advice. I am going to keep plugging away at it. I must admit, I do like it when her little hands play with my skin while I am feeding. I also get a chance to fiddle with her nails and make them look pretty - so it's not an entirely bad experience at all.

  18. #18
    Registered User

    Jan 2005
    Down by the ocean

    I was so close to giving up with Mason. I had given him a bottle of formula then I felt bad so I BF him next feed. I think it wasn't until he was 6 wks that it settled down properly with not much night leaking.
    I was really shy about feeding in public as I had a lady in the mothers room at Myer tell me that "Gee you are really small, how do you know that you are making enough?". Pretty rude hey!