planned to breastfeed

by Rachel...

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has told their story and I hope more new mums who are struggling with breast feeding find this website.

I had only ever planned to breastfeed after all of my friends seemed to have no trouble at all. I had lessons before the baby was born and I did absolutely no research at all on bottle feeding or formula. I had a very natural 6 hour labour and a waterbirth so I thought everything would go well.

The first few days were hell. On day 3 my milk still hadn't come in and despite my baby suckling on my breast for hours and hours he just screamed all night. When the midwife came over the next day she said he was starving and when she weighed him he had lost over 10% of his birth weight. My parents went and bought bottles, formula, sterilisers and I robotically went through a lesson on how to use these things. Meanwhile, the midwife fed my son and he guzzled down a bottle of formula and went straight to sleep.

I tried hospital grade pumps, lactation consultants, breastfeeding clinics, helplines, fenugreek tablets and tea and persevered for about 3 weeks. At around week 4 my milk did increase a little and I was able to hand express 100mls a day so I fed my baby with formula and made one of his bottles a day breastmilk. I think this was more to satisfy myself than him as he was 100% happy on formula.

I don't know why I felt so guilty and every time I gave him formula I felt like i was feeding him poison. I wasn't bonding with him and was crying most of the time. It started to affect my relationship with my husband and my new baby. I won't say I am fully over it and I may never be. If I have another baby I will try again but I don't ever want to put myself through the agony and guilt I have felt for the last month and when I look at my son, he is healthy, happy and content and that is what matters,

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