Friday, 20 March 2015

Breast Feeding: It's Your Choice!


So today I am doing something about different on the blog and I am approaching the very controversial topic of Breast Feeding but from all angles even breast feeding in public. This is also a varied topic on expressing and formula feeding. So please be open minded whilst reading all of this and see what I have to say :)


Ah I hate that saying with a passion because what could be okay for someone else isn't necessarily okay for another. Of course as a mother we always have our babies best interest at heart but by doing that we also need to take care of ourselves too - it is very important to remember it is about what is best for both the mother and baby. Some mums are totally for it, some totally against. 

There are a few ways to feed your baby so read up about them all before making a decision. You could either breast feed, express or formula feed

I personally was a young mother and didn't particularly want to breast feed. I felt pressured at first. My midwife didn't give me any information at all but just said "breast is best". So I done my own research with our good old trusty friend Mr Google! I found out about all the nutrients that are supposed to be good for the baby within the first couple of days. There are many pros and cons. Back then breast feeding in public was "frowned" upon and although I see it as very natural and you know a baby needs food. I wasn't comfortable to get my pieces out in public. I finally decided that the best option for me would have been to express. This is a great alternative to get both. It meant that Corey would have been bottle fed with my breast milk. For me this was best, it meant Corey's dad could still do feeds and bond with Corey just as much as I could. It meant I could keep an eye on how much Corey was drinking each feed too. However, due to Corey being premature it didn't really work out. He got a few bits of expressed milk but straight to formula milk really. I had a bad experience where a nurse on duty just came over with a pump and forced me to try, despite knowing my decision because she knew I didn't want too. I didn't do anything about it at the time but looking back I wish I had stood up to her because what she done was wrong. If I were to have another child, I would try what I wanted too with Corey and that is express. A picture of Corey having his first bottle at like 3 weeks old:

Family Fever has a great post on breast feeding a premature baby. If I had expressed from the beginning like Kate had than I would have been able to continue but because Corey didn't eat for the first week or so, I didn't think I could which is a common myth that a lot of us believe. 

Now there are apparently studies showing that breast feeding means your child will be more intelligent. I think what a load of rubbish, it may be true but who knows. Every single human is different. I personally don't think breast feeding could factor into somebodies intelligence. I could be wrong but so could these researchers! Zena's Suitcase has a good post on her opinion here. Modern Military Mother has also written a bloody brilliant post here about the research and how apparently broccoli (yes you read that right!) will compensate for the lack of IQ us non-breast feeding mums didn't give our children!

I would also just like to say a very big important factor that you could be dead set on breast feeding being the only option or maybe worth a try but it does not necessarily mean that your baby will take to being breast fed - quite a common problem. It can be quite an emotional and distressing time if your baby does not take to breast. Midwives on the ward will be there to help but it doesn't always work. If this is the case then don't be upset, you can try expressing as they will still get your milk which is ultimately what you want. Maybe you might not produce enough or be too poorly too. Birth is hard work and can leave some mums very ill. Messed Up Mum wrote a post on her experience here.

Is it really that bad to formula feed?! With all the resources and technology we have around these days, they are formulated for a reason to meet our children's needs and requirements for their various ages or stages. To be honest the "hungrier" milk was a god send for me as Corey needed it, he may have been born little but he soon made up for it with all he drank. Amy from The Smallest Of Things has written a great post here on why she formula fed too and how her daughter wouldn't latch - a common problem like mentioned above.

As for breast feeding in public, it is always all over the news and a very big on going debate. Silly Facebook sees a breast feeding picture as nudity when usually the baby is covering any main parts anyways. Yet it allows some disgusting videos of violence or naked people pictures. Some people think breast feeding in public is disgusting, off putting if eating etc. But surely if you don't want to see a woman's breast you just don't look?! There is no need to stare and in fact that would be them being rude by staring. What is so wrong by a baby being fed their food?! It baffles me. Family Fever has a great post on it here too. Kat from Beau Twins wrote a post about breast feeding, which you just have to read because the way it is written - I admit I found funny! It is a conversation between breast and baby. Read it here.

I suggest if you are pregnant and considering whether to breast feed, express or formula feed you do some research, get some advice from midwife or friends and really think about what is right for you and your baby :) It isn't up to anyone else, it will always be your decision alone. No one can force you.

Whatever our personal choice may be, or how circumstances actually turn out whether it be how we want or differently. We always do what ever is best for our own baby and that is all that matters :) 

I was a little worried about posting a controversial topic on the blog as I do not wish for a big debate. However, I am very varied in my opinions and I am not one sided. I would just like to say that these are my opinions only, there is no right or wrong and everyone is different :) 

Love, Gemma xo

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  1. It's a shame something as simple as feeding our babies is considered a controversial topic :(

    Some pretty great thoughts in there, I think the best thing we can do as parents is take each day as it comes. One thing that stands out to me is the lack of proper support people receive, which is a true shame.

  2. I 100% agree with you. As a new mother you have enough pressures put onto you without being made to feel like a terrible mother if you don't breast feed! Like you said it should be our choice :) I would have loved to breast feed Scarlett but by me continuing I could have made her very il so I did what was best for my child in the circumstances! Brilliant post :) thank you for including me xx

  3. Well said. I think I found breastfeeding so easy because I had no pressure what so ever from anyone. I had decided I'd give it a go, if it didn't work I'd bottle feed. I didn't think one was any better than the other but figured it was worth trying anyway. I had no problems with feeding in public as I always expressed a bottle if I was going out and the odd times I didn't have a bottle with me there were places available for me to go in private. I know I'm very lucky that I had no problems but I'm well aware it could be completely different the second time round.




  4. Great post! Very balanced and it highlights that it is a complicated decision and the 'right answer' is going to be different for different families. I have written my thoughts on the issues as I wanted to put my thoughts out there but like you I was worried about causing unintended offence and drama. Thank you for sharing this post and for the links to some other great posts, off to have a read of the ones I haven't read now!

  5. This is always such a controversial subject and I think it is because us Mums love our children so much and want what is best for them. I breastfeed because i thought it was the right thing to do. But can I let you into a little secret? I hate breastfeeding... Yep there it is. And now i'm in this awkward situation where my daughter is allergic to dairy I'm struggling to get her to stop and transfer to a bottle, she won't (she screams) and I'm still breastfeeding at 10 months. It is hard enough being a parent I wish we would all just support each other's choices. Great post x

  6. There's enough room in the world for our varied opinions; well done on expressing yours and also highlighting the views of others - fab #bloglove right there!

    Breast is best for who it is best; i considered it to be the best for us, but I respect that it might not be for someone else. We must each do the best we can do in our particular situations for our little ones.

    With the right support, those who want to breastfeed can usually do so successfully. All the best with your next breastfeeding journey when it comes around. #aNoviceMumTwitterfeed

  7. I'm completely open minded about breast feeding..I did want to do it, but knew it might not be possible. Thankfully for me M was great and took to it straight away. I put her onto formula at 4 months though as she wasn't getting enough and was feeding all the time. I didn't really care about feeding in public..i would just wap them out and get on with it!! ;-)
    What a great post! :-) #mummymonday

  8. I am all for breast feeding if the mother chooses it because she wants to. not because she feels pressured into it. I was bottle fed and so were my siblings. I have bottle fed both of my children and they are doing just fine! x

  9. Great post hun :) it's a shame this topic crops up continually. As long as baby is healthy & happy and mum is too we should not be judged on our choice of feeding x

  10. I had little breastfeeding pressure from anyone other than myself. As things turned out, I breastfed (feed) one twin and the other didn't take to it. They are just as healthy as each other :)

  11. As a Mother of five I've experienced the dos and donts over the last 15 years and WOW they have changed. Its insane. When all is said and done you feed your child how YOU wish too and why? Because he/she is YOUR baby, YOU have the say, no one else. Thanks so much for linking up with #MMWBH xx



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