I would have loved to have bf dd until 12mths so I'd want to strive for that next time. So I think before 12mths is too early only because that's what I want to do not based on what I want others to do.
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13-05-2012 15:00 #21
13-05-2012 15:10 #22
For me, personally, barring any medical problems not compatible with breastfeeding, anything before 2 is too soon. If natural weaning occurs before 2 I would give EBM on cereal, in food, in a sippy cup, etc until at least 2. If the problem was with me, I would source donor EBM and if my baby was only able to have prescription formula then I would give that because it is about providing the best milk for the baby. But that would be for my own baby, not putting that onto anyone else.
13-05-2012 15:29 #23
I honestly don't know how to "fix the problem," or anything, but perhaps it's more a matter of less shame, more support. "You must breastfeed," is the message but it comes with rules: "...but not in public," "...but not past 12 months," "...but surely it will ruin your social life, so just give a bottle!"
That said, I do feel sad for babies who don't get colostrum. I really think that's important, and if that's all your baby ever gets, then I think you've done well. (Of course, I understand there are reasons why this is not possible/is traumatic, but in cases where it is possible, I think it should be strongly encouraged!).
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13-05-2012 20:53 #24
Same as my answer in the other post.... Whenever the mother decides......
13-05-2012 21:56 #25
Whenever the mother wants to - i think it is more important for a mother to have a healthy, bonded relationship with their baby than to breastfeed.
We are lucky enough to live in a country with numerous types of formula, fresh water, fresh food and nutrition.
Both my babies got 3 months with comp feeding before they totally refused the breast (and i hate those evil breast pumps too!!!). But some mothers simply can't fathom the idea of breastfeeding and should feel able to say so.
As mothers we are simply damned if we do, damned if we don't. The worst part is that it is other mother's judging and putting pressure on us.
13-05-2012 23:09 #26
I really dont like the "exclusively breast fed" stats. I think they misrepresent big number of mothers.
I dont think jasper was exclusively breast fed to even 2 months and I know he had a bottle by 3 months.
Never mind he was breast fed on demand 24/7 until 2 years. Fed on demand at night until 3. He wasnt exclusively breast fed, thus, we fall into that percent of mothers who *failed* to *exclusively* breast feed.
I dont like the term because it sends the message that breast feeding is all or nothing. That its not okay to go out for a few hours if you cant express milk. That its not okay to have a bad night and need your partner to take over so you can sleep. Or that struggling early on with supply, giving formula while boosting your supply, well sorry thats still not good enough.
I'd rather talk in terms of breast feeding being at least 1 feed in 24 hours (for babies) if you can breast feed once in 24 hours, thats awesome!
Yes "exclusively breast feeding" is ideal, but lets be realistic. I think that could be a step in the right direction.
And these heaps more things obviously. More support. GPs & mchn's who dont actively discourage breast feeding. Better education and understanding of normal newborn behaviours and more positive examples in popular media. To start with.
*oh to answer the question - as long as baby is being fed some form of appropriate milk product in demand with their hunger then thats good enough for me. But yeah id love it if mothers who would like to breast feed had better support and encouragement to do so*
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Last edited by Boobycino; 13-05-2012 at 23:12.
14-05-2012 07:45 #27
I think there's pressure, without support and a whole whack of misinformation and then once you cross some magic number of weeks, months or years, pressure to wean.
It's just cruel & confusing.
And so many GPs know diddly squat about breast feeding. I went in with mastitis when jasper was 2. The total appointment was 7 minutes, 5 of which was spent her in shock I still breast fed and asking me if i wanted to wean and I was ushered out the door with me still asking if what she had prescribed me was safe for breast feeding and she said "it should be". Should is not good enough!
I wound up asking the pharmacist - who umm'ed and arr-ed and said it should be fine. I took it for a couple of days but jasper got a rash on his face so I stopped. I don't know that it was related, but I already was feeling so uneasy taking what that doctor prescribed because she had no idea.
Last edited by Boobycino; 14-05-2012 at 07:50.
14-05-2012 08:28 #28
14-05-2012 08:31 #29Senior Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2012
I would say 6 months in my opinion. I was amazed at how many people tried to encourage me to bottle feed. I had a friend come over when ds was a few weeks old and said oh don't worry we will have him on a bottle soon. That is not something a new mother who is trying to establish breastfeeding should hear.
However in saying that I wasnt told some breastfed babies will refuse bottles. I'm still feeding ds at 12 months and struggling to wean him as he won't drink out of anything else. Next time I will make sure I give a bottle of ebm to keep them used to a bottle because unfortunately these days many women need to return to work before 12 months.
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14-05-2012 10:29 #30
Boobycino – I do agree to some extent about your comments on exclusive breastfeeding statistics, vs babies who receive any breastmilk. I heard this compared at a conference once to ‘expecting everyone to buy and eat connoisseur ice cream, when for some people home brand is just fine’. The statistics for the number of babies receiving any breastmilk at 1 month of age is 70%. So that means 27% of mothers who initiated breastfeeding have weaned completely by 1 month of age. This is still a lot (and a lot more than the 2% we are all talking about following the TIME mag cover). I also acknowledge that some of these mothers may be the ones who did not really want to do it to begin with but felt pressured, and found a valid reason to stop. Maybe these ones are not left with a sense of loss or regret of sadness as another pointed out – maybe these ones are left with relief? I would question though why these mothers didn’t want to do it to begin with – perhaps a reflection of a society that isn’t always supportive and open about breastfeeding, nor one that sees it as normal? Maybe they were not brought up surrounded by breastfeeding mothers, sisters, aunts etc and so the thought of it is foreign. I don’t know, I am just guessing. I found my 2 and a bit year old sitting on our feeding chair tandem feeding her bear and her doll yesterday, then putting them both to bed and patting them to sleep. That’s her normal. The mothers I am referring to in my question though are the ones who did really want to breastfeed and by one month are not. Judging from the level of emotion about the topic of breastfeeding and weaning, I think there are mums out there who do feel loss and sadness.
I also agree with Missy_mack that there can be enormous pressure to bottle feed (which is ironic, when you read from FF mums they felt enormous pressure to bf). I know personally each time I hit a bump with breastfeeding, or dared complain about getting up for night feeds, the first solution was ‘why don’t you just try formula’. Like it was a cure all, and I was being a martyr for continuing. When I complained about night feeds, I didn’t do it so that I could be encouraged to switch to formula to let DH help, it was just expressing how I felt; it would have been so much more helpful if someone just said ‘yeah, its pretty torturous isn’t it? It feels like it might last forever at times – but it will pass. Can I get you a cup of tea?’
I read this article recently on the pressure mums feed to bottle feed, and how the pressure increases as your baby gets older. It’s very interesting.
I too am stunned at the low level of breastfeeding training health professionals get, especially knowing this is the first port of call for most mums when they are having problems. There was an online breastfeeding support network called mumbubconnect trialled recently. Basically, the mums got a ‘check in’ text once a week on how breastfeeding was going, and they would reply with a key word eg ‘engorged’ ‘sore nipples’ ‘fine’ ‘stopped’ etc and an auto reply would be sent out to give extra information on whatever the mum had responded with (they could also text a key word at any time if they wanted the information straight away). The mums could then get more tailored information via online email counselling if they needed it. They could also go online (to a forum on FB but a bit like BH) to talk about any issues they were having and to encourage each other. Amazingly, the breastfeeding statistics for this group of mothers was significantly higher than the general population. Like HEAPS higher. It was even higher than the control group who got 1 on 1 assistance from either an LC, GP or CHN on a regular basis. This study shows that mother to mother peer support is very powerful when it comes to improving our breastfeeding rates – and in this study was more powerful than direct help from a health professional.
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