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Old 03.10.2011, 15:33
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Power and breast feeding

Please, this is not a thread to discuss the pros and cons of breastfeeding.

It seems we all agree that a woman should have the choice- and that a happy and relaxed mum is much more important.

In the UK, my best friend is a La Leche League advisor, and another good friend is a midwife. They often talked to me about individual cases when a woman had to fight hard to breastfeed, or even to be allowed to breastfeed.

This happens for all sorts of reasons. Sometimes just because the mum's mum bottle fed and thinks her daughter or dil should do the same. Sometimes it is husbands, who feel that the breast belong to them, and don't want the wife to breastfeed out of jealousy or lest they would become saggy (incredible, that such husbands are fairly common)- or because they feel excluded from the feeding, and another form of jealousy occurs. Most often though, this happens to women from very traditional ethnic groups- and most often to daughters in law - as the father's mother wants to have control on the up-bringing of the child and taking over the feeding is the best way to start that process. Also because husbands in certain cultures are not allowed to have sex with a nursing woman, so they want the child bottle fed. Incredible power games for most of us, I know and I myself just couldn't believe it. Just wanted to share that it is not always not 'just a woman's choice'.
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Old 03.10.2011, 15:47
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Re: Power and breast feeding

With my first child I was bent on breastfeeding her. I would stress so much all the time that my milk supply was going down! It was my own stress caused by myself. What a luxury! I can't imagine how I would've felt if someone was pressuring me to not breastfeed.
I really feel for all of those women out there who do not have the privilege of nourishing their baby as they wish.

IMO, the perfect scenario is:
Once baby is born, to have someone to cook and clean for a couple of weeks for you and offer advice only when you ask. Then they must go home and leave you to learn how to raise your child.
Husbands are there to work with the mothers, not against them.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:07
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Re: Power and breast feeding

My first baby will be born next week (scheduled C-section due to the baby's position).

I have to admit that I have felt a bit pressured and just automatically expected to breast-feed -- this by both my husband and his mother. But I guess that my biggest reason for thinking about NOT breast-feeding is because I've read/heard that babies tend to sleep longer during the night when they are formula-fed. Does anyone know if that's true?

Well, either way -- I fear that it's a bit selfish on my part and that I should consider what is best for the baby first. But I do know that if I have a lot of trouble with breast-feeding, I'm not going to hesitate to just give formula... especially if it will help ease some of the sleep deprivation and keep me from slipping into postpartum depression, etc.

Besides, I was never breastfed and I turned out perfectly normal (hee hee. Right! )
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:15
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Re: Power and breast feeding

My baby slept through the night 12 hours solid every night from 10 weeks to 5.5 months - up to around 16 weeks he was exclusively breast fed, from 16 weeks on to 5.5 months i used to add the occasional bottle of formula (in the day time only) so basically I don't believe formula helps them sleep through the night - it's down to the baby in my opinion
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:16
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Re: Power and breast feeding

So, Odile, you side-step the whole breast vs. bottle discussion with your neat disclaimer, but then open the floor to the whole "my culture vs. their culture is better" debate...



Of the few things I've learned in life, one is that LaLeche leaguers have their agenda and are zealous in its pursuit, with midwives not far behind. Take care in interpreting their observations as being reflective of what is really happening and whether this is as big a problem as they would have you believe.

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I have to admit that I have felt a bit pressured and just automatically expected to breast-feed -- this by both my husband and his mother. But I guess that my biggest reason for thinking about NOT breast-feeding is because I've read/heard that babies tend to sleep longer during the night when they are formula-fed. Does anyone know if that's true?
Yein - they sleep a little bit longer but rarely straight through - so you might get 3-4 hrs unbroken instead of 2-3 hrs depending on how well the baby feeds/sleeps. Whatever you choose, I suggest you try and get a system set up so that it becomes automated and you don't have to think too much when you are going through the motions in the middle of the night... it sounds silly and simple, but just plan everything so that the feeding cushion is at hand, the baby is easy to access etc. etc. so that you minimise the amount of time you actually have to be awake.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:19
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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I But I guess that my biggest reason for thinking about NOT breast-feeding is because I've read/heard that babies tend to sleep longer during the night when they are formula-fed. Does anyone know if that's true?
Not really, breast milk changes rapidly over the first couple of months, where as formula is the same recipe for the first few months. That means that, for example, the first breast feeding does not include much in the way of milk, but more colostrum, and that sugars are increased gradually. Formula includes full fat and sugar to start with so the baby digests straight away and so is more full straight away and for a bit longer. They also grow faster for the same reason.

However, breast feeding reduces some stomach problems (less chance of air getting swallowed as with a bottle, more antibodies etc). I'm not saying that BF babies don't get colic, but I believe it is less likely. And colic WILL keep babies up all night.

And both sets of babies wake in the night. It depends what you want to do when they do. Do you want to go and prepare some sterile milk powder into some sterile water in a sterile bottle and heat it to the correct temperature (I don't see this taking less than 5 minutes and requiring open eyes and brain cells), or do you roll over, and pick your child up and put it to your breast (which takes 2 seconds and you can do with no brain cells). And as both babies will wake, you will have limited brain cells.

It's a lot cheaper to breast feed too. I must admit, cost and time to do night feeds were more important factors to me than long term health trends.

Last edited by MsWorWoo; 03.10.2011 at 16:21. Reason: forgot the name of colic.....you never get sleep with babies
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:28
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Re: Power and breast feeding

Thank you so much for all of the advice and shared experiences posted above!


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Do you want to go and prepare some sterile milk powder into some sterile water in a sterile bottle and heat it to the correct temperature (I don't see this taking less than 5 minutes and requiring open eyes and brain cells), or do you roll over, and pick your child up and put it to your breast (which takes 2 seconds and you can do with no brain cells). And as both babies will wake, you will have limited brain cells.
That's true... I hadn't thought of that. Ugh! Sooo much to think about!
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:31
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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My first baby will be born next week (scheduled C-section due to the baby's position).

I have to admit that I have felt a bit pressured and just automatically expected to breast-feed -- this by both my husband and his mother. But I guess that my biggest reason for thinking about NOT breast-feeding is because I've read/heard that babies tend to sleep longer during the night when they are formula-fed. Does anyone know if that's true?

Well, either way -- I fear that it's a bit selfish on my part and that I should consider what is best for the baby first. But I do know that if I have a lot of trouble with breast-feeding, I'm not going to hesitate to just give formula... especially if it will help ease some of the sleep deprivation and keep me from slipping into postpartum depression, etc.

Besides, I was never breastfed and I turned out perfectly normal (hee hee. Right! )
Nursed babes as much as formula fed babes have their own agenda. Wait till you see what kind of sleeper you have. You might have a fussy babe, that wouldn't sleep through the night no matter what, or a chill one, who will sleep no matter what he/she is eating.

I nursed, coslept, so the nights were super easy, no waking, we did all automatically, semi asleep.

I would want to, however, offer breast milk to later on times, when babes get more alert (roughly 5mo), and mobile, and teeth come, so the baby is less likely to have nice, smooth night. Then nursing saved my sanity, since it was a soothing mechanism that worked absolutely in all scenarios. But formula mom will still have to get up, make the bottle and work on soothing mechanisms that in fact when nursing are part of the whole feeding ritual (it does work with bottles, too, but I think the calming attachment is easier with nursing).

Hey, is it a breach? They don't do the moves here to twist the babe so you avoid csec??

Should you want to nurse, though, do not sleep yourself through the night, since your prolactine has to be stimulated at night (newborns, pump/nurse a few times a night, later on 2x times, pump between). Your lactation would go down fast, withing the few first months, should you sleep through. You can pump while babe is asleep, but you yourself have to work on yourself and not sleep should you want to have good enough supply and your hormonal response might happen not be the standard one.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:36
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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I have to admit that I have felt a bit pressured and just automatically expected to breast-feed -- this by both my husband and his mother. But I guess that my biggest reason for thinking about NOT breast-feeding is because I've read/heard that babies tend to sleep longer during the night when they are formula-fed. Does anyone know if that's true?
It's true in the sense that you feed them a bottle of a known quantity of formula that fills them up and takes a bit longer to digest. I did both as my milk supply was low and I had a baby that was constantly hungry due to not getting enough breast milk. If you want a good night's sleep, there are plenty of women who will support you if you decide that getting a few hours of sleep due to a nighttime formula feeding is a desirable thing. And, as a sleep-deprived exhausted mother with a hungry baby...la leche could have held a gun to my head and I still would have reached for that formula at night.

Take care of you, first, as nobody is a good mother when you aren't eating and sleeping at some minimal level.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:36
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Re: Power and breast feeding

Personally I don't understand why people would voluntarily chose to: sterilise bottles, boil water, buy very expensive powder, buy, clean and sterilize many kinds of nipples to find THE one baby prefers, plan and carry all the necessary equipment when going out...

My breast milk is always ready and at a good temperature. At night, I open one eye, cling her to the breast, sleep through the feeding and out her back to bed when it's finished
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:43
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Nursed babes as much as formula fed babes have their own agenda. Wait till you see what kind of sleeper you have. You might have a fussy babe, that wouldn't sleep through the night no matter what, or a chill one, who will sleep no matter what he/she is eating.

I nursed, coslept, so the nights were super easy, no waking, we did all automatically, semi asleep.

I would want to, however, offer breast milk to later on times, when babes get more alert (roughly 5mo), and mobile, and teeth come, so the baby is less likely to have nice, smooth night. Then nursing saved my sanity, since it was a soothing mechanism that worked absolutely in all scenarios. But formula mom will still have to get up, make the bottle and work on soothing mechanisms that in fact when nursing are part of the whole feeding ritual (it does work with bottles, too, but I think the calming attachment is easier with nursing).

Hey, is it a breach? They don't do the moves here to twist the babe so you avoid csec??

Should you want to nurse, though, do not sleep yourself through the night, since your prolactine has to be stimulated at night (newborns, pump/nurse a few times a night, later on 2x times, pump between). Your lactation would go down fast, withing the few first months, should you sleep through. You can pump while babe is asleep, but you yourself have to work on yourself and not sleep should you want to have good enough supply and your hormonal response might happen not be the standard one.
Thanks! I've been wondering how often i would need to pump (and when). I do have a midwife that is supposed to help me after the birth, but to be honest, I don't get a very good vibe from her (and her English isn't so great). She seems to have a nasty habit of not responding to my emails.

Yeah, the baby is breach -- but it's because of a large myom/fibroid that I have, so he will not turn around no matter what. (To be honest, though, I think a big part of me is kind of relieved to be having a C-section because the "other" way scares the bajeebus out of me).

To the OP -- I apologize if I've made your thread go off-track.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:47
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Personally I don't understand why people would voluntarily chose to: sterilise bottles, boil water, buy very expensive powder, buy, clean and sterilize many kinds of nipples to find THE one baby prefers, plan and carry all the necessary equipment when going out...

My breast milk is always ready and at a good temperature. At night, I open one eye, cling her to the breast, sleep through the feeding and out her back to bed when it's finished
I have a few questions (as I am obviously completely naive about all of this stuff...)

1. About how long does each feeding usually take?

2. Do you usually only use one breast per feeding and then switch to the other breast for the next feeding, or...?

3. How do you know when the baby needs feeding during the night? Will he begin to get fussy or cry and wake me up? Or should I set an alarm?
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:49
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Thanks! I've been wondering how often i would need to pump (and when). I do have a midwife that is supposed to help me after the birth, but to be honest, I don't get a very good vibe from her (and her English isn't so great). She seems to have a nasty habit of not responding to my emails.

Yeah, the baby is breach -- but it's because of a large myom/fibroid that I have, so he will not turn around no matter what. (To be honest, though, I think a big part of me is kind of relieved to be having a C-section because the "other" way scares the bajeebus out of me).

To the OP -- I apologize if I've made your thread go off-track.
If you need specific nursing answers when you need them, pm me or come to the nursing group I opened for moms to have a tad more privacy without being picked on but still giving info out there.

Don't rely on your midwife at all, I have heard very peculiar myths, almost killed my own lactation, too. Some are grand, for sure, but rare. Nursing is not a priority, nor for maternity ward, nor nurses there, nor your midwife, nor your ped (most I encountered here). There are exceptions, of course.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:51
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Re: Power and breast feeding

MC - isn't all this "how to" off topic?

Shouldn't this thread be about cultural differences? I think there's another "how to BF" thread that you've contributed to...
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:52
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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I have a few questions (as I am obviously completely naive about all of this stuff...)

1. About how long does each feeding usually take? Depends on your supply, demand of your child, etc. anytime from 30min to 3min. Not all feeds are teh same lengths throughout the day.

2. Do you usually only use one breast per feeding and then switch to the other breast for the next feeding, or...? Always 2.

3. How do you know when the baby needs feeding during the night? Will he begin to get fussy or cry and wake me up? Or should I set an alarm?
Depends if you have a sleeper or not. Set the alarm just to be sure, I did. Since I had ultra sleeper and a child that wouldn't cry even when hungry, it took me a while to actually figure out, and my lactation was already on decline. So, save yourself troubles, set the alarm, feed every 2hrs to be safe, the first few months, then you won't have troubles. If you start well, you might cruise through it without any difficulty, it is easier to do a mini bootcamp at the beginning, than troubleshoot later. Hormones are finicky.
.........................
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:53
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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MC - isn't all this "how to" off topic?

Should this thread be about cultural differences? I think there's another "how to BF" thread that you've contributed to...
Yeah, why not help when specifically asked. Are you a nursing mom? Actually knowing Odile, she won't kill me over this.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:56
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Personally I don't understand why people would voluntarily chose to: sterilise bottles, boil water, buy very expensive powder, buy, clean and sterilize many kinds of nipples to find THE one baby prefers, plan and carry all the necessary equipment when going out...

My breast milk is always ready and at a good temperature. At night, I open one eye, cling her to the breast, sleep through the feeding and out her back to bed when it's finished
I bought jugs of distilled water and I don't think I ever boiled the bottles, just washed them well. Like anything, you become more efficient when you get a routine down. You make a few every day, refrigerate them and use as needed.

Also, there are plenty of women for whom breastfeeding isn't a practical (or even impractical) option either. I think we lose sight that feeding the baby is the primary goal and the pressure to breastfeed can be overwhelming at an already overwhelming time.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:58
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Re: Power and breast feeding

Music Chick -- thank you sooooooo much!

Carlo -- The thread going off-topic is entirely my fault.

Odile -- Thank you for allowing me to use your thread to ask questions and to obtain some very helpful information. Again, I apologize that my questions made it go off-track.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:59
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Please, this is not a thread to discuss the pros and cons of breastfeeding.

It seems we all agree that a woman should have the choice- and that a happy and relaxed mum is much more important.

In the UK, my best friend is a La Leche League advisor, and another good friend is a midwife. They often talked to me about individual cases when a woman had to fight hard to breastfeed, or even to be allowed to breastfeed.

This happens for all sorts of reasons. Sometimes just because the mum's mum bottle fed and thinks her daughter or dil should do the same. Sometimes it is husbands, who feel that the breast belong to them, and don't want the wife to breastfeed out of jealousy or lest they would become saggy (incredible, that such husbands are fairly common)- or because they feel excluded from the feeding, and another form of jealousy occurs. Most often though, this happens to women from very traditional ethnic groups- and most often to daughters in law - as the father's mother wants to have control on the up-bringing of the child and taking over the feeding is the best way to start that process. Also because husbands in certain cultures are not allowed to have sex with a nursing woman, so they want the child bottle fed. Incredible power games for most of us, I know and I myself just couldn't believe it. Just wanted to share that it is not always not 'just a woman's choice'.
Ok, to make Carlos happy..cultural it is.

Coming from a place where it is considered complete duty, it can be overwhelming. Formula companies are making it easier now, on moms should they want to avoid nursing, though advertising formula is very restricted, it is considered unethical. You won't see it in peds office nor pharmacies.

It is a choice, but I do not know a single mom who didn't go for it back home. It is not difficult in a place where gov pays you 3-4yrs to stay at home and nurse. The info is out there, the help, brigades of volunteers. And, the bond everyone wants to have. And, people do not have so much cash to spare on ff. It is traditionally that way, though mom tells me horrid stories about schedule nursing, I was on it, my older bro, my younger didn't have to anymore. Can you imagine following some douche schedule, and peds and nurses reinforcing? Ugh.

So, yeah, choice. My lovely friend didn't want kids. Then she said, ok, 1! Ended up with triplet boys, all nursed till they were almost 2. Anytime I think of choice, I think of her.
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Old 03.10.2011, 16:59
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Re: Power and breast feeding

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Yeah, why not help when specifically asked. Are you a nursing mom? Actually knowing Odile, she won't kill me over this.
Am I a nursing mom? No. Do I have experience of nursing children? Yes.

Are you a mod? Yes.

There-in lies the difference.

@ Carrie F, check this out... Breast feeding

There's lots of discussion towards the end about "how to" - including lots of hints and tips from our very own MC.
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