Breastfeeding Influences
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  1. #1
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    Default Breastfeeding Influences

    Hi

    Hope it's okay with you all for me to ask this - I know I don't come on here much at all now but I trust you all and appreciate your comments whatever they may be!

    I'm training to be a breastfeeding counsellor and for my latest assignment I have to find out about what influences mothers with their breastfeeding experience.

    Influences such as partners, family & friends, the media, midwives, GPs, health vistors, etc.

    I would appreciate any comments at all - positive or negative - both are equally important.

    Thank you x

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    Well my personal biggest influence with regards to breast feeding was my MIL. She fed three babies herself and was staying with us when I had my DD. She's a bit of a judgmental woman and I knew that she'd judge me if I gave up. For some people that would have assured failure and I know that the prevailing thought these days is to support without judgement but honestly if I didn't feel like I was going to be judged for giving up I think I would have. I'm really really grateful for it. My DD is 11 months now and I'm still bf'ing and hoping to continue for another year even.

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    for me it was just the natural thing to do?
    not influenced by anyone really. just the obvious choice for me.

    i fed all four of mine for between 18 months and two years quite happily.
    even though i would never judge anyone for choosing to bottlefeed for whatever reason i do have to control my reaction when faced with a newborn with a bottle in its mouth. never looks right somehow.x [to me that is. not judging just being honest]xxx

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    Thank you for your replies x

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    The biggest influence for me was my new baby. The midwife was very good and helped us get started in the delivery room, and I had always had the attitude that if I found it hard I wouldn't put pressure on myself.
    My baby girl took to it amazingly well, and wow it was wonderful, she was a hungry little thing and barely let go of me for the first couple of days. I breastfed her for a year.

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    if it helps I didnt breadfeed and was put off by the midwifes in the hospital as they just kept grabbing my boobs and trying to put baby on, in the end I felt like a useless peice of meat which meant when my 2nd child was born I didnt even try and went straight to the bottle
    I know you asked for what influenced but negatives also may help you decide the best way to help people, I feel there is a lot of preasure to breast feed these days and it just isnt for everyone and dosent work for everyone and maybe supporting all mothers rather than just breastfeeding mums would be good.

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    i breastfed my DS for 8 weeks and am currently still feeding my 10wk old DD.
    With my DS I was very influenced by my DH - DS had reflux (undiagnosed at the time) and would feed constantly because he was trying to soothe the pain - DH convinced me that I wasn't producing enough milk to satisfy him. i got stressed because i was feeding all the time and i was being subtly told that i wasn't doing what was best for him.

    with Arla she latched on with no trouble literally 10 mins after birth and nursed for over an hour and i am so much more confident. because i am more confident in what i am doing and the good i am doing i feed her out and about without shame (iykwim) I love feeling so attatched to her, and so needed and i won't be giving up until she self weans.
    i didn't have anyone family wise to give me advice or their experiences so i wasn't influenced in that way. however my SDD recently had a baby and only bf'ed whilst in hospital for the first 3 days or so then gave up immediately - her mum did not bf her or her brother either and i think she was very influenced by that fact and had made up her mind not to carry on before she'd even tried.

    hth x
    Blessed Be!

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    I'm the same as the pp, for me it was just a natural decision. I fed both my daughters one till 2 years and the other a few months beyond 2. With no female influences (my mum died long before children came), I don't have sisters, my MIL is a bottle advocate and lives too far away to influence decisions really I didn't have any role models persuading me either way. I had my fair share of problems, but it was a decision that was so right in my head that it didn't occur to me to give up at any point. I went on to train as a peer support worker and still now support bf mothers and actually to my surprise bottle feeding mothers - i'm acutely aware that this choice was very personal to me and respect that other peoples choices are very personal to them.
    triangle sandwiches are better than square ones...

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    I didn't breastfeed ds, I have been made to feel inadequate by my friend due to this. She was did not know I hadn't but ranted on about how her SIL hadn't. Another friend also felt upset by this, she had tried but was unsuccesful. I don't like how people can make you feel bad and that you are not doing the best for your child for not breastfeeding, it is the parents choice and too many people will shot you down for it. That was my choice when ds was born nearly 8 years ago. I had not known anyone who had and at 20 I had no friends with children. I also felt it was nice for my dh to be able to feed ds as well and bond (I know this will have many of you disgreeing with this bit but that is how I felt)

    If we we're to have another child I would try breastfeeding, after attending toddlers for 8 years I now have more knowledge in a way, if you know what I mean. Also I know where to get help and advice ect.

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    actually as a bf mother thats the only thing that I struggled with Louise - my husband could not feed our girls. By god I tried - expressing was fine but neither would take from a bottle and so my husband missed out on that experience. He found other ways to bond with them, but feeding was definately not one of them and that did feel like I was totally tied to the girls - in the main this was fine - but sometimes you want a break - especially in the middle of the night.
    triangle sandwiches are better than square ones...

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    Thank you very much for all of your replies.

    Yes please, I would really find it useful to hear stories of people's negative influences too as these are so important.

    I think people need to always be aware that how you feed your child is a personal decision and everyone should do what is right for them. How a baby is fed does not define how good a mother someone is.

    My mum did not breastfeed me because she thought it was 'disgusting' and that is completely fine by me, everyone is different and should respect other's decisions. My mum loves me no differently to how I love my children who I breastfed - we were just fed by different methods.

    Thank you again for the replies, I much appreciate it. x

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    For me it was just the natural thing to do. I didn't even consider bottle feeding and don't remember ever giving it any thought. I didn't have any femail family influences and friends at the time mainly bottle fed, so I didn't feel any pressure to do it. I was what I wanted to do. I loved the intimacy of bfing and the ease of not having to make up bottles, bother with a steriliser etc.

    I did find though that I had more pressure to give up when it didn't go so well. My MIL in particular blamed every little niggle on breastfeeding - DS was unsettled, he needs to be on a bottle, DS didn't sleep - he needs to be on a bottle etc etc. Unfortunately that led to DH telling me I should switch to bottles. I told him in no uncertain terms that he should be supporting me, not siding with his mum!

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    for me it was my babies and the health benefits to them and the closeness that I thought I would gain from it.

    As I turned out I was unsuccessful in breastfeeding either of my two they couldn't feed/latch on so after spending a few weeks with both expressing the tiniest amounts of milk, there was nothing left.

    I feel a bit cheated of the experience if I'm honest
    if you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got

  14. #14
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    I didnt bf my dd and if we were to have another baby i prob wouldnt again.

    I hate the saying breast is best as i really don't think it is, just my opinion

    My dd was bottle fed and is a healthy 14 yr old, i have a friend who has many children and they were bf and are always poorly so who knows

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    I didnt bf my first 4 babies born in the late 80's and early 90's, I tried half heartedly with 2 of them but gave up after 2 or 3 days.
    With 2 I didnt even try but in those days there was a patients smoking room on the end of the corridor on every maternity ward

    I had my last baby in 2008 and desperately wanted to bf.
    Dd was slightly tongue tied so latched on fine but soon 'fell off' so that was very difficult and the 'head' of bf visited me to offer help but it was hard.

    Dd's jaundice levels kept rising and we went back to the maternity ward twice and she was under the lights for 3 days at a time before she was 10 days old.

    Eventually dd was diagnosed with breastfeeding jaundice and I was told to bottle feed her by the consultant as my breast milk was making her ill.
    I was really shocked and upset by the reaction of a couple of midwives who were not happy that I had 'given up'

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    The reasons for me breastfeeding was health benefits for the baby, the cost -it was freely available and I just wanted to breastfeed, never even considered bottle feeding.

    I was the first of my friends to have a baby and so peer pressure was not a problem. My mum was thrilled I BF as she was unable to with me or my sister, her milk dried up after a few weeks. MIL - don't know what she thought I don't take any notice of her

    My DD was a natural at latching on and feeding. When my DS was born he would latch on and then take a breath and bite(gum) down on my nipple it was so painful and bledTMI, but my DH kept reminding me how much I had enjoyed BFeeding my DD and would regret it if I gave up, so I carried on, one of only a few times he has been right. Fed all 3 of my children until they were around 15 months.

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    I personally thought breastfeeding was weird- I guess I never tought Id do it but I went to a workshop while pregnant and decided Id try Jake done all the work. There are times when you feel like meat, sore as the pressure on your nipples is horrible, bleeding cracked etc concentrating too much about where they wanted him/ how to latch but soon decided our way or none and 13 months Im interested in how all you fab mummies getting to 24 months got them off lol doesnt look like Jakes going anywhere. Had a lovely bonding with my boy though worth it all long days sleepless nights..

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    My biggest influence was also that it was a natural thing to do.

    My Mum did not breast feed me (I was her first in 1970) the hospital persuaded her that as I was small I needed to be bottle fed. She did feed myounger brother & sister for a few months.

    Both my husbands were supportive although my 2nd much more so which is probably why my DS was breast fed for 9 months and DD1 & 2 for 25 months and 23 months respectively. I think my first husband had had enough by that point and looking back was encouraging bottle feeding too from 4 months so I was combi feeding.

    Both girls were only breast fed even when I went back to work with DD1. I worked for the AA and they were very supportive and they allowed me to go to her in my lunch break and feed her I think that enabled me to keep the feeding going for much more time.

    I never really suffered from very sore nipples just slightly uncomfortable but I did manage to get through mastitis with DD2 through the support of my DH and my Mum.

    Neither of the girls ever used a bottle they both took expressed milk from a beaker from 4 months.

    DS and DD1 were poor suckers to start with and I had loads of support from the community midwives. The hospital midwives kept taking DS off and giving him a bottle as he was so small! (was 1992 though) Things had changed by the time I had DD1 5 years later and the hospital midwives were just as supportive as the community ones. DD2 knew exactly what to do from the time she was born.

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    The biggest influence for me was my best friend. She was a huge support to me and was bfding her own daughter at the time. I have to admit though she did make it look easy and I had a big shock when I had cracked nipples, engorged breasts, mastitis but I am very single minded and persevered through those first few weeks until it became second nature.

    I do think new mums need to be warned that its not all plain sailing. Its one thing looking at diagrams and knowing the theory but quite another doing it for real.

    I would love to be a bf support - how did you get into this?

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    I didn't breastfeed - I had c-sections with both my 2 and felt under pressure from media, newspapers, articles in magazines that "breast is best" but after going through an emergency c-section feeling almost like death lol, the last thing you think about is breastfeeding so 1st baby was given bottle. Had no health problems, no asthma, no excema, nothing. Healthy and always has been. (he is 13)
    5 years later baby no.2 - had no intention of breast feeding - my bg boobs were sore enough as it was. Bottle fed her - no health issues, no allergies, nothing so far (she is almost 8) touch wood.
    My mother, sister etc all bottle fed too so I suppose that influenced me.
    I used to feel annoyed by people/midwifes who told me I should have breastfed - who's decision was it - it was mine. I feel strongly that we women shouldn't be pushed into breastfeeding like my sister was - her baby wouldn' latch, her nipples were bleeding, she cried and cried and felt useless midwives told her to keep trying, HV told her not to give up they tried to help her butthey pushed her too. Until my mum had anything to say about it! lol. She gave baby bottle and he took it straight away - again, healthy 16 year old boy!

 

 
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