Breastfeeding or bottlefeeding... which do you prefer and why?

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Lynette - posted on 04/28/2009

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i prefer breastfeeding... id always wanted 2 breastfeed my child if it didnt work out between us then i would bottlefed then at least i i feel iv tried my best and i tried it out. it makes me feel ive helped my daugther in her few months of life,bonding with ur child is very important 2 me, makes me so proud that i make her feel safe. and the health benefits is another reason. its cheaper, faster,easier and best way 2 bond with ur little one. it will b emotional wen i stop but i kno i have 2 let go. i will differently breastfeed agen if i have another one

Kathy - posted on 04/28/2009

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I have always breastfeed since I believe that mother's milk is a superior food source for baby. Plus breastfeeding is soooo much easier than bottle feeding I don't think I need to go into specifics.

Sarah - posted on 04/28/2009

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By the way, I also lost a tremendous amount of weight while breastfeeding and it helps shrink the uterus. Two more reasons to breast-feed if you can!

Sarah - posted on 04/28/2009

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I have done both so I can appreciate both sides of the coin. My son was my first baby and he really had trouble latching on to breast-feed. He just was not a good nurser. Because of his inability to stimulate my supply, I could not produce enough milk for him. I would always have to supplement with formula. We later found out that he was tongue-tied so that was probably the reason he was not able to suckle properly. So in that case, formula was a life saver. The downside is it was expensive and messy/inconvenient to have to deal with the bottles. But it did give my husband a chance to feed him and bond with his son while I took a break.



My daughter on the other hand was a champion nurser from day one. I started breast feeding her when she was only a couple hours old and she did wonderfully. I never had to use formula with her and she wouldn't even drink it when we tried. She even refused my breast milk from a bottle. She didn't like pacifiers either. It must have been the plastic she didn't like. So the downside of that was that I was the only one who could feed her. However some babies will take a bottle of breast milk, but mine wouldn't. I have to say I prefer to breast-feed. It was easier, convenient, cheaper and it was always available for her as long as I was there. But since I am a stay-at-home mom, being separated was never an issue.



There is nothing wrong with formula. Millions of babies have thrived on formula and are perfectly healthy and happy. If it weren't for formula, adoptive parents and dads wouldn't be able to feed their babies. I also have girl-friends who just couldn't breast-feed because it hurt them so badly- to the point of their nipples bleeding every time. So it really is a personal choice. But pediatricians will tell you that mothers milk is the best and healthiest. I would recommend either to anyone, depending on the circumstances and the needs of the parents/child.

Linda - posted on 04/28/2009

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Quoting Linda:

I'd probably breast feed only if I wasn't a modern day mommy. I love bottles!!!!! I do pump milk (which is time consuming), but I think it's worth it for the baby and will save us some money since I already bought a pump with my last baby. I say share the joy of feeding with others! Take advantage of this wonderful creation... the bottle!


I should say I had some problems keeping a schedule with my job with my first child.  I supplemented with formula a good deal.  I say whatever works.  Keep them fed and keep them healthy.  There are so many ways to bond with your child and only a few of options for feeding.  Do what works for you and love that baby with all your heart.

Linda - posted on 04/28/2009

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Quoting Stacy:

as long as your are feeding your kid who cares!


You said it!!!!!

Linda - posted on 04/28/2009

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I'd probably breast feed only if I wasn't a modern day mommy. I love bottles!!!!! I do pump milk (which is time consuming), but I think it's worth it for the baby and will save us some money since I already bought a pump with my last baby. I say share the joy of feeding with others! Take advantage of this wonderful creation... the bottle!

Odette - posted on 04/28/2009

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It took me two weeks to get the hang of breastfeeding. So it doesn't come naturally to everyone. But keeping at it made it all worthwhile.

Odette - posted on 04/28/2009

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I forgot to mention how quickly I got my waistline back and to below my starting weight thanks to breastfeeding :-)



Took less than 2 months.

Laura - posted on 04/28/2009

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I prefer breastfeeding because of many reasons, but don't judge mommies who chose not to breastfeed. It's a personal choice!

Breastfed babies bond more with their moms? I don't think so... I think people confuse that for attachment. Breastfed babies tend, but not always, to be more attached to their mothers.

Odette - posted on 04/28/2009

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I know that many women have no choice but to bottle feed due to their circumstances. I read a lot on the subject when I was pregnant and after seeing all the benefits of breastfeeding for my baby's health, I decided to try my best to breastfeed.



He is now 2 years old and in those two years, he has only been sick once (stomach virus which he picked up when visiting his 95 yr old great-grandmother in a nursing home). The virus only lasted 24 hrs and other than that he's been as healthy as a horse. I put it down to breastfeeding.



Also, I read that there are substances in breastmilk that have not even been identified yet. So formula is definitely not EQUAL to breastmilk.

Nalini - posted on 04/28/2009

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Lorna, I'm truly sorry for the pain you went through. I don't think anyone is saying that bottlefeeding makes you a horrible mother. You should definitely do what's right for you and your child. My son was breastfed and still has a close bond to his father, grandparents, etc. I don't think breastfeeding is selfish, nor do I think that not breastfeeding (especially in your case where you were unable) is selfish or particularly short-sided. However, having said that, there are medically proven benefits to feeding breastmilk over formula. I, like I said earlier, am a baby who grew up on formula and turned out just fine lol BUT, I will say, it's not just the breastfeeding that creates close bond, it's probably also the skin to skin contact which you can also do with a bottle...anyway, I know this is a sensitive issue to all, both bottle feeding and breastfeeding have benefits to baby and mother (especially if mother or baby are unable to breastfeed) so it is important we all be sensitive to other people and their situations when posting. :)

Nalini - posted on 04/28/2009

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I personally was bottlefed as a child, but I breastfed my child as long as he would let me (about a year and he got bored). I will say that breastfeeding is a WONDERFUL bonding experience, it does have immunobenefits as one of the mothers listed as well. Furthermore, it helps to teach the child to regulate how much he eats and has been linked to less incidences of obesity (per my obgyn). Plus, you always have it with you, it never spoils, and you never have to sterilize or reheat milk EVER. The downside is you're waking up every 2-3 hours to feed and your husband cannot breastfeed the baby. There are definite pluses, but minuses as well. If you are going to breastfeed, I DO suggest that you have your child learn to use a bottle even if you are pumping and using your own breastmilk. Mine refused which meant if I had anything to do that would last for more than 4 hours, he refused the bottle and preferred to starve himself. My son's still a pretty stubborn eater though, so in retrospect, I'm not surprised lol

Sarah - posted on 04/28/2009

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Breastfeeding. Its better for the baby, cheaper, easier meaning that you don't have to mix and warm up formula in the middle of the night. Plus its great for bonding with your baby. I breastfed both of my boys and if I had to do it all again, I would.

Sarah - posted on 04/28/2009

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Breastfeeding. Its better for the baby, cheaper, easier meaning that you don't have to mix and warm up formula in the middle of the night. Plus its great for bonding with your baby. I breastfed both of my boys and if I had to do it all again, I would.

Christine - posted on 04/28/2009

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I feel very strongly about at least two weeks of breast milk, for health reasons, but if it comes from a bottle, it doesn't really matter. My son is four months and because of breastfeeding has been able to hold off on his heart surgery this long. We were able to add formula to the breastmilk to double up. This is only because he had a very hard time gaining weight. For healthy babies, there is probably not much difference when you find the right formula. I have pumped since he was about a month old, which was hard at the beginning because I liked our alone time and it feels better when the baby feeds off of you than when you pump, but now I appreciate the convenience of pumping and using a bottle. Either way, try breastfeeding, or pumping and a bottle and see what your body and the baby decides. You never know until the baby is here!

Christine - posted on 04/28/2009

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I feel very strongly about at least two weeks of breast milk, for health reasons, but if it comes from a bottle, it doesn't really matter. My son is four months and because of breastfeeding has been able to hold off on his heart surgery this long. We were able to add formula to the breastmilk to double up. This is only because he had a very hard time gaining weight. For healthy babies, there is probably not much difference when you find the right formula. I have pumped since he was about a month old, which was hard at the beginning because I liked our alone time and it feels better when the baby feeds off of you than when you pump, but now I appreciate the convenience of pumping and using a bottle. Either way, try breastfeeding, or pumping and a bottle and see what your body and the baby decides. You never know until the baby is here!

Jakki - posted on 04/28/2009

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Sigh... I totally loved breastfeeding my 3 kids. It was the happiest moments of my day. It never hurt. It was completely convenient. it was alround a terrific experience.



I breastfed my last child until she was three (she's now 4) and I can't describe the intense physical bond between us, even more than with the first (12 months breastfed) and the 2nd (18 months).



If you can do it - do it!

Jo - posted on 04/28/2009

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I have 3 kids and have breast fed them all, and I am still feeding my 7 mth old. I loved the bonding and everyone has always commented on how quickly I ot my wasit back after having a baby...this is due to breastfeeding as it helps to contract your uterus. It is so quick and easy and you don't have to worry about carting bottles, formula etc around. My children never get sick, they have had a few 24 hr bugs and that is it, even when all their cousins and friends are sick. Breastfeeding works for me, however it is a very personal choice and one that only a mother can make.

Mel - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Courtney:



Quoting Tina:

I have bottle fed both my children because I did not have enough milk for their demand. I also get very annoyed with people that jam 'breastfeeding' down your throat. When my daughter was 6 months old and I went to a chemist to buy a tin of formula the nurse gave me a card with a lactation consultant's name on it and said that she would like me to go and see her. I felt like sending her a tin of formula, she made me so mad.






Tina I am sorry that happened! that was very rude. Everyone needs to respect your personal choices. It is not fair to "ram Breastfeeding or bottle feeding on anyone.





 



gosh i feel for you. especially with your chld being 6 months! i switched mine to formula at 2 weeks even tho i expressed for her eveeyr now and then for another week or 2. bottle feeding is best for weight gain and so that mums can get a break and dad and others can help out with feeds! sorry you had to go through this.

Kimmurra - posted on 04/27/2009

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I agree w/the prior post...it's highly overrated! I've done both and having both experiences, they both have benefits and drawbacks especially when you have multiple children! Do whatever works best for your situation.

[deleted account]

I nursed both of my children (My first for 9 months exclusive and the other for 6 months exclusive). I could not have done it with out support from my mother and my husband and also by reading every book I could about nursing. My experience was wonderful & positive, my children were never sick and only went to the dr for well visits during their first year +. Nursing is a personal choice and it was easier for me because I was fortunate enough to stay at home; I don't know if I could have done it if I had to pump everyday. I think whatever keeps the mother less stressed is the best thing - whether it be bottles or nursing.

Jennifer - posted on 04/27/2009

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Just a note... the juandice actually occurs before the milk comes in, when there is only the colostrum. it is not enough to get the system going to flush the bile from the liver, and the jaundice sets in. once your milk comes in the jaundice is not an issue.

Courtney - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Tina:

I have bottle fed both my children because I did not have enough milk for their demand. I also get very annoyed with people that jam 'breastfeeding' down your throat. When my daughter was 6 months old and I went to a chemist to buy a tin of formula the nurse gave me a card with a lactation consultant's name on it and said that she would like me to go and see her. I felt like sending her a tin of formula, she made me so mad.



Tina I am sorry that happened! that was very rude. Everyone needs to respect your personal choices. It is not fair to "ram Breastfeeding or bottle feeding on anyone.

Courtney - posted on 04/27/2009

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Okay Erinn after reading all the other postings I am not sure I want to say to much! I have 4 children they all have been breastfed, however when I had to return to work my oldest two children were both bottle fed and breastfed. I enjoyed my time nursing my children,but my husband also enjoyed being about to give the girls a bottle occasionally. There are health benefits, financial benefits, and convience benefits. However you need to do whatever makes you feel the most comfortable. Nursing is a wonderful experience if you can do it. My sister in law could not she tried with her first child then again with her 5th child. Both times the babies were failing to thrive. she did not produce more than a few ounces. Please read everyones postings as just there feelings on the matter and not that one way is better than the other. As long as you feed your baby with love, hold your baby, and generally take care of the baby He or she will be fine. The bond will be there either way! I hope that you have not been discouraged by all the opinions on both sides of the question. You will make the decision that is best for you.

Tina - posted on 04/27/2009

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I have bottle fed both my children because I did not have enough milk for their demand. I also get very annoyed with people that jam 'breastfeeding' down your throat. When my daughter was 6 months old and I went to a chemist to buy a tin of formula the nurse gave me a card with a lactation consultant's name on it and said that she would like me to go and see her. I felt like sending her a tin of formula, she made me so mad.

Heather - posted on 04/27/2009

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Well, I bottlefed my growing girl and she's as healthy as a horse. I had two breast biopsies before I got pregnant, and there was too much scar tissue for one of my breasts to produce milk and milk only came in on half of my other breast. I would have loved to breastfeed but couldn't. I suffer from Fibrocystic breast disease that causes fibroid tumors to occur very frequently. My daughter and I bonded very well and she is still very much a Mommy's girl. I think it is a decision that you have to make on your own and don't let anyone make you feel guilty for it. The formula today is very different than what we was around when we were babies. I am a bottle-baby since my Mom also suffered with the breast tumors. I am very intelligent and suffered only allergies brought on my wood smoke as a child. Other than that, no problems. I will say that my daughter does suffer with Eczema (OMG, how do you spell that!!!!) but her Daddy has Asthma so it was expected. I have one friend who breastfed both her children until they were 2 and another friend who bottlefed her kids and they are both happy healthy children with no behavioral problems. So whatever you want to do is up to you.

Good luck to those that are making this difficult choice and I wish you and your children all the best, no matter what you decide.

Cheers!

Cassandra - posted on 04/27/2009

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Breastfeeding.!! My pediatrician told me that the reason my children were hardly ever in his office was because I breastfed all of them for over a year. There is a protein in breastmilk that cannot be reproduced commercially, and it is directly related to brain development. We really cannot improve on what God created.

Amanda - posted on 04/27/2009

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I didn't have a choice in the matter I found out I have a cyst in my breast. I resented the fact that everyone I knew was breastfeeding and people would make me feel terrible about it. Like your permanantly damaging your child, which is not true. Bottlefeeding is just as good and with all the advances your baby can get the same amount of nutrients from the bottle as form the breast. If you do decide to go bottle don't let anyone make you feel like you are a bad mom or you are not taking good care of your baby!!!

Kathryn - posted on 04/27/2009

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I think there are some women in this forum that are taking comments WAY to seriously. Most of these comments aren't intended to judge any specific person. If you like to breastfeed, then do it. If not use a bottle. But for someone to get grouchy because somebody doesn't agree with them is really immature. Grow up and agree to disagree.

Glory - posted on 04/27/2009

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breastfeed is still and always be the best...if you are a working mom,take time to pump out the milk from your breast and store it in the freezer..

Mindy - posted on 04/27/2009

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Breastfeeding!!! There's tons of reasons why! It's healthiest for mother and baby alike! It helps build the baby's immune system, it's a wonderful bonding experience, it's cheeper than formula, and it's designed perfectly for baby's tummy!Besides, it's what boobs were made for!!! :) Google 101 Reasons to Breastfeed, there's a PDF document that outlines all the reasons! Plus, it's totally rewarding! :)

Debbie - posted on 04/27/2009

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I breast fed all my children. They were all different, with different needs. For one it was both, for another it was first nursing and at four months weened onto the bottle, the third was for only about 2-3 weeks, and it was bottle too. So each child is your and childs best interest decision. But i felt breast milk was the best. I wish it had lasted longer for all my children.

Maria - posted on 04/27/2009

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I tried both. I didn't have enough mother's milk to give my youngest, so I ended up bottlefeeding him. Also, find out first if your baby is not allergic to your breastmilk. If not, it's a wonderful bonding experience. If your baby is, then your option is to bottlefeed.

Amanda - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Kristen:



Quoting Jennifer:

personaly i read that the breast milk only protects the child for six months and that the first few is most important because it contains the colastrum (which has the mother's antibodies). i did breast for about four months with formula once and week and gradually increased bottle and decreased breast.





That is NOT true...Breastfeeding provides many benefits for as long as it's continued. It's reccomended that you breastfeed for the first year.





I have read up to 2 years and even beyound that if you are comfortable doing it.

Amanda - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Kristen:



Quoting Jennifer:

personaly i read that the breast milk only protects the child for six months and that the first few is most important because it contains the colastrum (which has the mother's antibodies). i did breast for about four months with formula once and week and gradually increased bottle and decreased breast.





That is NOT true...Breastfeeding provides many benefits for as long as it's continued. It's reccomended that you breastfeed for the first year.





I have read up to 2 years and even beyound that if you are comfortable doing it.

Amanda - posted on 04/27/2009

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about sterilizing bottles, we use the ones with the liners so you only need to sterilize the nipple. they are small so it is pretty easy. my mom taught me an easy way. boil water i an electric kettle and pour it over the nipples that are in a colander sitting in a large bowl. let them sit and drain. we always put the liners right in the bottles and we use bottled water instead of boiling so really it takes just a few seconds to make a bottle. probably takes less time than it takes a breast feeding mother to grab the boppy pillow undo the nursing bra, position the baby, get him latched on and begin.

[deleted account]

Quoting Jean:



Quoting Joy:




Quoting Sarah:

Breastfeeding is NOT over rated! Not only the nutritional aspect, but the bonding you will feel is stronger than you would with the bottle. the only thing people tend to leave out...it's not that easy. there will be days the baby will act like he has never nursed. you have to stick to it or you won't produce enough milk and it won't work for you. Breast is Best!!!








So you're saying I'm not as bonded with my bottle fed son as you are with your breastfed babies?  I don't buy that for one second.










Thats the thing that irks me too, some people think you don't have as great of a bond if you breastfeed, I have the closest bond possible with my son. My partner also has a great bond with his Daddy as his Daddy is able to feed him too.






 I would have loved to breastfeed my son but due to medical reasons, it just wasn't possible.






I had a lady come up to me at my mother in law's hair salon asking my why I wasn't breastfeeding my son. I had expressed breastmilk in his bottle. Then when my son was 3 months, I had to top up his milk with formula as my milk declined.






Its also not that hard to clean, sterilize a bottle or make up a bottle during the night for your child. It doesn't take that long.





I agree Jean.  We used to pre-make a few bottles for overnight.  When he would wake I would sit a bottle in a bowl of warm water.  By the time his diaper was changed, the bottle was just the right temp for feeding him.  As for the sterilizing, every bottle I ever bought only said to boil to sterilize once...before the first use.  After that, I just did a sinkful of baby dishes each day.  No biggie...took maybe 10 minutes out of my life each day to clean them all.

[deleted account]

Quoting Joy:



Quoting Sarah:

Breastfeeding is NOT over rated! Not only the nutritional aspect, but the bonding you will feel is stronger than you would with the bottle. the only thing people tend to leave out...it's not that easy. there will be days the baby will act like he has never nursed. you have to stick to it or you won't produce enough milk and it won't work for you. Breast is Best!!!






So you're saying I'm not as bonded with my bottle fed son as you are with your breastfed babies?  I don't buy that for one second.






Thats the thing that irks me too, some people think you don't have as great of a bond if you breastfeed, I have the closest bond possible with my son. My partner also has a great bond with his Daddy as his Daddy is able to feed him too.



 I would have loved to breastfeed my son but due to medical reasons, it just wasn't possible.



I had a lady come up to me at my mother in law's hair salon asking my why I wasn't breastfeeding my son. I had expressed breastmilk in his bottle. Then when my son was 3 months, I had to top up his milk with formula as my milk declined.



Its also not that hard to clean, sterilize a bottle or make up a bottle during the night for your child. It doesn't take that long.

Shelagh - posted on 04/27/2009

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I mainly bottle-fed my first child, and totally breastfed my second. Here's some thoughts.

1) Breastfeeding - plus points are not needing to sterilise bottles, always having it 'on tap' and not having to make up bottles in the middle of the night, the feeling that you are doing what nature intended, the health benefits to the mother and the baby. Minus points are - no-one else can do it, so it's hard to get a break, it can be awkward in public situations. Bottle feeding - plus points - anyone can do it, so Mum can take a break, you can see how much the baby has taken. Minus points - sterilising, wasting milk if the baby isn't hungry. At the end of the day, the choice is yours. It's worth bearing in mind that if you start to breast feed, you can always bottle feed later, but it's pretty difficult to go back to breast feeding if you start with the bottle. My advice would be - if you're not sure, give breast feeding a try, you can always switch if it's not for you.

Kristen - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Jennifer:

personaly i read that the breast milk only protects the child for six months and that the first few is most important because it contains the colastrum (which has the mother's antibodies). i did breast for about four months with formula once and week and gradually increased bottle and decreased breast.


That is NOT true...Breastfeeding provides many benefits for as long as it's continued. It's reccomended that you breastfeed for the first year.

Kristen - posted on 04/27/2009

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I tried breastfeeding with both my daughters...Unfortunately it didn't work out for us. I'm expecting baby #3 and am once again going to try. I feel whatever is best for you and your baby is the right choice. You can still bond with your baby while bottle feeding...ALWAYS hold them to feed Never prop their bottles. Good Luck!

Sara - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Wendy:



Quoting Trina:

I'm sure this question was not meant to cause a huge debate, HOWEVER I am so tired of hearing asinine comments from breast feeding mothers. Something to take into consideration when you're spewing your holier-than-thou attitude on bottle feeding mothers: regardless of what you choose to believe, NOT EVERYONE IS CAPABLE OF BREAST FEEDING!!!!!! Your comments are hurtful and insensitive and meant solely to make a mother who made a different choice than you feel inferior.






Trina, I'm sorry you feel that way. Many breastfeeding moms are not trying to make "holier-than-thou" statements, however they are trying to express some of the information which research has affirmed.






I'm aware that not everyone can nurse their children. According to the WHO (World Health Organization) 1-2% of women cannot breastfeed their babies. Additionally the WHO, along with some other organizations, have stated the order of child feeding preference: 1) Breastfeeding 2) Breast Milk Feeding (mom's milk) 3) Breast Milk Feeding (from milk bank or screened direct donor) 4) Infant Formula Feeding.






 






Nevertheless, many parents are not told about all the options when is comes to infant feeding. Additionally, I'm not in your circumstance, I didn't go through what you when through and cannot state with fact what I would have done.






However, according to my experiences, education (in lactation) and research I originally answered the question about what I prefer and why. It was all about me and so are most of the other posters comments. You have every right to your feeling, and should be able to express them. However, many of the comments were not meant to be, as you say "hurtful and insensitive and meant solely to make a mother who made a different choice than you feel inferior", they where answering the question with an "I" statements which is bases on their stories and their experiences. ((HUGS))





I was only able to BF my daughter for 4 weeks...but let me ask you this:  Do you know how much donor breast milk costs?  I'd have to rob a bank to pay for it, so I don't think that's a realistic option for a lot of mom's that bottlefeed for whatever reason.



Also, why all this debate?  It's a personal choice, and I think being a mom is hard enough without the additional pressure of "if you bottlefeed you are doing you child a disservice" attitudes.  We all know that breast is best, but in the end does it really matter if you bottlefeed or BF as long as it comes from a place of love?

Beth - posted on 04/27/2009

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I breastfed three and it was easy--no bottles, no formula, inexpensive, always ready. My children were healthier than their friends who were not breastfed--I passed on my immunities. I had some awesome nurse-midwives who advised me through mastitis with no antibiotics. I just can't imagine any other way. It is also relaxing and I think that is the key--you as the mom have to relax to make it work and then it becomes a good bonding time for both mom and child.

Amanda - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Karrie:

My first child wouldn't breastfeed despite lots of help, and my second wanted to but because of the medication I was on, I couldn't. I truely feel like I missed out on that bonding experience. But bottle feeding can be done by anyone, freeing up more time for you! Each baby is different. Listen to your baby.



isnt that ironic, same situation with me. first baby hated it and the second wanted to but I couldnt (no milk) I wouldnt feel bad, it is just as easy to bond while bottle feeding, just hold your baby close to your body while you feed

Sarah - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Joy:



Quoting Sarah:

Breastfeeding is NOT over rated! Not only the nutritional aspect, but the bonding you will feel is stronger than you would with the bottle. the only thing people tend to leave out...it's not that easy. there will be days the baby will act like he has never nursed. you have to stick to it or you won't produce enough milk and it won't work for you. Breast is Best!!!






So you're saying I'm not as bonded with my bottle fed son as you are with your breastfed babies?  I don't buy that for one second.






I don't think that is true either. I have 4 children. Some were breastfed and some were bottlefed. I was able to bond with all of them. I think if you have only brestfed and feel that bond with your baby, it is special. But I don't think those mothers who say that the bond is stronger with breastfeeding has also bottlefed a baby. If they had they would realize that it is just as special.

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