I’ve read so many articles, arguments, comments and posts about the battle between formula feeding and breastfeeding. I’ve heard a lot of comments and suggestions about this and to be honest for me it’s all about the outcome and what suits your baby.
Ok, here’s my two cents on the topic.
- It is a mutual agreement between you and your baby. When I was pregnant with my first child, I was pretty confident that I want to exclusively breastfeed for at least a year. It was my goal and really keen on sticking to it. Then came my beautiful baby, hungry and wanting her milk. At the hospital, I gave her milk straight from the breast. As a first time mother I was clueless on how to properly latch my daughter and did not know it hurts a lot when done incorrectly. By the time I saw the lactation consultant, it was too late, I was sore, tired and also frustrated for not having enough milk. I took Fenugreek, ate a lot of leafy vegetables, drank lots of fluids but the supply just wasn’t enough. My daughter screams out of hunger and that’s when I decided to grab the formula. She was satisfied, I was satisfied and the routine became mix feeding – boob first then bottle. This worked for us. At the end of the day, she’s happy and I was happy too. This lasted for 3 months and she just had formula after.
- Look at the outcome and not on the action. I’ve seen a lot of babies that were formula-fed right from the beginning and they all look as healthy and happy as those who were breastfed and vice versa. In some instances I’ve seen mothers with guilt feelings for not breastfeeding their baby and other times, mothers who breastfeed their child look down on those who don’t. If we can look at the end result, as long as our kids are healthy and happy, we know we are on the right track.
- There is no rule where and when to feed, it’s your baby’s call. This is the tricky part. For bottle-feeding mums, there’s a public acceptance on where and when to feed their child. This has been the “norm” and no one raises an eyebrow if you take out your bottle and baby starts drinking from it. Unfortunately, there are still individuals who (for goodness sake) still discriminate mothers who breastfeed in public. To tackle this a bit more, I’d like to share that I breastfed my second child for 10 months. Personally, I breastfeed in public but use a piece of cloth to cover the exposed part of my breast. When I am at home and female friends, aunts or female cousins visit us, I just whip out my boob and feed my daughter whenever she wants it. I’ve seen some of my friends who breastfeed in public without any cover and I’m fine with it. It’s a personal choice and for me, I’m not comfortable doing it in public without a cover while other mums are ok with it. The bottom line is when the baby is hungry, go for it – covered or not covered. Expect that some people will tell you off but hey your baby needs milk and they’ve got to have it whenever they want. There are people who will accept the action and there are some who will judge you for it. What matters most is what’s best for the baby.
Mothers know best.