When you’re pregnant you are constantly being told that breast is best – which maybe true in some cases, but not for me. we’re constantly being told that babies that aren’t breastfed will have a low IQ or a weaker immune system and I’m here to tell you why – for me – bottle beat breast and why it is okay to NOT breastfeed.
Of course breastfeeding is an amazing thing and for those that want to do it and are able to do it it is an amazing bonding experience between mother and child and naturally, full of great benefits for both. But personally I didn’t feel comfortable at all with the prospect of breast feeding in public or at home and around family. Amelia hit all of her milestones early and is incredibly switched on picks up new things so quickly and easily which is why I know being bottle fed hasn’t affected her IQ or any other nonsense. She has also never been poorly (touch wood) or suffered with digestive problems so I don’t think it has weakened her immune system either. Weaning was never a problem as she always eats well and her stomach has never had a problem with formula or food now. This is why I know that bottle feeding was the right choice for us. It also gave the chance for Jack and Amelia to bind whilst giving me time to myself whilst he handled a fussy Amelia that wanted feeding. Now that’s not to say that I think she would have been worse off if she had been breast fed, I am just merely indicating how bottle feeding really hasn’t cause her issues in her life so far.
It is very wrong how society and other breast feeding mothers make mothers that bottle feed feel guilty when our main concern should be that our children re happy and healthy – not how they get that way. People forget that some mothers try as they may, are just unable to breast feed and they shouldn’t be punished for that. Just as mothers whom don’t feel comfortable with breast feeding should also not be criticised.
I liked using bottles, of course it had its down sides at times like the monotonous washing, sterilising, then making, but over all they worked well with our lifestyle. Bottle feeding has the benefit of being able to pass baby over to dad or grandparents so you can have 5 minutes to do some house work, take a shower or even just sit down with your hands free. On a slightly selfish note, I didn’t really fancy wandering around with leaking and sore breasts and in all honesty, it made me feel like a dairy cow all the times I did feed her at night! I never really worried about the extra nutrients Amelia may or may not be missing out on because it was never apparent that it was having a big affect on her.
I also really love that Amelia sleeps ALL night and if I want to sleep in until 10am, she actually allows this and I put it down to not being over clingy and reliant on the breast for comfort more than anything. A lot of people at her playgroup that breastfed have said that their babies don’t sleep well at night, even now when they’re over a year old. Don’t get me wrong Amelia and I still have an amazing bond and mother-daughter connection and to be honest were pretty inseparable so being bottle fed hasn’t affected that at all either.
We should all respect and encourage whatever feeding choice a mother makes and be glad that they’re doing what is best for their child. I’m happy to see a baby being bottle fed out and about and I’m happy to see babies being breast fed whilst out and about so whichever decision you make or have made then good on you and don’t let other people make you feel bad about the choices you made for your child – I know I don’t!
Did you chose bottle, breast or a combination of both?