Liquid gold, momma’s milk whatever you choose to call breast milk is God’s gift to babies. It’s really all a baby needs- a whole meal all in one but is breastfeeding for you?
From your very first prenatal visit you’re encouraged to breastfeed. Your doctor, nurses, friends, WIC, and even strangers will push you to breastfeed. All new mothers face the decision of should they breastfeed or use formula. Breastfeeding has many benefits for mom and baby but it also has its challenges.
Some challenges include finding a comfortable position for you and baby, knowing how frequently to feed, getting a comfortable latch, managing nipple tenderness, infections like mastitis, and having to breastfeed when you feel ill yourself. Also, it might just be inconvenient to your lifestyle or your the type that just doesn’t feel comfortable feeding in public if you have to and that’s fine. Breastfeeding isn’t for everyone.
It’s rough in the beginning but breastmilk is what’s best for babies, yet it’s not the only factor in an infant well-being. A mother’s mental health is quite important. A mother’s mental health can affect her child’s well-being. So if you or someone you know feels overwhelmed by breastfeeding formula feeding your baby might be what’s best.
Once you make your decision it’s also ok if you don’t stick to it. Do what’s best for you and your baby. The more you know about the benefits of breastfeeding, the more you’ll want to try it.
For moms on the fence about breastfeeding there are many benefits to breastfeeding. Some pros are that breastmilk is a natural medicine and can help with your child build a strong immune system. Breastfed babies are usually less sick, have less earaches, allergies and stomach problems.
Breastmilk is always ready at the right temperature. It tightens your uterus and for me it helped me get my “snap back” because you burn more calories breastfeeding.
Not everyone has the time or can produce breastmilk but if you can you will absolutely understand that the connection/bond you have with your baby during breastfeeding is priceless. Gazing in to each others eyes and building trust makes me grateful to be able to breastfeed and give my child that security that momma has always got them and will fulfill their every need.
Also, I’m always go go go go and breastfeeding makes me stop and enjoy the infant stage. It goes by so fast so I want to enjoy it while it lasts. I used to get annoyed by constantly having to whip my tit out but now I take as we both must have needed that moment to just rest and my attitude change has made the experience more enjoyable.
My favorite benefit is there is less buying, washing, sterilizing, testing and measuring of bottles or stressing about forgetting formula but by no means it it free or less time consuming. I’m tired of seeing the word free tossed around with breastfeeding when it’s not true. I really wish I had kept all my receipts for all the storage bags and replacement parts I purchased from the very beginning so I could show you guys how much breastfeeding cost me. Take it from me it’s not free.
Breastfeeding costs you money and time. It takes a lot of preparing ahead, sterilizing equipment, special supplies, and it’s only convenient in the middle of the night because even pumping at work takes a lot of time and effort.
The truth is breastfeeding demands significantly more work from mom than dad. This can be overwhelming for any mom so if you are considering breastfeeding I encourage you to talk to your partner and split up the other responsibilities like baths, diaper changes, and laundry.
That way you don’t get fatigue from waking up all hours of the night from feedings and running yourself low trying to do all the chores. This will stress you out and trigger depression. I know from experience because I feel like breastfeeding with no help in other areas caused some of my postpartum depression and I don’t want any other new moms to experience that because it’s awful.
Formula is a good substitute for breast milk but it is not equivalent. Don’t let your family or friends or even random strangers make make you feel guilty for whichever you decide.
Some will try and convince you that you have to breastfeed or that formula is bad but in all actuality your baby will let you know if they can’t digest the formula or if breastmilk isn’t filling them up. In the end their little fragile bodies really make the choice for us moms.
I hope my real take on breastfeeding vs formula helps you make a better informed decision on if breastfeeding is right for you. At the end of the day the decision is YOURS not anyone else’s. I’m going on 13 months breastfeeding and it’s definitely a labor of love that I’ve had to adjust my whole entire life around. I can’t give enough thanks to all my supporters who didn’t mom shame me when I breastfeed around them and my work who provided a encouraging and supportive atmosphere for me to continue breastfeeding when I returned to work.
My goal was to breastfeed for at least a year and I’ve surpassed that so I’m happy with that. Did you breastfeeding or formula feed and why?