My friend shared this story with me. I think she did brilliantly to perserve with breastfeeding for 3 months, but it sounds like switching to formula was the right thing to do, for the emotional wellbeing of the family.
She writes: “I had always intended to breastfeed for longer but things just didn’t work out that way. I had Raynauds which was awful. My daughter being prem (almost 6 weeks early) with initially an undeveloped suck and was fed through IV and a Nasal Gastric Tube for over a week. (ed: try theRaynauds Breastwarmers)
Baby would get tired very easily and it was easy to get in a vicious cycle – when she was tired she would not feed well and when she would not feed well she would not sleep. She spent a total of three weeks in hospital. My milk supply was large and fast flowing (possibly affected by expressing) and baby could not cope with the flow, breastfeeding was not a fun or even a particularly tolerable experience.
We persevered and baby had breast milk for 3 months. A Lactation Consultant helped and we did some breastfeeding and the balance was expressed milk. Both baby and I had constant frustration and tears were a frequent occurrence and the norm.
Hubby and I found that the time involved with breastfeeding and other feeding issues was such a dominant part of my relationship with baby (as it is between any mother and baby and why having successful and happy feeding is so important and why I think your site is so great). We felt that our negative feeding experiences were taking time that could be positive and persevering with breast milk was affecting our emotional wellbeing. Since transferring baby to formula, we maximise the quality time that we spend together and we are so much happier, baby is growing and developing beautifully, she is a lovely girl with lots of smiles and laughs (her mum has lots of smiles too!).
I had never looked at breast pumps when I was pregnant as I intended to breastfeed but instead had to express from day 1 – while the breast pump that I purchased from the hospital was cheaper than the shops I have since noted that yours are even cheaper, if I had known….
Who knows, if we have more children in future I may have more success with breastfeeding!”