Normalize Formula Feeding Again

When I was growing up, It was so rare to have or know someone who breastfed their children. Ironically enough, It seemed there was a lot more stay at home moms who never worked also too. This was in the 90’s. To be fair, I don’t think I could name a single one of my friends who had siblings that I can remember ever having them breastfed. I don’t even remember if their mom’s pumped either. It was all about formula feeding at that time.

Fast forward to 2020, I had a child in that year and many of my friends have been having kids for a while before that. A lot of the times you hear about them breastfeeding. Which was almost unheard of when we were growing up. What changed? In the time when I was born to the time when I was having kids, something had to have changed to have such a shift in how we feed our children.

Before I go into my own opinion Chrissy Teigen said it best.
Here is the link to the original tweet and a screen shot for all you folks who don’t want to click away : https://twitter.com/chrissyteigen/status/1333097266710679552 (Not to mention she doesn’t even have Twitter anymore?

I totally understood this for sure. She is not wrong. Something has changed in the last however many years that has made breastfeeding seem to bee superior to formula feeding. There is no doubt that breastfeeding probably has a FEW MORE nutrients then a formula however it is 2020 and I am sure that there are so many advances that they basically are super similar also.

A friend of mine had a child 2 months before we had our son. Her and her husband decided to start with formula right from the beginning. She had mentioned when she gave birth in the hospital that they were a little bit judgey in the sense of “Oh you aren’t going to try breast feeding”. It was pressured in the very beginning which I also had noticed as well. This was a decision that her and her husband had decided on and they were completely pushed back on their decision by these little comments.

When I had given birth to our son, I wanted to try breastfeeding. I wanted to at least give it a go. Early on our son had a small heart beat issue which sorted itself out however we had to stay in the hospital for an extra day because of this. Then we came home for a day due to them kind of lying about us not leaving, And then we went back for 24 hours since he had a bit of jaundice and had to be under lights for 24 hours. We then went home for another day and went back to check up on him that he was doing well and his levels were fine. Now I know, There is so many more health issues that children and babies can have, But for me as a first time mom staying in the hospital alone (My boyfriend went home at night to sleep, stock up on our supplies, and be with our dog) it was a lot. After begin up every 3 hours and him feeling a bit helpless due to obviously not being to help a whole lot with feedings especially, we decided that on the weekend we would go to formula. It helped a lot and I think our sanity was saved a bit. When we went back to the hospital for the check up after his jaundice things, We again were met with a bit of eye rolls when mentioned we had switch to formula.

Being a new parent is stressful. To say the least. Are they fed enough? Are they clean and happy? Are they okay physically? When you have made a decision on whether or not you will breastfeed your baby and are met in the hospital with resistance and a bit of shaming as well it certainly does not make you feel very good. Especially if you and your spouse have thought and made this decision together only to hear it met with such rolling eyes and questions as to why you aren’t doing it.

I stopped breast feeding because it legit stressed me out. From my child being in the hospital more than expected I was worried he wasn’t drinking enough and that isn’t good. It was a lot of pressure just on me and not my boyfriend (not that I want him to have more pressure but you know what I mean). We stopped because I was running on fumes being up in the hospital alone for some time. Once we did this I think some stress did go away that is for sure.

People need to stop thinking “Breast is Best”. Sure it may be a bit more nutrients however there is no right or wrong way. A baby fed is the best. There are many different reasons why someone may not want to choose the breast feeding route. Maybe they are unable to produce enough and supplement with formula, Maybe they have to go back to work due to bills and are unable to breastfeed. They may choose to use formula because they had to use a surrogate and aren’t able to produce milk themselves. Or maybe, just maybe they choose formula because it suits their needs better.

For me, with baby number 2. I may decide to try breastfeeding again. If it wasn’t for me the first time maybe I would have learned a lot before the 2nd child and feel more confident in my abilities. Breastfeeding is hard and there is a lot of tricks to make it successful. I do know that if I decide to breastfeed and switch to formula though, I wont be as hard on myself for making the switch as I did this time. It felt like I was a bit of a failure by switching to formula when I said I would try the breast in the beginning. And if it doesn’t work a second time around I know that I can say I tried. Sometimes formula just better suits a lifestyle or family more than breastfeeding.

All I know for certain, is just because someone may breastfeed or formula feed shouldn’t make them any different. Mom’s who breastfeed shouldn’t look down on mom’s who formula feed and vice versa. Fed is Best, regardless of method.

Do you have kids? If so have you tried breast feeding or formula? Or both?

Let me know in the comments below!

-Stacey

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2 thoughts on “Normalize Formula Feeding Again

  1. This was great to read, Stacey. Thank you for sharing it. I would like formula to be normalised too. Choosing to formula feed was definitely the best decision for me and my family – I didn’t feel ashamed or like a lesser mum because of this choice, but out in public, or in midwife/doctor appointments, I was embarrassed. I’m glad I didn’t do what others wanted me to do, breastfeeding would have taken its toll on my mental health – but being a formula-feeding-mum is quite a lonely experience.

    Like

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