Breastfeeding Guilt, Part 2

by jessicaturner on January 12, 2009

Today, Elias is six months old! That means I made my breastfeeding goal! :)
Several of you have emailed me asking what I decided to do about the whole breastfeeding guilt topic. We have started to transition Elias to formula, and he is doing well. In the past week, I reduced 50% of my pumping sessions most days (just twice during the day instead of four times). He is nursing in the morning, at night and sometimes at lunch, if I go to his day care, and getting one pumped bottle a day (two formula bottles). 
However, if I am home, he really wants to nurse. Consequently, I nursed all weekend. Lol. I don’t think that helped the weaning process, did it? :) We are doing things gradually and not getting too hung up on arbitrary deadlines that I set for myself. I plan to continue to nurse in the morning and at night for at least a few more months, in hopes of getting him through the sick season – particularly because he is in daycare. 
Thank you to all of you who shared your thoughts on breastfeeding and guilt. It was incredibly encouraging to read all of your comments and emails. 

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Jess :) January 12, 2009 at 1:19 pm

Congrats on your goal, Jess!! I’m so proud of you!! You’ll have to keep us all updated as to how it continues to go ~ which I know you will!

Have a wonderful day!

Love,
Jess :)

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The Pelts January 12, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Hey, Jessica!

I’ve been watching your blog for a while now, and enjoy it very much!

One thing I learned after I stopped the whole pumping thing is that you can mix breast milk and formula in the same bottle. (with the advice of your pediatrician, of course, but mine is who gave me this info). My daughter is now 2 1/2, but when she was born she never wanted me directly, so I pumped for her. That meant pumping into the bottle that fit on the bottom of the pump, then into the bottle Saralynn used, etc. By the time she was 4 weeks old, my supply was running low and she was no longer satisfied. I went back to the doctor with her, and was told to start formula. Talk about guilt! I couldn’t satisfy her for more than a month.

Anyway, I say all that to say that my doctor told me with the next baby, if we were in the same boat, to freeze my milk in 1 or 2 oz. increments and add it to formula bottles. That keeps you providing your milk to your child longer.

Something to consider.

Blessings,
Mary Beth
http://peltfamily.blogspot.com

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Rebecca (Sam's wife) January 12, 2009 at 2:44 pm

congrats! i think it might be harder to give up those morning and night feedings than you think it will be. well that is how i am starting to feel. that is funny about nursing him all weekend. he loves his mommmy!! my girl is the same way.

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Julia January 12, 2009 at 3:31 pm

yay!! congrats on reaching your goal! keep it going. it will happen with he and you are ready!

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Angela W January 12, 2009 at 3:38 pm

Good for you and Elias! I don’t think it would do any good getting hung up on when to stop. Just do gradual like you have been, if you nurse him more than usual, no big deal!

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Angela W January 12, 2009 at 3:41 pm

Oh and reading Mary Beth’s comment, I also pumped and froze even if it was just an oz or 2. I hated wasted the bags, but it worked!

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Lauren January 12, 2009 at 4:19 pm

Wow, I cannot believe it has been 6 monthes already! Congrats on meeting your goal. I love everyones comment. I completely forgot about mixing milk & formula to wean your baby. I guess you really do forget things between kids.

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Jung A January 12, 2009 at 4:46 pm

keep at it! it’ll happen…especially since he’s started solids. eventually i weened my daughter just by breastfeeding once before bedtime. great job for keeping it up!

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Amanda January 12, 2009 at 5:29 pm

I don’t think that you should feel guilty, I think that you do the best you can and do what works for you and your baby. I was going to try to breastfeed my son for a year and at about 6 or 7 months he decided that he liked the bottle better. So I pumped and fed for a couple more months but I had to supplement with formula (I mixed too, I think it’s easier on their tummys). Now I am expecting my second son in about 3 weeks and the thought of breast feeding/pumping etc. is a little overwhelming.
Good Luck
Amanda

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Open your Eyes. January 12, 2009 at 6:00 pm

Well done on reaching your goal :)

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RN and OSHP January 12, 2009 at 6:33 pm

No need to feel guilty! You do what feels right for you and Elias and you have already made it farther than most women especially given the fact you work Full time!! Good Job!

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Brooke January 12, 2009 at 9:51 pm

Congratulations on reaching your goal. It’s a lot harder than they make it look isn’t it? Good on you for sticking in there!!

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Anonymous January 12, 2009 at 10:20 pm

Hi Mama!
My now 12 year old daughter was such a happy nurser that I actually had to avoid sitting in our favorite rocker because if I did and denied her the opportunity…she was not a happy little girl. Funny now, but frustrating then cuz she was such a snuggle bunny and I loved that time with her.
good luck and God Bless!
Michelle

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Anonymous January 12, 2009 at 11:12 pm

Wow – Breastfeeding and working – I couldn’t do that as my pumping didn’t go well at all.
Breastfeed AS LONG as you want … or don’t. 6 mos is a very good goal and as he’s enjoying it and you are too – why not longer?
My 1st born was b’fd till 5.5 mos and my 2nd born 15.5 mos. When other foods are added in it cuts into the amount that they want to nurse. But it’s a great comfort for your son and you too.
Keep up the great job …

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jayfersgirl January 14, 2009 at 7:36 am

Way to go! I totally agree with you — just go with what works and don’t worry about arbitrary deadlines you put on yourself…I’m learning to do that as well:)

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Sherri January 18, 2009 at 9:18 pm

Congratulations on reaching your goal! It is something to be proud of.
I have 4 boys, the first 2 I bottle fed, the second 2 I breast fed. After breastfeeding my younger boys, I felt (and still feel) terribly guilty about not being successful the first two times around.
Are you quitting because you reached your goal and that is enough for you? Or is there another reason? If you and he are both happy still breastfeeding, I say keep going. I read that you are making your own baby food, which is also something you should be commended for! As he begins to eat real food, his nursing will cut back.
Of course you do what you think is best and what works for you. The guilt though is a normal part of the process. Go with your gut, it is usually right.

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