I chose NOT to breastfeed

formula feedingI knew before I was pregnant with my first 9 years ago that I wasn’t going to breastfeed and let me tell you, people tried to make me feel like an asshole almost everyday about my decision.

I remember being in labor sitting with the nurse before being admitted, she was asking me all kinds of questions filling out her forms. Then, the next question, which wasn’t even really a question to begin with. She looked at me and said, “And you’re going to breastfeed” She didn’t wait for a response, just checked off her paper. I remember looking over at my husband thinking and so it begins. I looked up at her and said no quietly. That’s when it all started. She immediately looked at me with a shocked, disgusted look on her face and asked if I knew what the “dangers” were to my baby if I formula fed. She went on and on for a while until it was time to take me to my room. A few hours {9, to be exact} later and my baby boy was born. As they put┬áhim on my chest, skin to skin and we were admiring this brand new human that we created they told me I could go ahead and put him on my breast. Again, I had to tell them I was not breastfeeding, that I had brought formula for him. They fought me again, explaining why “breast is best” until they saw that I was not changing my mind.

Those 3 days in the hospital made me miserable. I felt like I was being bullied. With every shift change I had to try to justify my reasons to the nurses and listen to the same facts about breastfeeding I had already been told 25882 times. As a new mom, I can say those nurses and doctors made me feel like a really shitty person for a few days. Even after leaving the hospital, I would get comments from the pediatrician, nurses, even complete strangers basically acting like I was choosing to feed my child poison.

It’s not that I don’t support breastfeeding, or know the many benefits to both mom and baby. I don’t have some fancy way of putting it, my reason for not breastfeeding is simply because I didn’t want to. I did not breastfeed any of my kids.
Am I a shitty mom for it? NO FUCKING WAY. Am I less of a mother because I chose to feed my babies out of a bottle instead of my breasts? HELL FUCKING NO.
Did I bond with my babies? Every day. Are my kids happy and healthy? Very much so.

Breastfeed, formula feed, pump, or do it all, just do what’s best for YOU and your baby and don’t let anyone make you feel like an asshole for it.

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